nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2021‒05‒03
eight papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. Homo domesticus : Une histoire profonde des premiers États By François Facchini
  2. Weber Revisited: The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Nationalism By Kersting, Felix; Wohnsiedler, Iris; Wolf, Nikolaus
  3. Bagehot for Central Bankers By Laurent Le Maux
  4. Life among the Econ: fifty years on By Thomas Palley
  5. The Normal Degree of Capacity Utilization: The History of a Controversial Concept By Trezzini, Attilio; Pignalosa, Daria
  6. Wettbewerb und Gemeinwohl By Christoph Engel
  7. Kapitalismus als System zur Verwirklichung moralischer Anliegen - Ordonomische Denkanstöße By Pies, Ingo
  8. The Banker's Oath And Financial Advice By Utz Weitzel; Michael Kirchler

  1. By: François Facchini (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: This bookreview presents the James C. Scott's thesis about the origin of State and discusses its relevance to the defense of the ethics of freedom.
    Abstract: Cette note de lecture présente la thèse défendue par James C. Scott puis discute de son intérêt pour les défenseurs de l'éthique de la liberté.
    Keywords: origine de l'Etat,blé,impôt,soumission,agriculture fugitive
    Date: 2020
  2. By: Kersting, Felix (HU Berlin); Wohnsiedler, Iris (HU Berlin); Wolf, Nikolaus (HU Berlin)
    Abstract: We revisit Max Weber's hypothesis on the role of Protestantism for economic development. We show that nationalism is crucial to both, the interpretation of Weber's Protestant Ethic and empirical tests thereof. For late 19th century Prussia we reject Weber’s suggestion that Protestantism mattered due to an “ascetic compulsion to save”. Moreover, we find that income levels, savings, and literacy rates differed between Germans and Poles, not between Protestants and Catholics using pooled OLS and IV regressions as well as IV mediation analysis. We suggest that this result is due to anti-Polish discrimination.
    Keywords: Max Weber; protestantism; nationalism;
    JEL: N13 N33 O16 Z12
    Date: 2019–11–13
  3. By: Laurent Le Maux (University of Western Brittany)
    Abstract: Walter Bagehot (1873) published his famous book, Lombard Street, almost 150 years ago. The adage "lending freely against good collateral at a penalty rate" is associated with his name and his book has always been set on a pedestal and is still considered as the leading reference on the role of lender of last resort. Nonetheless, without a clear understanding of the theoretical grounds and the institutional features of the British banking system, any interpretation of Bagehot's writings remains vague if not misleading-which is worrisome if they are supposed to provide a guideline for policy makers. The purpose of the present paper is to determine whether Bagehot's recommendation remains relevant for modern central bankers or whether it was indigenous to the monetary and banking architecture of Victorian times.
    Keywords: Bagehot,Central Banking,Lender of Last Resort
    Date: 2021–04–19
  4. By: Thomas Palley (Economics for Democratic and Open Societies (US))
    Abstract: Almost fifty years ago, the Swedish econographer Axel Leijonhufvud (1973) wrote a seminal study on the Econ tribe titled “Life among the Econ”. This study revisits the Econ and reports on their current state. Life has gotten more complicated since those bygone days. The cult of math modl-ing has spread far and wide, so that even lay Econs practice it. Fifty years ago the Econ used to say “Modl-ing is everything”. Now they say “Modl-ing is the only thing”. The math priesthood has been joined by a priesthood of economagicians. The fundamental social divide between Micro and Macro sub-tribes persists, but it has been diluted by a new doctrine of micro foundations. The Econ remain a fractious and argumentative tribe.
    Keywords: Micro, macro, economagicians, Keynesians, New Classicals, New Keynesians
    JEL: A10 B00 B20 Z00 Z10
    Date: 2021–04
  5. By: Trezzini, Attilio (Roma Tre University); Pignalosa, Daria (Roma Tre University)
    Abstract: The determination of the normal degree of capacity utilization has been addressed in the analysis of radically different problems and with different theoretical approaches. By going back over the history of these analyses, the paper highlights the main findings that have emerged from the early literature on the subject and identifies some generally shared principles on the one hand and different methodological positions on the other. Finally, attention is drawn to some issues that seem susceptible to further investigation.
    Keywords: capacity utilization; choice of technique; demand-led growth; competition
    JEL: B51 D21
    Date: 2021–04
  6. By: Christoph Engel (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods)
    Abstract: Die Worte Wettbewerb und Gemeinwohl kommen im Grundgesetz nicht vor. In ständiger Rechtsprechung betont das Bundesverfassungsgericht, dass das Grundgesetz keine Entscheidung über die deutsche Wirtschaftsverfassung getroffen hat. Gleichwohl hat das Gericht häufig über das Verhältnis von Wettbewerb und Gemeinwohl entschieden. Es hat den Wettbewerb, also das freie Spiel der Kräfte, vor allem als eine Gefahr für das Gemeinwohl gedeutet. Vor allem sind die einschlägigen Entscheidungen aber sehr kursorisch. Dieser Beitrag systematisiert die Entscheidungspraxis und stellt ihr Kerngedanken der Wettbewerbstheorie entgegen. Für den wirtschaftlichen Wettbewerb finden sich diese Gedanken in der ökonomischen Theorie, für den Stimmenwettbewerb in der politischen Theorie, für den Meinungswettbewerb in der publizistischen Theorie, für den Wettbewerb der Rechtsordnungen in Albert O. Hirschmans Theorie von Widerspruch und Abwanderung.
    Keywords: Wettbewerb, Gemeinwohl, Bundesverfassungsgericht, wirtschaftlicher Wettbewerb, Stimmenwettbewerb, Meinungswettbewerb, Wettbewerb der Rechtsordnungen
    JEL: A12 D01 D02 D04 D40 D60 D72 F00
    Date: 2021–04–22
  7. By: Pies, Ingo
    Abstract: Dieser Beitrag formuliert aus der wirtschaftsethischen Perspektive des ordonomischen Forschungsprogramms einige Denkanstöße, die dazu beitragen sollen, ein differenzierte(re)s Moralurteil über 'Kapitalismus' zu entwickeln: Kapitalismus setzt Wettbewerbsanreize ein, um Produktionseffizienz und Innovationsdynamik zu fördern. Durch solche Wettbewerbsanreize sind die einzelnen individuellen Handlungen und ihre sozial aggregierten Ergebnisse einerseits intentional entkoppelt, andererseits aber institutionell verknüpft. Auf diese Weise avancieren die Anreizwirkungen des kapitalistischen Ordnungsrahmens zum system(at)ischen Ort der Moral. Von ihnen hängt es ab, ob die Ergebnisse normativ erwünscht oder unerwünscht sind-und inwiefern es gelingt, den Kapitalismus als System zur Verwirklichung moralischer Anliegen in Dienst zu nehmen.
    Keywords: Kapitalismus,Konkurrenz,Marktwirtschaft,Moral,Umweltschutz,Wachstum,Gender (Pay) Gap,Capitalism,Competition,Market Economy,Morality,Environmental Protection,Growth
    Date: 2021
  8. By: Utz Weitzel (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam); Michael Kirchler (University of Innsbruck)
    Abstract: Financial misbehavior is widespread and costly. The Dutch government legally requires every employee in the financial sector to take a Hippocratic oath, the so-called ``banker's oath.'' We investigate whether moral nudges that directly and indirectly remind financial advisers of their oath affect their service. In a large-scale audit study, professional auditors confronted 201 Dutch financial advisers with a conflict of interest. We find that when auditors apply a moral nudge, referring to the banker's oath, advisers are less likely to prioritize bank's interests. In additional prediction tasks, we find that Dutch regulators expect stronger effects of the oath than observed.
    Keywords: experimental finance, audit study, banker’s oath, moral nudges, financial advice
    JEL: C92 D84 G02 G14
    Date: 2021–04–26

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