Re: [OPE] Open problems in Marxist economics: Workers' savings

From: Paul Cockshott <>
Date: Thu Apr 08 2010 - 10:18:11 EDT


Just for clarity, profit is a flow of income, consumption is a flow of
spending, but "net savings" is a change to a stock (e.g., the current
value of my bank account).
The Kaleckian identities don't hold out of equilibrium.
Are you sure, I am pretty certain that as accounting identies they hold for any finite time period
In general
although total effective demand (from workers and capitalists) always
returns as income (either wages or profits) nonetheless during its
circulation the effective demand may transfer from one class to
another. Given that:
Profits + Net savings by workers = Capitalist consumption
Then if net savings by workers are positive then workers are earning
more than they spend. Assume the total stock of savings in the economy
is constant (i.e., conservation of monetary value).
 Then net savings
by workers (the change in stock) necessarily implies net dis-savings
by capitalists (a corresponding change in stock). So capitalists must
be earning less than they spend. In other words, the above equation
can be written as:
I dont think you can leave investment out. If there is workers savings, firms may be financing
investment out of funds provided by workers savings
Net savings by workers = Capitalist consumption - Profits
which is equivalent to
Net savings by workers = Net dis-savings by capitalists
I'd suggest that this describes a situation where the distribution of
income is moving in favor of workers. In other words, the workers are
"winning the fight" over the material surplus.
Does this help at all?
I think you have oversimplified by leaving out investment, what you can validly assume is that
capitalists would be taking on financial obligations to workers.
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Received on Thu Apr 8 10:24:56 2010

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