Tuesday, 15 December 2009

That Robert Shiller paper...

...that I mentioned previously is well worth a read. Shiller seems to have become a popular economist amongst lefties, presumably because he criticises the efficicent markets hypothesis and presents a behavioural take on markets. That's all well and good.

Therefore I recommend folks on the Left having a look at this paper, even though it's an oldie, because if you take him seriously you should also consider his views on speculation (necessary, and often socially beneficial) and attempts to deal with it. He writes very clearly about the problems in trying to tackle speculation (and indeed indentify exactly who counts as a speculator). These are not the easy questions that are sometimes supposed.

As a side issue it's been interesting going back and reading things like this, the Paul Marsh paper and Margaret Blair from the 1990s. It hammers home the fact that these questions about ownership and long-termism being discussed currently are nothing new, and actually they were discussed in more detail previously. And I don't see many new policy ideas either.

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