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John Maynard Keynes by Hyman P. Minsky (auth.)

By Hyman P. Minsky (auth.)

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The empirical estimation of short-period changes in investment has not been one of the outstanding successes of econometric work. Many of the models that are used have Conventional Wisdom: Standard Interpretation of Keynes 32 given up on estimating investment from functional relations presumed to capture economic regularities; instead, they rely upon survey dataquestionnaires to businessmen-for their estimates of/. In their various forms, early econometric forecasting models did not find a large or significant role for interest rates, monetary phenomena, or financial interrelations in determining income.

We have still to take up how the IS-LM approach is integrated into the neoclassical framework. 37 Conventional Wisdom: Standard Interpretation of Keynes The /S-LM framework is more sophisticated than the simplistic consumption-function model in that it allows for the influence of money and permits the elasticities (shapes and positions) of the various functions to affect income. In particular, the view that the liquidity-preference function is a demand-for-money relation permits the introduction of the idea that in appropriate circumstances the demand for money may be infinitely elastic with respect to variations in the interest rate; that is, Mn = L(i,Y) is such that for some range of incomes changing the money supply will not affect the interest rate.

One way around this difficulty is to assume that the pattern among interest rates is a constant-except that simple observation rules this view out. The difficulties raised by the question of the content of the Hicksian liquidity-preference function will be resolved as we reinterpret the liquidity-preference function as a schedule determining the demand price for assets. In addition to the liquidity trap, the possibility exists that the IS curve may be inelastic with regard to interest-that a fall in the interest rate may not increase investment appreciably.

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