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The labour market in a Keynesian economic regime: theoretical debate and empirical findings


  • Hansjörg Herr


In a Keynesian mode of thinking wages become the nominal anchor for the price level because unit-labour costs in a closed economy represent the most important factor in determining the price level. The second most important driver of price level changes is the exchange rate. A positive economic regime includes nominal wage increases according to trend productivity growth as well as the target inflation rate of the central bank, discretionary monetary policy geared towards growth and anti-cyclical fiscal policy. Since the early 1990s nominal wages in the USA and the UK have followed this wage norm to a large extent. But in Germany, wages have increased below this norm or even decreased, and in Japan this effect has been even more extreme. Overall, while Japan and Germany have suffered from dysfunctional economic regimes leading to low growth, the UK and USA have managed a much more positive interaction between wage development, monetary policy and fiscal policy. Copyright The Author 2008. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Cambridge Political Economy Society. All rights reserved., Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Hansjörg Herr, 2009. "The labour market in a Keynesian economic regime: theoretical debate and empirical findings," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 33(5), pages 949-965, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:cambje:v:33:y:2009:i:5:p:949-965

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    Cited by:

    1. repec:ilo:ilowps:471360 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Herr, Hansjörg. & Sonat, Zeynep M., 2013. "Neoliberal unshared growth regime of Turkey in the post-2001 period," ILO Working Papers 994841263402676, International Labour Organization.
    3. Nina Dodig & Hansjorg Herr, 2014. "Previous financial crises leading to stagnation – selected case studies," Working papers wpaper24, Financialisation, Economy, Society & Sustainable Development (FESSUD) Project.
    4. Herr, Hansjörg & Sonat, Zeynep M., 2013. "Neoliberal Unshared Growth Regime of Turkey in the Post-2001 Period," EconStor Preprints 88606, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics.
    5. Herr, Hansjörg. & Ruoff, Bea., 2014. "Wage dispersion : empirical developments, explanations, and reform options," ILO Working Papers 994853253402676, International Labour Organization.
    6. Arne Heise, 2017. "Walras' Law in the Context of Pre-Analytic Visions," Economic Thought, World Economics Association, vol. 6(1), pages 83-96, March.
    7. Nina Dodig & Hansjorg Herr, 2015. "EU policies addressing current account imbalances in the EMU: an assessment," Working papers wpaper74, Financialisation, Economy, Society & Sustainable Development (FESSUD) Project.
    8. repec:ilo:ilowps:484126 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Nina Dodig & Hansjörg Herr, 2015. "Current Account Imbalances in the EMU: An Assessment of Official Policy Responses," Panoeconomicus, Savez ekonomista Vojvodine, Novi Sad, Serbia, vol. 62(2), pages 193-216, June.
    10. Herr, Hansjörg, 2013. "An analytical framework for the Post-Keynesian macroeconomic paradigm," IPE Working Papers 23/2013, Berlin School of Economics and Law, Institute for International Political Economy (IPE).
    11. Hansjorg Herr, 2016. "After the Financial Crisis; Reforms and Reform Options for Finance, Regulation and Institutional Structure," Working papers wpaper148, Financialisation, Economy, Society & Sustainable Development (FESSUD) Project.
    12. Daniel Detzer & Hansjorg Herr, 2014. "Theories of Financial Crises," Working papers wpaper25, Financialisation, Economy, Society & Sustainable Development (FESSUD) Project.
    13. Herr, Hansjörg, 2018. "The Communist Manifesto: What can we learn today for a country like Vietnam?," IPE Working Papers 98/2018, Berlin School of Economics and Law, Institute for International Political Economy (IPE).
    14. Herr, Hansjörg. & Horn, Gustav A., 2012. "Wage policy today," ILO Working Papers 994713603402676, International Labour Organization.
    15. Herr, Hansjörg, 2016. "After the financial crisis: Reforms and reform options for finance, regulation and institutional structure," IPE Working Papers 63/2016, Berlin School of Economics and Law, Institute for International Political Economy (IPE).
    16. Herr, Hansjörg, 2009. "Time, expectations and financial markets," IPE Working Papers 03/2009, Berlin School of Economics and Law, Institute for International Political Economy (IPE).
    17. repec:ilo:ilowps:485325 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Herr, Hansjörg, 2018. "Karl Marx's thoughts on functional income distribution - a critical analysis," IPE Working Papers 101/2018, Berlin School of Economics and Law, Institute for International Political Economy (IPE).
    19. Eckhard Hein & Eckhard Achim Truger, 2017. "Opportunities and limits of rebalancing the Eurozone via wage policies," FMM Working Paper 06-2017, IMK at the Hans Boeckler Foundation, Macroeconomic Policy Institute.

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