Current Global Imbalances: Might Keynes Be of Help?
A large number of interpretations has been proposed for current global imbalances, with a variety of future scenarios for world economy. The perspective here adopted tries to be fully respectful of the assumption of global economic interdependence as well as to cope with the complexity of a political, and not exclusively an economic, problem. By the use of the three alternatives outlined by Keynes in his 1945 memorandum "Overseas Financial Policy in Stage III" for the restart of multilateralism at a global level, we propose to rearrange views about current imbalances according to the unilateral, bilateral or multilateral nature of the adjustment they propose - if any - for their unwinding. Comparisons are made between Keynes's "Starvation Corner" and "gloomy views", together with scenarios suggesting the need of unilateral adjustments. Keynes's "Temptation" is used to analyse views stating that global imbalances are sustainable due either to the working of market mechanisms, related to the strength of the American economy, or to the (tacit) agreement of a "revived Bretton Woods system". The parallel with Keynes's "Justice" leads to consider views highlighting shared responsibilities for the imbalances and prompting for collective actions to reduce them.
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- Ricardo J. Caballero, 2006. "On the Macroeconomics of Asset Shortages," NBER Working Papers 12753, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.