French Economy: From Short-Term Crisis to Structural Crisis

This paper has been kindly translated by Olga Savkievitch-Litviakov. All errors are my own responsibility. It is to be published in “Studies on Russian Economic Development”, volume 26, n°2, 2015

The French government had warned in 2014, on the occasion of the July 14 ceremonies, that the period after the summer holidays would be “difficult”. This was hardly surprising. Despite a temporary improvement in 2010, France has not really recovered from the crisis in which it was plunged in 2008 by the turmoil in international finance. This indicates that beyond the short-term crisis and policies – good or bad – that have been implemented, France is actually experiencing a structural crisis. This results in significant pessimism among the population and the feeling that the country is not doing well.

However, if the perception that France is not doing well became so widespread, it is not because of the so-called “psychological uneasiness” of the French. The latest business survey of INSEE (the French statistical office) demonstrates the scale of the problems facing the French economy[1]. Thus, there are factors that might be described as “targets” to explain this feeling and this sensation, and such factors are focused on the economic situation.

I. Facts and figures.

The burden of the crisis was actually being felt over the last six years. Thus, there is a cumulative impact. This situation, if not spectacular and not comparable to the experiences of other countries, such as Greece, Spain and Portugal, is, however, extremely alarming.

Table 1

Factors contributing to economic growth





















Domestic demand excluding inventories 0,5 -0,5 0,2 0,1 0,4 -0,2 0,1 -0,1 0,2 0,4 0 0,2 -0,4 0,1
incl. gross fixed capital formation 1,7 -0,9 -0,7 1,8 -0,1 -0,1 -0,1 -0,7 -0,3 0,3 -0,3 -0,1 -0,9 -1,1
Consumer spending 0,3 -0,9 0,2 -0,3 0,5 -0,6 0,1 -0,1 0,3 0,3 -0,1 0,2 -0,6 0,4
Changes in inventories 1,4 -0,3 0,0 -0,9 0,1 -0,1 0 -0,2 -0,1 0,1 0,3 -0,3 0,5 0
Foreign trade -0,8 0,9 0,0 0,9 -0,3 0,1 0,1 0,1 -0,1 0,2 -0,4 0,3 0 -0,1
GDP 1,1 0,0 0,2 0,1 0,2 -0,2 0,3 -0,3 0 0,7 -0,1 0,2 0 0

Source: INSEE, Annexe Statistique à la Note de Conjoncture, October 2, 2014, Paris.

Moreover, it is necessary to recall here that, if the GDP is stagnating in real terms and the distribution structure remains constant, a country with steadily expanding population, as is the case in France, experiences a mechanical decrease of its GDP per capita. This results in a declining income, but, as there is a naturally strong resistance to various social cuts that the government wants to impose, it also means higher levies and taxes to try to reduce various deficits, whether it be the budget deficit, which was found to increase despite Government’s efforts[2], the social security deficit or the foreign trade deficit. However, with regard to the budget deficit, taxation and public levies are linked to GDP growth, due to the central role of VAT in the resources because this tax is very sensitive to GDP growth. Furthermore, the variations of public expenditure, especially social spending, are determined by both the increase in unemployment and the changing household income. These various factors lead to rising public debt (as a proportion of GDP) and budget deficit. In addition, changes in domestic consumption act as a drag on growth but also on investment. The different phenomena work in conjunction to form the features of an economy in a long-term crisis.

A long-term crisis

GDP growth has lastingly been affected by the financial crisis of 2007-2008. Whilst the rate of growth in France was one of the best in the Euro Zone from 2000 to 2007, it has been stagnating ever since. This trend is certainly not unique within the Euro Zone. However, comparison of industrial production shows that in France it is below the average for the Zone, and is lagging far behind Germany. The latter has returned to its level before the crisis, but the same cannot be said of France.

Graph 1

A - G1 

Source: database of the International Monetary Fund 

Graph 2

 A - G2

Source: Institut National des Statistiques et des Etudes Economiques (INSEE)

Graph 3

 A - G3

Data from the database of the International Monetary Fund

The situation is undoubtedly serious, and becomes even more dramatic if we look at the evolution of per capita wealth. It becomes apparent that France has become more impoverished since the crisis of 2007-2008. This is a situation unprecedented since 1945. Its novelty – after all, per capita wealth has been permanently increasing since the end of World War II – also explains the confusion and dismay of the public and the government.

Consumption dynamics.

Decrease in consumption was exacerbated by the measures contained in the so-called Fillon reforms, which were undertaken in 2011. The government of the day faced a rapid rise in public debt (as a proportion of GDP) and budget deficit. It took measures to reduce public spending (especially by extending the age of retirement) and increase public revenues. However, it probably underestimated the depressive effect of such measures by non-awareness of the fiscal multiplier mechanism[3]. In general, it should be noted here that successive governments that France experienced in recent years, whether it be the centre-right government (UMP) or, since June 2012, different socialist governments, have committed a serious error of judgement in this respect. Of course, business and government consumption expenditures conceal this process to an extent.

Graph 4

Monthly household consumption of goods.
Variation to the same period of the previous year


A - G4

Source: INSEE

One should note here the importance of spending by the regions which have contributed to support business activity (and to avoid a real economic depression), however, at the cost of increasing debt[4]. The burden of « constrained » consumption, such as fuel, must also be added. Nevertheless, this process becomes more obvious every day. In fact, after the downturn caused by the financial crisis, household consumption has recovered until January 2011.

Graph 4b

A - G41

Source: INSEE

Since then, under the blows of the austerity policies imposed to “save the Eurozone” consumption declines. Thus, the situation that occurred as the result of the crisis, and that was offset by the expansionary policies of 2009 and 2010, reappears today on an unprecedented scale.

This should not surprise us if we keep in mind the statistics of output per capita. However, it is significant that this decline is happening when savings are considerably lower than in 2000 (at constant prices). In fact, the decline in consumption confirms the general impoverishment of the population. Of course, one should add the decline of public services to the population, either in quality (transportation services) or in quality and quantity (health and education). One forgets too often that the fiscal policy of governments, carried out since 2010, has resulted in some stabilization of public spending stricto sensu.

Unemployment trend

Given this decrease in consumption and deteriorated international outlook, it is not surprising that unemployment is increasing continually. The issue of unemployment statistics is, obviously, a central issue today, and not just because of the reckless statement on an “inversion” of the unemployment curve made by the President François Hollande in December 2012. One should also note that the official data are controversial in the United States and in a number of European countries. In the United States in particular, the controversy is caused by the declining labour participation rate, whilst the unemployment rate decreases at the same time[5]. In France, it is the extent of unemployment that feeds a polemic. However, it should be noted that various data collection and treatment agencies and operating data are doing an honourable job. The problem, especially in our country, resides in the presentation of these data.

Box 1

The data presented in France are not related directly to the “unemployment” but to “job seekers”. From this point of view, the data are not necessarily consistent with those corresponding to the ILO definition. These data are divided into categories defined as follows by the DARES (Directorate for Research, Studies and Statistics)[6].

« …For the purpose of statistical analysis, DARES and Pôle emploi (the French employment agency) present data on job seekers registered at Pôle emploi according to the following categories:

Category A: job seekers required to seek work actively, unemployed;

Category B: job seekers required to seek work actively, having been engaged in a short-term reduced activity (i.e. 78 hours or less during the last month);

Category C: job seekers required to seek work actively, having been engaged in a long-term reduced activity (i.e. more than 78 hours during the last month);

Category D: job seekers not required to seek work actively (for reasons of internship, training, illness, etc.), unemployed;

Category E: job seekers not required to seek work actively, employed (e.g.: persons working under subsidized contracts). »

The numbers of category “A” are constantly cited as a reference. However, we note that category “D” is in fact very close. A person released from the obligation to “seek work actively” in the current month (regardless of the reason), but jobless, does fit in with the normal concept of “unemployed”. People who are in category “B” have a very small part-time job that was imposed on them (less than 78 hours per month) and want to work. This refers to the unemployed who find a job for a few days per month, but do not cease to be unemployed. Thus, the real unemployment actually covers categories A + B + D, and B + D category should be considered as referring to unemployment masked by statistical artefacts.

There are a number of other problems related to the categories “C” and “E”. The category “C” refers to individuals who had to accept a job for more than 78 hours but less than 156 hours per month. Very often, they are women working in high volume retail stores. It certainly cannot be said that these people are unemployed, but neither do they have a livelihood sustaining job. They represent a new category, that of “quasi-unemployed” people forced to take a job with working hours that are less than the statutory working hours. Finally, there is the “E” category that includes people who have a job, but a job very often related to the existence of a specific public aid, which is the very condition of this job (subsidized employment). These people are not unemployed, but they remain particularly vulnerable. One can also consider that they are “quasi-unemployed”. Therefore, this new category includes categories C + E of the DARES.

Graph 5

 A - G5

Source: data of the DARES

People in category “C” are actually victims of a more flexible labour market, and they are the first to be made redundant once either general or local economic difficulties arise. One can also note that the decline in the number of employees forced to accept part-time jobs slowed down when the category A numbers increased very sharply, from August 2008 to summer 2009. Therefore, mechanisms linking these categories are not the same in the period of acute crisis and in the period of long-term crisis. This is one of the characteristics of the “flexible labour market” as it was forced on French employees. From this point of view, it is interesting and instructive to note that this phenomenon is also present in Germany, with an increase in forced part-time jobs.

In fact, a French employee works more (as an annual average) that a German employee (about 5.8% more), which is a counterintuitive result, challenging the image of a virtuous Germany.

Table 2

Mean Annual Working Time per Worker











1 565

1 566

1 560

1 567

1 549

1 551

1 576

1 574


1 495

1 473

1 485

1 492

1 472

1 480

1 482

1 479


1 431

1 424

1 422

1 422

1 383

1 407

1 406

1 397


1 819

1 815

1 816

1 803

1 771

1 772

1 772

1 752

Source: OCDE data,

This is especially true for an Italian employee who works 18.5% more on average than a French employee. It also needs to be pointed out that there is a category of individuals that are not included in the DARES statistics: people who are entitled to the “foundation” RSA (inclusion income support) but who are not “active job seekers”. Some of them are actually unemployed, discouraged or written off by Pôle Emploi.

The investment issue.

In this situation, it is not surprising that the investment is hamstrung. This has triggered a debate between “supply-side policy” and “demand-side policy”, which rebounded following the statements made by Francois Hollande at his conference of 14 January 2014. In fact, to be closed, the debate implies that a greater attention to the issue of investment is required. The implicit assumption of the “supply-side policy” is that, if we increase the mass of profits at time (t) (or the margin), this would provide incentives for companies to invest, increase growth, and create jobs. This is the so-called “theorem” of Helmut Schmitt: “Today’s profits are tomorrow’s investments and the day-after-tomorrow’s jobs.”

Graph 6

A - G6

Source: INSEE

This implicitly assumes that the investment is only limited by financial capacities. It says nothing about what leads an entrepreneur to invest, in other words, about the anticipated level of demand at (t + 1). However, an entrepreneur invests by reference to potential returns on the operation. The notion of “potential” or “expected” returns must not be misleading. In some cases it can be seen as the mathematical expectation[7], albeit in most cases it will be much more psychological, an entrepreneur’s feeling, a representation of what the future might bring, but does not necessarily have to[8].

In fact, entrepreneurs are facing two phenomena: first, the decline in household consumption, which we have already mentioned, and, secondly, the drop in industrial output, with the exception of agricultural and food industries. This leads to lesser willingness to invest, with financial constraints unchanged. Today, the investment appears limited primarily by weak demand. This results in its absolute decrease over the past years. Indeed investment, which had tended to increase significantly from 2003 to 2007, did not recover from the shock of the financial crisis either. The partial recovery of 2011 was largely determined by public investment in response to the situation created by the crisis. This particular effort of public investment was quashed by the reversal of economic policies imposed in 2011 by François Fillon, Prime Minister at the time.

Graph 7

 A - G7

Source: INSEE data.

Private investment has not been able to take over. Thus, in 2013, the total amount of the investment was just above € 350 billion (at 1995 prices), whereas it reached € 395 billion in 2007, i.e. a decline of -11.4%. The consequences are considerable, both in the short and the medium term. In the short term, growth is led neither by domestic consumption nor by investment. No wonder then that it is sluggish. However, in the long term, the decline in investment implies a decline in the overall competitiveness of industries on a constant currency basis. Because of the Euro, the only possible strategy for France is to achieve better gains in competitiveness than its partners, driven by a proportionately bigger investment effort, unless it intends to do something about this binding framework.

Now we understand better why is the French economy withering. The French President had to recognize that his promise to “reverse the unemployment trend” was not held and the prospects announced during the 2012 presidential election have collapsed. It is also obvious that the introduction of the reduced rate for the CSG (generalized social security transfer tax) and the increased number of subsidized jobs are utterly inadequate to the gravity of the situation. These two measures can only be palliatives with limited efficiency[9]. One should understand that there can be no “supply-side policy” stricto sensu unless it will include a necessary investment effort[10]. However, to achieve this, we need to rebuild both the demand (to provide the need to invest) and the cash flow of companies (to provide the ability to invest), as one without the other leads to, and will inevitably end in failure. The economic situation became more and more dramatic over the last few weeks, leaving very little room for manoeuvre to different players. Inevitably, it creates a negative climate. The government’s loss of credibility is only a prelude to its loss of legitimacy.


II. Misguided policies.

Policies implemented since 2011 are largely to blame for the current situation, both because of their effects, but also because of problems they were not able or not willing to deal with. From this point of view, we can identify three specific causes: the effects of austerity policies implemented since 2011 and consistently pursued, a fundamental mistake with respect to the investment vehicle, and the impact of France’s presence in the Euro Zone.

Misguided austerity policies.

Austerity policies, with a sharp reduction in government spending and a rise in tax revenues, were put into place all over Europe from 2010-2011 onwards when it became obvious that the sovereign debt crisis became a long-term threat to the survival of the Euro Zone. These policies were most brutal in the countries most affected by this crisis, such as Greece, Spain and Portugal, but they have gradually spread to a large number of countries. These policies were introduced in the hope that they would penalize growth but little.

However, as early as November 2012, Jesse Frederik[11] posted on the blog of the Real-World Economic Review a short paper in which he showed, with supporting evidence, that the European Commission had routinely erred in its forecasts about Greece, largely underestimating the depressive effect of measures implemented. One could say the same for Spain and Portugal. For Spain, official statistics are regularly adjusted downwards, however, it happens eighteen months after their publication.

These problems of forecasting, in particular the underestimation of deeply depressing nature of austerity policies, are due to the very structure of the models, which the European Commission and the governments use in their analyses[12]. We encounter the same issue in the MESANGE model, used by the French Ministry of Finance[13]. For instance, this is the case of the fiscal multiplier that is known to determine the future evolution of the GDP with an increase or a decrease in public spending (including tax measures). The European Commission is sticking to its values around 0.5 (and MESANGE modellers seem to have adopted a value of 0.7[11] in the latest version of the model), whereas the values actually observed for Italy and Spain are 2.2 to 1.7. The IMF itself has recently adopted values around 1.2, which explains more pessimistic forecasts of the recent World Economic Outlook report published in October 2012.

Thus, Pierre Moscovici, Minister of Finance in the government formed in June 2012, could well declare: “Our forecasts are arbitrary, we are aware of that. They are above the consensus of economists. But they are not foolishly optimistic, they are realistic.”[14]. In fact, scientific studies, including those conducted by the Research Department of the IMF, showed that the magnitude of the fiscal multiplier was much higher than its 1990s’ estimate. The so-called “fiscal multiplier” is the value that links any change in the budget balance (either through tax adjustments or through adjustments of public spending) to the change of growth. This “multiplier” has been the subject of both theoretical studies, essentially in line with the Keynes’s General Theory, and important empirical research[15]. A paper co-authored by O. Blanchard, Chief Economist of the IMF, and D. Leigh recognizes that the multiplier value has been heavily underestimated[16] in various forecasting models used by the European governments, as well as by the US government. It analyses the forecast errors that were made in recent years. From this point of view, it is definitely a positive contribution to the debate. The author of the present lines has personally drawn on this research, strongly criticizing growth estimates of the French government on the research blog RussEurope[17].

Successive governments since 2011 are clearly responsible for the situation of the French economy, due to the policies they have implemented. However, this is not limited to the austerity policy.

An erroneous vision of the investment process.

Another source of error involves the vision of the investment process that these governments had. Here, we should mention again the negative influence of some economic models on economic advisers providing guidance to political leaders.

These models are derived from the extremely simple Jorgenson’s[18] model. It involves the cost of capital and the actual cost of labour, or, in some modifications, the relative cost of capital/labour as a key factor in determining investment, which was echoed by Blanchard[19]. However, various empirical studies have clearly failed to report a negative effect of the user cost of capital on investment. Similarly, these studies have struggled to integrate the corporate cash-flow and self-financing capacity. Empirical studies failed to report any negative relationship between the investment and the user cost of capital or even between the investment and the real interest rate. Indeed, the current profit provides no information on potential future profits that alone are likely to push businesses to invest. If it is difficult to interpret the presence of the rate of profit in an investment equation as a sign that profit is the reason why companies invest, so why not try to interpret it as the means whereby businesses invest? The more profit a company makes, the higher its self-financing capacity, thus avoiding the use of external financing, such as debt. The trouble with this kind of reasoning is that it contradicts the Modigliani and Miller’s theorem[20]. However, the idea of an “overall supply of loanable funds,” if it is compatible with the hypothesis of rational expectations, presents a real problem of realism in reasoning. One way to solve the issue of business expectations is to consider that all relevant expectations for firms are summarized in the value the stock market bestows on their assets (the famous Tobin’s q). The theoretical research of Abel[21] and Hayashi[22] are an example of such approach. But this leads to a problem because the majority of businesses do not have access to the stock market, or the market provides a very imperfect estimate for the value of this coefficient, when it does provide it at all.

It is therefore clear that the money to be invested will come from both the operating cash-flow or self-financing (achieved through current profits) and external financing. Thus, the representation of financial constraint in the models commonly used is defective because of the primacy given to the hypothesis of “loanable funds market.” The commonly used indicator, DK/K, cannot be known ex ante[23]. Therefore, there may not be a direct comparison between the usable amounts and the bank interest rate. Self-financing has traditionally played an important role in the French industry, although this role varied depending on the sector[24]. Nevertheless, it is difficult to interpret directly.

Then, the issue of partial or total irreversibility of the investment arises[25]. It has undergone a number of transformations since Pyndick’s paper[26]. Thus, for Jérôme Bourdieu and his co-authors: «The investment involves not only the acquisition of capital on the market, but also the transformation of this “undetermined” capital into a specific capital, specific to each company. It is precisely this second cost of specification of the capital that makes the investment decision irreversible, i.e., more expensive to make, then to break, than to do nothing. Thus, the irreversibility of the investment decision should be understood as the irreversibility in the sense of physics: a physical system that has undergone a transformation cannot return to the initial state unless it spends more energy than originally required for the first transformation.[27]». This implies a decision, itself relatively irreversible, which can only be the result of a bet on the future, and, therefore, on the demand that the investor expects.

Models of irreversible choices in the face of uncertainty[28] are also consistent with the fact, empirically observed in several countries, that businesses experience periods without investment. An empirical study of the US economy by Doms and Dunne[29] shows that, at the corporate level, years without investment follow periods when the investment is, conversely, very important. A similar result has been found for France; Duhautois and Jamet[30] have shown that this succession of periods with and without investment is also true for French businesses. We must therefore re-examine the problem, if not from scratch, at least at the base, integrating the subjective dimension of entrepreneurial behaviour[31]. This places a renewed focus on expectations of demand growth on which these entrepreneurs may reasonably rely.

The idea of a supply-side policy, which is at the heart of the French governmental policy, can only be relevant if real investment, as compared to the notional investment, is limited by costs and, on the other hand, if the cost of bank financing for investment is prohibitive. In other words, it is only when the investment financing is made mainly through self-financing in the context where businesses invest less than they wish (the actual investment is lesser than the notional investment), that a reduction of the overall tax burden can play a positive role. This is not the case today. It is obvious that the problem is more on the demand side. The notional investment is actually less than the possible investment. Therefore, a combination of tools is required: a mix of measures to stimulate the massive economic recovery without losing competitiveness (which implies monetary sovereignty) and of a certain level of inflation to provide the increase of the nominal income of households and entrepreneurs. This is the price to pay for triumphing over mass unemployment. It is not compatible with maintaining the Euro Zone in its current state.

The competitiveness issue and continued participation of France in the Euro Zone.

Now, we should look at a deeper cause of the crisis, and that refers to one decisive choice made by the French elite in the 1990s – to join the single currency project known as the Euro. Joining the Euro implies a single monetary policy, which is now vested in the European Central Bank.

However, the conditions of determination of the fundable investment as compared to the notional investment reflect the crucial role of the real interest rate required to bring about a situation where the fundable investment will be equal to the notional investment. This is a result consistent with the lessons from French economic history in the post-war period. Periods when the real interest rate was negative, or close to 0, were those when the share of self-financing in investment funding has historically been the highest. In fact, in the case of France, it was the situation that prevailed in the post-war years[32]. However, the policy implemented by the ECB results in such an inflation rate that real interest rates have now become relatively high. Worse, this policy imposes or seeks to impose a single inflation rate, whereas structures of different economies may require different rates[33].

Moreover, there is the problem of the overall competitiveness of the French economy, as evidenced both by the trade deficit and the role of international trade in driving the economic growth (Table 1). We can also see that France’s economic performances have deteriorated since the introduction of the Euro[34].

Table 3

Comparative performances of the French economy before and after the introduction of the Euro


GDP in volume

Trade Balance (% of GDP)

Manufacturing Employment (% of active population)

Public Deficit (% of GDP)

Public Debt (% of GDP)














However, the issue of competitiveness is not limited to the French economy only. The impact of this issue can be measured by price elasticities, compared for different countries.

Table 4

Comparative Price-Elasticity for Main Economies of the Euro Zone


Price-Elasticity of Exports

France 0,8
Spain 0,7
Portugal 0,7
Italy 0,6
Holland 0,5
Germany 0,3
Belgium 0,3

Source: Natixis, Artus P., De combien faut-il réduire le coût du travail en France et en Italie ? De 15 à 20% , Natixis Flash-Economie, n°506, 20 juin 2014

A study shows that, on one hand, the price elasticity is particularly high in France, and, on the other hand, the reduction of labour costs required to regain satisfactory competitiveness should be high, about 20%[35]. In fact, the mechanism of single currency puts the economies of southern Europe at a severe competitive disadvantage. Moreover, constraints on growth have a cumulative impact, whether as a result of the combination of depressions affecting several countries simultaneously or of the decline in potential growth with regard to the prolonged crisis in such countries[36]. An obvious solution would lie in the dissolution of the Euro Zone that would allow each country to have the exchange rate corresponding to the realities of its economy[37]. What we would lose compared to Italy and Spain, which would devalue more, we would recover, without any doubt, and gain even more compared to Germany and the countries of the dollar zone. That would bring some order into the hierarchy of trade balances, the German surplus would decrease, whilst France, Italy and Spain would be driven by the growth of both foreign and domestic trade. For the moment, this solution is rejected by different governments who remain convinced that the austerity policies would eventually yield positive results[38], although a number of officials acknowledge, in private and in public, the negative impact of the exchange rate of the Euro on the French economy.

It can therefore be seen that the current crisis of the French economy is not just a short-term crisis but a structural one, or, more precisely, a crisis that stems from the contradiction between its structures (including demographics) and the framework imposed by the Euro Zone. The inadequate economic policy, making the economic situation increasingly difficult, is due precisely to this compulsory framework. This crisis is now going to reach a turning point, insofar as the budget submitted to the Parliament for the year 2015 could be rejected by the European Commission. Although the French government had managed to avoid public reprimands for 2015, this would be only a postponement. This current aggravation of the structural crisis points out a very serious problem of governability for the French economy.

[1] INSEE, « La reprise différée », Note de Conjoncture (Business Survey), October 2, 2014, Paris.

[2] Le Figaro, « France : déficit budgétaire creusé fin août », October 7, 2014,

[3] O. Blanchard and D. Leigh, « Growth Forecast Errors and Fiscal Multipliers », IMF Working Paper, WP/13/1, FMI, Washington D.C., 2013.

[4] The deficit of the regions tripled from 2012 to 2013, reaching 9.7 billion euros, or almost 0.5% of the GDP.

[5] A. Puzder, «What does the unemployment rate really mean for Americains», in The Daily Caller, December 23rd, 2013,

[7] Bourdieu J, Benoît Cœuré et Béatrice Sédillot « Investissement, incertitude et irréversibilité », Revue économique, Volume 48, n°1, 1997. pp. 23-53.

[8] Malinvaud, E, « Profitability and investment facing uncertain demand », Document de travail de l’INSEE, n° 8303, Paris, 1983.

[10] Artus P. (ed), « Trois scénarios pour la France », NATIXIS, FLASH-Economie, n° 708, September 19, 2014.

[11] Frederik J., Folly from Olly. The disastrous quality of the economic predictions of the European Commission, URL :

[12] Gali J., et M. Gertler, “Macroeconomic Modelling for Monetary Policy Evaluation”, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Vol. 21, n°4, 2007, pp. 25-45

[13] Céline Allard-Prigent, Cédric Audenis, Karine Berger, Nicolas Carnot, Sandrine Duchene, Fabrice Pesin, PRÉSENTATION DU MODÈLE MÉSANGE. Modèle Économétrique de Simulation et d’Analyse Générale de l’Économie, Direction de la Prévision, Document de Travail, May 2002, , p.6.

[14] Hebert D., « Moscovici : ‘’nos prévisions de croissance sont volontaristes mais réalistes’’ », Nouvel Observateur, November 11, 2012,

[15] T  Baunsgaard, A. Mineshima, M. Poplawski-Ribeiro, and A. Weber, “Fiscal

Multipliers”, in Post-crisis Fiscal Policy, ed. by C. Cottarelli, P. Gerson, and A.

Senhadji, Washington: International Monetary Fund, Washington DC, 2012. Spilimbergo, A., Symansky, S., et M. Schindler, 2009, “Fiscal Multipliers,” IMF Staff Position Note, SPN/09/11, May 2009, FMI, Washington DC..

[16] O. Blanchard et D. Leigh, « Growth Forecast Errors and Fiscal Multipliers », IMF Working Paper, WP/13/1, FMI, Washington D.C., 2013, op.cit., p. 3, 4.

[17] J. Sapir, “Quand le gouvernement marche sur la tête…”, paper published on the blog Russeurope on 24/10/2012, URL:

[18] Jorgenson D.W. (1963), «Capital Theory and Investment Behavior», American Economic  Review, vol. 53, n°2, May, pp.247-259.

[19] Blanchard O., « Investment, Output, and the Cost of Capital: a Comment », Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, 1, 1986, pp. 153-158.

[20] Collard F., «L’investissement », in Analyse Macroéconomique, in J.O. Hairault éd., vol. 1, chapitre 10, La Découverte, 2000, Paris. Modigliani F. et Miller M. «The Cost of Capital, Corporation Finance and the Theory of Investment», American Economic Review, vol. 48, n°3, 1961, pp. 261-297

[21] Abel A. «Optimal Investment under Uncertainty», American Economic Review, vol. 73, March 1983, pp. 228-233

[22] Hayashi F., «Tobin’s Marginal Q and Average Q: a Neoclassical Interpretation», Econometrica, vol. 50, n°1, January 1982, pp. 213-224

[23] Courbis, R., « Le comportement d’autofinancement des entreprises » in Economie Appliquée, vol. 21, 1968, n° 3-4. Malinvaud, E, « Profitability and investment facing uncertain demand », op.cit.

[24] Hautcoeur, P-C., « L’autofinancement : théorie, questions de méthode et tentative de cadrage macroéconomiqupour la France (1914-1990) », in Entreprises et Histoire, n°22, October 1999, pp. 55-77.

[25] Pindyck R.,«Irreversible Investment, Capacity Choice and the Value of the Firm», American Economic Review, vol. 78, n°5, 1988, December, pp. 969-985

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Jacques Sapir

Ses travaux de chercheur se sont orientés dans trois dimensions, l’étude de l’économie russe et de la transition, l’analyse des crises financières et des recherches théoriques sur les institutions économiques et les interactions entre les comportements individuels. Il a poursuivi ses recherches à partir de 2000 sur les interactions entre les régimes de change, la structuration des systèmes financiers et les instabilités macroéconomiques. Depuis 2007 il s'est impliqué dans l’analyse de la crise financière actuelle, et en particulier dans la crise de la zone Euro.

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