Two issues have dominated the recent employment experience of the major industrial countries: first, the common rise in unemployment throughout the OECD; second, the diversity in the scale and content of that rise as between, on the one hand, the core of the European Union and Australia, and, on the other hand, North America. The growth and persistence of unemployment may be the result of the deregulation of global financial markets in the 1970s that has been followed by huge growth in short‐term capital flows. These flows have produced a significant increase in risk aversion in public sector and private sectors. This is the major source of deflationary pressures and persistent unemployment throughout the world. Those pressures could have been substantially mitigated if a key lesson had been drawn from the development of domestic financial markets – liberal markets are only efficient if they are efficiently regulated.
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