Ricardo, David

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Related to David Ricardo: John Stuart Mill

Ricardo, David

(1772–1823) an English economist who, in his Principles of Political Economy and Taxation (1817), argued that the value of products is determined by the amount of labour needed to produce them and developed a theory of distribution to explain how this value is shared between major classes in society (see LABOUR THEORY OF VALUE). Ricardo suggested that however prosperous the economy, wages could never rise above subsistence level. As workers became more prosperous, they would have more children and, as these children grew up, this additional labour supply would force wages down: an ‘iron law of wages’.

Ricardo argued that capitalists would not benefit much from economic progress either, since competition would keep their prices down and wage payments would cut into their profits. He regarded landlords as being the only real beneficiaries from economic progress since, with a finite amount of arable land and a growing population to feed, the landlords’ rental income would grow and the value of their land would rise. Rising rents would raise the cost of food produced and workers would need larger wages to pay for food, eroding capitalists’ profits. Ricardo's theories were used by the emerging industrialists to fight for free trade and an end to high tariffs on imported grain so as to lower food prices and keep wages low. See also ECONOMIC RENT.

References in periodicals archive ?
que hubiera pasado si James Mill no hubiera insistido ante David Ricardo, para que pusiera por escrito sus valiosas ideas; que hubiera ocurrido si Ricardo hubiera resistido la presion que ejercio Mill?
Being highly interested in the economic and social analysis of David Ricardo and Karl Marx as great thinkers in economics, I was aware of Sraffa's description of his search for the special version of the Principles.
Asevera que esa practica es una falsadora del teorema de las ventajas comparativas de David Ricardo, pues el outsourcing desde Estados Unidos hacia la India viola la condicion sine qua non del teorema de David Ricardo: la inmovilidad de factores para igualar la tasa internacional de beneficio entre paises con distintas productividades.
Na opiniao de Carcanholo, a subestimacao do papel de Adam Smith e a superestimacao do papel de David Ricardo por Marx teriam aberto espaco para o prestigio posterior de interpretacoes ricardianas.
This has not only been the governing principle of capitalism but, polished by David Ricardo, turned into a winning proposition.
La propuesta de Krugman en este libro es releer a los pensadores clasicos como Adam Smith, David Ricardo y a John Maynard Keynes.
The next economist who exercised an influence anywhere near as great as Smith, David Ricardo ([1817] 1953: 354, 362-63), took the contrary position because of his belief that "after the establishment of Banks, the State has not the sole power of coining or issuing money.
James Galbraith has provided a provocative essay that incorporates-in an almost stream-of-consciousness style-his commentary on topics ranging from David Ricardo to Robert Rubin.
It was called the theory of comparative advantage that went all the way back to Robert Torrens and David Ricardo almost two centuries ago.
It caused an uproar by rejecting the classical theories of economists like Adam Smith, David Ricardo and John Stuart Mill.
The shadows of Thomas Malthus and David Ricardo loom large over Turchin and Nefedov's search for history's motive force.
In the 18th century, David Ricardo, one of the world's most respected - and wealthy - economists, consistently traded in and out of the market as a young stock jobber.