nep-pke New Economics Papers
on Post Keynesian Economics
Issue of 2022‒09‒05
four papers chosen by
Karl Petrick
Western New England University

  1. A Kaleckian growth model of secular stagnation with induced innovation By Stamegna, Marco
  2. A complexity view on the future of work. Meta-modelling exploration of the multi-sector K+S agent based model. By Giovanni Dosi; Marcelo C. Pereira; Andrea Roventini; Maria Enrica Virgillito
  3. Wage inequality and induced innovation in a classical-Marxian growth model By Stamegna, Marco
  4. The economics of class. A dual approach. By Fernando Esteve Mora; Rafael Muñoz De Bustillo Llorente

  1. By: Stamegna, Marco
    Abstract: The present paper works out a demand-led growth model of a labour-constrained economy with an endogenous direction of technical change. It draws on the Kaleckian-Steindlian tradition to examine the short-run relation between income distribution, capacity utilization, and capital accumulation; on Goodwin-type growth cycle models to investigate the dynamic interaction between labour market and distributive conflict; on the induced innovation literature to link labour productivity growth to income distribution. The model defines a two-dimensional system of differential equations in the wage share and the employment rate at full capacity to investigate the properties of the long-run equilibrium. In a Kaleckian fashion, an endogenous rate of capacity utilization allows effective demand and income distribution to affect the long-run equilibrium. We find that: i) an exogenous increase in workers’ bargaining power raises the long-run labour share, capital accumulation, labour productivity growth, and real wage growth, regardless of the short-run demand and growth regime of the economy; ii) a positive institutional shock to the labour share may cause the long-run employment rate to fall even in a wage-led demand regime; conversely, iii) positive technology shocks reduce the long-run rate of growth of the economy in a wage-led growth regime; thus, strengthening labour market regulation emerges as an unambiguously better strategy to raise the long-run labour share, capital accumulation, and labour productivity growth.
    Keywords: Functional income distribution; effective demand; growth regimes; endogenous technical change
    JEL: E12 E24 E25 O40
    Date: 2022–07–12
  2. By: Giovanni Dosi; Marcelo C. Pereira; Andrea Roventini; Maria Enrica Virgillito
    Abstract: When complexity meets economics, complexity economics turns out to be something more than simple interactions across individuals/entities, it turns into what has been labelled the bicycle postulate made of two components, coordination and change. Granted the ''Complex evolving system approach'', we provide an example of the effectiveness of the complexity view in economics applied to the context of the current debate on the future of work drawing upon the agent-based ''Schumpeter meeting Keynes'' multi-sector model (Dosi et al., 2022) and the meta-modelling approach developed in Dosi et al. (2018). The complexity approach proves to be an alternative, useful lens to address the technical change vs employment relationship modulated by demand patterns, income distribution, structural change and labour market organizations. It allows to enlarge the scope of investigation beyond production functions of tasks, relative prices of capital vs labour, inputs substitutability, comparative advantages of workers in their skill levels, the latter elements upon which the dominant neoclassical approach on the employment-technology nexus is rooted.
    Keywords: Complexity; Meta-modelling; Future of work.
    Date: 2022–08–16
  3. By: Stamegna, Marco
    Abstract: The present paper works out a classical-Marxian growth model with an endogenous direction of technical change and a heterogeneous labour force, made up of high-skilled and low-skilled workers. It draws on the Kaleckian mark-up pricing to link wage inequality to the relative unit labour cost at a firm level; on growth cycle models à la Goodwin to formalize the dynamic interaction between labour market and distributive shares of income; on the induced innovation literature to link the bias of technical change to the firm’s choice of the optimal combination of factor-augmenting technologies. We assume that economic growth is constrained by the growth rate of the high-skilled effective labour supply, whereas the low-skilled labour supply is perfectly elastic. Thus, we develop a three-dimensional system of differential equations for the output-capital ratio, the relative unit labour cost and the employment rate of the high-skilled workers, and investigate the stability and the main properties of the steady-state equilibrium. We find that, in contrast to the neoclassical literature on skill-biased technical change, the institutional framework governing the conflict over income distribution is the ultimate determinant of both wage inequality and the direction of technical change. A decline in low-skilled workers’ bargaining strength or a rise in product market concentration lead to both an increase in wage inequality and a bias of technical change favouring high-skilled over low-skilled labour productivity growth. As opposed to the Goodwin model with induced technical change and homogeneous labour force, labour market institutions thus affect steady-state income distribution, capital accumulation and labour productivity growth, and no necessary trade-off arises between labour market regulation and employment. Finally, if the steady-state value of wage inequality exceeds a critical value, an exogenous increase in the mark-up or in the high-skilled workers’ bargaining power allow both capitalists and high-skilled workers to increase their income shares at the expense of the low-skilled workers.
    Keywords: Wage inequality; growth; distribution; endogenous technical change
    JEL: D33 E11 E24 O33
    Date: 2022–07–16
  4. By: Fernando Esteve Mora (UAM); Rafael Muñoz De Bustillo Llorente
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to present a novel proposal to define social classes from the economic perspective. This paper draws on a previous working paper (Muñoz de Bustillo and Esteve, 2022) that discusses the demise of the concept of social classes in economic analysis derived from the triumph of Neoclassical Theory, its substitution in recent times by the definition of social classes based on ad-hoc aggregation of deciles of people in the income distribution, and the convenience to explore new ways of defining social classes from an economic perspective. The proposal presented in this paper regarding social classes is based on two different elements. The first one is the participation or exclusion of a given person from the economic surplus. The second one is its position, both in terms of income and consumption, in relation to the necessary consumption, C*, and average income, Y. These concepts allow defining three different social classes: Low, Middle and High, that can be further divided in subclasses up to a total of seven. A second, and less developed part of the paper reviews the role of economic power in explaining the allocation of different people in the above-mentioned social classes.
    Keywords: Social classes, Classical political economy, Surplus approach
    Date: 2022–08

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