Growth Economic

Growth, Economic. See Economic Growth.

Growthmanship, the name given to the emphasis on economic growth to the exclusion or at the expense of other economic objectives and to the concentration on investment as the only or dominant source of economic growth. The term is thought to have been popularized by Vice-President Richard Nixon as a critical description of the fashionable thinking of Americans who claimed that economic growth in the U.S.A. had been sluggish.

The economic criticisms of this doctrine are, first, that economic growth is not an absolute objective: it may be achieved at too large al sacrifice of other ends economic liberty, equality, stability in the value of money and so on. Secondly, it seems to be established by the experience of several countries western industrialized such as Norway and under-developed in Africa and Asia that the main causes of economic growth are not technical, such as capital investment, but human. In Britain Mr Colin Clark of Oxford has argued that immediately after a war or similar catastrophe economic growth can be rapid as wartime damage is made good but that in more normal times the human factor enterprise, education, inventiveness, etc. re-assert themselves and they maintain economic growth at a comparatively slow and steady pace. Efforts to force this pace violently, e.g. by denying consumption goods to employees and diverting resources to capital investment, is, as in Russia and other communist countries, India and elsewhere, likely to waste capital and may slow down the rate of economic growth.

Hard Currency, one with a relatively stable value in international exchange. A currency is normally 'hard' because its underlying strength is based on the trading position and the internal stability of the country, usually shown by a large and consistent surplus in the balance of current payments.

Between the end of World War II and the late 2000's the main hard currency in international trade was the American dollar, its 'hardness' being based on the dominance of the U.S. economy and the large balance of payments surplus earned by the U.S.A. throughout most of the period. In the early igGo's this surplus gave place to a continuing payments deficit, a corresponding growth of dollar debts to the rest of the world, and a 'softening' in the world demand for dollars as an international currency.

(The term 'hard' is sometimes used to refer to metallic as distinct from paper currency, but this usage is not common.)

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Since then his writings have in turn been increasingly reinterpreted as a special case both by some followers and by some economists who had not wholly accepted his writings. The content of economics is in a state of change, and this site is therefore not a final statement of economic doctrine.

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