Quesnay served as the consulting physician to King Louis XV at Versailles.
With the support of Madame de Pompadour, he and fellow physiocrat Jean de Gournay became influential in the Secte des Économistes
Tableau économique (1758), diagrammed the relationship between the different economic classes and sectors of society and the flow of payments between them.
The first explanations of economic interdependence were examined by François Quesnay´s Tableau Économique, published in 1758.
The recognition of Quesnay as pioneer of inter-industrial analysis was made by whom many years later became one of the greatest modern exponents of this type of analysis: Wassily W. Leontief. In his book The Structure of the American Economy.
Anne Robert Jacques Turgot 1727-1781
Born: 10 May 1727
Birthplace: Paris Died: 18 March 1781
Perhaps the leading economist of 18th Century France.
His contributions were quite distinct and advanced considerably upon Physiocratic theories.
Turgot exercised a deep influence upon Adam Smith, who was living in France in the 1760s and was on intimate terms with Turgot. Many of the concepts and ideas in Smith's Wealth of Nations are drawn directly from Turgot.
“Consumption is the sole end and purpose of all production; and the interest of the producer ought to be attended to, only so far as it may be necessary for promoting that of the consumer.”... Adam Smith
Laissez-faire – Origins of the Phrase
According to historical legend, the phrase stems from a meeting in about 1680 between the powerful French finance minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert and a group of French businessmen led by a certain M. Le Gendre.
When the eager mercantilist minister asked how the French state could be of service to the merchants and help promote their commerce, Le Gendre replied simply "Laissez-nous faire" ("Leave us be", lit. "Let us do").
Laissez faire – Origins of the Phrase
Laissez-faire, telle devrait être la devise de toute puissance publique, depuis que le monde est civilisé ... Détestable principe que celui de ne vouloir grandir que par l'abaissement de nos voisins! Il n'y a que la méchanceté et la malignité du coeur de satisfaites dans ce principe, et l’intérêt y est opposé. Laissez-faire, morbleu! Laissez-faire!!
(Trans: "Leave it be, that should be the motto of all public powers, as the world is civilized ... That we cannot grow except by lowering our neighbors is a detestable notion! Only malice and malignity of heart is satisfied with such a principle and our (national) interest is opposed to it. Leave it be, for heaven's sake! Leave it be!)
“It is the greatest happiness of the greatest number that is the measure of right and wrong.”
British economist Jeremy Bentham is most often associated with his theory of utilitarianism, the idea that all social actions should be evaluated by the axiom :
Counter to Adam Smith’s vision of “natural rights,” Bentham believed that there were no natural rights to be interfered with.
Born: 5 January 1767
Died: 15 November 1832
Location of death: Paris
Treatise on Political Economy
Say’s Law, states that supply creates its own demand
"It is worth while to remark, that a product is no sooner created, than it, from that instant, affords a market for other products to the full extent of its own value. When the producer has put the finishing hand to his product, he is most anxious to sell it immediately, lest its value should diminish in his hands. Nor is he less anxious to dispose of the money he may get for it; for the value of money is also perishable. But the only way of getting rid of money is in the purchase of some product or other. Thus the mere circumstance of creation of one product immediately opens a vent for other products." (J.B. Say, 1803: p.138-9)
"population increases in a geometric ratio, while the means of subsistence increases in an arithmetic ratio."
Born: 19 April 1772
He articulated and rigorously formulated the "Classical" system of political economy.
He had an uncanny ability to arrive at complex conclusions without any of the mathematical tools now deemed essential
Law of diminishing marginal returns (Law of Variable Proportions): as more and more resources are combined in production with a fixed resource—for example, as more labor and machinery are used on a fixed amount of land—the additions to output will diminish.
Comparative costs or comparative advantage: a country that trades for products it can get at lower cost from another country is better off than if it had made the products at home.
Marshall emphasized that the price and output of a good are determined by both supply and demand: the two curves are like scissor blades that intersect at equilibrium.
John Maynard Keynes
Born: 5 June 1883 Birthplace: Cambridge
Died: 21 April 1946
Location of Death: Tilton, East Sussex, England
"There are also, I should admit, forces which one might fairly well call automatic which operate under any normal monetary system in the direction of restoring a long-run equilibrium between saving and investment. The point which I cast into doubt - though the contrary is generally believed - is whether these `automatic' forces will... tend to bring about not only an equilibrium between saving and investment but also an optimum level of production."
The 20th century’s most prominent advocate of free markets was born to Jewish immigrants in New York City.
MONETARISM. Friedman presented evidence to resurrect the quantity theory of money—the idea that the price level depends on the MONEY SUPPLY.
In Studies in the Quantity Theory of Money (1956), he stated that in the long run, increased monetary growth increases prices but has little or no effect on output. In the short run, he argued, increases in money supply growth cause employment and output to increase, and decreases in money supply growth have the opposite effect.
The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in
Memory of Alfred Nobel 1973
Leontief is primarily associated with:
development of the linear activity model of General equilibrium and the use of input-output analysis that results from it.
Contributions in other areas of economics such as international trade where he documented the famous Leontief paradox.
He was also one of the first to establish the composite commodity theorem.
Leontief wrote that the statistical study presented in his Introduction to Part I could be better defined as an attempt to produce a “Tableau Économique” of the United States for 1919 and 1929.
Leontief´s input-output model was originally intended to functionalize Léon Walras´ general equilibrium and interdependence model.
That is why Leontief defined Input-output as an adaptation of Neoclassical theory of general equilibrium to the empirical study of the quantitative interdependence among interrelated economic activities.
A skeptic about utilitarianism, Sen also pointed out that the standard measure of poverty in a society, the proportion of people who are below a poverty line, leaves out an important datum: the degree of poverty among the poor. He came up with a more complicated index to measure not only poverty but also its degree.
Amartya Sen is Lamont University Professor, and Professor of Economics and Philosophy, at Harvard University and was from 1998 until January 2004, the Master of Trinity College, Cambridge.
Nobel Laureate 1998 for his contributions to welfare economics