The Political Economy of Central Banking
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The Political Economy of Central Banking

Contested Control and the Power of Finance, Selected Essays of Gerald Epstein

Gerald Epstein

Central banks are among the most powerful government economic institutions in the world. This volume explores the economic and political contours of the struggle for influence over the policies of central banks such as the Federal Reserve, and the implications of this struggle for economic performance and the distribution of wealth and power in society.
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Chapter 14: Financialization, rentier interests and central bank policy

Gerald Epstein

Abstract

“Financialization” refers to the increasing importance of financial markets, financial motives, financial institutions, and financial elites in the operations of the economy and its governing institutions, both at the national and international levels. Many questions arise when considering the increased role of finance in the world economy. What are its dimensions? What is causing it? What impact is it having on income distribution within and between countries? What is its impact on economic growth? What impact is financialization having on the nature and distribution of political power within and between countries? What policies can be implemented to reduce the negative effects of financialization while preserving its positive effects, if there are any?

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