Journal section "Theoretical and methodological issues"

From a Robinson Crusoe Economy to a Pure Exchange Economy

Nekipelov A.D.

Volume 14, Issue 6, 2021

Nekipelov A.D. From a Robinson Crusoe economy to a pure exchange economy. Economic and Social Changes: Facts, Trends, Forecast, 2021, vol. 14, no. 6, pp. 33–48. DOI: 10.15838/esc.2021.6.78.2

DOI: 10.15838/esc.2021.6.78.2

Abstract   |   Authors   |   References
The pure exchange model is considered as the first stage of the analysis of a simple exchange economy; at that, the research is based on the patterns of behavior of the “economic man” that were identified while studying the Robinson Crusoe model. The interpretation at this stage of production as an exogenous factor helps to determine in “pure form” the forces leading to the formation of exchange relations, to introduce into analysis and to reveal basic features of the main phenomena and processes in the sphere of circulation. Proceeding from well-known approaches to the impact of redistribution of the initial bundle of goods on the individual well-being of members of society, we pay considerable attention to the difference between the exchange of bundles of goods and the exchange of individual goods, the two possible forms of exchange that implement such redistribution. While studying the market form of exchange, we additionally analyze the known options for achieving general equilibrium – on the basis of equilibrium and a series non-equilibrium proportions of exchange. We show that due to institutional reasons, competition between the participants of the exchange, as a tool for reducing transaction costs, cannot eliminate the costs completely; therefore, the path of moving toward the contract surface inevitably turns out to be multi-stage, accompanied by the use of non-equilibrium proportions of exchange. But the final (limit) point on this path will necessarily be a point of general equilibrium, and the number of such points that can be reached from the initial position is infinitely large. The latter is explained by the multitude of proportions of exchange that can be used by its participants at each of the nodal points of the path. The paper develops our viewpoint formulated in an earlier publication: the possibility of introducing credit relations into the analysis at this stage is associated with the existence of consumer goods of long-term use. At the same time, only the goods of long-term use can serve as the object of the credit, and it is impossible to single out an “interest rate component” in the supplies of credit servicing


credit, interest rate, economic institutions, Robinson Crusoe model, exchange economy, exchange, exchange value, pure exchange

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