Blog

Stock Buybacks vs Greenfield Investment

December 10, 2014

In his November 29, 2013 piece, ‘Low Capex, High Market Cap: A New High for Corporate Sabotage?’, Edward Lam lends support to CasP’s sabotage thesis by showing how firms with relatively low ‘greenfield’ investment outperform those with relatively high ‘greenfield’ investment. A recent FT article, titled “Money Well Spent?” (Tom Braithwaite, Nicole Bullock and Michael … Read More

The Rise and Fall of Debate in Economics

December 10, 2014

 New data illustrate the extent to which economists have stopped discussing each other’s work. Once upon a time, economists regularly used to publicly criticise each other’s work in academic journals. But not any more. In Figure 1 I have illustrated the degree to which economists have stopped debating. The data have been culled from Jstor, the online database of … Read More

The Oil Price: Differential Accumulation and Punishing One’s Rivals

November 27, 2014
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According to some forecasters the price of oil might hit $75 a barrel soon. Goldman Sachs has even predicted a $70 barrel of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) in 2015. If the price does drop this low it will be a dramatic change from the recent status quo; a relatively stable, higher price of over 90 … Read More

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Publications

Encumbered Behemoth: Wal-Mart, Differential Accumulation and International Retail Restructuring

December 3, 2014
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This chapter draws on, and develops, some aspects of the capital as power framework so as to provide the first clear quantitative explication of the company’s power trajectory to date. After rapid growth in the first four decades of its existence, the power of Wal-Mart appears to be flat-lining relative to dominant capital as a … Read More

Francis, Bichler and Nitzan on The Buy-to-Build Indicator: An Exchange

October 3, 2014
BuytoBuild

The first part of the exchange is a short article by Joe Francis. The article provides new long-term estimates and an assessment of the buy-to-build indicator for the United States and Britain, going back to the end of the 19th century. The second part offers commentary by Shimshon Bichler and Jonathan Nitzan. Citation: The Buy-to-Build … Read More

How Capitalists Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Crisis

June 8, 2014
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Do capitalists really want a recovery? Can they afford it? On the face of it, the question sounds silly: of course capitalists want a recovery; how else can they prosper? According to the textbooks, both mainstream and heterodox, capital accumulation and economic growth are two sides of the same process. Accumulation generates growth and growth … Read More

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Working Papers

No. 2014/04: Bichler and Nitzan, “Still About Oil?”

November 27, 2014
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Working Paper No. 2014/04 Shimshon Bichler and Jonathan Nitzan, “Still About Oil?” During the late 1980s and early 1990s, we identified a new Middle East phenomenon that we called ‘energy conflicts’ and argued that these conflicts were intimately linked with the global processes of capital accumulation. This paper outlines the theoretical framework we have developed over the years … Read More

No. 2014/03: Baines, “The Ethanol Boom and the Restructuring of the Food Regime”

July 16, 2014
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Working Paper No. 2014/03 Joseph Baines, “The Ethanol Boom and the Restructuring of the Food Regime” [A shorter version of this paper is forthcoming at The Journal of Peasant Studies] The agrofuel boom has brought about some of the most significant transformations in the world food system in recent decades. A rich and diverse body … Read More

No. 2014/02: Fix, “Rethinking Profit: How Redistribution Drives Growth”

April 7, 2014
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Working Paper No. 2014/02 Blair Fix, “Rethinking Profit: How Redistribution Drives Growth” Using a combination of heterodox economics and biophysical analysis, this paper investigates the relationship between economic distribution and the growth of material throughput. Empirical results show that the growth of “useful work” correlates with redistribution towards pro fit. Furthermore, increases in energy consumption are correlated … Read More

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Critical Mass Forum

Political Economy • Political Economy Professor Wanted at Antioch College

December 21, 2014

http://antiochcollege.org/about/employmentAntioch College is seeking applicants for a tenure-track position in Political Economy to begin September 1, ...

Political Economy • Re: Bringing energy back in

November 27, 2014

Here's a little more data relating corporate employment concentration and energy consumption. This time I look at the global level. Data is only available ...

Research • Re: Decomposing Dominant Capital

November 20, 2014

I also had the data for the Fortune 500 from 1955 to 2008. Fifty-four of the firms (2.2%) have endured the entire time. There was also a large spike of ...

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