Synopses & Reviews
Recently, the issue of inequality has regained attention in the economic and political debate. This is due to both an increase in income inequality, in particular amongst rich countries, and an increasing interest in this issue by researchers and politicians. In the last three decades, income inequality amid rich countries increased. This period also witnessed the growth of "financial capitalism," characterised by the strong dependency of economies on the financial sector, by the globalization and intensification of international trade and capital mobility, and by the "flexibilization" of labour markets.
From the 1980s to the present day, this book considers the theoretical aspects of inequality (its foundations, definitions, approaches and origins) and examines empirical evidence of income inequality in a wide range of advanced economies. The key arguments in this volume are that income inequality increased during this period because labour and welfare became seen as costs to be compressed in "financial capitalism" rather than as a fundamental part of aggregate demand to be expanded. However, the welfare state is not a drain on economic performance and competitiveness, or is it a barrier to economic efficiency. Instead it is demonstrated that in countries which adopt "welfare capitalism" welfare state expenditure not only contributes to a reduction in inequality, but also fosters economic growth.
Inequality in Financial Capitalism is of great importance to those who study political economy, labour economics and globalisation.