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Screen shot 2013-10-02 at 12.59.14 PMOnly one U.S. state, North Dakota, owns a bank. But that bank has been so successful – and the financial systems elsewhere have been so problematic – that 22 other legislatures have considered starting similar state banks.

Would government-owned banks distort the free market, or complement private lending? If states or the federal government set up banks, should they lend directly to consumers and businesses?

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Featured contributors:

Ellen Brown, Public Banking Institute

Mark Calabria, Cato Institute

Eric Hardmeyer, Bank of North Dakota

Pierre Beynet, Organization for Economic Coordination and Development

Celeste Watkins-Hayes, Sociologist, Northwestern University

Michael Likovsky, Author, Obama’s Bank

Hester Peirce, Mercatus Center, George Mason University

Heather Morton, National Council of State Legislatures