Dvoskin and Petri on the relevance of the capital debates
Ariel Dvoskin and Fabio Petri just got their paper published in Metroeconomica. From the abstract:
Among the recent interventions in the capital controversy, the debate between Paola Potestio and Kurz & Salvadori has raised important issues. We agree with Potestio's rejection of the legitimacy of a value endowment of capital but we disagree with her dismissal of the relevance of reswitching and reverse capital deepening: these phenomena are very important because they undermine the demand-side role of the conception of capital as a single factor. For the marginal approach to be plausible, this demand-side role had to imply the stability of the savings-investment market even in shorter time frames than those required by a complete adaptation of the ‘form’ of capital; this was taken by Marshall to authorize doing without a given endowment of value capital, which opened the door to the shift to the modern neo-Walrasian versions of the marginal approach. With proof from Hayek, Hicks, Malinvaud, and Lucas we argue that a continuing belief in traditional time-consuming marginalist disequilibrium adjustments based on capital-labour substitution is the hidden reason why the claim often made by contemporary marginalist economists, that the economy can be assumed to be all the time on the equilibrium-growth path, is not found patently unacceptable. The true microfoundation of DSGE macromodels is not intertemporal equilibrium theory, but the time-consuming adjustment mechanisms on whose basis the marginal approach was born and accepted, and on whose basis monetarism was then able to re-assert a pre-Keynesian view of the working of the economy.You can read the preliminary version at the Siena working paper series here. The idea that the capital debates is a central issue in macroeconomics has been discussed recurrently in this blog.