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La grande crisi e l’imperialismo globale

Listed author(s):
  • Ernesto Screpanti


The economic collapse of 2007-10 is described as a debt deflation crisis triggered by a speculative bubble. The basic causes are traced back to the policy choices of the great capitalist powers governing globalization. Market liberalization and the TRIPS agreements work as a sort of global capitalist pact against the working classes. The high tech capital of the advanced countries has a monopolistic advantage over scientific and technological research. The great capital of the emerging countries succeeds in fully exploiting the competitive advantages of their low labour costs. Their trade penetration in advanced capitalist markets has led to a reduction in labour demand and an increase in labour supply. This weakens the Trade Union movements and favours income redistribution from wages to profits. The governments of some advanced countries like Germany and Japan have reinforced redistribution processes by implementing restrictive fiscal and monetary policies. By the same token they have maintained the systematic current account surpluses that help to strengthen their currencies. The United States is unable to implement the same policy because they have to maintain a huge budget deficit to sustain the military expenditure required to ensure the opening of recalcitrant countries to globalization. Moreover they have to maintain a big trade deficit to expand the supply of international currency. Therefore they adopt expansionary fiscal and monetary policies. Finally, to feed domestic demand they favour residential and financial speculation, an expansion of debt-funded consumption and deregulation of financial markets. Emerging countries have reaped great advantages from this policy, as it enables them to maintain the systematic current account surpluses through which they stimulate their GDP growth and by means of which they have accumulated enormous dollar assets. But in the United States the disproportionate increase in private and public debt has nourished a speculative bubble that has dragged financial capital from all over the world into highly risky positions. The trade and industrial crisis was provoked by the debt deflation process triggered by the bubble burst. Probably it paves the way for rebalancing power relations among major geopolitical areas and redesigning the global governance system. China has reacted to the crisis by implementing expansionary fiscal policies, by which it intends to underpin the continuation of its growth. It is preparing to substitute the United States as a major engine of world economy. At the same time it is manoeuvring its currency reserves to pilot a smooth dollar devaluation followed by stabilization. Its goal is to flank the Dollar with a composite currency created by an IMF in which the influence of China is duly strengthened

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Siena in its series Department of Economics University of Siena with number 590.

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Date of creation: Apr 2010
Handle: RePEc:usi:wpaper:590
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