Welcome to the Economic Exchange; a marketplace for economics ideas and high quality posts on economic issues. This blog aims to spread economics to a wider audience by making content suitable for all but hopefully teaching something interesting to all readers. Like a normal exchange, the blog is not just one way and contributions from you, the readers, can greatly enhance the standard of this blog. I look forward to my ideas being challenged and hope this is an opportunity to provoke lively debate. While we may not always appreciate our ideas being challenged it is vital to ensure our ideas are legitimate and can stand up to scrutiny.
This blog advocates a pragmatic approach to economic problems rather than promoting theories based on ideological preferences and self interest. This involves looking at the merits and demerits of economic policies and trying to use an objective cost-benefit analysis to reach a conclusion. Evidence will be found first and then ideas made. Ideas won't be made and then evidence found to support them.
The author of the blog, me, goes by the pseudonym "The Invisible Hand" as a reference to Adam Smith's famous phrase. Like Adam Smith's invisible hand I will aim to allocate scarce resources (knowledge) in such as way as to improve the common good of society by enriching your knowledge.
For the first section of the blog, I will examine the economics behind why you should read this blog. First of all there are private benefits to you. These are improvements to your welfare gained from reading these articles. The utility a reader gains from this blog is primarily in the form of greater knowledge of the wider economy and commonly debated topics. However, there are also external benefits or externalities. These are benefits to third parties who, in this case, are not readers of the blog. An example of these benefits could be the gain to the wider economy of having a better educated population in economy, such as more financially aware households. As these benefits are not experienced by you, the reader, you will not consider them assuming you are a rational economic actor. However, this means there is a loss to society from these external benefits not being realised.
Monetary costs are non-existent because the blog is free, however… there is no such thing as a free blog. That is because there is an opportunity cost to reading the blog of whatever you could have been doing instead. However, I would hope you, like any other economist, would make a cost benefit analysis and recognise the benefits of reading my articles exceed the costs. Thank you.