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St Catharine's Political Economy Seminar Series - Speaker: Peter Sinclair

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The next St Catharine’s Political Economy Seminar in the series on the Economics of Austerity, will be held on Wednesday 17 February 2016. Peter Sinclair will give a talk on “In Search of Smart Fiscal Policies”. The seminar will be held in the Ramsden Room at St Catharine’s College from 6.00-7.30 pm. All are welcome. The seminar series is supported by the Cambridge Journal of Economics and the Economics and Policy Group at the Cambridge Judge Business School.

Speaker: Professor Peter Sinclair taught Economics at Brasenose College Oxford from 1970 to 1994, when he moved to a chair at University of Birmingham. His main interests lie in international, macro, monetary, and taxation economics – and in the special subjects of unemployment policy and climate change economics. Though now the Department of Economics Emeritus Professor at the University of Birmingham, he still lectures and supervises PhD students there. Professor Sinclair also works at the LSE and, also, in a peripheral role, at the Bank of England. His first main book was The Foundations of Macroeconomic and Monetary Theory (OUP, 1983). His overseas activities include directing central banking courses for Seanza. His research has appeared in over twenty learned journals, and in numerous books, some of which he has edited or written, usually with others.

Talk Overview: Peter Sinclair will talk on whether right or misconceived, austerity policies often involve improvements in one aspect of the public finance ledger and deteriorations on other aspects. What look like savings in public expenditure at one date may increase it later on, for example, or entail losses of tax revenue. The lecture will concentrate on a number of possible measures of a very different character: decisions that could, for instance, increase tax receipts and at the same time help to reduce the discounted present value of public expenditure streams into the bargain. We could describe this as a search for ‘smart’ fiscal policies. The lecture will range on a wide variety of items that might have the potential to achieve these double-edged benefits for the public balance sheet, and often, though not always, offer the prospect of potential gains to welfare on some definition as well.

This talk is part of the St Catharine's Political Economy Seminar Series series.

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