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"The Eyes and Ears of the Agricultural Markets": A History of Information in Interwar Agricultural Economics

Thomas Delcey () and Guillaume Noblet ()
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Thomas Delcey: REHPERE - CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
Guillaume Noblet: REHPERE - CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique

Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) from HAL

Abstract: This article offers a historical analysis of the contributions of U.S. interwar agricultural economics to the economics of information. Concerned with improving the circulation of information on agricultural markets, agricultural economists analyzed the relationship between agents' information and the behavior of prices on agricultural commodity exchanges, thus anticipating modern debates on informational efficiency. We show that these debates were part of a more general context of agricultural market reform led by the U.S. administration to improve the production and diffusion of economic information. We argue that such reforms were a prerequisite for theoretical discussions on information, and established institutional tools that are still active today, such as the USDA market news service.

Date: 2021-05-17
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-his
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