Pedro Molina

L’économie en crise

BERKELEY – Lors d’une récente conférence à Bretton Woods dans le New Hampshire – là même où s’était tenue la conférence de 1945 à l’origine de l’actuelle architecture économique mondiale – le moment le plus intéressant fut lorsque l’éditorialiste du Financial Times Martin Wolf questionnât l’ancien Secrétaire au Trésor Larry Summers, ancien conseiller à la politique économique de Barack Obama. « Ce qui s’est passé ces dernières années », demandât-il, « [ne laisse-t-il pas] penser que les économistes [théoriciens] n’ont pas compris ce qui se passait ? »

Voici l’extrait le plus intéressant de la longue réponse de Summers : « Il y a beaucoup de choses chez [Walter] Bagehot à propos de la crise que nous venons de traverser. Il y en a plus chez [Hyman] Minsky, et peut-être plus encore chez [Charles] Kindleberger. » Cela peut paraître obscur pour un non économiste, mais c’était une accablante accusation.

Bagehot (1826-1877) fut l’un des éditeurs de The Economist  au milieu du 19ème siècle qui publiât un livre sur les marchés financiers, Lombard Street, en 1873. Summers a surement raison : il y a bien des choses dans Lombard Street en rapport avec la crise dont nous sommes en train de récupérer.

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