Economics

Marxist economists analyse the crisis

Financial crisis

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Costas Lapavitsas/Leo Panitch/Fred Moseley/Michel Husson/Andrew Kliman/David Laibman/Simon Mohun/Trevor Evans/Robert Brenner/more
Andrew Kliman and David Laibman are new contributors, and Michel Husson, Fred Moseley, Leo Panitch, and Costas Lapavitsas present second thoughts, in a symposium also including Simon Mohun, Trevor Evans, Robert Brenner, and Dick Bryan.

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Fair trade, free trade, and socialism

Author: 

Paul Hampton

Trade is a vital part of the neoliberal economic, political and ideological regime that now dominates the world economy and most national states.

In this pamphlet we try to grasp the essential features of the world economy, especially relating to trade issues.

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The economic consequences of Donald Trump

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Martin Thomas
Beyond domestic regression, President Trump may also disrupt the large trends which have allowed capitalist growth for 60 years.

Newly-elected US president Trump will surely hack back migrants', workers', women's, and civil rights; speed environmental destruction; and raise risks of war, especially with Iran. He may also disrupt the large trends which have allowed capitalist growth for 60-plus years.

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Bankers’ greed brings us down

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Editorial

“For questions about the survival of big European banks to be swirling almost ten years after the financial crisis started is utterly damning”, writes the big business magazine The Economist.

Questions are indeed swirling. On 26 October, the Bank of England asked British banks to say how much they are owed by Germany’s huge Deutsche Bank and Italy’s oldest bank, MPS, in case those banks prove unable to pay. Deutsche Bank’s share price has fallen by over 50% this year.

In today’s global-markets capitalism, the financial piping is central. Banks are not quiet enterprises, doing backroom work in a steady and cautious fashion, but the leaders in general capitalist speculation, corner-cutting, and reckless greed. If banks go down, as they did in 2008, they bring everything else down.

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The pound and the Marmite crisis

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Martin Thomas

It’s often thought bad in Marxist publications to write articles on the theme “we don’t know”, but that is what I have to do about the falling pound.

The exchange rate of the pound against other major currencies has fallen 17% since the Brexit vote on 23 June, and has recently had a further sudden lurch downwards. The inflation rate is ticking up a bit. Marmite is disappearing from the shelves at Tesco because its producer demanded a price rise to compensate for the falling exchange rate.

The exchange rate of the pound against other major currencies has fallen 17% since the Brexit vote on 23 June, and has recently had a further sudden lurch downwards.

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Marxist Theory and History: 

No hard Brexit

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Editorial

Loud voices among the Tories are pushing for a “hard Brexit”. They want to slam the door on migrants from Europe and make things difficult for migrant workers already here.

Smaller economic units — Britain, as compared to the EU — are even more subordinate to markets and global capital than larger.

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The world of neoliberalism, three years on

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Colin Foster

Three years ago, we surveyed “the world of neoliberalism” as it had emerged from the 2008 financial crash and the acute phase in 2010-12 of the eurozone government-debt crisis.

Many patterns have continued since 2013. Overall economic growth has been slow by historical standards, even slower by comparison with the rates expected in recovery from a big slump. Of the global growth, the bulk, 63% in 2015-6, has been in China and India, and the Chinese growth figures are dubious.

The financial crash of 2008 was a distinct crisis, and, like all other capitalist crises in fact, had its own special features.

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Marxist Theory and History: 

Work, time, and the working class

Moishe Postone, a Marxist writer based at the University of Chicago and author of Time, Labour, and Social Domination, and Critique du fétiche-capital: Le capitalisme, l’antisémitisme et la gauche, was in London in May, and discussed capital and labour with Martin Thomas from Solidarity.

Moishe Postone, a Marxist writer based at the University of Chicago and author of Time, Labour, and Social Domination, and Critique du fétiche-capital: Le capitalisme, l’antisémitisme et la gauche,discusses capital and labour with Martin Thomas.

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Don’t blame migrants, blame the bosses!

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Editorial

Free movement across borders gives individual freedom, and makes cultures more diverse and richer. Migrants have rights; and migrants are a boon, not a burden.

To win democratic control against the rapacious profit-drive of the capitalist multinationals and the global financial markets requires joint action by many countries. Socialism cannot be built in one country alone. The working class, to win gains, must unite across borders. The lower the borders, the easier it is to unite.

To win democratic control against the rapacious profit-drive of the capitalist multinationals and the global financial markets requires joint action by many countries.

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Two cheers for neo-liberalism?

Author: 

Martin Thomas
IMF economists have criticised extreme neo-liberalism, but in the name of moderate neo-liberalism.

Jonathan Ostry, an IMF economist with a long record of arguing that extreme income inequality harms capitalist growth, has published a new article on the theme with two IMF colleagues, Prakash Loungani and Davide Furceri.

Capitalist crises generally come through sudden shutdowns of investment and luxury spending by the rich which then snowball through the economy. The poor are less apt to go in for sudden bouts of holding on to our cash. The greater the proportion of spending controlled by the rich, the more unstable.

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