Consumers are reluctant to spend because of new technologies that could eventually replace many or most of their jobs, therefore creating economic stagnation, economist and Nobel laureate Robert Shiller warns.
“My own theory about today’s stagnation focuses on growing angst about rapid advances in technologies that could eventually replace many or most of our jobs, possibly fueling massive economic inequality,” he wrote for Project Syndicate.
“People might be increasingly reluctant to spend today because they have vague fears about their long-term employability – fears that may not be uppermost in their minds when they answer consumer confidence surveys. If that is the case, they might increasingly need stimulus in the form of low interest rates to keep them spending,” wrote Shiller, a 2013 Nobel laureate in economics.
“Since around 2012, the equity and housing markets have been hitting new records. But the same sort of thing happened regularly in