The Hunt Brothers

Nelson Bunker and William Herbert Hunt were the heirs of oil tycoon H.L. Hunt. The family was one of the richest in America at the time. In the early 1970’s the family decided to buy silver as a hedge against inflation, and amassed it in great quantity. In the fall of 1979, the Hunt Brothers, … Read more

Plaza Accord and the Devaluation of the US Dollar

Methods of regulating the foreign exchange market – such as fixing currency values to a commodity such as gold, or setting maximum exchange rate fluctuations had proven to too rigid. After the regulatory mechanisms- such as the gold standard, the Bretton Woods Accord and the Smithsonian Agreement – were no longer in place, the currency … Read more

Bretton Woods

The Bretton Woods Accord was established in 1944, towards the end of World War II. The United Nations Monetary Fund convened in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, with representatives from the United States, Great Britain and France. The Bretton Woods Accord established the policy of pegging currencies against the U.S. dollar in order to stabilise the … Read more

Buttonwood Agreement

In 1790, the nation’s first Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, issued $80 million in bonds to pay for the Revolutionary War. On May 17, 1792 a group of twenty-four merchants and brokers gathered under a buttonwood tree at 68 Wall Street in lower Manhattan, New York City, and agreed to trade the securities. The … Read more

Asian Currency Crisis

A financial crisis that started in July 1997 in Thailand, and affected currencies, stock markets, and other asset prices of several Asian countries, many part of the East Asian Tigers. The Thailand Baht was devalued by as much as 48%, dropping to close to a 100% fall by New Year of 1998. The Indonesian Rupiah … Read more