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Neo-Liberal Economic Policy

Critical Essays Edited by Philip Arestis, University Director of Research, Cambridge Centre for Economic and Public Policy, Department of Land Economy, University of Cambridge and Fellow, Wolfson College, UK and Malcolm Sawyer, Emeritus Professor of Economics, University of Leeds, UK
Over the past two decades there has been a prevailing shift in economic policy in many countries. This reflects the continuing rise of neo-liberalism – the doctrine that economic policy should ‘leave it to the market’ and that governments should retreat from market intervention. This book provides a balanced and comprehensive appraisal of these important policy developments.

The authors examine the most notable trends in neo-liberal economic policy such as the withdrawal from the use of fiscal measures and the reliance on monetary policy. They discuss the neo-liberal view that the causes of unemployment lie in the operation of the labour market, in particular its inflexibility. They also assess the increasing inclination towards the liberalisation and deregulation of markets, most notably financial markets.
Extent: 256 pp
Hardback Price: $129.00 Web: $116.10
Publication Date: 2004
ISBN: 978 1 84376 794 7
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  • Economics and Finance
  • Post-Keynesian Economics
Over the past two decades there has been a prevailing shift in economic policy in many countries. This reflects the continuing rise of neo-liberalism – the doctrine that economic policy should ‘leave it to the market’ and that governments should retreat from market intervention. This book provides a balanced and comprehensive appraisal of these important policy developments.

The authors examine the most notable trends in neo-liberal economic policy such as the withdrawal from the use of fiscal measures and the reliance on monetary policy. They discuss the neo-liberal view that the causes of unemployment lie in the operation of the labour market, in particular its inflexibility. They also assess the increasing inclination towards the liberalisation and deregulation of markets, most notably financial markets.

In light of these developments, the authors investigate several specific areas including:

• an assessment of the theory of credibility
• financial fragility and the development process
• a reappraisal of the Rehn–Meidner Model for Sweden
• the economic policy of the Spanish socialist governments
• the costs of neomonetarism in Brazil
• macroeconomic policies of the EMU.

The contributors expertly illustrate the ways in which neo-liberal policies have been applied and implemented. They also seek to show the shortcomings of the neo-liberal approach and illustrate the different policy models available. As such, this volume will interest and inform academics, economists and policymakers looking for a detailed critique of recent developments in economic policy.
‘. . . this is a very good book. It is carefully argued and well presented,
incorporating a wealth of information.’
– Andrew Mearman, Economic Issues
Contributors: P. Arestis, S. Basu, L. Erixon, J. Ferreiro, J. Forder, L. Morais, A. Saad-Filho, M. Sawyer, F. Serrano
Contents: Preface 1. Introduction 2. The Theory of Credibility: Confusions, Limitations and Dangers 3. Financial Fragility: Is it Rooted in the Development Process? An Examination with Special Reference to the South Korean Experience 4. A ‘Third Way’ in Economic Policy: A Reappraisal of the Rehn–Meidner Model in the Light of Modern Economics 5. The Economic Policy in Spain during the Decades of the 1980s and the 1990s 6. The Costs of Neomonetarism: The Brazilian Economy in the 1990s 7. Macroeconomic Policies of the Economic and Monetary Union: Theoretical Underpinnings and Challenges Index