Goodbye, Great Britain

Overview

In March 1976 the value of the British pound began to slide. The slide turned into a rout and triggered an economic and political trauma. By September confidence in the pound had collapsed. In April 1975 the 'Wall Street Journal' had run the headline 'Goodbye, Great Britain', advising investors to get out of sterling. The British Labour government under its new Prime Minister James Callaghan was forced to seek help from the International Monetary Fund, a familiar option for Third World countries but highly ...
See more details below
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (8) from $29.49   
  • New (4) from $29.49   
  • Used (4) from $57.00   
Sending request ...

Overview

In March 1976 the value of the British pound began to slide. The slide turned into a rout and triggered an economic and political trauma. By September confidence in the pound had collapsed. In April 1975 the 'Wall Street Journal' had run the headline 'Goodbye, Great Britain', advising investors to get out of sterling. The British Labour government under its new Prime Minister James Callaghan was forced to seek help from the International Monetary Fund, a familiar option for Third World countries but highly unusual for a developed western economy. This expert new study uncovers the roots of the most searing economic crisis of postwar Britain.

The weakness and instability of the British economy in the mid-1970s, the consequence in part of the 1973 rise in oil prices, raised international alarm. The US government in particular feared economic crisis would drive Britain into a left-wing siege economy, endangering NATO and the EEC. Anticipating the danger, the US Treasury set out to force Britain to make major domestic policy changes. The sterling crisis provided the opportunity. The IMF provided the weapon.

Arriving in London in November 1976, the IMF mission announced that the price for the loan included deep cuts in public expenditure. The consequent political crisis was fought out in private and in public, amongst members of the British Cabinet, the Labour Party, the Treasury and the Bank of England. It involved the US President, Treasury and State Department, the Federal Reserve, the German Chancellor and the Bundesbank.

Burk and Cairncross uncover the efforts of the Labour government to escape the IMF conditions. They also examine the political agenda, the loss of economic control, the rise of monetarist ideas and the change in the climate of opinion. Juxtaposing gripping narrative with expert analysis, the book provides surprising answers to critical questions and reveals how the breakdown of the postwar consensus on macro-economic management paved the way for the triumph of Thatcherism.

Kathleen Burk, educated at Berkeley and Oxford, lectured in history at University College, London. She is the author of 'Britain, America and the Sinews of War, 1914-1918', 'The First Privatisation: Politicans, the City and the Denationalisation of Steel', 'Morgan Grenfell 1838-1988: the Biography of a Merchant Bank', and 'Troublemaker: the Life and History of A. J. P. Taylor'.

Sir Alec Cairncross divided his career between academic life and government service. He served in four different government departments, including nearly eight years in the Treasury, first as Economic Adviser to the British government and later as first head of the Government Economic Service. In Washington DC he worked with the World Bank as the first director of the Economic Development Institute (1955-6). He was Master of St. Peter's College, Oxford, from 1969 to 1978, and went on to be Chancellor of Glasgow University. He is the author of numerous books and articles on economic affairs.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780300057287
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/1992
  • Pages: 290
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures
List of Tables
Preface and Acknowledgements
Introduction: 'Goodbye, Great Britain'
Pt. I The Politics
1 What's Past is Prologue 3
2 The Gathering Storm: March-September 1976 20
3 The Crisis Breaks: October-December 1976 59
4 Getting Rid of the Sterling Balances 111
Pt. II The Economics
5 The Movement of Opinion 129
6 The Loss of Control: The Balance of Payments 163
7 The Loss of Control: Domestic Economic Policy 179
8 Comparisons and Conclusions 215
Appendix: The Letter of Intent 229
Notes 237
Bibliography 254
Index 261
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)