[OPE-L:3798] Re: Predicting market prices and trade imbalances

Gerald Lev (glevy@pratt.edu)
Mon, 9 Dec 1996 06:14:36 -0800 (PST)

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Paul C wrote in [OPE-L:3795]:

> If ones concern is relative values, the trade surplus or
> deficit is not relevant. If ones concern is over whether a
> country is an exporter or importer of surplus then the
> trade surplus is relevent.

If one's concern is the relation between value and market prices among
capitalist firms, then I think one has to examine the process of the
redistribution of surplus value among capitalist firms within each branch
of production. To do that, IMHO, one has to examine the process of
"technological rent" that arises when firms within a branch of production
experience differing productivities of labor due to differing qualities of
means of production. Since many branches of production are
*international*, one can not observe _this_ process by examining i/o
tables for an individual nation. The question should not be whether a
country experiences a trade surplus or trade deficit since that is easy
enough to determine. Harder to determine and something that the trade
numbers do not tell you is *why* and *how*.

In Solidarity, Jerry