The Wage-Price Problem

The Wage-Price Problem

The Wage-Price Problem

The Wage-Price Problem

Excerpt

The American Bankers Association considers it a privilege to publish this study by one of America's most distinguished economists of one of the most important economic problems of our time.

John Maurice Clark needs no encomiums from us. Emeritus Professor of Economics at Columbia University, author of many outstanding books and articles, and a past president of the American Economic Association, Dr. Clark long ago attained top rank among American economists.

Some readers may wonder why a monograph such as this is being published by The American Bankers Association. The basic answer is that the wage-price problem has now become a matter of vital concern to all those who wish to achieve sustained economic growth without inflation. Publication of this study reflects the fact that The American Bankers Association is attempting to do its share to contribute to this objective.

In the past the Association has quite naturally concerned itself primarily with the financial aspects of public economic policy. Until recent years, most bankers, along with many others, hoped that if we could adhere to sensible monetary and fiscal policies, the other problems involved in achieving satisfactory growth and reasonably stable prices, would be minimized.

The events of recent years have made it clear, however, that sound financial policies, while still essential, will not suffice alone. We can no longer blink the fact that the combined effects of industrial wage and pricing policies have now come to constitute a persistent inflationary force in our economy.

In 1959 The American Bankers Association launched an enlarged, long-range program to promote economic growth and to combat inflation. In doing so, it was explicitly recognized that attention should be given to certain strategic problems outside the field of banking and finance, and notably to the wage-cost-price spiral.

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