Jac Laubscher on financialisation

Posted by Melt van Schoor on 2018-05-31

Jac Laubscher, honorary professor in the Department of Economics at Stellenbosch University, recently presented a guest lecture at the Department on the topic of financialisation and the South African economy. [You may download his presentation here]. He is on right-hand side in the picture above, along with Prof Ingrid Woolard (newly appointed dean of the faculty and professor in economics), Prof Willem Boshoff and Prof Andrie Schoombee.

Prof Laubscher’s involvement with our Department goes back many years: He started his career as lecturer in the Department and later became involved with the Bureau for Economic Research, before he moved to Sanlam, where he held the position of chief economist from 1997 to 2014. Throughout his career, he maintained his ties with the Department, teaching post-graduate financial market analysis here. He also served on the management committee of the BER. Prof Laubscher’s clarity of analysis and presentation has made him a well-respected media commentator in South Africa.

The topic of his lecture, financialisation can be broadly defined as the increasing role of financial motives, financial markets, financial actors and financial institutions in the operation of the domestic and international economy. He showed how the rise of financialisation since the democratic transition is reflected, among other things, in the growing size of the forex market for Rand and the JSE, in the growth in trading activity, in the growth in the size of finance as a proportion of GDP, and in the growth in debt of households and corporations. Laubscher discussed various drivers of South African financialisation, including its relation to financialisation in other countries. He then discussed the impact of financialisation on inequality and the interaction of financialisation and macroeconomic policy in South Africa.

(Thanks to Prof Willem Boshoff for contributing information in this article.)

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BER Weekly

5 December 2022
Shock waves reverberated through SA last week after an independent panel report found that President Cyril Ramaphosa may have violated his oath of office in handling a theft at his Limpopo farm. While the Phala Phala saga will drag on this week, there are also some important local data releases, including the 2022Q3 real GDP figures (tomorrow) and the...

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