Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Five of the best books about the financial market

Mariana Mazzucato is a Professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value at University College London (UCL), and Director of UCL's Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose. Her latest book is The Value of Everything: Making and Taking in the Global Economy.

At the Guardian she tagged five books to help us understand how political forces shape the markets, including:
But what is the “market”? As we close in on the 10th anniversary of the financial crisis, and the Turkish lira crisis draws the eyes of the world back to financial markets, this is worth interrogating in more detail. The word market is often confused with the words “business” and “private sector”, which miss the point. Karl Polanyi, a radical Austro-Hungarian thinker, wrote his highly influential book The Great Transformation during the second world war. In it he argues that markets are not “natural” or inevitable – rather, they result from the ways in which movements shape them and also from purposeful policy-making. He describes not market forces but markets as outcomes of the interactions between business, policy and forces in civil society. Without trade unions we would not have the eight-hour work day that has shaped the market. It is therefore not market forces themselves that are the problem – nor is privatisation – but the way in which markets have evolved to become overly embedded in the narrow interests of speculative finance.
Read about the other entries on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue