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 Post subject: Turnover time of capital
PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2016 4:04 pm 
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Allow me first to frame my understanding of Marx's presentation of turnover time.

Turnover time of capital is the production time plus the circulation time. There are costs of circulation that are not generally included in the price of the commodity, and there are production costs which are included in the price of the commodity. Production costs include fixed and circulating capital. The circulating capital is quickly turned over, or immediately turned over, whereas the fixed capital takes more time to turn over.

Specific example.

A machine that costs $10,000 lasts for 10 years. Therefore yearly it transfers a value of $1,000 to the product, and has a turnover time of 10 years.

But this is only categorically true is it not? The mass of commodities, once produced and sold, exist in the form of money which is of course not divided into different parts corresponding to the different costs incurred during production or surplus value. However, for production to continue the circulating capital does need to be replaced almost immediately such that the category of money belonging to circulating capital has a much more 'immediate' reality than does that of fixed capital. Once we've removed the costs of circulating capital we have left two parts of the sold commodity, the surplus value and the value of fixed capital. Neither one of these 'parts' really exists in the money of course, the 'immediate' reality of the costs of circulating capital doesn't exist very much here.

The cut of my jib is that the capitalist could choose to practice some of that good ole' capitalistic abstinence and not consume all of the surplus value and get a brand new $10,000 machine (assuming nothing changes as far as productivity in these sorts of things goes) while still retaining the old $10,000 machine. The costs of circulating capital would have to rise to work two machines concurrently of course, but it seems like Marx's categorical examination has some discontinuity with what may actually happen. I don't know I don't have any data on that.

Is this important? Thoughts in general?

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