Credit, Profitability and Instability: A Strictly Structural Approach
This paper offers a purely structural characterisation of the content, limits and contradictions of credit relations in capitalist accumulation. Considering steady-state evolutions and step-change perturbations in a dynamic model of the Marxian circuit of capital, it establishes that sustained paces of net credit extension may boost aggregate profitability, the rate of accumulation, and the aggregate financial robustness of capitalist enterprises. These gains are limited by the economy’s dynamic productive capacities, and tempered by the risks of credit and monetary disruptions created payment obligations established by credit. Economies with higher paces of net credit extension are shown to be more vulnerable to the disruptions to accumulation variously emphasised by Marxian, Keynesian and Post-Keynesian contributions.
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