Editorial to the special issue
Eugenio Caverzasi and Antoine Godin
Our opinion is that the so-called sub-prime mortgage crisis has been a structural crisis of the US's financial capitalism. In analysing the complex combination of factors that led to those events, we try not to focus on the most contingent aspects but to clarify the underlying structure that made the crisis endogenously emerge from the US's economic system. To reach this goal, we base our analysis on existing economic theories. In particular, the combination of the Financial Instability Hypothesis by Hyman Minsky, the theory of Capital Market Inflation by Jan Toporowski, and the post-Keynesian literature on financialisation represent the foundation of our analysis. The results of our analysis will then be reproduced through a simulated stock-flow consistent model to test their logical coherence.
Markus P.A. Schneider, Stephen Kinsella and Antoine Godin
We present two Gini-like inequality indices that provide a more nuanced picture of how the profile of inequality has changed across European countries since 2005. We use these indices to analyse the distributional changes that can be attributed to the push for austerity. We estimate the JV-indices for 24 European countries over 9 years, and then use this panel to analyse the distributional effects of the fiscal consolidation policies Europe endured after the 2008 crisis. We find that austerity increased income inequality in eurozone countries, but reduced income inequality in countries that do not use the euro as their currency. We uncover a significant new relationship between austerity policies and the tails of the income distribution, further suggesting that in the eurozone these policies on average amount to a redistribution from the bottom to the top.