© 2019 by Henry Thornton. 

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December 20, 2019

Check out Pete's 2018 exhibition of EcoArt here.

Geoffrey Blainey

Oil paint on canvas

550 cm X 750 cm

Signed bottom left, 2019

Geoffrey is the artist's great friend, in my view one of the great historians of Australia with a wonderful feel for matters economic.  As well as...

October 17, 2019

Modern Crucifixion

 Oil on canvas board

24 '' x 16 "

Signed, Left Hand Side

Cardinal Pell's trial, where he was declared guilty by a jury of pedophile actions, was a deeply curious event. I expect appeal before by three judges will present a more believable judgment o...

October 18, 2016

A lifetime's hard work, mostly pro bono. 'Thank your mother for the rabbit' type of activity.



1. Practitioner

1.1  On the edge of chaos, 1995

Biographical account of the rise and fall of a central banker

1.2  Money, Prices and Output, 1975.   [Link to be pro...

August 20, 2016

Henry's editor, Pete Jonson, has recently decisively wound back his corporate involvement. He is now fulfilling the promise he made to himself as a young part-time landscape painter that he would, later in life, spend more time painting. This time has arrived; and Pete...

August 3, 2016

We were quickly allowed to exit Tanzania into the no man’s land before Kenya. The queue before the Kenyan customs post was short, and soon we were sitting on chairs before a uniformed custom’s official. Vision and mission statements for customs and immigration were pro...

July 26, 2016

The first step was to meet the guide who was to take us on the Tanzanian part of the safari.  Hussein turned out to be pleasant, extremely knowledgeable about the parks we visited, the animals and how they interacted with each other and the signs they gave to humans wh...

August 30, 2014

Sorting out confusion

How does monetary policy impact asset inflation?  This is a question that is not fully answered in economics, although many practical men of affairs have a pretty shrewd idea that it does. This paper suggests a simple theoretical framework that is...

August 6, 2013

The Reserve Bank is widely expected to cut interest rates today. The economy is facing such a grim future that one can support such an outcome. But no-one, not even the Reserve Bank, is facing the main problem facing Australia, which is double-digit cost disequilibrium...


This paper shows that in modern USA history asset (share price) inflation mostly responds to changes in monetary policy in the same direction as goods inflation. However, in certain important episodes, asset inflation booms while monetary policy is well contr...

January 12, 2013

Tax capital flows to tame dollar.

If the current dilemma with Australia's monetary policy is not resolved, it will do great damage to Australian industry, as it did in the late eighties, when the correct conclusions were not drawn. A similar problem helped lead America...

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The next financial crisis ... is inevitable

The weekend AFR's article reporting the GFC work to save our financial system was interesting. RBA chief Glenn Steven is reported as saying something like: 'We flooded the system with liquidity'. (An action recommended by Bagehot all those years ago.)

Coincidentally, this week's Economist looks at the global equivalent under the heading 'Has finance been fixed?'

It concludes: 'Policymakers have made the economy safer, but they still have plenty of lessons to learn. And fracturing geopolitics make globalised finance even harder to deal with. A decade after Lehman failed, finance has a worrying amount to fix.'

Deep within the article is a statement I have not heard before.

'The Fed acted as lender of last resort to the world, offering foreigners $1trn of liquidity.

[other sources say total swaps were more like $ 11 trn]   Since then, offshore dollar debts have roughly doubled. In the next crisis, America’s political system is unlikely to let the Fed act as the backstop to this vast system, even after Donald Trump leaves the White House.'

This is a truly scary remark.

Comments welcome. Contact Henry here.



Who is Henry

 Henry Then...

"Henry Thornton (1760-1815) was a banker, M.P., philanthropist, and a leading figure in the influential group of Evangelicals that was known as the Clapham set. His 'Enquiry into the Nature and Effects of the Paper Credit of Great Britain (1802)' is an amazing performance. "...it anticipates in some points the analytic developments of a century to come. No other performance of the period will bear comparison with it, though several, among them Ricardo's, met with much greater success at the time as well as later... He was one of those men who see things clearly and who express with unassuming simplicity what they see."

This is the judgment of Joseph Schumpeter, one of the twentieth century's finest economists, in his monumental 'History of Economic Analysis', Allen and Unwin, 1954, p.689.


Henry Now...


Henry Thornton is the nom de plume of a prominent economist. Like his predecessor the modern Henry Thornton has been a banker and an advisor to M.P.s although he is not a politician himself. He is no evangelist but is keenly interested in a wide range of economic, social and political issues... 

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