Contribution to the calculation of value appropriation in the world market




The figures of absolute masses of profit converted to dollars do not represent the true appropriation of value of the productive processes of dissimilar countries in the world market. We can formulate it in the following way:   the only way that two identical absolute dollar amounts of profit (or any currency used as a common denominator) of productive processes in different countries can represent an identical value appropriation through existing nominal market exchange rates, is if all the factors of production of these production processes have the same cost price either in dollars or local currency, keeping the equivalence between these nominal exchange rates. As this is highly unlikely, if not impossible, any deviation in the price of the factors of production will produce a different organic composition, and therefore, an appropriation of unequal value. As a consequence, if we want to perform a focused analysis from the world market about the value appropriations of productive processes in different societies, we have to turn to the calculation of production costs and the profit of each society, assuming they have an equivalence in terms of the nominal exchange rate between those societies and productive processes.

Compare the same example of productive processes, but the first in dollars, and the second in a local fictional currency that has a nominal exchange rate with the dollar equivalent to 2.

productive process in dollars:
total capital
500
500
constant capital
200
150
real constant capital
150
150
variable capital
300
350
cost prices
450
500
market value
475
profit
25
-25
surplus value
25
-25

productive process in local currency:
total capital
1000
1000
constant capital
400
300
real constant capital
300
300
variable capital
600
700
cost prices
900
1000
market value
950
profit
50
-50
surplus value
50
-50

As it is possible to see, the problem is not the nominal exchange rate, an equivalence which is maintained through either of the two magnitudes, but the prices of the factors of production or costs prices in general, since any deviation in the cost price, in spite of maintaining the equivalence of the nominal exchange rate between the two currencies, would produce unequal value appropriations on which the absolute magnitudes of profit (either in dollars: 25 or -25, or in local currency, 50 or -50) would no longer be equivalent to each other in terms of profit and value, even if they maintain the equivalence of the exchange rate. For example, if we alter the cost of real constant capital:

total capital
1000
1000
constant capital
400
300
real constant capital
300
150
variable capital
600
700
cost prices
900
850
market value
875
profit
-25
25
surplus value
-25
25

The dollar equivalent of this last example would be -12.5 and 12.5 respectively, instead of the 25 and -25 in the original dollar production process.   Even having identical total capital (500 dollars and 1000 units of the local currency), with their respective appropriations of profit and surplus value within each productive process, the profit and surplus value for this final productive process and the original productive process in dollars, are both completely heterogeneous. And this with prices and work values ​​equivalent and identical (which rules out that it’s due to labor prices).   This exercise also confirms the certainty of Michael Roberts' criticism of John Smith's assertions in his Imperialism in the XXI century, about the world market having different socially necessary labours for each society, instead of a "world" socially necessary labour, something non-existent. We can now make another example with absolute quantities or masses of identical gains, and see that not only do they respond to heterogeneous total capitals, but they are also heterogeneous sums of appropriation of profit and value:

total capital
950
950
constant capital
500
500
real constant capital
500
400
variable capital
450
450
cost prices
950
850
market value
900
profit
-50
50
surplus value
- 50
50

We see that there is an appropriation of profit of 50 in the productive process of the right, but that in reality it represents an absolute mass of market value of 900, instead of the previous example of 950. Both gain 50 in terms of profit, which in turn represents the same amount of dollars if we make the equivalence through the nominal exchange rate, and even then the absolute masses are unequal. This means that comparing the appropriation of value of countries like China or the United States using two quantities of absolute profit mass simply converted to the same currency (commonly being the dollar this common denominator) do not represent in the least not only values, but not even identical profits. From this finding it is possible to investigate in the ways that the unequal appropriation of value in the different nations of the world market can be determined, going beyond the uses of quantities or absolute masses as an indicator, and constructing some method of calculation that determine. We have not gotten there, but we hope that this exercise serves to move in that direction.


* Since this processes are operating at a loss (which in Marx doesn't contradict the fact that they produce profit anyways -volume III-), it is assumed that they are processes similar to gross investment and not net investment. Total capital actually spent is measured with the real constant capital, and not with the constant capital in total. Which is indifferent, since we can put in place of the total capital figures the real constant capital as the total investment of capital (for example in the third table place a total capital of 850 instead of 1000 and so on) , and we would have the same results.

Comentarios

Entradas populares de este blog

A note on Debarshi Das’ A Model of the Marxist Rent Theory

Colonialism and periphery: Latin America, Africa and the Middle East

Intercambio desigual, etc III (dependencia y sistemas-mundo)