Wouter Den Haan's picture
Affiliation: 
London School of Economics
Credentials: 
Professor of economics

Voting history

Towards a High-Wage, High-Productivity Economy

Question 2: What is your evaluation of the following statement: “A well-designed government-stipulated wage increase can lead to higher productivity”?

Answer:
Strongly disagree
Confidence level:
Very confident
Comment:
Although, there may very well be sectors in which workers are not treated fairly and some regulatory protection would be warranted, a generic strategy to increase wages across the board seems like madness to me.

Question 1: Which of the following statements most closely reflects your understanding of the relationship between productivity and wages.

Answer:
Wage increases cannot increase productivity in and of themselves
Confidence level:
Not confident
Comment:
I chose this answer because improved productivity due to increased motivation is not permanent and any increase in productivity because of a substitution out of labour into capital means that it isn't just a wage increase anymore.

Post-Covid Fiscal Rules for the UK

Question 3: Which of the following variables should fiscal rules target to best improve the performance of the UK macroeconomic policy going forward.

Answer:
Public debt
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
In answering this question, I assume that the fiscal rule in question would be one that would remain in place for a long period. And then I'd rather would see a debt-level-target rule that is in place only when the economy is growing.

Question 2: What impact has the sequence of fiscal rules adopted in the UK since 1997 had on the conduct of fiscal policy in the UK?

Answer:
Neither improved nor harmed
Confidence level:
Not confident
Comment:
Again, my ideal answer would have been slightly improved but effects are small so no effect is closer to my thinking.

Question 1:  What impact has the sequence of fiscal rules adopted in the UK since 1997 had on the level of UK public debt? 

Answer:
No impact
Confidence level:
Not confident
Comment:
My ideal answer would have been that UK debt has been reduced a little because of fiscal rules. The FT makes a sensible point by saying that the rules codify the current stance of the chancellor. Although changing a "rule" has clearly not been difficult, a change in a fiscal rule still goes with a bit more discussion/defence than changing a stance.

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