Markets and Inequality

In the August 16 issue of The Financial Times, popularizing economics writer Tim Harford joined the chorus of voices raising the issue of income inequality. He asked whether or not we should care that the income gap is widening. He suggested there are two reasons we might care: process and outcome. On the process, Harford Continue Reading

Mediating the Intra-capitalist Struggle

U.S. regulators have subpoenaed powerhouses of financial intermediation, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase, as part of a probe into metal warehousing. Two companies identified with the supposedly ephemeral world of finance are being called to answer questions as owners of the decidedly concrete warehouses used to store aluminum. The investigation is being conducted by the Continue Reading

The language of capitalism

In a Guardian op-ed, Doreen Massey explains how neoliberalism has altered the way we think and talk about the economy. While the general point is correct, the issue is much more fundamental than neoliberal ideology. The extent of the problem can be seen in the essay’s slugline: We should scrutinise the everyday language that shapes Continue Reading

The Buy-to-Build Indicator: New Estimates and Comment

This note presents new long-term estimates of what Jonathan Nitzan and Shimshon Bichler (2002: 53-4, 82-3; 2009: Ch.15) have named the ‘buy-to-build indicator’, which is calculated as the value of mergers and acquisitions as a percentage of gross capital formation. Estimating the buy-to-build indicators is not simple, principally due to the absence of consistent series for expenditure on mergers and acquisitions. Nevertheless, Continue Reading

Protest and gold deccumulation

Activists confronted Barrick Gold CEO Peter Monk and shareholders at the company’s annual meeting. A Globe & Mail article suggested: “The long term outlook for Barrick shares hinges on many factors: the gold price is obviously the biggest driver, but the company also faces vociferous opposition from environmentalists and many residents around its mine sites, Continue Reading