2010: Positive Money UK established
Positive Money, a UK non-profit research and campaign organization, was founded in London following the 2008 global financial crisis. It was clear in the aftermath of the crash that civil society was unprepared to respond, and lacked a clear narrative of why the finance industry was malfunctioning other than ‘capitalism is broken’. We recognized the role that banks’ creation of money played in causing the financial crash and the structural problems inherent to the global money and banking system.
Over the last eleven years, Positive Money has developed direct proposals for how to reform our dysfunctional money and banking system in order to tackle ecological breakdown, inequality and other systemic failures, and our ideas have steadily moved from the fringes of debate to the mainstream. In 2014, the Bank of England published a paper confirming what we’d been saying about how new money enters the economy. Other central banks, including the European Central Bank and the Bundesbank in Germany have followed suit.
Positive Money has successfully forced public responses from Bank of England (BoE) governors, and helped to change the BoE’s mandate. It is a leading voice holding the Government and BoE to account on their economic response to COVID-19, regularly engages with UK Parliamentary enquiries and consultations, and has triggered debates in the Parliament. It is a prominent voice in print and broadcast media both in the UK and internationally and a leader amongst wider civil society movements for economic reform. It has delivered petitions with tens of thousands of signatures, produced several ‘viral’ education videos, and grown a following of 70,000 subscribers and several local groups across the UK.
2013: Positive Money goes international
While Positive Money initially focused on money and banking reform in the UK, we quickly realised that to win truly transformational changes that addresses the deep rooted inequalities in our economic and financial system, we needed to take a global approach. We therefore began progressively expanding our work internationally.
In 2013, we formed the International Movement for Monetary Reform to support the growth of new money reform movements across the world and facilitate collaboration between them. There are now over 22 national movements pushing for reform of money and banking in their countries.
2015: Positive Money Launches Eurozone campaign
In 2015, Positive Money took one step further by launching the “quantitative easing for people” campaign in the Eurozone. Together with a coalition of 20 civil society organizations, we succeeded in promoting alternative monetary policy ideas such as Green QE and helicopter money within the European Union. You can find out more about this campaign by visiting Positive Money Europe’s website here.
Positive Money has also been a proud member of Finance Watch, a Brussels-based membership group set up to counter the power of the finance sector, since 2015. This has allowed us to take part in a wider European movement working to make finance serve the needs of society.
2018: Positive Money Europe established
In order to take our work in Europe much further, Positive Money Europe officially launched in Brussels in 2018. Building on the QE for people campaign, it grew its influence in the European Union (EU) and spoke to hundreds of stakeholders including Members of the European Parliament (MEPs), European Commission officials, NGOs and influencers. It grew as the only EU-level civil society organization focusing on holding the European Central Bank (ECB) to account. Positive Money Europe has pushed forward the conversation on central banking reform in the Eurozone, and on greening and democratising the ECB, and continues to scrutinize and respond to the ECB’s monetary policy and operations. It now has a team of nine, and a budget well over half that of the UK company. It is now largely autonomous from Positive Money UK, conducting its own fundraising, program activities and campaigns through its own core team, but remains closely aligned on its strategy and overall vision.
2021: Positive Money United States established
Positive Money had worked with partners in the US for several years, including through the Climate Safe Lending Network, of which we were a founding member. In order to take our work in the US much further we launched Positive Money US in 2021. We have begun our work with a campaign calling on the Federal Reserve, the US central bank, to protect our financial system and the economy against a climate fuelled crash. The US has a critical role to play in the global financial system, and the Federal Reserve is a key part of this. As such, we want to build on our success with moving the Bank of England (BoE) and European Central Bank (ECB) towards greener monetary policy by expanding our work to the Federal Reserve System.
The Next Chapter
We’re excited about what we can achieve with this group of organisations in the coming years. Our three offices in the UK, EU and US are each autonomous and develop their own strategy, but they regularly collaborate with each other, and are united under a shared vision to reimagine money, banks and our economy for the wellbeing of people, communities and the planet.
We’ve accomplished a lot since we started in 2010, but there’s a long way to go. And we know we’ll win faster with more supporters on board. Please sign up to our mailing list today to help Positive Money US reform money and banking to build a fair, democratic and sustainable economy.