Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

JM Keynes Writings Project

L. Randall Wray | August 22, 2016

JMK Writings Project Flyer

A crowdfunding campaign starting October 2016, on Indiegogo:

Overall aim:  To complete the publication of all of Keynes’s remaining unpublished writings of academic significance.

Only about one third were published in the Royal Economic Society edition. A huge quantity of valuable unpublished material remains, scattered across 60 archives in 6 countries.

Aim of this campaign:  Preparation of the Eton and early Cambridge volumes.

Campaign start:  11 October 2016.

To locate project: Google ‘JMK Writings Project Indiegogo.’

It is also planned, with publisher cooperation, for the campaign to assist selected universities in developing countries.

How you can help:

  1. Spread the word prior to the campaign launch – to academic colleagues (in economics or elsewhere), students in classes, conference participants, policy-makers, parliamentarians, philanthropists etc.
  2. Make, and encourage, donations, of ANY size, according to your situation. Especially on the first or second day of the campaign. Experience shows that strong starts are correlated with strong finishes.

Editor: Professor Rod O’Donnell, University of Technology Sydney, Australia.

Contact:  jmkwritingsproject@gmail.com

See also https://www.uts.edu.au/staff/rod.odonnell

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New Book: Rethinking Capitalism

Michael Stephens | July 21, 2016

A new book edited by Michael Jacobs and Mariana Mazzucato and featuring contributions from Joseph Stiglitz, L. Randall Wray, Stephanie Kelton, and others will be released tomorrow:

Rethinking Capitalism Cover

The TOC is below:

Rethinking Capitalism TOC

You can download the introductory chapter here (pdf).

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Why Minsky Matters and Boom Bust Boom

Michael Stephens | February 25, 2016

Screening and Book Signing_Minsky Matters_Boom Bust Boom

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Why Minsky Matters, Reviewed in Times Higher Education

Michael Stephens | January 13, 2016

L. Randall Wray’s recently published book on the work of Hyman Minsky (Why Minsky Matters: An Introduction to the Work of a Maverick Economist) was reviewed by Victoria Bateman for Times Higher Education. Here’s a taste:

Having experienced the pain of a new Great Depression, the very least we should expect is that economists try to learn from it. Unfortunately, still too few of them understand the importance of what Minsky had to say …. While Minsky is now quite well known, his contributions are still widely ignored or misunderstood.

In terms of name recognition or casual citation, there’s been a lot of progress made in raising Minsky’s profile. As for comprehension of his vision of economics and public policy (or the influence of that vision on policymaking), there’s a tremendous amount of work ahead. Here’s hoping the book helps us move a little further along that path. Read the entire review here.

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Review: Minsky Matters and the Next Minsky Moment

Michael Stephens | December 2, 2015

From Edward Chancellor’s review in Reuters Breakingviews of L. Randall Wray’s Why Minsky Matters:

Minsky, who taught economics at the University of Washington in St Louis before ending up at the Levy Institute at Bard College, had little time for conventional economics with its emphasis on equilibrium, rational expectations and the view that money and finance were largely irrelevant: “Nobody ‘up there’ understands American capitalism,” he once contemptuously wrote. […]

When the credit crunch arrived, it provided posthumous support for Minsky’s economic vision. Subprime mortgages were revealed as a classic form of Ponzi finance. Losses of securitized debt cascaded through the financial system, prompting a liquidity crisis, exactly as described in Minsky’s work. The Great Moderation gave way to the Great Recession, and the Lehman bust became known as the ultimate example of a “Minsky moment.”

As a result, the crisis made Minsky something of a household name beyond strictly economic circles. Unfortunately, Minsky in the original isn’t an easy read. “He needs to be translated,” writes Wray, in the preface to “Why Minsky Matters.” As a former teaching assistant of Minsky’s and colleague at the Levy Institute, Wray is perfectly positioned to perform that task. Few people understand Minsky as well as Wray. Written in clear prose, with Minsky’s idiosyncratic ideas and language patiently explained, Wray provides the best general introduction to Minsky’s economics.

Read the whole thing here.

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New Book on EU Financial Regulation

Michael Stephens | November 11, 2015

A new volume on EU financial regulation edited by Rainer Kattel, Jan Kregel, and Mario Tonveronachi:

kregel_bkcvr

Have past and more recent regulatory changes contributed to increased financial stability in the European Union (EU), or have they improved the efficiency of individual banks and national financial systems within the EU? Edited by Rainer Kattel, Tallinn University of Technology, Director of Research Jan Kregel, and Mario Tonveronachi, University of Siena, this volume offers a comparative overview of how financial regulations have evolved in various European countries since the introduction of the single European market in 1986. The collection includes a number of country studies (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Estonia, Hungary, Slovenia) that analyze the domestic financial regulatory structure at the beginning of the period, how the EU directives have been introduced into domestic legislation, and their impact on the financial structure of the economy. Other contributions examine regulatory changes in the UK and Nordic countries, and in postcrisis America.

You can read an excerpt (which includes the Introduction and part of Chapter 2) at Routledge.

Table of contents below the fold: continue reading…

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“Why Minsky Matters” Now Available

Michael Stephens | November 4, 2015

“Hyman Minsky is the most important economist since Keynes, yet it’s virtually impossible to find any books about him.”

That’s from Michael Pettis’s blurb for Randy Wray’s new book Why Minsky Matters, which is now shipping:

Minsky Matters Cover

Hyman Minsky’s name has appeared in the popular press a lot more since the financial crisis, but often without much more elaboration of his ideas than a paragraph noting (to the bewilderment of non-economists) that his economic research stands out because of the way in which it takes into account the significance of the financial sector and the possibility of financial crises.

And as Wray points out, reading Minsky can be a challenge (though one you won’t regret embracing: you can browse through the digital archive of his papers here). This book is a guided tour of Minsky’s work, covering everything from his views on the inherent instability of the financial dynamics of capitalism to his work on poverty and full employment policies.

The book’s introduction is available for download (pdf), and Arnold Kling (who declares himself “not completely converted”) just posted a nice review.

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Second Edition of the Modern Money Primer

Michael Stephens | September 7, 2015

The second edition of L. Randall Wray’s Modern Money Theory: A Primer on Macroeconomics for Sovereign Monetary Systems, an updated and expanded version with new chapters on tax policy and inflation, is now available for order and will be released September 23rd:

Modern Money Theory Primer_2nd edition

“This book synthesizes the key principles of Modern Money Theory, exploring macro accounting, monetary and fiscal policy, currency regimes and exchange rates in developed and developing nations. Randall Wray addresses the pressing issue of how misunderstandings about the nature of money have caused the current global financial meltdown, and provides fresh ideas about how policymakers around the world should address the continued weaknesses in their economies.”

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Countering Austerity Economics

Greg Hannsgen | February 11, 2015

Untitled

As deflation sets in in the economies of Europe and Japan, Robert Kuttner’s words in Debtor’s Prison: The Politics of Austerity versus Possibility—an interesting, readable new volume—complement those of many of the Levy Institute’s scholars. The book argues that during the financial crisis and its aftermath, policymakers continually relied on excessively optimistic projections of economic growth. Hence, stimulus plans adopted by Congress were not up to the task. Meanwhile, monetary policy could do little more than keep the crisis from worsening. As a result, the recovery remained exceedingly weak, and deficits overshot estimates to boot. Kuttner notes that in spite of the end of the recession, US growth rates on the order of 1.7 percent in 2011 and 2.2 percent in 2012 have not been high enough “to blast out of the deflationary trap.”

The more recently released annual growth rate of 2.4 percent for 2014, as well as the 2.2 percent final figure for the year before, indicate that he is right when he argues against the political “consensus” that “borrowing money is the last thing the government should do.” In fact, fiscal policy still needs to be made more stimulative, perhaps through increased infrastructure spending. Kuttner decries a situation in which an “austerity lobby” is set to bat down such efforts in Washington.

Also notably, Kuttner uses a detailed historical argument to challenge the notion that fiscal austerity is the answer to foreign debt problems in highly indebted economies such as Greece. In essence, keeping economies in a debtor’s prison is not in anyone’s interest.

Kuttner’s book, published just last year, addresses many other big policy issues, including health care, all in relation to deflationary fiscal austerity and the problems and non-problems posed by high levels of different types of debt. His lucid argument brings home the sometimes counterintuitive insight from John Maynard Keynes that an increase in government borrowing is actually desirable in a world facing a huge unemployment problem. This situation, faced by policymakers, in fact differs completely from that of a household that is heavily indebted and finding itself with inadequate disposable income. “Austerity economics,” Kuttner points out, “conflates several kinds of debt, each with its own causes, consequences, and remedies. The reality is that public debt, financial industry debt, consumer debt, and debt owed to foreign creditors are entirely different creatures.”

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The Modern Money Primer: Spanish Language Edition

L. Randall Wray | February 6, 2015

For our Spanish-speaking followers, my Modern Money Primer has just been released in Spanish and is available:

Modern Money Primer_Spanish Book

Here’s the description of the book:

El esfuerzo intelectual que se realizó en el campo de la física tras la aparición de la teoría de la relatividad o del modelo copernicano, no se llevó a cabo en la economía tras la aparición del dinero fíat. Teoría Monetaria Moderna es la plasmación de dicho esfuerzo intelectual. En este libro se expone claramente qué es el dinero en realidad y lo que es más importante se exponen las políticas económicas que deberían llevarse a cabo para llevar a la práctica un programa político coherente con dicha realidad. L. Randall Wray es doctor en economía y profesor en la Universidad de Missouri-Kansas City, así como director de investigaciones del Center for Full Employment and Price Stability. Además, pertenece al Levy Economics Institute of Bard College de Nueva York.

I’ll be in Madrid for the book launch. See you there. More details to follow.

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