The zombie firms plaguing Britain's economy, and what to do about them.
Robert CB Miller gives a modern Austrian explanation of the crisis, and argues that tightening the 'loose joint' of bank credit expansion is the key to preventing a repeat in the future. Based on the work of FA Hayek and other Austrian school economists, he says that the recession is a necessary part of the recovery process, as bad investments are liquidated and new profit routes discovered, but government draws out this process by regulating markets and restricting trade.
Statistician John C. Duffy and ASI fellow Christopher Snowdon assess the Sheffield Alcohol Policy Model, used as the basis for the British and Scottish governments' calls for minimum alcohol pricing. They find that the model is deeply flawed, based on faulty premises and used to justify policy far beyond what it actually proves.
Sam Bowman argues that a 'living wage' can be secured by taking the poor out of tax, not by raising the minimum wage and risking creating unemployment.
We need a real market for corporate control, argues Elaine Sternberg. Private firms may have good reason to pay their executives highly, and shareholder sovereignty should be protected. The most important thing the government can do is to remove state restrictions on shareholder power — and stop meddling in how private companies are run.
Adam Smith and David Ricardo explained the benefits of trade, based on specialisation and comparative advantage. These concepts, says Arnold Kling, also can provide the basis for explaining fluctuations in employment. In this paper Kling proposes that we jettison the Keynesian paradigm of aggregate supply and demand (AS-AD) in favour of an alternative paradigm, which he calls patterns of sustainable specialisation and trade (PSST).
How one small change in mindset could free millions of SMEs from onerous regulation and tax by allowing more of their employees to register as self-employed.
Accurate accounting is at the root of the legal and scrutiny framework; without accurate accounts basic laws are incapable of enforcement. This report argues that international accounting rules have given the impression of illusory profits on bank balance sheets, inflating bonuses and creating perverse incentives for banks to act recklessly.
In a follow up his last report on the Tobin Tax, Adam Baldwin assesses the impact of the European Commission's Financial Transaction Tax on Britain. He draws on the EC's impact assessment and independent research and concludes that it would wipe out derivatives trading in the City, hurt economic growth and increase market volatility.