Vol. 6 No. 4 (1986): Oct-Dec / 1986

Vol. 6 No. 4 (1986)

Oct-Dec / 1986
Published October 1, 1986


Marx’s economic theory: a post-Keynesian interpretation
Fernando J. Cardim de Carvalho
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

Marx’s thoughts about money and its role in capitalist economies are scattered
throughout his works. In particular, they constitute a major part of the 3rd volume
of Capital and of the Grundrisse. In these two works, Marx presents the foundations for a
theory of money that is very close to Keynes’s views. In the paper, this similarity is shown
through the systematization of Marx’s monetary theory along (post) Keynesian lines. The
demand for money is shown to be rooted not only in the transaction’s motive but also in the
liquidity properties of money. These properties become important in capitalist economies
characterized by market uncertainty. Both Marx and Keynes use the concept of money to
break Say’s law. An essential difference between the two authors is shown to relate to the
measure-of-value function of money and ways to reconcile them on this issue are developed.

JEL Classification: E11; E12; B24.

Declining trend of profit rate and technical progress
Luiz Carlos Bresser-Pereira
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

Given a stable rate of surplus value and an increasing organic composition of
capital, Marx asserted that the rate of profit would tend to decline. The increase of the
organic composition of capital depends, however, on the type of technical progress. It can
be labor-saving – and then the organic composition of capital will rise – but can also be
neutral or capital-saving. On the hand, only in a very special case firms will adopt new
techniques that increase their costs and lower their profits. The recent debate on the Okishio
theorem about this problem and Shaikh’s attempt to reestablish the Marxian orthodoxy are
discussed. The author concludes that the law of the declining tendency of the rate of profit
is an essential instrument to understand the long-run dynamics of the process of capital accumulation,
but does not mean that the rate of profit will actually decline.

JEL Classification: E11; B51.

The current economic crisis: an essay on a Marxist interpretation
Nelson Ribeiro, Antonio Mendonça
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

The 70s are marked by the birth of a threefold crisis: an economic one, a crisis
in economic policy, and a crisis in the economic theory which had, until then, been esmonic.
The sharp growth in the world capitalist economy, the considerable decrease in the range of
cyclic movements, during the post-war period, seem to have validated the Keynesian concepts
arrived in power following the 1929 crisis and the subsequent Second World War. ln
1974-75 everything changed. The crisis reappeared in all its depth, along with it there set in
a feeling of skepticism regarding the efficacity of state intervention. At the same time with all
their might there reemerged the “liberal” and monetarist thesis which had been dethroned by
the impact of the events of the 30s and Keynes’s criticism. The purpose of this paper is to fit
into the framework of the debate that exists today regarding the crisis and state intervention
and to propose an interpretation of the economic difficulties triggered off by the 1974-75
crisis, from the theoretical elements left by Marx.

JEL Classification: E21; E11; B51.

The land question
Ignácio M. Rangel
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

This paper analyses some relationships between the agrarian problem and the
process of capitalist development in Brazil. It argues that the increase in productivity associated
with the deepening of the social division of labor changes the relations of production
in the agricultural sector. The peasantry firstly linked to the feudal latifundia becomes wage
labor hired on seasonal basis for the capitalist farms. In this context, the land problem
emerges as a financial issue associated basically with the land price. As a result, the agrarian
reform based on the purchase of large areas by the government will not be a solution for the
agrarian problem since it will support an increase in land prices.

JEL Classification: Q15; Q18.

Position in occupation, working time and income in Brazilian agriculture in 1980
Rodolfo Hoffmann, Ângela Kageyama
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

The size distribution of income within the agricultural sector, in Brazil, is
analised, considering the weekly working time of each economically active person and his
classification as employee, employer, or autonomous worker. The data basis is the 1980
Demographic Census. The results show the importance of that classification in the determination
of the overall inequality of the income distribution in the agricultural sector.

JEL Classification: J22; J21; J31.

Indexing, exchange rate policy and effects of inflationary feedback in Latin America
Paul D. McNelis
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

This paper examines inflationary adjustment processes in Argentina, Brazil,
Chile, Ecuador, Peru, and Uruguay with time-varying estimation techniques to determine the
relationship between inflationary inertia or feedback effects from past to current inflation
and the degree of indexation of wages and exchange rates to past inflation rates. The results
show that reductions in the degree of exchange rate linkage to past inflation have not been
particularly helpful in larger or relatively more diversified economies (such as Argentina,
Brazil, or Chile), while reductions in wage linkages to past inflation rates have had strong
but short-lived effects.

JEL Classification: F31; E31; J38.


A synthesis of the central theses of interpretation of the cycle in the Brazilian economy
Tânia M. Limeira de Carvalho e Silva
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

This is a synthesis of the central thesis of interpretation given by Brazilian economists
to the problem of the economic cycle in the country, between 1947 and 1983.

JEL Classification: B22; B24.

Notes and Comments

Social Security in check: an analysis based on the adequacy of financing mechanisms
Maurício C. Coutinho
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

The 1980s have been a time of change in the debate around social security in
Brazil. Being first a topic of medicine and actuaries, since it started to present successive
deficits, it has called the attention of economists. This paper aims to debate the crisis of the
social security system, the possible origins of its deficit, and alternatives to funding.

JEL Classification: J32.

State intervention and drought in Northeast Brazil
Manuel Correia de Andrade
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

The vast region of the Brazilian Northeast has a significant proportion of its
territory subject to severe droughts. This paper provides an analysis of the government’s
response to the great droughts the region underwent since the imperial period in the nineteenth

JEL Classification: Q54; Q25; N56.

For a current Marx
Rogério Pereira de Andrade
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

Book reviews for “Karl Marx: o apanhador de sinais” and “Marx: nas pistas da
desmistificação filosófica do capitalismo”.

JEL Classification: B14, Y30.


White book on public deficit
Secretaria do Planejamento da Presidência da República .
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

Reproduction of the “White Book on Public Deficit” issued by the Planning
Secretariat of the Brazilian government, including the prospects for 1986.

JEL Classification: H62; H68.

Macroeconomic aspects of the Target Plan
Secretaria do Planejamento da Presidência da República .
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

Reproduction of the Target Plan of the Sarney government.

JEL Classification: E61.

The difficulties of the Austral Plan: inflation returns
Raul E. Cuello
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy

After some initial success, the Austral Plan is starting to show its weakness. This
note provides an analysis of the latest inflation figures and what is next for the stabilization
process in Argentina.

JEL Classification: E31.