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Did the Troika get it right?

Martin Myant of the European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) examines the forecasting record of the European Commission and finds it wanting The European Commission has been consistently optimistic in its forecasts, always giving reassurances that recovery is under way, that progress is being made or, when reality clearly failed to match up with previous forecasts, that the EU economy ‘has […]

Flexploitation: the case of the 2012 Spanish Labour Market reform

Ronald Janssen of the European Trade Union Confederation argues against the idea that the solution to unemployment lies in more flexible working practices, pointing out that precarious jobs make for a precarious recovery. Last month the informal EPSCO Council met in Athens to discuss, amongst others, the link between structural reforms and a job rich recovery. They would do well to […]

The war over drugs: what’s at stake?

By Steve Coulter, LSE The takeover tussle between rival drug giants Pfizer and AstraZeneca has uncovered some interesting truths about government and corporate policies on taxes and R&D funding.  Of course, the shadow of Pfizer still looms over UK-based AstraZeneca, with continuing speculation that the US-headquartered Viagra manufacturer will revive its bid later this year. Both firms face imminent ‘patent-cliffs’ […]

Cold shower for the Euro

By Bob Hancké, LSE

This week, both of the mildly pro-European papers in Britain, the Guardian and the Financial Times, published an important comment on the euro. Both Larry Elliott, the Economics editor of the Guardian (here), and Wolfgang Münchau of the FT (here, with paywall) raised the spectre of an on-going crisis in the euro-zone. Just when we thought […]

Europe gets in step with the ‘March of the Makers’

Steve Coulter of the London School of Economics applauds the European Commission’s new hands-on approach to industrial policy but offers a note of caution about the task ahead Industrial policy is well and truly back in fashion. Even in market-liberal states such as the UK, where the idea of governments directing the structure of the economy was previously anathema, industrial […]

About the recovery in the UK

By Bob Hancké, LSE For those of us who maintained that austerity would not lead to economic growth, the deflationary depression settling into the euro-zone is comfortably bad news. Compound austerity has kept growth rates well below what they have normally been in the past, especially after serious recessions. Unemployment has remained high, and debt (which is what this was […]

FTT: right idea, wrong way?

By Bob Hancké, LSE

John Grahl, a political economist at Middlesex University, and Photis Lysandrou at City University, have written an interesting critique of the financial transaction tax (FTT) that is so dear to many on the Left, including the trade unions. Their key points are that, while mechanisms to curtail the overly risky nature of finance are in themselves […]

Piketty on Capitalism: Worth getting excited about?

Steve Coulter, LSE The excitement over Thomas Piketty’s new book, Capital in the Twenty First Century, feels somewhat strange as few people I know have been able to actually get hold of a copy (the LSE’s campus bookshop – of all places- has none for sale and there’s a two-week wait on Amazon…). But reviews I‘ve seen of the book, […]

Debunking the myth that keeps coming back: Excessive spending on labour market policies and benefit fraud in the UK

Tim Vlandas of Reading University shows why recent UK labour market reforms rest on false assumptions and will do little to cure unemployment   Consistent with previous trends in reforms of labour market policies, the UK government has announced yet another restriction on unemployment benefit claimants: they will now be asked to take certain steps – such as preparing a CV – prior […]

EMU and the loss of monetary sovereignty

By Bob Hancké, LSE Deborah Mabbett and Waltraud Schelkle have written an interesting short piece on EUROPP analysing the arguments, made by Paul De Grauwe among others, that the crisis of EMU is fundamentally due to the loss of monetary sovereignty: Spanish sovereign debt is problematic, in that perspective, because the Bank of Spain is no longer in a position […]

April 28th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments|