Does Finance Benefit Society?

A new paper by Luigi Zingales asks whether finance benefits society (hat tip - Ronan Gallagher). In the wake of anti-finance sentiment, Zingales argues that academic financial economists have a duty to promote the right sort of finance. Finance, according to Zingales, can quickly degenerate into rent-seeking activity. Zingales argues that financial economists should use their "research to challenge the existing practices in finance and blow the whistle on what does not work. We should be the watchdogs of the financial industry, nots its lapdogs".  

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