By Frederik Zeuthen
This ebook is a translation of the Danish publication 'Økonomisk Teori og Metode' (Nyt Nordisk Forlag, Copenhagen, 1942) completely revised and significantly enlarged.
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Extra resources for Economic Theory and Method
36 Method and Theories Time enters into static theory in so far as production, consumption and income of any kind are measured per unit of time. But whether this unit is a second or a year is irrelevant because all quantities reckoned per unit of time are influenced proportionately with a change in the duration of the unit. , the labor force, machinery, inventories, property and debts. The connection between these funded quantities and the flow quantities is of decisive importance for the dynamic approach of Part III.
Consequently, it may be irrelevant in relation to all economic valuations. In other cases, certain properties are economically relevant, for instance, heating power per unit of weight of fuel. A recalculation in terms of tons of prime coal or calories or the calculation of an average price in a fixed proportion cannot be used as an exact economic expression when the relative importance of the different criteria are changed. This may be the consequence of a changed distribution of weight between the sub-types.
In order that there should here prevail a static equilibrium for the quantities regarded as dependent variables, these must not be confined by a resistance which does not itself enter into the equilibrium system to be explained. It has therefore been said that static equilibrium is characterized by free mobility, but no movement. There must, by the way, be a certain mutual agreement between the conditions which in economics are regarded as data, but which in reality cannot be quite independent of each other, as, for instance, technology and habits of consumption.