Full text: Trend - Problems

Trend - Problems 
Kalecki's remarks on the trend are rather sketchy as compared 
with his elaborate theory of the cycle. In his first version 
of the trade cycle he excluded the trend altogether by 
the assumption of a "pure cycle" which revolves round 
a constant replacement demand ( replacement and depreciation 
are assumed to be equal ). In the sense of a long term 
movement there is a trend also in this version - it is the 
constant replacement demand which is the feature of a 
stationary economy. The question which puzzles the reader is: 
What forces the investment to come down again to where it 
started from? We can hardly assume that the investors 
the^mselves aim at the stationary state, because that 
results only as an average and because the stationarity 
is all against the experience fo capitalist attitudes. 
The explicit treatment of the trend in later versions 
of K's theory combines two statements: 
a) A positive trend will only be generated by a continuing 
exogenous influence^that is, if we exclude the influence of 
public spending and of export surplusses, by continuing 
technological change (in a fairly wide sense -organisation etc) 
which keeps promising extra profits to the innovator. 
b) the exogenous influence is combined with endogenous elements 
and it is the two in their mutual and combined interaction 
which produces the trend.Kalecki speaks of a "semi-autonomous 
trend". The endogenous element corresponds to a long term 
memoryjthat is ( to the evol ution of the economy in the past 
( the past extend^* farther back then just one or two years - 
perhaps even over the length of a whole trade cycle). 
These indications constitute a research program, 
but very little work if any has been done on it yet by anybody.

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