Paris Commune 150: the economics

Today is the 150th anniversary of the beginning of the Paris Commune.  The Commune (Council) was formed as result of what should be considered the first uprising and revolution led by the working class in history.  This new class was the product of the industrial revolution in the capitalist mode of production that Marx andContinue reading “Paris Commune 150: the economics”

The year of the pandemic

It is one year to the day since the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the COVID-19 outbreak or epidemic as a ‘pandemic’, namely the global spread of the disease.  Of course, COVID-19 had emerged much earlier, maybe even in autumn 2019, but the outbreak really took hold in Wuhan, China first, before quickly sweeping acrossContinue reading “The year of the pandemic”

Luxemburg 150

Yesterday, 5 March 2021, was the 150th anniversary of the birth of Rosa Luxemburg, the great revolutionary socialist of the Polish-German labour movement.  Luxemburg’s contribution to socialist ideas and to the struggle to replace capitalism is too manifold for a short blog post to do her justice.  So I won’t attempt to do a properContinue reading “Luxemburg 150”

UK budget: coming out of COVID

The UK economy was the hardest hit of the top G7 economies in the year of the COVID.  Real GDP fell 9.9%, which the multi-millionaire and richest man in the British parliament, Conservative Chancellor, Rishi Sunak admitted was the worst contraction in national income in 300 years! The UK government also failed to protect theContinue reading “UK budget: coming out of COVID”

Mission impossible

Italian-American economist, Mariana Mazzucato, who works and resides in London, has become a big name in what we might call ‘centre-left’ or even in mainstream economic and political circles.  She has a new book out, Mission Economy: a moonshot guide to changing capitalism. Mazzucato was briefly an economic adviser to the UK Labour Party underContinue reading “Mission impossible”

Deflation, inflation or stagflation?

During the year of the COVID, global consumer and producer prices inflation dropped. In some manufacturing-based economies, there was even a fall in price levels (deflation) eg the Euro area, Japan and China). US inflation rate (annual %) “Effective demand” as Keynesians like to call it, plummeted, with business investment and household consumption dropping sharply. Continue reading “Deflation, inflation or stagflation?”

Ecuador: reversing the pandemic slump?

The leftist candidate Andrés Arauz took the lead in the first round of the presidential elections in Ecuador.  Arauz won 31.5 per cent of the vote, putting him about 11 percentage points clear of his nearest rivals. It was unclear who Arauz would face in the run-off. Indigenous leader Yaku Pérez and Guillermo Lasso, aContinue reading “Ecuador: reversing the pandemic slump?”

The mainstream: meeting the historic challenges?

Recently, newly confirmed US Treasury secretary and former Fed chief, Janet Yellen, spelt out the challenges facing US capitalism in a letter to her new staff.  She said: “the current crisis is very different from 2008. But the scale is as big, if not bigger. The pandemic has wrought wholesale devastation on the economy. EntireContinue reading “The mainstream: meeting the historic challenges?”

Covid and fictitious capital

During the year of the COVID, output, investment and employment in nearly all the economies of the world plummeted, as lockdowns, social isolation and collapsing international trade contracted output and spending.  And yet the opposite was the case for the stock and bond markets of the major economies.  The US stock market indexes (along withContinue reading “Covid and fictitious capital”