nep-his New Economics Papers
on Business, Economic and Financial History
Issue of 2011‒01‒16
twenty papers chosen by
Bernardo Batiz-Lazo
University of Leicester

  1. Poverty, Population, Inequality, and Development: the Historical Perspective By Chilosi, Alberto
  2. Power and the translator: Joseph Conrad in Chinese translations during the Republican era (1912-1937). By Lee, K.-K.G.
  3. The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money After 75 Years: The Importance of Being in the Right Place at the Right Time By Matthew N. Luzzetti; Lee E. Ohanian
  4. U.S. Foreign-Exchange-Market Intervention and the Early Dollar Float: 1973 – 1981 By Michael D. Bordo; Owen F. Humpage; Anna J. Schwartz
  5. Developmentalism By Erik S. Reinert
  6. How Amsterdam got fiat money By Stephen Quinn; William Roberds
  7. Capital taxation during the U.S. Great Depression By Ellen R. McGrattan
  8. "Political Economy of Trade Liberalization: The Case of Postwar Japan" (in Japanese) By Tetsuji Okazaki
  9. Race and Home Ownership from the Civil War to the Present By William J. Collins; Robert A. Margo
  10. Real Business Cycle Models of the Great Depression. By Luca Pensieroso
  11. To err is human: rating agencies and the interwar foreign government debt crisis By Marc Flandreau; Norbert Gaillard; Frank Packer
  12. Cultural Policies in Europe.From a State to a City-Centered Perspective on Cultural Generativity By Pierre-Michel Menger
  13. Revisiting the 1929 Crisis: Was the Fed Pre-Keynesian? New Lessons from the Past. By Claude Diebolt; Antoine Parent; Jamel Trabelsi
  14. The Evolution and Changing Geographical Structure of World Agri-food Trade, 1950-2000. By Raúl Serranoa; Vicente Pinilla
  15. Informalidad y dualismo en la economía mexicana By Alicia Puyana; José Romero
  16. Stochasticity in Population and Economic Growth with Past Dependence. By Tapas Mishra; Claude Diebolt; Mamata Parhi
  17. La dynamique structurelle et spatiale des systèmes de brevets. Une comparaison France, Allemagne, Grande-Bretagne, Etats-Unis et Japon : 1617-2006. By Claude Diebolt; Karine Pellier
  18. La Evolución de los Sistemas de Pagos de Bajo Valor en el Perú By Choy, Marylin; Roca, Victor
  19. Oil scenarios for long-term business planning: Royal Dutch Shell and generative explanation, 1960-2010 By Jefferson, Michael; Voudouris, Vlasios
  20. Evolución de la demanda de importaciones de México: 1940-2009 By José Romero

  1. By: Chilosi, Alberto
    Abstract: Seen in historical perspective the main economic predicaments of the present world (such as poverty, inequality, backwardness) appear in a somewhat different light than in many current discussions, especially by sociologists, radical economists and political scientists. In the present paper the achievements of the modern age, and in particular of the post- World War II period, are considered in the perspective of economic and demographic history, and in their connection with the systems of production and of international relations. Some considerations concerning future possible developments conclude the paper.
    Keywords: poverty; population; development; distribution; globalization
    JEL: O10 P00 N00
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:pra:mprapa:27761&r=his
  2. By: Lee, K.-K.G.
    Abstract: When he died in 1924, Joseph Conrad, who was named a ‘racist’ by Chinua Achebe (1977) and defended by others as taking an anti-imperialist stance (Brantlinger 1996), was a total stranger to the Chinese readers, whose country was made a semi-colony in the late nineteenth century. In the 1930s, however, four of his works were translated and published within four years, all commissioned by the Committee on Editing and Translation funded by the China Foundation for the Promotion of Education and Culture. The thesis investigates the Chinese translations of Conrad’s works published during the Republican Era in 1912-1937, exploring the power relations between the translators as agents and the social structure in which they operated. The thesis is divided into six chapters. After the introduction, I describe, in Chapter 2, the translators’ practice in terms of their narrating positions on the textual and paratextual levels as reflected in the translations of the sea stories borrowing analytical models on narrative discourse devised by Gérard Genette and Roger Fowler. I proceed in Chapter 3 with an account of the commissioner, tracking down the organization of the China Foundation and the Committee on Editing and Translation which initiated the project of translating World Classics (including Conrad’s works) in the 1930s. In Chapter 4, I reassess the notion of ‘faithfulness’, a key concept in the discourse of translation in theory and criticism at the time. Using Pierre Bourdieu’s theory of practice as the theoretical framework, I argue that the practice of the translators, who created the image of Conrad through their translations, can be explained with reference to their relations with other agents (commissioners, theorists, critics, etc.) occupying different positions within the intellectual field, and the habitus which mediated their position and the social structure they were engaged in Chapter 5, followed by the conclusion.
    Date: 2010–09
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:ner:ucllon:http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/133983/&r=his
  3. By: Matthew N. Luzzetti; Lee E. Ohanian
    Abstract: This paper studies why the General Theory had so much impact on the economics profession through the 1960s, why that impact began to wane in the 1970s, and why many economic policymakers cling to many of the tenets of the General Theory. We discuss three key elements along these lines, including the fact macroeconomic time series through the 1960s seemed to conform qualitatively to patterns discussed in the General Theory, that econometric developments in the area of simultaneous equations made advanced the General Theory to a quantitative enterprise, and that the General Theory was published during the Great Depression, when there was a search for alternative frameworks for understanding economic crises.
    JEL: E12 E32
    Date: 2010–12
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16631&r=his
  4. By: Michael D. Bordo; Owen F. Humpage; Anna J. Schwartz
    Abstract: The dollar’s depreciation during the early floating rate period, 1973 – 1981, was a symptom of the Great Inflation. In that environment, sterilized foreign exchange interventions were ineffective in halting the dollar’s decline, but showed a limited ability to smooth dollar movements. Only after the Volcker FOMC changed its monetary-policy approach and demonstrated a willingness to maintain a disinflationary stance despite severe economic weakness and high unemployment did the dollar begin a sustained appreciation. Also contributing to the ineffectiveness of the interventions was the Desk’s method of operation. The small, covert interventions, particularly prior to 1977, seemed inconsistent with an expectations channel of influence, and financing intervention with short-term borrowed funds seemed inconsistent with a portfolio-balance channel of influence. The Desk never clearly articulated an intervention transmission mechanism. The episode indicated the shortcomings of sterilized intervention and led to their cessation in April 1981.
    JEL: F3 N1 N2
    Date: 2010–12
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16647&r=his
  5. By: Erik S. Reinert
    Abstract: Develpmentalism . or the idea of the .developmental stateÿ . was one of the most spectacularly successful ideologies of the 20th century. The Cold War and the division of most ideas into a camp of either being politically to the .rightÿ or to the .leftÿ has obliterated the fact that Developmentalism was successfully performed along the whole political axis, from fascism via social democracy to communism. In their emphasis on economic growth built on industrial mass production . on the idea that only a certain type of national economic structure is conducive to increased wealth . Stalin, Hitler and the Scandinavian social democracies all represented Developmentalism. With the growth and eventual dominance of neo-classical economics and economic neoliberalism, Developmentalism gradually disappeared along the whole political axis, with the exception of Asia and to some extent Brazil.
    Date: 2010–12
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:tth:wpaper:34&r=his
  6. By: Stephen Quinn; William Roberds
    Abstract: We investigate a fiat money system introduced by the Bank of Amsterdam in 1683. Using data from the Amsterdam Municipal Archives, we partially reconstruct changes in the bank's balance sheet from 1666 through 1702. Our calculations show that the Bank of Amsterdam, founded in 1609, was engaged in two archetypal central bank activities—lending and open market operations—both before and after its adoption of a fiat standard. After 1683, the bank was able to conduct more regular and aggressive policy interventions, from a virtually nonexistent capital base. The bank's successful experimentation with a fiat standard foreshadows later developments in the history of central banking.
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:fip:fedawp:2010-17&r=his
  7. By: Ellen R. McGrattan
    Abstract: Previous studies of the U.S. Great Depression find that increased taxation contributed little to either the dramatic downturn or the slow recovery. These studies include only one type of capital taxation: a business profits tax. The contribution is much greater when the analysis includes other types of capital taxes. A general equilibrium model extended to include taxes on dividends, property, capital stock, and excess and undistributed profits predicts patterns of output, investment, and hours worked more like those in the 1930s than found in earlier studies. The greatest effects come from the increased tax on corporate dividends.
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:fip:fedmsr:451&r=his
  8. By: Tetsuji Okazaki (Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the sequence of trade liberalization in postwar Japan and its determinants. As the Japanese government utilized the foreign exchange allocation system as a tool for the industrial policy, especially for protecting domestic industries, in the 1950s, trade liberalization was considered to give a serious impact on those industries, and designing the sequence of trade liberalization was an important policy issue. We indentified the timing of liberalization of each commodity using original official documents, and examined what factors affected on the timing. It was found that in designing the sequence of trade liberalization, the government took into account of competitiveness of domestic industries and survivability of small and medium-sized firms.
    Date: 2011–01
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:tky:jseres:2011cj231&r=his
  9. By: William J. Collins; Robert A. Margo
    Abstract: We present estimates of home ownership for African-American and white households from 1870 to 2007. The estimates pertain to a sample of households headed by adult men participating in the labor force but the substantive findings are unchanged if the analysis is extended to all households. Over the entire period African-American households in the sample increased their home ownership rate by 46 percentage points, whereas the rate for white households increased by 20 percentage points. Thus, in the long run, the racial gap declined by 26 percentage points. Remarkably, 25 of the 26 point long-run narrowing occurred between 1870 and 1910. Since 1910, both white and black households have increased their rates of homeownership but the long-run growth in levels has been similar for both groups, and therefore the racial gap measured in percentage points was approximately constant over the past century.
    JEL: N11 N12 R21
    Date: 2011–01
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16665&r=his
  10. By: Luca Pensieroso (FNRS, IRES, Université catholique de Louvain (Belgique).)
    Abstract: This paper presents and assesses the recent application of models in the Real Business Cycle (RBC) tradition to the analysis of the Great Depression of the 1930s. The main conclusion is that the breaking of the depression taboo has been a desirable completion of the cliometric revolution: no historic event should be exempt from a dispassionate quantitative analysis. On the other hand, the substantive contribution of RBC models is not yet sufficient to establish a new historiography of the Great Depression.
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:afc:wpaper:10-01&r=his
  11. By: Marc Flandreau; Norbert Gaillard; Frank Packer
    Abstract: During the 1930s, rating agencies took up a central role in regulatory supervision that they still have today. The proximate cause for this changeover was the economic shock of the Great Depression. Exploring the performance of rating agencies in assessing the risks of sovereign debt, an important segment of the bond market, we do not find that superior forecasting capacities can explain the agencies' growing importance.
    Keywords: sovereign credit ratings, Great Depression, financial crisis, international bond markets
    Date: 2010–12
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:bis:biswps:335&r=his
  12. By: Pierre-Michel Menger (Ecole des hautes études en sciences sociales; Centre national de la recherche scientifique)
    Abstract: Cultural policy in Europe is deeply rooted in the Welfare State doctrine that has been prevailing during the last half century. Its implementation has gone along with the invention and rise of educational policy, social policy and health policy. This paper sketches its evolution as a four phase move towards what has been emerging as the central dual content of the current public cultural policy: preserving and promoting heritage, and bringing the creative industries at the core of the so-called knowledge society. The general evolutionary trend shows four distinct phases: 1) the creation of a systematic cultural supply policy based on a limited definition of culture suitable for public financing and based on a vertical concept of democratization by conversion; 2) the gradual decentralization of public action, which leads to an increasing disparity in its aims and functions, and which challenges the initial universalist, top-down egalitarian model; 3) a revision of the legitimate scope of public action, which declares symbolically obsolete the founding hierarchy of cultural politics, that which would oppose high culture, protected from market forces and entertainment culture and governed by the laws of the industrial economy; 4) an increasing tendency to justify cultural policy on the basis of its contribution to economic growth and to the balance of national social diversity, which legitimises the regulatory power of public action as well encouraging the expansion of the creative industries and the demands for the evaluation of procedures and results. The last section of this paper moves away from the state centered perspective and focuses on the city as the incubator of cultural generativity, in order to suggest how a city-centered approach to cultural development challenges the state-centered doctrine of cultural policy.
    Keywords: policy; culture; creativity; welfarism; global city; sociology; urban economics Note :The paper is based on the study when the auther was a research fellow of GRIPS(National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies).
    Date: 2010–12
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:ngi:dpaper:10-28&r=his
  13. By: Claude Diebolt (BETA/CNRS, Université de Strasbourg, France.); Antoine Parent; Jamel Trabelsi
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:afc:wpaper:10-11&r=his
  14. By: Raúl Serranoa (Department of Business Administration, Universidad de Zaragoza, Spain.); Vicente Pinilla (Department of Applied Economics and Economic History, Universidad de Zaragoza, Spain.)
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:afc:wpaper:10-06&r=his
  15. By: Alicia Puyana (Flacso); José Romero (El Colegio de México)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the trajectory of informality as it has evolved since 1950. For doing so, the analytic frame elaborated by Arthur Lewis was applied. For Lewis, the informal employment results from the incapacity of an economy, with unlimited labour supply, to absorb all the working force at a given equilibrium salary. Therefore, in this essay, informality represents the residual labour that remains stacked in the non modern sector, once the modern sector has absorbed all the labour it can employed at a given equilibrium wage and available capital. The analysis starts with a mathematical formalization of the Lewis model and proceeds to evaluate one of its main conclusions using observed data of the Mexican economy. The model accurately represents the stylized facts of the economy and allows concluding that, after the introduction of the structural reforms, the modern sector of the Mexican economy experienced a large increase in capital intensity which enlarged its capital/labour ratio and inflated the costs of generating formal employment. In these conditions, and taking into consideration the meagre investments registered during the last two decades it is not surprising the immovability of the share of formal in total employment as well as the almost negligible increases in total labour productivity and total income per head.
    Keywords: empleo, informalidad, dualismo, productividad
    JEL: J0 J4 O4 O5
    Date: 2010–12
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:emx:ceedoc:2010-04&r=his
  16. By: Tapas Mishra (Department of Economics, Swansea University, UK.); Claude Diebolt (BETA/CNRS, Université de Strasbourg, France.); Mamata Parhi (Department of Economics, Swansea University, UK.)
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:afc:wpaper:10-10&r=his
  17. By: Claude Diebolt (BETA/CNRS, Université de Strasbourg, France.); Karine Pellier (Lameta/CNRS, Université de Montpellier 1, France.)
    Date: 2010
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:afc:wpaper:10-05&r=his
  18. By: Choy, Marylin (Banco Central de Reserva del Perú); Roca, Victor (Banco Central de Reserva del Perú)
    Abstract: El trabajo describe el desarrollo de los sistemas interbancarios de pago de bajo valor en el Perú en el período 2005-2010. Se destaca que las transferencias de crédito han tenido una alta tasa de crecimiento en los últimos cinco años, aunque los valores y volúmenes alcanzados son aún más bajos que los obtenidos en la región. Los bajos niveles de bancarización, la elevada preferencia por circulante y la concentración de los depósitos transferibles limitan el nivel potencial de las transferencias interbancarias. Sin embargo, dichos factores limitantes vienen progresivamente revirtiéndose: la bancarización está incrementándose sostenidamente, la preferencia por circulante está disminuyendo y la concentración de los depósitos transferibles se ha reducido. En el país se viene implementando un conjunto de acciones que permitirían que en el mediano plazo las transferencias electrónicas alcancen niveles comparables a los de otras economías de la región. Entre estas acciones se destaca el rol promotor y regulador del Banco Central, así como el rol de la comunidad financiera de incentivar a los clientes del sistema financiero a la sustitución del efectivo y del cheque por instrumentos electrónicos, particularmente por transferencias de crédito. Asimismo, la creciente inclusión de entidades financieras no bancarias al proceso de compensación, el desarrollo de innovaciones y de la tecnología se constituyen en factores favorables al crecimiento del uso de transferencias electrónicas, incluso para los sectores de microempresas y rurales.
    Keywords: Sistemas de Pagos, Instrumentos de Pago, Instrumentos de Pago de Bajo Valor, Transferencias de Fondos
    Date: 2010–12
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:rbp:wpaper:2010-015&r=his
  19. By: Jefferson, Michael; Voudouris, Vlasios
    Abstract: Most executives know that overarching paints of plausible futures will profoundly affect the competitiveness and survival of their organisation. Initially from the perspective of Shell, this article discuses oil scenarios and their relevance for upstream investments. Scenarios are then incorporated into generative explanation and its principal instrument, namely agent-based computational laboratories, as the new standard of explanation of the past and the present and the new way to structure the uncertainties of the future. The key concept is that the future should not be regarded as ‘complicated’ but as ‘complex’, in that there are uncertainties about the driving forces that generate unanticipated futures, which cannot be explored analytically.
    Keywords: oil scenarios; Shell; ACEGES; agent-based computational economics
    JEL: C0 L1
    Date: 2011–01–05
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:pra:mprapa:27910&r=his
  20. By: José Romero (El Colegio de México)
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to specify and estimate an aggregate import demand function for México, and to discuss the implications of the results. Estimation is based on quarterly data for real imports, real GDP and relative prices over the period 1940-2009. In our empirical analysis of the aggregate import demand function for México, cointegration and error correction technique have been used. This analysis suggests that a cointegrating relationship exists between these variables. In our study we got more than one cointegrating relationship among these variables. More than one cointegrating relationship means more stability in the system. We also found that a structural change happen after 1982 so we estimated two demand functions one for each period. Our econometric estimates of the aggregate import demand function for México suggest that import demand in the second period is overwhelming dominated by GDP and weekly affected by relative prices. This turns fiscal and monetary policies infective to regulate the business cycle.
    Keywords: México, importaciones, exportaciones, propensión a importar
    JEL: F02 F14 F15
    Date: 2010–12
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:emx:ceedoc:2010-03&r=his

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