More in Global Economy

7 months

The Eternal Majority Against the Way Things Are: Brexit, Health Care & Socialism

It seems as if there's always a majority against the way things are. In a world full of problems and issues, how could it be otherwise? It's why politicians are always calling for "change," which strikes me as a slogan that is appealing and concealing in equal measure. Because the real-world problem that arises is when those who are united in their opposition to the way things, and united in favor of "change," need to offer an actual alternative of their own. 

7 months

Gross National Happiness and Macro Indicators in Bhutan

A lot of people have heard, one way or another, that the country of Bhutan decided back in the early 1970s to pursue Gross National Happiness. The King at that time is supposed to have said:  “Gross National Happiness is more important than Gross Domestic Product.” But in practical terms, what does that actually mean? Sriram Balasubramanian and Paul Cashin describe "Gross National Happiness and Macroeconomic Indicators in the Kingdom of Bhutan" in IMF Working Paper WP/19/15 (January 2019). They write:

7 months

Universal Basic Income: Preliminary Results from the Finnish Experiment

The big selling points for a universal basic income are simplicity and work incentives. The simplicity arises because with a universal basic income, there are no qualifications to satisfy or forms to fill out. People just receive it, regardless of factors like income levels or whether they have a job. There are not bureaucratic costs of determining eligibility, and no stigma of applying for such benefits or in receiving them.

7 months

China's High Savings Rate

China has a remarkably high savings rate in a typical year--and sometimes its higher than that. In fact, the main reason for China's high trade surpluses is that with such a high savings rate, China doesn't consume either a lot of imports or domestically produced goods. A reason that China can invest so much, year after year, is that the investment is financed by high savings rates. A standard recommendation for China's economy for at least the last 15 years or so is to "rebalance" toward being an economy driven by domestic consumption, not by investment.

7 months

Europe Is Losing The Technology Race

If we analyze the ranking of the main technological companies (2017), there is not a single European among the top fifteen. The vast majority are North American and Chinese companies.

7 months

The New Green Deal Is Just Old White Elephants

What happens when politicians see that their monster stimuli have not delivered? They bring the next rabbit out of a hat. They need a new name and a new magic solution to make citizens believe in the magic of demand-side policies despite the constant failure of those same plans.

7 months


Those with medium-term memories will remember that a scandal erupted around LIBOR in 2010. But you may not know that as a result, LIBOR is probably going to disappear in the next few years to be replaced by SOFR. Since several hundred trillion dollars of financial contracts will be different as a result, it's useful to have at least some sense of what the change means.