Is This The Great Crash Of China?

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China’s second stock market crash will be its first fully fledged economic crisis

China has achieved a remarkable transformation in the last 30 years—something that you can only fully appreciate if, like me, you visited China before that transformation began. In 1981/82, I took a group of Australian journalists on a tour of China on behalf of the Australia-China Council. The key purpose was to take part in a seminar with Chinese journalists under the auspices of the “All-China Journalists Association”. Given the unfortunate acronym by our Chinese hosts of SAPS—for the “Sino-Australian Press Seminar”—it was the first seminar between Chinese journalists and those of any other nation.

Good Universities and Bad Economics

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For the next two days, I’m taking part in a peculiarly British institution (and I’m starting to realize just how many peculiar British institutions there are) called “Clearing”. This is where Universities towards the bottom of the status pecking order here in the UK offer places to students who didn’t get good enough marks to get into Universities towards the top of the pecking order.

Help make Minsky easier to use

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I’ve just put A$10,000 of my own money towards improving Minsky, the Open Source program I have designed to enable economists to create dynamic and monetary models of the economy. If you support the work I’m doing to help economics escape its 19th century equilibrium fetish, please consider also making a donation to Minsky’s development via Dr Russell Standish’s PayPal account (or via direct debit, using the account details you’ll find below):

Death of a Great Australian: Hugh Stretton 1924–2015

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The great polymath and humanitarian Hugh Stretton died this weekend. I can do no better than to reproduce another great Australian’s tribute to him.

The following is from Geoff Harcourt.

Hugh died last Saturday at the age of 91 after a long illness. I had known him since 1958 when I first came to Adelaide where he was the much-admired Professor of History. In later years we became firm friends, though I continued to regard him with awe and admiration. He was a giant intellect, easily Australia’s most deep and progressive thinker, and a remarkably kind and humane man who lived up to his ideals in many practical ways.

Help Renegade Inc. get over the line in the next 70 hours

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Renegade Inc., the media group that produced the Four Horsemen documentary about the financial crisis, is running a Kickstarter Campaign to raise US$45,000 to underwrite its next documentary.

Click here to go to Kickstarter and donate.

The Four Horsemen documentary has been an independent media success, with over three million views on YouTube. It has also shown at more than three hundred Q and A sessions in seventeen countries. Ross and Megan Ashcroft, the principals of Renegade Inc., want to produce a documentary for the post-crisis–or rather permanent crisis–world in which we now live. They also plan to follow this up with an independent media platform, to give the public something other than the superficial pap that dominates the media coverage of economics, politics and culture today.

Will We Crash Again? (FT/Alphaville Presentation)

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This is the talk I gave at the FT/Alphaville conference in London last week. A number of people asked me to send the PPT to them, and I got buried in other work and the emails are long lost in my Gmail queue. So if you’d like to download the presentation file, please click here. My apologies to those correspondents to whom I haven’t replied directly.

To run the Minsky model, download Minsky from here and install it.

Time To Play Hardball Yanis

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The Greek referendum has delivered a stunning victory for Syriza and its anti-austerity message. Despite the banks being closed as a result of the ECB limiting its provision of banknotes, and despite a united chorus of European leaders warning of dire consequences if the No vote succeeded, the Greeks have voted No in overwhelming numbers. The final result looks likely to be a 62% No to 38% Yes rejection of the Troika’s terms. Syriza now has overwhelming support from the Greek people to oppose the Troika (a result that opinion polls got completely wrong).

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The Greek Vote

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There is an adage in politics that you should never put anything to the vote unless you are sure of the outcome beforehand. On that front, the referendum Greeks will vote in this Sunday is a mistake, because the vote could go either way. If the majority votes No, as Syriza hopes, then it—hopefully—will strengthen its hand in future negotiations with the Troika. But if the majority votes Yes, then Syriza will have to capitulate to the Troika and accept its unbending policy of austerity.

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