MEINE FORSCHUNG

Meine Forschungsschwerpunkte liegen im Bereich Geldtheorie, Makroökonomie, Finanzmärkte und Ungleichheit. Ausgewählte Publikationen finden Sie unten. Meine Forschung können Sie Sich auch ansehen ...

bei Ideas/REPEC ansehen: https://ideas.repec.org/e/peh8.html

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Unten finden Sie ausgewählte Publikationen, u. a. meine Bücher zu Geld und Kredit bzw. Modern Monetary Theory und einige Veröffentlichungen aus den letzten Jahren.

Artikel in Fachzeitschriften, Kapitel in Büchern, Arbeitspapiere

Die folgenden Veröffentlichungen sind eine Auswahl aus meiner Forschung.

A Paradigm Lost, a Paradigm Regained -
A Reply to Druedahl on Modern Monetary Theory (with Asker Voldsgaard)

Unpublished draft

In this paper, we respond to Druedahl's (2019) critical engagement from a neoclassical perspective with the macroeconomic school of thought Modern Monetary Theory (MMT). We find that the confusion stems from different ontologies of the economic system. These divergences relate to whether capitalist economies are fundamentally demand- or supply- constrained, whether capitalism should be understood as a monetary production system where money is non-neutral rather than neutral at all times or in the long run, whether capitalism is an equilibrating or destabilising system, if the interest rate on government liabilities is a policy variable, and the role of the state in the monetary system. We note how MMT's divergence from core neoclassical axioms has rendered MMT economists able to predict and explain economic phenomena at odds with neoclassical reasoning. Nonetheless, neoclassical economics remains ever-amendable by ad-hoc additions to preserve core notions such as the 'natural rate of interest'. The theoretical differences lead to an epistemic divide over how to provide persuading academic arguments. We are therefore dealing with a paradigm shift driven by the unequal ability to make sense of observed reality.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/13a2To14MLbCyUMPexNwciwk7Valv5MTY/view?usp=sharing

Modern Monetary Theory and the Public Purpose (with Maurice Höfgen)

American Review Of Political Economy, Bd. 15, Heft 1, 2020 

This paper investigates how the concept of public purpose is used in Modern Monetary Theory (MMT). As a common denominator among political scientists, the idea of public purpose is that economic actions should aim at benefiting the majority of the society. However, the concept is to be considered as an ideal of a vague nature, which is highly dependent on societal context and, hence, subject to change over time. MMT stresses that government spending plans should be designed to pursue a certain socio-economic mandate and not to meet any particular financial outcome. The concept of public purpose is heavily used in this theoretical body of thought and often referred to in the context of policy proposals as the ideas of universal job guarantee and banking reform proposals show. MMT scholars use the concept as a pragmatic benchmark against which policies can be assessed. With regards to the definition of public purpose, MMT scholars agree that it is dependent on the socio-cultural context. Nevertheless, MMT scholars view universal access to material means of survival as universally applicable and in that sense as the lowest possible common denominator.

https://www.arpejournal.com/volume-15-number-one/modern-monetary-theory-and-the-public-purpose/

The Job Guarantee: Full Employment, Price Stability and Social Progress (mit Maurice Höfgen)

Society Register, 3(2), 49-65, 2019

This paper presents the idea of the Job Guarantee (JG), which is a logical extension of the paradigm of a tax-driven fiat currency. The JG involves the govern- ment offering a public purpose-oriented job with a fixed hourly wage and job benefits to anyone willing to work. The JG as a bottom-up approach is locally administered but federally funded. As the analytical lens of MMT reveals, a monetarily sovereign gov- ernment is always able to provide the spending required. Macroeconomically, the JG works as an automatic countercyclical stabilizer and an excellent tool for aggregated demand management, ensuring the economy is continuously operating at full capacity. On top, the JG uses an employed buffer stock approach as a superior means to maintain price stability. Next to its favourable macroeconomic impacts, the JG offers many social benefits, particularly related to continuous employment, working condi- tions in the private sector, power relations in the labour market and democracy. While the JG and Universal Basic Income (UBI) are often discussed as comparable, competing policy proposals, the JG addresses more macroeconomic and social issues than the UBI does. This paper concludes that the JG qualifies for being the single most effective policy in order to drive the economy towards continuous full employment and price stability while realizing additional social benefits.

20605-Article Text-42889-1-10-20191231.pdf

The balance sheet approach to macroeconomics

Kapitel in S. Decker, W. Elsner und S. Flechtner (Hrsg.): "Principles and Pluralist Approaches in in Teaching Economics - Towards a Transformative Science", Routledge, 2019

In 1905, Georg Friedrich Knapp published The State Theory of Money in his native German, claiming that money is a "creature of law" and not connected to metals via some intrinsic value. When the English translation appeared in 1924, apparently at the wishes of John Maynard Keynes, the German version had run through four editions, upon which the last the translation builds. There also had been considerable debate about 'Chartalism' - the idea that money derived its acceptance by legal means - in the German academic literature. Among others, Knut Wicksell and Georg Simmel commented on it. Since so far there has not been any English-language publication on this issue, it is deemed worthwhile to provide such. After presenting the main arguments that Knapp makes in his book, the academic reviews that followed are presented and evaluated.

https://books.google.de/books?id=Ds-gDwAAQBAJ&lpg=PA253&dq=ehnts%20balance%20sheet%20approach%20decker%20elsner&hl=de&pg=PA243#v=onepage&q&f=false

Knapp's 'State Theory of Money' and its reception in German academic discourse 

IPE Berlin working paper 115/2019

In 1905, Georg Friedrich Knapp published The State Theory of Money in his native German, claiming that money is a "creature of law" and not connected to metals via some intrinsic value. When the English translation appeared in 1924, apparently at the wishes of John Maynard Keynes, the German version had run through four editions, upon which the last the translation builds. There also had been considerable debate about 'Chartalism' - the idea that money derived its acceptance by legal means - in the German academic literature. Among others, Knut Wicksell and Georg Simmel commented on it. Since so far there has not been any English-language publication on this issue, it is deemed worthwhile to provide such. After presenting the main arguments that Knapp makes in his book, the academic reviews that followed are presented and evaluated.

From Wicksell to Le Bourva to Modern Monetary Theory: a Wicksell connection 
(mit Nicolas Barbaroux)

IPE Berlin working paper 72/2016

In the aftermath of the Great Financial Crisis (GFC), and within the context of significant macroeconomic imbalances in the world economy, economists have shown renewed interest in the way central banks and financial systems work. The rise of Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) has relied on the examination of balance sheets, which has led to advancements in the understanding of the nuts and bolts of the financial system and the fundamental role of taxes, reserves, and deposits. While the school is associated with Post-Keynesian economics, we make the case that it could just as well be called Post-Wicksellian. The aim is not to argue for or against some label, but to make explicit the Wicksellian connection. In doing this, we bring forward old discussions and insights, which can be integrated into recent debates. MMT authors emphasize the importance of endogenous money and the examination of assets and liabilities in balance sheets. In our inquiry, we demonstrate that a horizontalist approach - adopted by MMT scholars - was already present in Wicksell (1898) and in the writings of French economist Jacques Le Bourva (1959, 1962). We examine the essential publications of the two authors and compare their views with the insights of MMT. By doing this, we hope to show continuity in monetary thought. MMT should not be seen as an intruder from the outside of monetary theory, but rather as a continuation and expansion of certain ideas that have long been part of the discipline. Identifying areas of disagreement between the three views should help bring clarity to the issues that are still disputed.

Samuelson and Davidson on ergodicity: A reformulation 

(mit Miguel Carrión Álvarez)

Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, 39 (1), 2016

The concept of ergodicity in economics seems to have the qualities of a shibboleth-a word or saying used by adherents of a party, sect, or belief, and usually regarded by others as empty of real meaning. It is in use by both neoclassical economics-after Samuelson (1965Samuelson, P. A. "Proof That Properly Anticipated Prices Fluctuate Randomly." Industrial Management Review, 1965, 6 (2), 41-49.[Web of Science ®], [Google Scholar], p. 43), who used the term in his paper on what later became a foundation of the efficient market hypothesis-and post Keynesian economics-after Davidson, who picked up the term in order to highlight methodological differences. Considering the origin of the concept in statistical physics and its use in the topology of dynamical systems, which most economists are not conversant with, the importance ascribed to ergodicity in economic debate seems mystifying. We deconstruct the meaning of the term in the major contributions of Samuelson and Davidson. We suggest an alternative to (non)ergodicity to discuss the nature of randomness in the real world. While neoclassical theory assumes stochastic randomness, post Keynesians assume nonstochastic randomness, a term developed by the mathematician Kolmogorov (1986Kolmogorov, A.N. "On the Logical Foundations of Probability Theory."In K. Ito, and J.V. Prokhorov (eds.), Probability and Mathematical Statistics, Moscow, 1986, pp. 467-471. [Google Scholar], p. 467). We argue that even in an ergodic world there is a problem with the idea that stochastic randomness can be dealt with by the financial system.

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/01603477.2016.1145062

Macroeconomics and the world economy in one lecture: a didactic primer

International Journal of Pluralism and Economics Education 11(2), 2020

This paper explains the basics of MMT and analyzes the current design of the Eurozone from an MMT perspective. It becomes obvious that individual member states of the Eurozone lack monetary sovereignty, which is not compensated by a fiscal authority on EMU-level. This results in the current permanent lack of aggregated demand culminating in high rates of unemployment and output gaps. Although the current QE policy of the ECB enlarges individual countries' policy space to cope with the problems at hand, the fundamental flaws in the design of the monetary union desperately need to be fixed. This is even more urgent with regards to the urgently needed socio-ecological transition that is required to tackle climate change adequately. In this light, the Green New Deal with the incorporation of a Job Guarantee program and the Euro Treasury as possible policy solutions for the Eurozone are briefly discussed.

https://www.inderscienceonline.com/doi/abs/10.1504/IJPEE.2020.111288

The fiscal-monetary nexus in Germany

real world economics review, Bd. 89, 2019

This paper explains the basics of MMT and analyzes the current design of the Eurozone from an MMT perspective. It becomes obvious that individual member states of the Eurozone lack monetary sovereignty, which is not compensated by a fiscal authority on EMU-level. This results in the current permanent lack of aggregated demand culminating in high rates of unemployment and output gaps. Although the current QE policy of the ECB enlarges individual countries' policy space to cope with the problems at hand, the fundamental flaws in the design of the monetary union desperately need to be fixed. This is even more urgent with regards to the urgently needed socio-ecological transition that is required to tackle climate change adequately. In this light, the Green New Deal with the incorporation of a Job Guarantee program and the Euro Treasury as possible policy solutions for the Eurozone are briefly discussed.

https://www.paecon.net/PAEReview/issue89/EhntsHofgen89.pdf

The fiscal-monetary nexus in Germany

IPE working paper 138/2020

Die Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) ist eine empirische Geldtheorie und nutzt insbesondere Bilanzen und Buchungen als methodische Grundlage zur Erkenntnisgewinnung. Nach der funktionalen Ausgestaltung moderner Geldsysteme, in denen die Regierung keine Schulden in Auslandswährung hat oder einen festen Wechselkurs garantiert, handelt es sich bei modernem Geld im Grunde genommen um Steuergutschriften. Diese werden durch die Zentralbank als Monopolistin der Währung den teilnehmenden Banken gutgeschrieben, wenn z. B. die Regierung ihre Ausgaben erhöht. Damit fällt der Regierung eine fundamentale Rolle in der Wirtschaft zu. Vollbeschäftigung, Preisstabilität und nachhaltige Ressourcenbewirtschaftung sind ohne eine Theorie der fiskalpolitischen Steuerung wohl nicht zu erreichen. Einige Reformvorschläge mit dem Ziel der Erhöhung des Gemeinwohls, wie der Green New Deal oder das Euro Treasury, basieren auf MMT und könnten sich auch in der Eurozone relativ einfach umsetzen lassen.

https://www.ipe-berlin.org/fileadmin/institut-ipe/Dokumente/Working_Papers/ipe_working_paper_138.pdf

Die Modern Monetary Theory: Staatsschulden als Steuergutschriften

Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung, Bd. 88, Heft 4, S. 77-89, 2019

Die Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) ist eine empirische Geldtheorie und nutzt insbesondere Bilanzen und Buchungen als methodische Grundlage zur Erkenntnisgewinnung. Nach der funktionalen Ausgestaltung moderner Geldsysteme, in denen die Regierung keine Schulden in Auslandswährung hat oder einen festen Wechselkurs garantiert, handelt es sich bei modernem Geld im Grunde genommen um Steuergutschriften. Diese werden durch die Zentralbank als Monopolistin der Währung den teilnehmenden Banken gutgeschrieben, wenn z. B. die Regierung ihre Ausgaben erhöht. Damit fällt der Regierung eine fundamentale Rolle in der Wirtschaft zu. Vollbeschäftigung, Preisstabilität und nachhaltige Ressourcenbewirtschaftung sind ohne eine Theorie der fiskalpolitischen Steuerung wohl nicht zu erreichen. Einige Reformvorschläge mit dem Ziel der Erhöhung des Gemeinwohls, wie der Green New Deal oder das Euro Treasury, basieren auf MMT und könnten sich auch in der Eurozone relativ einfach umsetzen lassen.

https://elibrary.duncker-humblot.com/zeitschriften/id/25/vol/88/iss/2173/art/12327/

Completing the Euro: The Euro Treasury and the Job Guarantee (mit Pavlina Tcherneva und Esteban Cruz-Hidalgo)

Kapitel in E. Febrero (Hrsg.): "20 years of the Euro", Revista de Economia Critica, 2019

The problems with the design of the Eurozone came into focus when, late in 2009, several member nations - notably Greece - failed to refinance their government debt. The crisis that followed was not entirely a surprise. When the Euro was launched in 1999, many economists warned that the single currency was unworkable. Even Eurozone optimists argued that the Euro project would eventually need to be completed. More than 10 years after the crisis, unemployment rates remain elevated and continue to threaten the social, political and economic stability of the Eurozone. The institutional constraints of the single currency however preclude bold action to address these challenges. In this paper, we suggest that tackling the twin problems of the Eurozone - its institutional flaws and mass unemployment - could be addressed by creating a Euro Treasury that would finance a Job Guarantee program, which would eliminate mass unemployment, enhance price stability, and foster social and economic integration across Europe.

https://revistaeconomiacritica.org/sites/default/files/9-CruzHidalgo-Ehnst-Tcherneva_Completing-the-Euro.pdf

The Present State of Economics: Errors and Omissions Excepted (mit Fritz Helmedag)

Kapitel in O. Feraboli and C. Morelli (Hrsg.): "Post-Crash Economics: Plurality and Heterodox Ideas in Teaching and Research", Springer, 2018

More and more often, confidence in the professional qualifications of individuals representing certain occupational groups which formerly were held in high esteem has started to erode. Dismissing scientific evidence and ignoring expert opinion has become a feature of political discourse around alternative truth. In part this is self-inflicted as various statements that are publicized with the aura of academic certainty do not stand up to closer scrutiny. Alas, this applies particularly to economics, which is often held up as the supreme discipline of social sciences. This chapter explores some of these truths and demonstrates what they spread across both micro- and macroeconomics.

https://www.springer.com/us/book/9783319658544

The euro zone crisis: what would John Maynard do?

IPE Berlin working paper 72/2016

In his letter to US President Franklin D. Roosevelt Keynes (1933) wrote about "the technique of recovery itself‟. An increase in output is brought about by an increase in purchasing power, Keynes argues, which can come from three sectors: households, firms and government. Using the IS/MY macroeconomic model developed by Ehnts (2014), which features sectoral balances and endogenous money, the situation of some euro zone members is examined with a focus on the three techniques of recovery: increases in debt of the respective sectors as defined by Keynes. A fourth technique, an increase in spending by the rest of the world, is added. The conclusion is that the policy recommendation given by Keynes in his letter also holds for the euro zone at present: a rise in debt-financed government expenditure. Some reform at the institutional level in Europe would enable "the technique of recovery‟ to work via the TARGET2 payment system, which is organized along Keynes‟ International Clearing Union proposal and a solid foundation to build on.

https://www.ipe-berlin.org/fileadmin/downloads/Papers_and_Presentations/IPE_WP_72.pdf

Die Krise der VWL und die Vision einer Pluralen Ökonomik 

(mit Lino Zeddies)

Wirtschaftsdienst, 96 (10), 2016

Die andauernde Finanzkrise hat tiefliegende Probleme des ökonomischen Mainstreams offengelegt und lässt Forderungen nach einer Erneuerung des ökonomischen Denkens lauter werden. Die Autoren beschreiben die Kritik am Status quo und gehen dabei auf die Vorwürfe von Einseitigkeit, blinden Flecken, Realitätsferne und impliziter Normativität ein. Als vielversprechender Gegenentwurf wird die Vision einer Pluralen Ökonomik vorgestellt und anhand von fünf charakteristischen Säulen beschrieben: Theorienpluralismus, Methodenpluralismus, historische Fundierung, wissenschaftstheoretische und ethische Reflexion sowie Interdisziplinarität.

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10273-016-2047-4