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April 9, 2015

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Latest Posts from Economist's View


'BB and the Permahawks'

Posted: 09 Apr 2015 01:46 AM PDT

Paul Krugman:

BB and the Permahawks: Ben Bernanke comes down firmly against the idea that concerns about financial instability should lead central banks to raise interest rates even in a depressed economy. Good — and I was especially pleased to see him citing the Swedish example and the Ignoring of Lars Svensson as a case study.
One odd thing, however, is that I'm not at all sure that most people — even economists — would be able to figure out who, exactly, Bernanke is arguing with. And that is, I think, an important omission. We can and should have a pure economics debate about appropriate interest rate policy; but if we're trying to understand the political economy — and we should, because this is about getting good decisions as well as good analysis — it is definitely relevant to note that the people making the financial stability argument for higher rates are permahawks, who keep coming up with new justifications for an unchanging policy demand. ...
Anyway, I think Ben Bernanke did us a bit of a disservice by not linking to whoever it is he's arguing with. It would help to know that John Taylor and the BIS are on the other side, because this would let readers place their position here in context with their other positions.

'Economic History is Dead; Long Live Economic History?'

Posted: 09 Apr 2015 01:46 AM PDT

I really hope The Economist is right about this, but I'm a bit more pessimistic:

Economic history is dead; long live economic history?: Two years ago, in a very interesting paper, Peter Temin bemoaned the decline of economic history as a research topic at universities. He took the example of what happened at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to prove his point. There, the subject reached its peak in the 1970s, when three members of the faculty taught economic history. But from then it declined until economic history vanished both from the faculty and the graduate programme around 2010.
But is economic history really dead? Last weekend, Britain's Economic History Society hosted its annual three-day conference in Telford, attempting to show the subject was still alive and kicking. The economic historians present at the gathering were bullish about the future. Although the subject's woes at MIT have been echoed across research universities in both America and Europe, since the financial crisis there has been something of a minor revival.

What revival does the article have in mind?:

renewed vigour can be most clearly seen in the debates economists are now having with each other

The conclusion:

Economic history may well be dead as a subject studied in independent academic departments, as it was at universities in the 1970s. But as a subject that is needed as part of the study of economics and the making of public policy, economic history is—and should be—very much alive.

'Interview of Barry Eichengreen'

Posted: 09 Apr 2015 01:45 AM PDT

Via Cezmi Dispinar:

Interview: Prof. Barry Eichengreen, University of California, Berkeley: Despite the similarities with the Great Depression, the policy makers' failure to tackle the Great Recession was striking. What failures do you reckon as crucial in fundamental conceptual way?
Conceptually, the Great Moderation led to the mistaken belief that the business cycle had been tamed and additional risks could be safely taken  Efficient-markets theory provided a convenient pretext for failure to address new risks created by financial innovation and to adequately regulate the shadow banking system and securitization markets. And then there was the tendency for macroeconomists to forget as many lessons of the Great Depression as they remembered.
How is it possible that the ideas of Austrian School without supporting evidence in practice still dominate the macroeconomic policy in Europe?
The answer, I think, is that the Austrian School got it half right: Hayek, Mises and others highlighted how credit booms and busts were intrinsic to the market system. The histories of the 1920s and 2000s both bear them out. But they, or at least some of their followers, then went on to endorse liquidationism as the appropriate response to these problems, which is a logical nonsequitur.
What, if at all possible, will the experience of the Great Recession change regarding economic thinking in the future?
The fact is that economic thinking changes only very slowly.  Senior professors of economics, with tenure, are set in their ways.  They've been at it too long to change how they think even in the face of evidence incompatible with their theories. Better to disregard the evidence in that case, the thinking goes.  
The field changes as students graduate and new scholars influenced by the Great Recession, by historical evidence and by Big Data begin to repopulate the field, making economics a more fundamentally empirical and historical discipline. I see at least some signs that this is beginning to happen.

[See also Interview: Prof. Stephen G. Cecchetti and Prof. Kermit L. Schoenholtz.]

Have Blog, Will Travel

Posted: 09 Apr 2015 01:45 AM PDT

I am here today:

2015 Annual INET Conference

liberté, égalité, fragilité
April 8-11, 2015 |
Paris, France

PROGRAM (papers)
Plenary
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
L'ESPACE PIERRE CARDIN
1, Avenue Gabriel, 75008
Paris, France
______________________________________________________
6.30P
Cocktail Reception
7.00
Opening Remarks
Robert Johnson
Anatole Kaletsky
Adair Turner
George Soros
Clive Cowdery

Program
Moderator: Clive Cowdery
Speakers: Angel Gurria, Thomas Piketty, and Joseph Stiglitz
______________________________________________________
Conference
Thursday, April 9, 2015
OECD Paris Headquarters
2 Rue André Pascal, 75016 Paris, France
Each panel runs for 1 hour and 30 minutes. The panels start 15 minutes apart to
allow for better flow when attendees pass through security at the OECD.
Panels run concurrently in the morning and afternoon. The panels list the names of authors and commentators; many papers are coauthored, so there are more names than papers. Regardless of the number of co-authors, each paper is allocated roughly 15 min. for presentation; commentators 10 min., then general discussion.
______________________________________________________
10.00 A
Economic Growth & Inequality across Time & Space: Where Has Growth
Lead to Equality and Why?
Speakers: Branko Milanovic, Vamsi Vakulabharanam
Discussant: Christina Anselmann
Chair: Anatole Kaletsky
Room:CC13
10.15
Politics by Other Means? Eurozone Institutions and National Sovereignty in
the Bank Bailout Negotiations
Speakers: Thomas Fazi, Patrick Honohan, Yanis Varoufakis, TBD
Discussant: Mar Gudmundsson
Chair: Neils Thygesen
Room: CC9
10.30
Macroeconomic Causes of Inequality
Speakers: Barry Cynamon, Steven Fazzari, Marc Lavoie, Mario Seccareccia, Till
van Treeck
Discussant: Salvatore Morelli
Chair: Thomas Ferguson
Room: CC7

10.45
Analyzing Growth & Inequality in the 21st Century
Speakers: Facundo Alvaredo, Gabriela Ramos, J.L. McCombie, Lance Taylor
Discussant: Nadia Garbellini
Chair: Perry Mehrling
Room: CC5
11.00
The Capital Account, Savings Gluts, and Global Imbalances
Speakers: Claudio Borio, Anton Brender, Florence Pisani, Helene Rey
Discussant: Peter Temin
Chair: William White
Room : CC10
11.15
Budget Deficits, Austerity and Deflation
Speakers: Karl Aiginger, Catherine Mann, Richard Portes, Martin Wolf
Discussant: Charles Goodhart
Chair: Charles Goodhart
Room : CC6
12:00 P
LUNCH
2.15
Central Banks & Distribution
Speakers: Adrian Blundell-Wignall, Gerald Epstein, Dominique Plihon
Discussant: Mario Seccarecia
Room: CC10
2.15
Inequality and Climate Change
Speakers: James Boyce, Michael Grubb, Lucas Chancel
Discussant: Shardul Agrawala
Chair: Rohinton Medhora
Room: CC6
2.30
Inequality: Claims about Genes
Speakers: Daniel Benjamin, Steven Durlauf, Michael Gazzaniga
Chair: Arjun Jayadev
Room: CC4
2.45
Financial Regulation That Might Have a Chance of Working
Speakers: Edward J. Kane, Gudrun Johnsen, John Kay, Walker Todd
Chair: William White
Room: CC5
3.00
History and the Theory Of Income Distribution: Some Perspectives
Speakers: Gerard Dumenil, Tiziana Foresti, Nadia Garbellini, Ariel Wirkierman
Discussant: Thomas Ferguson
Chair: Thomas Ferguson
Room: CC7
3.30
Motivations, Emotions, Decisions
Speakers: Antonio Damasio, Tania Singer, Dennis Snower, George Soros
Discussant: Robert Johnson
Chair: Robert Johnson
Room: CC9
______________________________________________________
Conference
Friday, A
pril 10, 2015
OECD Paris Headquarters
2 Rue André Pascal, 75016 Paris, France
______________________________________________________
10.00 A
National Strategies, Value Creation, Income Distribution, and the Structure
of Careers
Speakers: William Lazonick, Mario Pianta, Marie Carpenter
Chair: Gavin Kelly
Room: CC10
10.15
Inequality, Innovation, and Public Investment
Speakers: Alberto Botta, Anna Maria Simonazzi
Room: CC6
10.30
Gender & Inequality: The Glass Ceiling In International Perspective
Speakers: Alessandra Casarico, Monika Queisser, Judy Tsui, Sarah Voitchovsky
Discussant: Thomas Ferguson, Pia Malaney
Chair: Thomas Ferguson
Room: CC4
10.45
Stimulating Innovation & Growth
Speakers: Jim Balsillie, Dan Breznitz, Andrew Wyckoff
Discussant: William Janeway
Chair: Rohinton Medhora
Room: CC13
11.00
The New Politics of Central Banking
Speakers: Perry Mehrling, Andrew Sheng, Adair Turner
Discussant: Robert Johnson
Chair: Robert Johnson
Room: CC9
11.15
Occupy? Strike? Separatism? Populism? Are Any Of The Historical Forms
Of Protest Effective In The Information Age?
Speakers: Andrea Fumagalli, Daniel Chomsky, Richard Hyman
Chair: Orsola Costantini
Room: CC7
12:00 P
LUNCH
2.00
Sovereign Debt Restructuring
Speakers: Richard Conn, Martin Guzman, Joseph Stiglitz
Chair: Eric Beinhocker
Room: CC9
2.15
Northeast Asia: The Balkans of the 21st Century?
Speakers: Bruce Cumings, James Kurth, Andrew Sheng
Discussant: Yide Qiao
Chair: Pia Malaney
Room: CC10
2.30
Financial Networks, Financial Innovation & Inequality
Speakers: Stefano Battiston, Co-Pierre Georg
Chair: Raphael Douady
Room: CC6
2.45
Information And Economics: How Should Expectations Be Modeled? What
Actually Works?
Speakers: Duncan Foley, Michael Goldberg, David Tuckett
Room: CC4
3.00
Political Institutions & Inequality
Speakers: Jie Chen, Orsola Costantini, Mirko Draca, Thomas Ferguson, Christian Fons-Rosen, Paul Jorgensen
Discussant: Alain Parguez
Chair: Mario Seccareccia
Room CC13
3.15
Challenging Economic Injustice Through Literature: What can economists
learn from authors like Ruskin, Balzac, and Goethe?
Speakers: Nicholas Boyle, Lynn Parramore, Jeffrey Spear, Sara Thornton
Discussant: Douglass Carmichael
Chair: Robert Johnson
Room CC7
3.30
The Problem of Capital Flight
Speakers: Melvin Ayogu, Leonce Ndikumana, Eleni Tsingou
Discussant: Erik Berglof
Chair: Vera Mshana
Room CC5
4.15
Macroeconomic Externalities
Speakers: Martin Guzman, Michael Kumhof, Benoit Mojon, Joseph Stiglitz
Chair: Perry Mehrling
Room : CC9
______________________________________________________
Conference
Saturday, April 11, 2015
OECD Paris Headquarters
2 Rue André Pascal, 75016 Paris, France
______________________________________________________
10.00 A
Large Round Discussion for Economics Curriculum for Activists
Speakers: Louison Cahen-Fourot, Laurène Tran, Claire Jones, Yuan Yang
Discussant: Robert Johnson
Chair: Robert Johnson
Room CC10
10.15
Durable Inequality and Individual Differences in Capacities and Behavior
Speakers:
Sam Bowles, James Heckman, Robert Sampson
Discussant: Arjun Jayadev
Chair: Arjun Jayadev
Room
CC6
10.30
The Eurozone Crisis: Fiscal Profligacy Or Capital Flows As Final Causes
Speakers: Domenico Lombardi, Hans-Werner Sinn, Servaas Storm, Andrea Terzi
Chair: Adair Turner
Room CC9
10.45
How Did Bad Economics Crowd Out Good Economics? Evidence from
Citation Analysis
Speakers: Carlo D'Ippoliti, Jakob Kapeller, Leonard Seabrooke
Discussant: Thomas Ferguson
Chair: Thomas Ferguson
Room: CC4
11.00
Teaching Economics
Speakers: Wendy Carlin, Marc Lavoie
Discussant: Wilfried Altzinger
Chair: Perry Mehrling
Room: CC7
11.15
Finance, Sustainability and the Environment
Speakers: Cameron Hepburn, Rens Van Tilburg, Ulrich Volz
Chair: Ian Goldin
Room:CC5
12.00
Ukraine & The Future of Europe
Speakers: Erik Berglof, Chris Canavan, James Kurth
Chair: Chrystia Freeland
Room: CC1
12:00 P
LUNCH
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________
By Invitation
Saturday, April 11, 2015
LOCATION:
Opéra Garnier
7.30P
George Soros on the Future of Europe
With the recent political tremors emanating from Greece, there is renewed focus
on the existential threats facing Europe's monetary union. Until recently, the
great achievement of the EU had been to reduce the probability of violent
nationalist conflict among some of its members to a vanishing small probability
while improving the economic lot of its members. But in spite of the
salesmanship surrounding the adoption of the single currency zone, much of this
reduction in the propensity toward violence and economic growth took place
before the adoption of the euro. Given the high prevailing rates of unemployment
and a policy focus which seems incapable of addressing Europe's growing
political fracturing, is it time to consider the notion of giving up the euro? Or is
there a wiser alternative that can address the immediate crises and establish a
new growth dynamic in the EU?

Links for 04-09-15

Posted: 09 Apr 2015 12:06 AM PDT

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