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Monetary Policy and Value Judgments : Did we forget Myrdal's legacy ?

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  • Nicolas Barbaroux

    ()
    (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS : UMR5824 - Université Lumière - Lyon II - École Normale Supérieure (ENS) - Lyon - PRES Université de Lyon - Université Jean Monnet - Saint-Etienne - Université Claude Bernard - Lyon I)

  • Michel Bellet

    ()
    (GATE Lyon Saint-Étienne - Groupe d'analyse et de théorie économique - CNRS : UMR5824 - Université Lumière - Lyon II - École Normale Supérieure (ENS) - Lyon - PRES Université de Lyon - Université Jean Monnet - Saint-Etienne - Université Claude Bernard - Lyon I)

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    Abstract

    Myrdal's works are usually analysed with a dual and separated point of view : on the one hand the methodological papers concerning the value problem and based on a strong non neutrality thesis ; on the other part the theoretical analysis concerning monetary theory and policy, with a Wicksellian filiation. In fact both the dimensions are strongly connected by a common way : the application of the Hägerström's Swedish guillotine between is and ought, but also the construction of a bridge between economic science and political views on social engineering and economic policy. Myrdal wants to address this problem : how economic science can become politically relevant ? This paper analyses two stages of that unique project : the proposition of a "technology of economics" (1930), and the selection process for a "norm for monetary policy" (1939). It shows that Myrdal distorts an initial end and means scheme by proposing some intermediary concepts between positive and normative fields. From a theoretical and statistical framework and an explicit value judgment these concepts enable to elaborate an iterative tree of selection of a speci-c monetary policy. If the Myrdal's project encounters difficulties in conciliating a non-cognitivist thesis with economic prescriptions and in proposing a tractable method, it remains an important benchmark for the analysis of the links between positive and normative views concerning monetary policy.

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    Paper provided by HAL in its series Working Papers with number halshs-00952009.

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    Date of creation: 26 Feb 2014
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    Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:halshs-00952009

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    Keywords: value judgment; monetary policy; positive analysis; normative analysis;

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    1. Laidler,David, 1999. "Fabricating the Keynesian Revolution," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521641739.
    2. Hans-Michael Trautwein, 2011. "From Austrian Economics To The Swedish Welfare State: Wicksellian Views On Money And Income Distribution," Cahiers d’économie politique / Papers in Political Economy, L'Harmattan, L'Harmattan, issue 61, pages 51-90.
    3. Svensson, Lars O, 2005. "Monetary Policy with Judgment: Forecast Targeting," MPRA Paper 819, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Pier Francesco Asso & George A. Kahn & Robert Leeson, 2007. "The Taylor rule and the transformation of monetary policy," Research Working Paper, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City RWP 07-11, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
    5. Pier Francesco Asso & Robert Leeson, 2012. "Monetary Policy Rules - From Adam Smith to John Taylor," Book Chapters, Hoover Institution, Stanford University, in: Evan F. Koenig & Robert Leeson & George A. Kahn (ed.), The Taylor Rule and the Transformation of Monetary Policy, chapter 2 Hoover Institution, Stanford University.
    6. Antoinette Baujard, 2013. "Value judgments and economics expertise," Working Papers, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique (GATE), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Lyon 2, Ecole Normale Supérieure 1314, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique (GATE), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Lyon 2, Ecole Normale Supérieure.
    7. Lars Pålsson Syll, 1998. "Myrdal's Immanent Critique of Utility Theory," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 30(3), pages 413-426, Fall.
    8. Jonung, Lars, 1979. "Knut wicksell's norm of price stabilization and Swedish monetary policy in the 1930's," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 459-496, October.
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