Complementary currency and its impact on the economy

Green-EconomyThe paper aims to show the impact that a complementary currency may have on a national economy from a theoretical point of view. A system dynamics model is created to describe the mechanics of money issuance in capitalist economies as well as in economies where there is no inside money. As an example, the first outcomes of a barter network implemented in 2008 by the STRO foundation in El Salvador (called Punto Transacciones) are presented and analyzed. Finally, using data from a complementary currency experience in El Salvador the spending multiplier is calculated. The main result shows that there is a greater spending multiplier in digital community currencies systems than in regular money market. Although the magnitude of PT network is still negligible from a macroeconomic point of view, the result is a desired outcome which may help to cushion the impact of macroeconomic shocks on labour market, contributing to stabilize aggregate demand.

Octavio Groppa

To cite this article: Groppa, O. (2013) ‘Complementary currency and its impact on the economy’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 17 (A) 45 – 57  <> ISSN  1325-9547

IJCCR 2013 Groppa


Is A Global Virtual Currency With 
Universal Acceptance Feasible?

As digital goods and services become an integral part of modern day society, the demand for a standardized and ubiquitous form of digital currency increases. And it is not just about digital goods; the adoption of electronic and mobile commerce has not reached its expected level at all parts of the globe as expected. One of the main reasons behind that is the lack of a universal digital as well as virtual currency. Many countries in the world have failed to realize the potential of e-commerce, let alone m-commerce, because of rigid financial regulations and apparent disorientation & gap between monetary stakeholders across borders and continents. Digital currency which is internet-based, non-banks issued and circulated within a certain range of networks has brought a significant impact on the development of e-commerce. The research and analysis of this paper would focus on the feasibility of the operation of a digital currency and its economic implications.

Sowmyan Jegatheesan, Sabbir Ahmed, Austin Chamney and Nour El-kadri

To cite this article: Jegatheesan, S., Ahmed, S., Chamney, A. and El-kadri, N. (2013) ‘Is A Global Virtual Currency With Universal Acceptance Feasible?’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 17 (A) 26-44  <>  ISSN  1325-9547

IJCCR 2013 Jegatheesan

Taking Moneyless Exchange to Scale: Measuring and Maintaining the Health of a Credit Clearing System

Every day brings reports of new financial crises and financial malfeasance within the banking and financial establishment. In an effort to keep the banking system functioning, the largest banks and financial institutions have been relieved by national governments of tremendous amounts of their bad debts, shifting that burden onto the shoulders of the citizenry. At the same time, governments are imposing austerity upon their citizens in order to reduce the extremity of their budget shortfalls. Clearly, the global system of money and finance contains structural flaws that must be recognized and transcended. Reform is very unlikely to come in time to avert widespread social, political, economic, and environmental disasters. That leaves it to citizens, businesses, and communities to take action on their own behalf to ameliorate the negative effects of the failing system. Parallel systems of exchange and finance are both necessary, and easily implemented at the local and regional level. The most effective approach is the process of direct clearing of credits amongst buyers and sellers. This credit clearing process, which is being used in such systems as LETS and commercial trade exchanges, enables the creation of local liquidity based on local production, avoiding the use of conventional money and bank borrowing and moving local economies toward resilience, independence, and sustainability. The focus of this article is on credit clearing as a local exchange option, and deals specifically with the proper allocation of credit within credit clearing exchanges. It explains the causes of (1) the “pooling” of credits, (2) stagnation of circulation, and (3) failure to thrive, it prescribes policies to be applied in credit allocation, and it describes metrics that are important in assessing the performance of individual member accounts and in monitoring the overall health of a credit clearing system. Further, it explains the distinction between private credit and collective credit and the role of each in facilitating moneyless exchange, and recommends procedures for preventing excessive negative and positive balances while enabling both saving and investment within the system.

T. H. Greco Jr.

To cite this article: Greco, T. (2013) ‘Taking Moneyless Exchange to Scale: Measuring and Maintaining the Health of a Credit Clearing System’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 17 (A) 19-25  <> ISSN  1325-9547

IJCCR 2013 Greco

Bitcoin: The Political ‘Virtual’ Of An Intangible Material Currency

This paper concerns the open source software project Bitcoin, which is often described as virtual cash. The paper investigates what ‘virtual’ signifies when applied to ‘cash’ and in turn what ‘virtual cash’ says about Bitcoin. Bitcoin is the latest cryptographic effort to create digital cash-like tokens, where Bitcoin’s designer Nakamoto argues that users now no longer have to trust a third party, traditionally the bank. Paradoxically, for Bitcoin it is key that nodes in the network agree on the status of the shared block chain database. Trust remains to be established, albeit in a different manner. Power is not destroyed, but transferred from banks to Bitcoin’s protocol. The paper concludes that ‘virtual’ refers to Bitcoin’s model of how cash appears to function in everyday exchange, allowing user privacy. Bitcoin does not model another aspect of cash, its function as a credential referring to debt. Bitcoin discontinues the concept of debt.

Mark Jansen

To cite this article: Jansen, M. (2013) ‘Bitcoin: The Political ‘Virtual’ of an Intangible Material Currency’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 17 (A) 8-18  <>  ISSN  1325-9547

IJCCR 2013 Jansen

Improving Complementary Currency Interchange By A Regional Hub-Solution

Groups involved in complementary currencies (CC’s) that push for an interchange between their member-currencies are not yet a favourite subject in the existing CC-grassroots movement. One reason could be the existing doubts of activists that such structures might be non-transparent, support instability, raise corruption or be a gate for the comeback of the ruling system of limitless inequality. On the other side, an interchange could open bigger markets, add more diversity or raise the number of participants above a critical number for long term survival. The authors present the case of the region of Zurich, Switzerland, where a council of different CC-organizations was founded. As a result a new software platform cc-hub was developed to bundle regional LET systems. The platform is based on the open source Online Banking software, Cyclos, and covers many possible needs of a regionally or purpose-linked network of CC’s. It is able to support interchange, improve the efficiency of clearing and help to build up the necessary resilience for long term stability. It could serve as a model for cooperation between small neighbouring CC’s, for organizational improvement and additional economical benefit. But to verify such benefits will be a subject of further research.

Lucas Huber and Jens Martignoni


To cite this article: Huber, L. and Martignoni, J. (2013) ‘Improving Complementary Currency Interchange By A Regional Hub-Solution’ International Journal of Community Currency Research 17 (A) 1-7  <>  ISSN  1325-9547

IJCCR 2013 Huber Martignoni

2013 Book review section

Equal Time, Equal Value – Community Currencies and Time Banking in the US  by Ed Collom, Judith N. Lasker and Corinne Kyriacou. Reviewed by Juliet Adams

People Money: The promise of regional currencies by Margrit Kennedy, Bernard Lietaer and John Rogers. Reviewed by Jonathan Warner.

Creating Sustainable Societies – The Rebirth of Democracy and Local Economies by John Boik Reviewed by Deirdre Kent


IJCCR 2013 book reviews

To cite this article: ‘Book Reviews’ (2013) International Journal of Community Currency Research 17 (A) <> ISSN  1325-9547