You are looking at 1 - 10 of 18 items

  • Author or Editor: Gerald Epstein x
Clear All Modify Search
This content is available to you

Foreword

The Declining Power of US Monetary Policy

Gerald Epstein

You do not have access to this content

Gerald Epstein

You do not have access to this content

Gerald Epstein

‘Capital controls’ are regulations implemented by governments in order to manage international financial transactions. Recently these have been referred to as ‘capital flow management’ techniques (CFMs) or capital account regulations (CARs). There has been a sea change in recent years in the ‘official’ perception by economists and policy makers with respect to the desirability and viability of capital controls (CARs, CFMs). Whereas previously, capital controls were seen as a costly and inefficient intrusion into the free market allocation of global finance, now, capital flows are perceived to be highly variable – even ‘fickle’ – and capital account regulations are seen as a potentially useful tool to manage these flows. Empirical evidence on the efficacy, benefits and costs of capital account regulations is growing.

You do not have access to this content

Gerald Epstein

Multinational corporations (MNCs) have become an increasingly important force in the dynamics of the global economy. For example, according to the United Nations, during the last 30 years, the gross product of the foreign affiliates of multinational corporations increased faster than global GDP while foreign affiliate sales increased faster than global exports. Despite the fact that there has been a great deal of research during the last several decades on MNCs, there is no consensus on their effects. This chapter discusses that what is needed, instead of more deregulation and ‘free’ capital mobility, is a more democratic framework of multinational investment regulation to help countries and their citizens reap the benefits that can be associated with international investment.

This content is available to you

Gerald Epstein

The ongoing Great Financial Crisis that began in 2007–2008 has dramatically called into question the previously dominant neoliberal approach to macroeconomic and financial policy. Unfortunately, these lessons are being learned in a highly uneven manner – and in some important circles, not at all. In light of this struggle to adopt developmentally friendly financial structures, it is critical that the history and practices of these policies, as well as their costs and benefits, be well understood. There is much rich history of developmental finance and central banking to draw from and many lessons to be found there. In this paper, we survey some of this history, focusing on the late twentieth century, including a discussion of policies undertaken following the Great Financial Crisis. The major lesson we draw is that developmental roles of central banks and related financial institutions have been the dominant approach in many periods since the mid twentieth century at least, and that the neoliberal approach to these policies is much more the exception than the rule. The way forward out of this crisis is to recognize the current policies for what they are – experiments in more developmental policy – and to build on them for the longer run, rather than see them as exceptional aberrations that should be abandoned at the first opportunity.

This content is available to you

Gerald Epstein

Modern financial markets and institutions have grown massively in relation to the economy in the United States and elsewhere, and there is little evidence that in recent years their contributions to economic and social output justify the resources they capture and the risks they impose on society. Many policy options exist to limit finance’s destructive excesses and to shrink its size. But while these efforts are important, more proactive measures to redirect financial activity is likely to be needed to achieve key social goals, such as employment generation and a successful transition to a fossil fuel limited economy. Refocusing financial institutions and financial activities toward providing investments in renewable energy and energy conservation provide an important example of reformed financial activity that both generate more and decent employment, while contributing to the production of key social goods. Abandoning the decades-long embrace of speculative finance and promoting socially efficient finance instead is a key imperative facing the United States and many other countries who adopted financial liberalization in the late twentieth century, with costly results.

This content is available to you

Edited by Gerald A. Epstein

This content is available to you

Gerald A. Epstein

Many observers thought that the financial crisis of 2007–08 would be a watershed moment in global finance. They believed the crisis would demonstrate, once and for all, the instability and inefficiency of this hyper-speculative global financial system, and finally bring an end to the destructive “neoliberal moment” and its “Washington Consensus” dictates in domestic and global economic policy (see, for example, Blanchard, Dell’Ariccia and Mauro, 2010). But, something surprising happened to “neoliberal financialization” on the way to the “dustbin of history”: it escaped. Financial deregulation and “neoliberal” populism in finance are in the ascendant in the United States and elsewhere, and the bankers are laughing, well. . .all the way to the bank.1 To be sure, there are important cracks in the old free market consensus on international financial issues. These cracks are leading to what Ilene Grabel (Chapter 5, in this volume) calls “productive incoherence” in theory and practice, which is leading to important opportunities for policy change in some areas. But, in many other areas, the old theories and practices are being resurrected after near-death experiences in the period following the crisis.

You do not have access to this content

Edited by Gerald A. Epstein

The essays in this book describe and analyze the current contours of the international financial system, covering both developed and developing countries, and focusing on the ways in which the current international financial system structures, and is affected by, profound inequalities in the international system. This keen analysis of key topics in international finance takes a heterodox perspective, with focus on the role of inequalities in power in shaping the structure and outcomes in the international sphere.