Minsky’s Theory of Financial Crises and Its Impact on Contemporary Economics
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Publish date: 2009-10-31
Gospodarka Narodowa 2009;235(10):49–70
The fall of the U.S. investment bank Lehman Brothers—one of the world’s largest financial institutions—in mid-September last year rocked the foundations of the global financial system and triggered what turned out to be the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. Amid the global turmoil, international economists and financiers dusted off a 1980s book by American economist Hyman P. Minsky entitled Stabilizing an Unstable Economy. The book sheds new light on the ongoing financial crisis. One of the many strengths of this book is that it offers a consistent definition of a financial crisis in the modern economy. Nawrot’s article analyzes the latest financial turbulence in the world. The analysis makes use of methods based on a theoretical model developed by Minsky, which, for the needs of the article, was expanded to address the situation at the start of the 21st century. The author uses this comprehensive financial model to probe the essence of the ongoing crisis and identify its causes, course and possible implications. The analysis shows that the world’s financial markets are undergoing dynamic changes and that many financial market players are in debt. This, along with a changing breakdown of this debt, poses a serious threat for the future, Nawrot says.