Note to Self: Inflation of the 1970s Readings for Tuesday
Moral-Philosophic Implications for Socialism in One Sector of a Visit from the Bernoulli Fairy

About That Backwards-S...

Mitchell Harwitz writes, about what I call the Krugman Backwards-S:

I first saw that curve deployed by Murray Kemp. It was in the first edition of his trade theory text, used as a device to refute Milton Friedman's claim that speculation always made (foreign exchange) markets stable. Not long after that, I read Marshall's theoretical pamphlet on trade, and saw the same sort of figure deployed, this time to argue that unstable equilibria were always "surrounded" by stable equilibria (stability in the sense of Marshall, of course).

Given Paul Krugman's age, I'll bet he was in graduate school when Kemp taught trade theory at MIT. In any case, one probably ought to call the curve the Marshall-Kemp-Krugman Backwards-S. And that's the Samuelson-style of designation, isn't it? By the way, I'd guess that if you dug hard enough in the footnotes of Samuelson's Foundations, in the sections on dynamics and stability, you'd find Samuelson referring to Marshall's formulations...

Probably should add "Obstfeld" to that list of names as well...

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