[OPE-L:5371] Re: Re: turnover time and surplus value

From: Gerald_A_Levy (Gerald_A_Levy@email.msn.com)
Date: Sat Apr 21 2001 - 10:52:27 EDT

In response to [5370], I would like to ask Paul
C  a few questions (with sub-parts):

> > Another related issue concerns the timing of
> > the transfer of value and creation of  value and
> > s.  Thus, if turnover time for the aggregate
> > capital was reduced, would this alter the
> > magnitude of s produced or only the *timing*
> > of when s is created?
> Neither.
> The thing that changes is the stock of work in
> progress  which counts as part of C.

1)  On the above

a) Why doesn't  a change in the turnover time
of capital  affect the timing of when value and
surplus value is created?   Doesn't it lead to
a reduction in both production and circulation

b) Doesn't the subject of the release and tying-up
of capital suggest a temporal staggering of value?

c)  couldn't a change in turnover time over a long
period of time lead to a change in what is
considered to constitute SNLT?

2) On the literature and empirical measurement

a) as I'm sure you remember, the subject of
a reduction of turnover time was considered by
Ernest Mandel  in _Late Capitalism_ (London,
NLB, 1975) to be "one of the fundamental
characteristics of late capitalism" (p. 223, see
Ch. 7).  Do you agree or disagree with Mandel's
perspective on this subject? (It is interesting to
note in this connection how Mandel interweaves
the subjects of reduction in turnover time and
the "pressure towards company planning and
economic programming"  insofar as the later
issue was addressed somewhat in the "Socialism"
book that Allin and you wrote).

b) In emphasizing a role for turnover time, Mandel
-- it seems to me -- is following in the footsteps of
one of his mentors, Henryk Grossmann.  Do you
agree with Grossmann that a shortening of
turnover time is a 'countertendency' which "is a
further means of surmounting crises"? (see _The
Law of Accumulation and Breakdown of the
Capitalist System_, London, Pluto Press, 1992,
pp. 140-142). Note in this connection that 
Webber/Rigby have claimed in their work, _The
Golden Age Illusion_ that changes in turnover
times "have offset any tendency of the rate of
profit to fall" (in the period that W/R study for
the four countries, Aus, Can, Jap, US).  Does
the empirical work that Allin and you did tend
to confirm or cast doubt on this perspective?

c) The annual rate of turnovers are estimated
by Webber/Rigby as "the ratio of total costs
(wages and salaries, raw materials, depreciation,
fuel, and electricity) to owned inventory" 
(_The Golden Age Illusion_, p. 323). Is this
the best way of calculating turnover rates?
How do you calculate turnover time in your
empirical work?

Of course, others are welcomed to answer these
questions as well.

In solidarity, Jerry

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