Local Currencies

There are numerous reasons for launching a local currency, perhaps the most important being able to find ways of keeping money circulating locally without leaking out of the local economy. This should build energy and resilience into the local economy, whereas the global currencies are a means of extracting value. Robert Owen had worked this out as early as the mid-18th century, and his attempts to establish and Equitable Labour Exchange based on a system of A book chapter relating Robert Owen's monetary experiments to modern community currencies (pdf, 335 K)

The Stroud pound has a design based on that of the German Chiemgauer. It loses value through time, encouraging people to spend rather than save it. It can only be spent within the Five Valleys of Stroud district. When notes are bought a proportion of the value is given to local charities. This is taken from local businesses if they redeem the money, to encourage them to spend it instead.

Launch of the Stroud pound, September 2009

Using local currencies requires a change of culture away from competition towards co-operation. Some traders find this a hard shift to make and see being involve in the community as bad business. In the past, most towns had their own currencies and, as local economies become more important, we hope that our local currency will encourage more production and exchange within the Five Valleys

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