Financialization and its Discontents

Financialization is not new, nor is discontent with it. “Capitalism is essentially a financial system, and the peculiar behavioral attributes of a capitalist economy center around the impact of finance upon system behavior.”  Minsky (1967) Fifty years ago, Minsky zeroed in on instability as the central flaw of the financial system of his time, and located the source of that

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BIS looks through the financial cycle

“I wouldn’t start from here,” the BIS never says explicitly in its recent Annual Report, but nevertheless it goes on to paint a rather comprehensive and compelling picture of a possible future toward which they think we should be trying to head, and of the present dysfunctional economic policies that are daily making it harder to achieve that possible future.

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Financialization versus Development? A money view of the 2015 UNCTAD Report

The BIS and the IMF have each weighed in from the center, representing the perspectives of central banks and central Treasuries respectively.  (Interestingly, they don’t agree, see here for a recent sample of the debate.)  Now comes the periphery.  The new Trade and Development Report of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development is titled “Making the international financial architecture work

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China’s Rocky Road Ahead, Financial Liberalization versus Financial Stability

A summary of the 3rd annual joint conference of the People’s Bank of China and the International Monetary Fund offers a snapshot of the state of debate.  So-called “renminbi internationalization” has been official policy since 2009.  By the end of this year, expect to see the launch of a new “China International Payments System” to facilitate use of RMB as a

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Old economic thinking is the problem, says BIS

The 85th Annual Report of the BIS is not perhaps the obvious first choice for beach-reading on a holiday weekend, but having read through its 119 pages, the core message reminds me of nothing so much as the most memorable line of the 40-year-old summer blockbuster “Jaws”:  “You’re going to need a bigger boat.” Notwithstanding everything that has been done since

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Why is money difficult?

As regular readers know, I emphasize two central functions of monetary systems:  payments and market-making. These are the foundation pillars of what I call the “money view”. In my teaching, I have come to appreciate a variety of barriers that people bring with them to the study of money, and to appreciate the necessity of bringing these barriers up to

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