Ann Pettifor

Finance Ministers

No, the Recession is Not Over

Ann Pettifor – 11th June 2009 – For the Guardian Online. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/jun/12/recession-economic-crisis A banker, Alan Clarke of BNP Paribas, citing a NIESR report, confidently tells the Guardian that the recession is over. Should we take the word of any banker – especially one that claims to be an economist – seriously? Given that the economics …

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Disarming the Financiers

1st December 2008 Watching our British politicians squabble and spin this last week over the Pre Budget Report – while Rome burns –  was depressing. Why are our politicians so off-beam? Why does their response to this crisis seem so petty and botched? The answer may lie in their ties to the finance sector. The …

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Rates: the BoE is not independent – it has a political mandate

Both the British Chancellor, Alastair Darling and the shadow Chancellor, George Osborne, have been on the radio this morning, resisting the idea that interest rates are political. Instead they have argued, vehemently, that the Bank of England is independent, and that the Bank must decide whether or not to lower interest rates.

Interest rates, Keynes and the longevity of the rentier

The Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, speaking on Radio 4’s flagship current affairs programme this morning, repeated something he says regularly: that ‘interest rates are low’ and that his government, through the Bank of England, kept them low. The question the BBC should have asked is this: if interest rates are low, and have been so, …

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Comrade Paulson, nationalised banks & socialism for the rich.

You have to admire the spin.  The US Treasury Secretary, Comrade Hank Paulson, pictured here, announced  today, Sunday 7th September, 2008  that the US government is natonalising two huge US banks, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.  Which means in effect that Comrade Paulson is  socialising the losses of the shareholders and investors in these banks …

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Ratcheting up the interest rate rack of torture.

In this big bad world of the Credit Crunch, powerful central bankers – civil servants all – have bent over backwards to help powerful and rich private bankers. On one day, ‘debtonation day’, central bankers in Europe and the US pumped an eye-watering $150 billion into the financial system, to keep big banks afloat. According …

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What have Putin, Hu & Greenspan in common?

Have been listening to debates about the conflict in Georgia over the week-end. There has been much wailing and gnashing of teeth about Putin’s disregard for democracy. In a similar vein, western commentary about President Hu Jintao’s Olympic Games is never complete without some tut-tutting about democracy and human rights in China. Yet these leaders …

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The G8 and Bankers: Lessons from the 20s and 80s

Open Democracy, 7th July, 2008. The precedent of the United States’s great depression and Japan’s post-bubble collapse should haunt today’s G8 summiteers, writes Ann Pettifor in Open Democracy. Japan hosts the G8 summit in the northern island of Hokkaido on 7-9 July 2008 at a time when its prolonged period of deflation and economic failure …

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Debtors (and banks?) ‘crucified’ on inflation cross

The FT reports today on a debate economists are having with the Bank of England (BoE). To summarise: the Bank of England does not seem bothered by falling house prices; economists are. This is a very important debate for all those that have debts – because while house prices are falling, the debts on those …

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