“Economic freedom” and economic growth: questioning the claim that freer markets make societies more prosperous
A conventional reading of economic history implies that free market reforms rescued the world’s economies from stagnancy during the 1970s and 1980s. I reexamine a well-established econometric literature linking economic freedom to growth, and argue that their positive findings hinge on two problems: conceptual conflation and ahistoricity. When these criticisms are taken seriously, a very different view of the historical record emerges. There does not appear to be enduring relationship between economic liberalism and growth. Much of the observed relationship between these two variables involves a one-shot transition to freer markets around the Cold War’s end. Several concurrent changes took place in this historical context, and it is hasty to conclude that it was market liberalization alone that produced the economic turnaround of the 1990s and early-2000s. I also question market fundamentalists’ view that all forms of liberalization are helpful, arguing that the data show little to no benefit from reforms that did not attract foreign investment.
|Date of creation:||27 Sep 2011|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Web page: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
- Sala-I-Martin, X. & Barro, R.J., 1991.
"Public Finance in Models of Economic Growth,"
640, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
- Barro, Robert J. & Sala-i-Martin, Xavier, 1992. "Public Finance in Models of Economic Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 630, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Robert J. Barro & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1990. "Public Finance in Models of Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 3362, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Kolodko, Grzegorz W., 2000. "From Shock to Therapy: The Political Economy of Postsocialist Transformation," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198297437.
- Berggren, Niclas, 2003. "The Benefits of Economic Freedom: A Survey," Ratio Working Papers 4, The Ratio Institute.
- Daniel Hoechle, 2007. "Robust standard errors for panel regressions with cross-sectional dependence," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 7(3), pages 281-312, September.
- Henry J. Bruton, 1998. "A Reconsideration of Import Substitution," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(2), pages 903-936, June.
- Cohen, Joseph N. & Centeno, Miguel A., 2006. "Neoliberalism and patterns of economic performance: 1980 to 2000," MPRA Paper 22436, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Robert Flood & Nancy Marion, 1998.
"Perspectives on the Recent Currency Crisis Literature,"
NBER Working Papers
6380, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Flood, Robert & Marion, Nancy, 1999. "Perspectives on the Recent Currency Crisis Literature," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 4(1), pages 1-26, January.
- Nancy P. Marion & Robert P. Flood, 1998. "Perspectiveson the Recent Currency Crisis Literature," IMF Working Papers 98/130, International Monetary Fund.
- Stern, Charlotta & Klein, Daniel B., 2006. "Is There a Free-Market Economist in the House? The Policy Views of American Economic Association Members," Working Paper Series 6/2006, Swedish Institute for Social Research.
- John C. Driscoll & Aart C. Kraay, 1998. "Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimation With Spatially Dependent Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(4), pages 549-560, November.
- Jakob De Haan & Susanna Lundström & Jan-Egbert Sturm, 2006.
"Market-oriented institutions and policies and economic growth: A critical survey,"
Journal of Economic Surveys,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 20(2), pages 157-191, 04.
- Jakob de Haan & Susanna Lundstroem & Jan-Egbert Sturm, 2005. "Market oriented institutions and policies and economic growth: A critical survey," TWI Research Paper Series 5, Thurgauer Wirtschaftsinstitut, Universitï¿½t Konstanz.
- David M. Drukker, 2003. "Testing for serial correlation in linear panel-data models," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 3(2), pages 168-177, June.
- Bruno Amable, 2011. "Morals and politics in the ideology of neo-liberalism," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-00553001, HAL.
- Bruton, H.J., 1998. "A Reconsideration of Import Substitution," Center for Development Economics 156, Department of Economics, Williams College.
- Rafael E. De Hoyos & Vasilis Sarafidis, 2006. "Testing for cross-sectional dependence in panel-data models," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 6(4), pages 482-496, December.
- Hubert Janicki & Phanindra Wunnava, 2004. "Determinants of foreign direct investment: empirical evidence from EU accession candidates," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(5), pages 505-509.
- Robert J. Barro, 2007. "Milton Friedman: Perspectives, Particularly on Monetary Policy," Cato Journal, Cato Journal, Cato Institute, vol. 27(2), pages 127-134, Spring/Su.
- Cohen, Joseph N, 2009. "Is “economic freedom” strictly free market capitalism? A decompositional analysis of the Economic Freedom of the World index," MPRA Paper 22437, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Noorbakhsh, Farhad & Paloni, Alberto & Youssef, Ali, 2001. "Human Capital and FDI Inflows to Developing Countries: New Empirical Evidence," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(9), pages 1593-1610, September.
- William Easterly, 2002. "The Elusive Quest for Growth: Economists' Adventures and Misadventures in the Tropics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262550423, June.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:33758. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ekkehart Schlicht)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.