Category Archives: Economic History

A Brief History of the Bank of England’s Endogenous Money Policies: An Ode to Roy Harrod

Roy Harrod, usually remembered today for his part in the development of the Harrod-Domar growth model was also, so far as I can see, the most sophisticated monetary economist among the early Post-Keynesians. His book Money, designed as a sort … Continue reading

Posted in Economic History, Economic Theory | 16 Comments

Exploring Inequality: Real Wages and Productivity Growth

I recently had an argument with a few New Keynesian types in the comments section of Lars Syll’s blog. I won’t get into the nuances here as they are not very interesting. Basically the New Keynesians were trying to defend … Continue reading

Posted in Economic History, Economic Policy, Economic Theory | 120 Comments

Why the Value of Contemporary Money is Not Dependent on the Value of Gold

I note that there is oftentimes confusion today when the gold standard era is brought up. The reason for the confusion when discussing this era is because the monetary system functioned in an entirely different way. The confusion goes two … Continue reading

Posted in Economic History, Economic Theory | 7 Comments

Arguments Against Free Trade and Comparative Advantage

In response to Krugman’s awful dismissal of heterodox economics the other day (see here) Ramanan has dug up an old quote reminding us that Krugman actually got his Swedish bank prize for being a defender of the status quo. In … Continue reading

Posted in Economic History, Economic Policy, Economic Theory | 16 Comments

Piketty’s Regressive Views on Public Debt and the Potential Impact of His Book

Piketty’s Wikipedia page says that he’s a Keynesian. Well, I don’t see it at all. His book contains a section on the public debt in historical perspective and it is desperately misinformed. A caveat first though: I actually like Piketty’s … Continue reading

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Posted in Economic History | 12 Comments

Unemployment and Wages in the US: A Tale of Institutional Change

Just a very short post this morning to highlight an incredibly interesting chart that I put together. Below I have mapped out year-on-year changes in wages against the unemployment rate. The results are very interesting indeed. As we can see, … Continue reading

Posted in Economic History | 3 Comments

The Interaction of Economists and Money Cranks in the Depression Years

Yesterday I ran a post that briefly delved into the connection between Keynes and the money cranks of the 1920s and 1930s. There I showed that Keynes’ ideas cannot be said to have been influenced in any substantial way by … Continue reading

Posted in Economic History, Economic Theory, Politics | 90 Comments

The Yield Curve and Recessions: Against US-Centricism

One of the nicest stylised facts in applied economics is that if the Fed inverts the yield curve it will cause a recession. Inverting the yield curve basically means that the Fed hikes the short-term interest rate goes higher than … Continue reading

Posted in Economic History, Economic Policy, Economic Theory | 24 Comments

The British Financial Account 2002-2012

Today I published an article on The Guardian’s website entitled The left needs a deft touch in tackling the financial sector’s dominance. In the article I made the case that the value of the sterling is inherently tied up with … Continue reading

Posted in Economic History, Economic Policy | 1 Comment

Making Sense of the Sterling Depreciation of 2007-2008

Something rather strange happened in Britain around the time of the financial crisis. The sterling tanked, import prices rose substantially and yet the inflation rate didn’t respond as much as we might assume. Other weird stuff happened too. For example, … Continue reading

Posted in Economic History, Economic Policy | 20 Comments