nep-his New Economics Papers
on Business, Economic and Financial History
Issue of 2005‒06‒05
eleven papers chosen by
Bernardo Batiz-Lazo
Bristol Business School

  1. Historical Perspective on Global Imbalances By Michael D. Bordo
  2. The Opium Wars, Opium Legalization, and Opium Consumption in China By Jeffrey A. Miron; Chris Feige
  3. On-line distribution of working papers through NEP: A Brief Business History By Bernardo Batiz-Lazo; Thomas Krichel
  4. ‘Historical Excellence’ in Football World Cup Tournaments: Empirical Evidence with Data From 1930 to 2002 By Benno Torgler
  5. Japan's Banking System: From the Bubble and Crisis To Reconstruction By Masahiro Kawai
  6. "Understanding the Economic History of Postal Services: Some Preliminary Observations from the Case of Meiji Japan" By Janet Elizabeth Hunter
  7. Citizenship Laws and International Migration in Historical Perspective By Graziella Bertocchi; Chiara Strozzi
  8. Making Capitalism Work: Social Capital and Economic Growth in Italy, 1970-1995 By Thomas P. Lyon
  9. Inversión pública y crecimiento económico. Una revisión crítica con propuesta de futuro By Carmen Díaz Roldán; Diego Martínez-López
  10. Governance of Diversity Between Social Dynamics and Conflicts in Multicultural Cities. A Selected Survey on Historical Bibliography By Ercole Sori; Renato Sansa
  11. Financial Reform, Institutional Interdependency, and Supervisory Failure in the Post-Crisis Korea By Hong-Bum Kim; Chung Lee

  1. By: Michael D. Bordo
    Abstract: This paper takes an historical perspectives approach to the current episode of global imbalances. I consider four historical episodes which may give some indications as to whether the adjustment to U.S. current account deficit will lead to a 'benign' or 'gloomy' outlook. The episodes are: the transfer of capital in the earlier era of globalization the late nineteenth century; the interwar gold exchange standard; Bretton Woods; and the 1977-79 dollar crisis. I conclude that adjustment in earlier era of globalization has more resonance for the current imbalance than the other scenarios.
    JEL: F02 F32
    Date: 2005–05
  2. By: Jeffrey A. Miron; Chris Feige
    Abstract: The effect of drug prohibition on drug consumption is a critical issue in debates over drug policy. One episode that provides information on the consumption-reducing effect of drug prohibition is the Chinese legalization of opium in 1858. In this paper we examine the impact of China's opium legalization on the quantity and price of British opium exports from India to China during the 19th century. We find little evidence that legalization increased exports or decreased price. Thus, the evidence suggests China's opium prohibition had a minimal impact on opium consumption.
    JEL: K4 N4
    Date: 2005–05
  3. By: Bernardo Batiz-Lazo (Bristol Business School); Thomas Krichel (Long Island University)
    Abstract: This brief article tells of the emergence and development of a service for speedy, on-line distribution of recent additions to the broad literatures on economics and related areas called NEP: New Economics Papers. This service is part of a wider project called RePEc. RePEc is a digital library for the Economics discipline. Details are also provided on how to make individual and institutional contributions.
    Keywords: NEP, current awareness service, RePEc, WoPEc
    JEL: N
    Date: 2005–05–30
  4. By: Benno Torgler
    Abstract: Most of the football papers that measure the international performances focus on the ranking system provided by the FIFA. Surprisingly, the World Cup per se has not been analyzed intensively. This paper as a novelty reports empirical evidence of international team performances in the World Cup tournaments between 1930 and 2002. The paper investigates to which extent economic, demographic, cultural and climatic factors have an impact on national teams’ performances. Strong evidence is reported that nations with a stronger football tradition perform better.
    Keywords: football; soccer; FIFA; culture
    JEL: L83
    Date: 2004–07
  5. By: Masahiro Kawai (university of Tokyo)
    Abstract: The Japanese banking sector is now going through major restructuring, reorganization, and consolidation on a scale unprecedented in its history, all against a background of an increasingly market-oriented, more deregulated and globalized policy environment. This process was set in motion and greatly precipitated by recent economic difficulties, i.e., the asset disinflation and economic stagnation that started in the early 1990s and led to the systemic banking crisis in 1997-98. The focus of this paper is the state of the Japanese banking system that was exposed to an asset price bubble (in the late 1980s), its collapse (in the early 1990s) and subsequent systemic crisis (in the late 1990s), and is undergoing recent reconstruction.
    Keywords: Japan, banking, asset price, reorganization, reconstruction
    JEL: G21 E58 G12
    Date: 2003–12
  6. By: Janet Elizabeth Hunter (Economic History Department, London School of Economics and Political Science)
    Abstract: This object of this paper is to raise some methodological issues relating to the economic history of postal services, an area relatively neglected by Western economic historians, and to use Japan in the second half of the 19th century as a case study for exploring some of these issues. The first half of the paper surveys the previous historical literature on 19th century postal systems, and then considers several key analytical issues, in particular the fact that postal systems were government monopolies, the nature of postal systems as technologies, and the significance of the improved information flow that these systems offered to an industrializing economy. The second half of the paper looks at the economic significance of the Meiji governments's postal regulatory framework, the use that was made of these provisions, and how this use changed over time. The analysis focuses in particular on the issue of demand for and supply of postal services, and suggests that in most cases the increasing use made of the service was supply-led. The conclusion puts Japan's postal usage in this period in comparative perspective, and suggests possibilities for future research.
    Date: 2005–05
  7. By: Graziella Bertocchi (Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia); Chiara Strozzi (Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia)
    Abstract: We investigate the origin, impact and evolution of citizenship laws. Citizenship laws originate from the common and civil law traditions, which apply jus soli and jus sanguinis, respectively. We compile a data set across countries of the world starting from the 19th century. The impact of the original, exogenously-given laws on international migration proves insignificant for the early, mass migration waves, which confirm to be driven primarily by economic incentives. Postwar convergence of citizenship laws is determined by legal tradition and international migration, but also by border stability, the establishment of democracy, the welfare burden, cultural factors and colonial history.
    Keywords: Citizenship laws, International migration, Legal origins, Democracy, Borders
    JEL: F22 K40 N30 O15
    Date: 2005–05
  8. By: Thomas P. Lyon (Indiana University)
    Abstract: Using data on the 20 Italian regions for the period 1970-1995, I examine whether the presence of social capital, as reflected in a number of different measures collected by Putnam (1993), affects economic productivity. I find three types of effects. First, social capital, when treated as an input to regional production, has a positive and significant effect in the South, but a much weaker effect in the North. Second, some forms of social capital can significantly increase regions’ propensities to make physical capital investments; however, dense networks of association reduce capital investment in both the North and South. Instrumental variables estimates show that social capital affects growth both directly and through affecting investment in physical capital. Third, social capital contributes positively to the rate of total factor productivity growth in the Italian regions.
    Keywords: Social capital, Growth, Investment, Italy
    JEL: O17 O47 O52
    Date: 2005–05
  9. By: Carmen Díaz Roldán (Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha); Diego Martínez-López (Centro de Estudios Andaluces y Univesidad Pablo de Olavide)
    Abstract: The relationship between public investment and economic performance has received a substantial attention by economists and policy-makers over the recent few years. In such a way, several approaches have been followed, from different theoretical and empirical points of view. The aim of this paper is to survey the main results found in the literature, especially those concerning productive public spending and economic growth. Moreover, we present a simple growth model in which regional characteristics are explicitly taken into account.
    Keywords: Growth, infrastructures, regional policy
    JEL: E62 H54
    Date: 2005
  10. By: Ercole Sori (Università Politecnica delle Marche); Renato Sansa (Università Politecnica delle Marche)
    Abstract: This paper is an excursus on multiculturalism from a historical perspective. It ranges from the encounters of different cultures in ancient times, through the Middle Ages, the Reformation and Counter-Reformation period up to the present times. It describes the peculiarity of the solutions adopted, juridical or social, formal or informal. Although it is difficult to classify the various attitudes towards foreigners, a decisive distinction should be made between modern history and previous times. Until the 19th century the number of migrants was significant in a historical perspective, but limited in absolute terms. May this fact have helped the hosting institutions to encourage a favourable policy towards foreign settlements? Another distinction must be made between high qualified migration and humble and unskilled workers. Cities’ histories are full of discriminatory measures towards local immigrants from villages who swelled the ranks of urban outcasts. Finally, it seems clear that the category of multiculturalism, as a premise for the successful integration of foreigners can only be applied with precautions to historical examples. The challenge of the clash of cultures was tackled differently in past societies, without necessarily meaning that those societies were racist or xenophobic. Successful examples of integration and development with the contribution of diversity in the past could involve exclusion and discrimination apparently unacceptable nowadays.
    Keywords: Social dynamics, Conflicts, Multicultural cities, Diversities
    Date: 2005–05
  11. By: Hong-Bum Kim (Gyeongsang National University, Seoul, Korea); Chung Lee (Department of Economics, University of Hawaii at Manoa)
    Abstract: In the wake of the economic crisis of 1997-98 South Korea undertook a number of reforms in financial supervision. In spite of these reforms doubts have been raised as to whether Korea has in fact succeeded in creating a system of financial supervision capable of dealing with certain risks and responding to new challenges appropriately. This paper argues that because of institutional interdependency a successful institutional reform requires changing not only the particular institution at issue but also other inter-related institutions; that Korea’s post-crisis reform in financial supervision was limited to changing formal institutions for financial supervision; and that further reforms are needed in other institutions—formal as well as informal—if Korea is to further improve financial supervision.
    Keywords: financial reform, institutional interdependency, Korea’s post-crisis reform in financial supervision
    JEL: G20 N20 O17
    Date: 2005

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