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October 26, 2021

276. Currency wars

Donald Trump believed that China was manipulating its currency to get an unfair advantage against the US. This week Professor Steve Keen explains why manipulating currencies isn’t that easy – and the US will always be at a disadvantage when it comes to competing for international trade.  He talks with Phil Dobbie about why countries moved to floating exchange rates, and how the system would have worked better if people had listened to Keynes. Meanwhile, it’s helped create an industry that transacts almost $2.5 quadrillion each year!

October 26, 2021

276. Currency Wars (preview)

Donald Trump believed that China was manipulating its currency to get an unfair advantage against the US. This week Professor Steve Keen explains why manipulating currencies isn’t that easy – and the US will always be at a disadvantage when it comes to competing for international trade.  He talks with Phil Dobbie about why countries moved to floating exchange rates, and how the system would have worked better if people had listened to Keynes. Meanwhile, it’s helped create an industry that transacts almost $2.5 quadrillion each year!

To hear the full version subscribe by picking a plan in the right column of the Debunking Economics website (not the mobile app). Or become a supporter at https://www.patreon.com/ProfSteveKeen

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October 18, 2021

275. The energy crunch

The world’s leaders are getting together in the UK at the end of this month to discuss how to tackle climate change. Meanwhile, fuel prices are rising higher and higher, and increasing talk of inflation. Prices are rising because, quite simply, demand is rising but supply is still constrained. Gas supplies in Europe are dependent on Russia and renewable energy has been held back by low winds and other weather-related influences. Now, to meet demand, countries are stepping up their use of fossil fuels. Energy supplies “at any costs” has been the approach in China. Phil Dobbie asks Steve Keen whether we’ll ever reach renewable targets whilst the energy industry is in private hands. In the UK how much of the problem we now face is the result of Thatcher-era philosophies that believed competition would yield greater amounts of lower priced energy?

The world’s leaders are getting together in the UK at the end of this month to discuss how to tackle climate change. Meanwhile, fuel prices are rising higher and higher, and increasing talk of inflation. Prices are rising because, quite simply, demand is rising but supply is still constrained. Gas supplies in Europe are dependent on Russia and renewable energy has been held back by low winds and other weather-related influences. Now, to meet demand, countries are stepping up their use of fossil fuels. Energy supplies “at any costs” has been the approach in China. Phil Dobbie asks Steve Keen whether we’ll ever reach renewable targets whilst the energy industry is in private hands. In the UK how much of the problem we now face is the result of Thatcher-era philosophies that believed competition would yield greater amounts of lower priced energy?

To hear the full version subscribe by picking a plan in the right column of the Debunking Economics website (not the mobile app). Or become a supporter at https://www.patreon.com/ProfSteveKeen

Governments have been spending their way through the pandemic, so what happens to that money? Regular listeners will understand how this spending gets added to the money supply, but then what? Steve Keen looks at the impact of government spending on the private sector, and Phil Dobbie asks if this is a prime example of modern monetary theory in action? Could the COVID years be used as the case study of how MMT works? There’s also some discussion on whether government handouts, like furlough payments, were the best approach. Would tax cuts have had the same impact? And what’s the relationship between an increase in the supply of money and the velocity of that money? If the government is injecting cash but we’re not spending it, is it really having the impact governments had hoped for?

To hear the full version subscribe by picking a plan in the right column of the Debunking Economics website (not the mobile app). Or become a supporter at https://www.patreon.com/ProfSteveKeen

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Governments have been spending their way through the pandemic, so what happens to that money? Regular listeners will understand how this spending gets added to the money supply, but then what? Steve Keen looks at the impact of government spending on the private sector, and Phil Dobbie asks if this is a prime example of modern monetary theory in action? Could the COVID years be used as the case study of how MMT works? There’s also some discussion on whether government handouts, like furlough payments, were the best approach. Would tax cuts have had the same impact? And what’s the relationship between an increase in the supply of money and the velocity of that money? If the government is injecting cash but we’re not spending it, is it really having the impact governments had hoped for?

Steve Keen is a man of many surprises. His latest is that he is going to stand for the Senate in New South Wales. He’s packing his bags and heading back to Australia, for an election that will be held early next year. He’ll be one of six senate candidates in NSW for the New Liberals. So, is this a good move? From an academic to a politician, from developing and challenging theories to creating soundbites for TV? Phil Dobbie asks why he is making the move, what are his chances and what does the New Liberal party stand for. And could this spell the end of our weekly podcasts?

COVID is causing supply disruptions the world over, evidenced by disruptions to supply chains and rising producer prices and consumer prices. Central banks are quick to suggest this is a temporary measure, and inflation will start to fall as quickly as it rose. And yet, they are also making noises about raising interest rates, as a way of controlling inflation. Last week the Bank of England was hinting that could happen sooner, rather than later, even as they implement quantitative easing. Phil Dobbie asks Prof Steve Keen whether there’s any merit in lifting rates in an economy struggling to recover. And what if inflation is here to stay? What policy can work for an economy where supply falls well short of demand and prices rise beyond the means of many lower paid workers?

To hear the full version subscribe by picking a plan in the right column of the Debunking Economics website (not the mobile app). Or become a supporter at https://www.patreon.com/ProfSteveKeen

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COVID is causing supply disruptions the world over, evidenced by disruptions to supply chains and rising producer prices and consumer prices. Central banks are quick to suggest this is a temporary measure, and inflation will start to fall as quickly as it rose. And yet, they are also making noises about raising interest rates, as a way of controlling inflation. Last week the Bank of England was hinting that could happen sooner, rather than later, even as they implement quantitative easing. Phil Dobbie asks Prof Steve Keen whether there’s any merit in lifting rates in an economy struggling to recover. And what if inflation is here to stay? What policy can work for an economy where supply falls well short of demand and prices rise beyond the means of many lower paid workers?

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Central banks around the world are at different stages of how they supposedly deal with the COVId-19 crisis. Most are implementing some form of QE, but many are now reducing their purchases, and some are even lifting interest rates. How can they all have a different monetary approach to dealing with the same crisis? And can any claim to have been operating independently, buying up the increasing amount of debt issued by their respective governments? With the big four central banks (the BoE, the ECB, the Fed and the BoJ) having amassed $24.5 trillion in government bonds, does anybody really expect they will ever get their balance sheets back down to zero? If not, have they really embarked on MMT but are afraid to admit it? Phil Dobbie talks to Prof Steve Keen.

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