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Entrepreneurs and wage-earners: a monetary approach


  • Jean Cartelier

    () (UPN - Université Paris Nanterre)


The purpose of the paper is to o¤er a logical genesis of the di¤erenci- ation of agents in two classes: capitalist entrepreneurs and wage-earners. The model presented here does not follow the Classical (or Marxian) tra- dition (where the two opposed classes are the straight consequence of the concentration of the means of production in the hands of a limited fraction of people). It does not follow mainstream economists either (no di¤erence according to general competitive equilibrium or a di¤erence taken as given in labour economics in general). Models belonging to those traditions fail to reproduce a major stylised fact: wage-earners cannot be distinguished from entrepreneurs when they are in the market for ccommodities but they radically di¤er in the 'market for labour'or in production (wage-earners do not produce for their own account but for that of entrepreneurs who get pro ts, not wages). Modern tentatives to deal with the di¤erenciation of agents (Mat- suyama for instance) explain it by a progressive di¤erenciation of the level of wealth up to a threshold which makes some agents able to accumulate and others not. We propose a di¤erent view based on the process of issuance of money. If a fraction of agents have not a direct access to that process they cannot act in the market for their own account. The alternatives they have are limited to autarky or to work for the account of those who have addi- tional alternatives due to their direct access to money (to be independent producers or entrepreneurs hiring wage-earners). The model makes explicit the necessary and su¢ cient conditions for the existence of an E-equilibrium in which co-exist heterogeneous agents (entrepreneurs and wage-earners) starting from a population homogeneous except for bank rationing. These reasonable conditions are: an e¢ cient monetary system, a su¢ cient gap between productivity of production in mass compared to other types and a possibility to induce wage-earners to work signi cantly more than they would as free producers. A non-Marxian notion of exploitation is suggested to conclude.

Suggested Citation

  • Jean Cartelier, 2014. "Entrepreneurs and wage-earners: a monetary approach," Working Papers hal-01285287, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:hal-01285287
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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. repec:dau:papers:123456789/1799 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Jean-François Jacques & Antoine Rebeyrol, 2010. "Primitive Accumulation, Growth And The Genesis Of Social Classes," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 540-557, July.
    3. Kiminori Matsuyama, 2006. "The 2005 Lawrence R. Klein Lecture: Emergent Class Structure," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(2), pages 327-360, May.
    4. Jean Cartelier & Claude Jessua, 1996. "Chômage involontaire d'équilibre et asymétrie entre salariés et non-salariés : la loi de Walras restreinte," Revue Économique, Programme National Persée, vol. 47(3), pages 655-666.
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    1. repec:wea:econth:v:6:y:2017:i:2:p:27 is not listed on IDEAS

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    JEL classification:

    • A10 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - General
    • B50 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Current Heterodox Approaches - - - General
    • J01 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics: General

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