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Understanding the business cycle in Latin America: Prebisch's contributions

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  • Pérez Caldentey, Esteban
  • Vernengo, Matías

Abstract

This paper analyzes Raúl Prebisch's less familiar contributions to economic theory, related to the business cycle, and heavily informed by the Argentinean experience. His views of the cycle emphasize the common nature of the cycle in the center and the Latin American periphery as one unified phenomenon. While his rejection of orthodoxy is less than complete, some elements of what would become a more Keynesian position are developed. In particular, a preoccupation with the management of the balance of payments and the need for capital controls as a macroeconomic management tool, considerably before Keynes and White's plans led to the Bretton Woods agreement. In the process it is clear that Prebisch developed several ideas that are still relevant to understand cyclical fluctuations in Latin America and the periphery in general, and became more concerned with the capacity of taking advantage of cyclical booms to maintain sustained economic growth

Suggested Citation

  • Pérez Caldentey, Esteban & Vernengo, Matías, 2011. "Understanding the business cycle in Latin America: Prebisch's contributions," Estudios y Perspectivas – Sede Subregional de la CEPAL en México 127, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL).
  • Handle: RePEc:ecr:col031:4908
    Note: Includes bibliography
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    File URL: http://repositorio.cepal.org/handle/11362/4908
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    Cited by:

    1. Esteban Pérez Caldentey & Matías Vernengo, 2015. "Towards an understanding of crisis episodes in Latin America: a post-Keynesian approach," Review of Keynesian Economics, Edward Elgar Publishing, vol. 3(2), pages 158-180, April.
    2. Pérez Caldentey, Esteban & Vernengo, Matías, 2012. "Portrait of the economist as a young man: Raúl Prebisch's evolving views on the business cycle and money, 1919-1949," Revista CEPAL, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL), April.
    3. Esteban Pérez Caldentey & Matías Vernengo, 2016. "Reading Keynes in Buenos Aires: Prebisch and the Dynamics of Capitalism," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 40(6), pages 1725-1741.

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