New Economics Papers
on Business, Economic and Financial History
Issue of 2005‒01‒16
eleven papers chosen by

  1. Post-Thatcher Fiscal Strategies in the U.K.: An Interpretation By Andrew Hughes Hallett
  3. Historical Attitudes and Implications for path dependence: FDI development and Institutional changes in China By Zhang, X.; Krug, B.; Reinmoeller, P.
  4. History friendly simulations for modelling industrial dynamics By Garavaglia, C.
  5. The evolution of alliance capabilities By Heimeriks, K.; Duysters, G.M.; Vanhaverbeke, W.P.M.
  6. A study into the alliance capability development process By Heimeriks, K.; Duysters, G.M.
  7. New Architectures in the Regulation and Supervision of Financial Markets and Institutions: The Netherlands By Olivier Pierrard; Henri Sneessens
  8. Politics and Efficiency of Separating Capital and Ordinary Government Budgets By Marco Bassetto; Thomas Sargent
  9. Work and the Disability Transition in 20th Century America By Sven Wilson; Joseph Burton; Benjamin Howell
  10. Heterogeneous preferences and new innovation cycles in mature industries: the camera industry 1955-1974 By Paul Windrum
  11. Estatísticas Demográficas: Pernambuco 1838-1888 By Heitor Moura Filho

  1. By: Andrew Hughes Hallett
    Abstract: Fiscal policy in Britain has changed radically since the Keynesianism of the 1960s and 1970s. After a passive period under monetarism of the 1980s, fiscal policy is said to have adopted a leadership role with long term objectives (low debt, the provision of public services/ investment, and social equity), together with an independent central bank. Monetary policy, operating with instrument independence, then takes care of short run stabilisation. I test this view – confronting it with evidence from the institutional arrangements put in place since 1997; with econometric evidence from the policy responses themselves; and with theoretical evidence on the incentive to choose such a regime in the first place. I conclude that this claim is broadly correct. It appears that the UK’s improved performance is a consequence of the advantages of combining fiscal leadership with an (instrument) independent central bank. The key feature is the ability to trade target (not instrument) independence in monetary policy to secure greater coordination between fiscal and monetary strategies.
    Keywords: Stackelberg leadership, policy complementarity, institutional coordination
    JEL: E52 E61 F42
    Date: 2004
  2. By: Branko Milanovic (World Bank; Carnegie Endowment)
    Abstract: Using recent economic statistics from the peak period of Byzantine political and economic influence, we estimate the average income around the year 1000 to have been about 6 nomismata per capita per annum. This is then translated into current prices using two independent methods. They both yield an estimate around $PPP 640-720 in 1990 international prices. It is argued that this amount is some 20 percent below an average estimate of Roman incomes at the time of Augustus (around year one). Assuming that most of income differences in Byzantium were due to the differences in average incomes between social classes, we estimate the Gini coefficient to have been in the range between 40 and 45.
    JEL: N30 N33
    Date: 2005–01–12
  3. By: Zhang, X.; Krug, B.; Reinmoeller, P. (Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), Erasmus University Rotterdam)
    Abstract: This paper attempts to explain how institutions in the reform era of China have evolved by looking into the FDI policies and regulations. As history matters, we don?t look solely into the previous direct stage to the reform era, and rather look into a longer history starting from prior to the 14th century. The study shows that a dimension of time is crucial to understand institutional change in China. Though the initiation of the open-door policy in the reform era is commonly regarded as path-break event, we claim that this institutional change is a path dependent event from a longer historical view. The path takes a zigzag that is shaped by interaction among interested parties: the central government, local governments and economic agents (foreign investors in terms of the open-door policies). The historical study shows that mutual needs and their behaviours influence their attitudes which further influence institutional building. This also further implies how Chinese institutions may evolve in the future and what we should concern more about institutional changes in transitional economies.
    Keywords: Attitudes;Institutions;Path dependence;China;FDI policy;
    Date: 2005–01–03
  4. By: Garavaglia, C. (CESPRI, Bocconi University, Milan, Italy and Cattaneo University, LIUC, Castellanza (VA), Italy)
    Keywords: simulation, models, industrial dynamics
    Date: 2004
  5. By: Heimeriks, K. (Ecis, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven); Duysters, G.M. (Ecis, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven); Vanhaverbeke, W.P.M. (Ecis, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven)
    Keywords: evolution, alliance
    Date: 2004
  6. By: Heimeriks, K. (Ecis, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven); Duysters, G.M. (Ecis, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven)
    Keywords: simulation, models
    Date: 2004
  7. By: Olivier Pierrard; Henri Sneessens
    Abstract: In recent years, several European Union member states have modified the institutional design offinancial supervision. These reforms pose the question which considerations have led to the different models chosen in these countries. We analyse the considerations in the Netherlands leading to the choice in 2002 of the twin -peaks model of financial supervision. The new model is based on the objectives of supervision. Thus, a separate authority is responsible for conduct-ofbusiness supervision, whereas a merged central bank and pensions and insurance board take care of prudential supervision. The authorities share responsibility for financial integrity issues. The main conclusion of this paper is that the size, composition and structure of the financial sector in the Netherlands constitute the main rationale behind the choice for a twin-peaks model of financial supervision.
    Date: 2004–12
  8. By: Marco Bassetto; Thomas Sargent
    Abstract: We analyze the democratic politics of a rule that separates capital and ordinary account budgets and allows the government to issue debt to finance capital items only. Many national governments followed this rule in the 18th and 19th centuries and most U.S. states do today. This simple 1800s financing rule sometimes provides excellent incentives for majorities to choose an efficient mix of public goods in an economy with a growing population of overlapping generations of long-lived but mortal agents. In a special limiting case with demographics that make Ricardian equivalence prevail, the 1800s rule does nothing to promote efficiency. But when the demographics imply even a moderate departure from Ricardian equivalence, imposing the rule substantially improves the efficiency of democratically chosen allocations. We calibrate some examples to U.S. demographic data. We speculate why in the twentieth century most national governments abandoned the 1800s rule while U.S. state governments have retained it.
    JEL: E6 H6 H7
    Date: 2005–01
  9. By: Sven Wilson; Joseph Burton; Benjamin Howell
    Abstract: Using data from Union Army pensioners and from the National Health Interview Surveys, we estimate that work-disability among white males aged 45-64 was 3.5 times as high in the late 19th century than at the end of the 20th century, including a decline and flattening of the age-profile since 1970. We present a descriptive model of disability that can account for a) the secular decline in prevalence; b) changes in slope of the age-profile; and c) periods of increasing prevalence. The high level and relatively flat slope of the historical disability age-profile is consistent with the early onset of chronic conditions and with high mortality associated with a subset of those conditions. We show that many common conditions in the 19th century have been either eliminated, delayed to later ages, or rendered less disabling by treatment innovations and the transformation of the workplace. These improvements have swamped the effect of declining mortality, which put upward pressure on disability prevalence. Given the low rate of mortality prior to age 65, technological changes will likely induce further reductions in work-disability, though recent increases in the prevalence of asthma and obesity may eventually work against this trend.
    JEL: I12
    Date: 2005–01
  10. By: Paul Windrum
    Abstract: The paper examines the innovation dynamics of the mature camera market between 1955 and 1974. This highlights the importance of heterogeneous preferences in determining industry structure. By recognising and accommodating consumer heterogeneity, new firms engaged in radical product and process innovation and overcame the first-mover advantages of dominant firms. The case raises important issues for our understanding of industry life cycles. First, a number of innovation cycles are possible over the life cycle. Second, new rounds of entry, exist and market shake-out can occur, with new, innovative entrants displacing old firms. If the new firms are in developing countries then a shift in global production occurs. Third, a basic tenet of Porterian competitive advantage is overturned because success is based on innovation not wage-cost advantages. Fourth, market structure can change, the industry dividing into a number of market niches that contain distinct user groups. Fifth, incremental modular innovations may be adopted by some user groups but not by others. Consequently, incremental product innovations may be adopted in low-priced goods but not in high-priced goods.
    Keywords: industry life cycle, innovation, heterogeneous preferences, cameras, photography
    JEL: L10 L60
    Date: 2004–12
  11. By: Heitor Moura Filho (Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro-IFCS)
    Abstract: Demographic statistics were few and unreliable for Brazil and specially for Pernambuco during the XIXth century. This paper discusses some pre- 1872 census statistics, including the creation of public cemeteries, which concentrated information on mortality. Text in Portuguese.
    Keywords: demography population Brazil Pernambuco
    JEL: N
    Date: 2005–01–09

General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.