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Financialization is one of the most innovative concepts to emerge in the field of political economy during the last three decades, although there is no agreement on what exactly it is. Profiting Without Producing puts forth a distinctive view defining financialization in terms of the fundamental conduct of non-financial enterprises, banks and households. Its most prominent feature is the rise of financial profit, in part extracted from households through financial expropriation. Financialized capitalism is also prone to crises, none greater than the latest turmoil that began in 2007. Using abundant empirical data, the book establishes the causes of the crisis and discusses the options broadly available for controlling finance.
“This book is a profound and panoramic study of the most powerful but destructive economic force of our time – financialization. Based on a sophisticated modern reinterpretation of Marxist theories and in-depth empirical analysis, the book comes up with bold and fundamental reform proposals. It is a must-read for anyone who is committed to progressive economic and social transformation.”
—Ha-Joon Chang, Author of 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism
“The growing dominance of global finance over the past generation ushered in the Wall Street crisis of 2007–09, and along with it, mass unemployment and punishing austerity policies throughout the world. Building from his command of both the Marxian tradition and alternative theoretical perspectives, Costas Lapavitsas provides both a wide panorama and fresh insights as to how “finance exploits us all”. Profiting Without Producing is a major contribution to our understanding of financialization and its discontents.”
—Robert Pollin, Political Economy Research Institute, University of Massachusetts-Amherst
“Costas Lapavitsas has provided an original account of the difficulties that economies will face recovering from the 2008 economic crisis. It is not an optimistic picture, but one that people should struggle with.” —Dean Baker, Center for Economic and Policy Research
“This work is clearly a masterpiece on the financialized capitalism of our age.”
—Makoto Itoh, Professor Emeritus, University of Tokyo