Academic journal article Journal of Australian Political Economy

Michael Beggs: Inflation and the Making of Australian Macroeconomic Policy 1945-85

Academic journal article Journal of Australian Political Economy

Michael Beggs: Inflation and the Making of Australian Macroeconomic Policy 1945-85

Article excerpt

Michael Beggs

Inflation and the Making of Australian Macroeconomic Policy 1945-85

Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, 2015, 325pp.

Mike Beggs shows how macroeconomic policy has been implemented in Australia. His book deals with the crucial decades when macro policy was variously part of a strategy of 'nation building', a means for securing full employment and a tool for preventing high rates of price inflation. The last of these elements is particularly distinctive because, as Beggs notes at the outset, 'the control of inflation is of central importance to the structural role of the state within contemporary capitalism (p.1). This emphasis may strike some younger readers as odd because it is a quarter of a century since inflation was a major economic threat in Australia and, post-GFC, it is deflation rather than inflation that has been the bigger worldwide concern. Yet the fundamental importance of the inflationary threat remains, Beggs argues, and is now enshrined in the independent role of the central bank in many nations. In Australia the Reserve Bank of Australia has the capacity to use monetary policy as a brake that can be applied whenever it regards an elected Australian government's expansionary fiscal policy as unwise.

Starting with an excellent chapter on the nature of the state and economic policy, reflecting on the ideological and institutional influences on the policy process, the book then turns detailed attention to how policy was shaped during the forty years studied (split broadly into two sub-periods). …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.