15 June 2012

Adam Smith on employers' bargaining power

"We rarely hear, it has been said, of the combination of masters; though frequently of those of workmen. But whoever imagines, upon this account, that masters rarely combine, is as ignorant of the world as of the subject" (Smith in the wealth of nations, p 84, quoted in Manning (2003) Monopsony in Motion: Imperfect competition in Labor Markets, page 14; footnote 9)

08 June 2012

Bernanke on Economic Outlook and Policy

Chairman Casey, Vice Chairman Brady, and other members of the Committee, I appreciate this opportunity to discuss the economic outlook and economic policy.
Economic growth has continued at a moderate rate so far this year. Real gross domestic product (GDP) rose at an annual rate of about 2 percent in the first quarter after increasing at a 3 percent pace in the fourth quarter of 2011. Growth last quarter was supported by further gains in private domestic demand, which more than offset a drag from a decline in government spending. 
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07 June 2012

Upcoming Summer conferences

SASE 24th Annual Conference - Global Shifts: Implications for Business, Government and Labour. June 28-30, 2012 - Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge. Program available

ILERA 16th World Congress - Beyond Borders: Governance in a Global Economy. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA in 2012. Draft papers

10th Annual ESPAnet conference .September 6-8 2012, School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh, Scotland. List of streams

European Trade Union proposal

02 June 2012

Neil Fligstein on Economic Sociology

The author of The Architecture of Markets says it’s important to understand social aspects of economic behaviour, particularly when times of crisis reveal shortcomings of traditional economic theory. Interview here.

01 June 2012

EU in crisis? Popular perceptions of the EU project in different Member States

A new study by the Pew Research Centre presents the results of a survey on attitudes towards the EU in different member states. While Germany remains most favourable to the EU project, this is also the case in Spain and Portugal whereas Britain, Greece and the Czech Republic have a less positive view. The ECB gets much less favourable ratings, with more than 50% being favourable only in Poland, with the most negative perceptions in Britain, Spain and Greece. Only the Germans see EU integration as conducive to economic growth. 

Two slightly surprising findings. First, Spain also (46%) retains a positive view of the effect of EU integration on the economy. Second, Greece has the highest share of the population seeing the Euro... as a good thing! This result is likely to have implications for the likelyhood of anti-Euro parties to win a majority in the next Greek legislative elections...