Exercising Economic Sovereignty in Today's Global Financial World: The Lessons from John Maynard Keynes

By Biagio Bossone

PKES Working Paper 2120

November 2021

In this article, I argue that current macroeconomic models (both orthodox and heterodox), centered as they are on local agents or agencies, do not recognize the role that "global investors" play in determining the space for effective macroeconomic policies. I therefore argue that these important players must be placed at the center of macroeconomic analysis if we are to understand how macroeconomic policies really work in the global financial environment. The article describes the key characteristics of global investors, analyzes their power to determine the value at which public sector liabilities (money and debt) are traded on international markets and how this power affects policy effectiveness. Consequently, no country is truly sovereign in a globalized world and the government of every country is subject to an intertemporal budget constraint (IBC), although, of course, not all countries are equal and not all IBCs are equally binding: the IBCs are flexible and endogenous to the decisions of global investors but in any case, unavoidable. I conclude the article by arguing that the policy choices of countries in today's globalized financial environment would benefit from revisiting some of John Maynard Keynes's teachings, considering his in-depth knowledge of global financial markets and how they affect economies. of the countries.

Keywords: economic sovereignty; exchange rates; global financial markets; global investors; macroeconomic policies; money; policy credibility; policy space; public debt

JEL classification: E60 F62 F65 G15