The consequences of prolonged low interest rates in Europe
Monetary policymakers are becoming preoccupied with the risks of persistently low interest rates to Europe’s still fragile economic recovery. Ultra-easy credit is creating growing economic distortions and asset bubbles, while reviving volatility and risk in financial markets. The European Central Bank realizes it must “normalize” rates, but it worries that sudden tightening could precipitate a financial crisis that could be as bad or worse than 2008-2009.
Is economic inequality a bad thing?
As an inevitable consequence of free enterprise, inequality is a phenomenon that naturally fluctuates over time and poses no real threat to society. It is the governments’ attempts to bring equality through dense regulation and wealth transfers that put at risk the West’s development and democracy.
A differentiated view of the new U.S. tax bill
The Trump administration's long-overdue effort at tax reform – the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act – has gotten a bad rap from its critics. While they focus on its alleged favors toward the super-rich, the media have overlooked its benefits to small and medium-sized companies – the family firms that form the backbone of the American economy. Europe could learn a thing or two about this approach to boosting growth.
Will education let Africa reap its demographic dividend?
With nearly 40 percent of its population under the age of 18, Africa is the youngest continent in the world. This expanding work-age population should bring higher productivity, increased consumption and faster growth. But turning this workforce into an economic asset will require ending the mismatch between educational outcomes and market needs.
Opinion: Conventional measures give false reassurance on global risk
Conventional measures could be the wrong ones to gauge the risk of a financial shock to the global economy. Imbalances created by cheap money are building up in the economy. A close look at market capitalization, share buybacks, and interest-rate spreads presents a troubling picture.
The Chinese economy: it’s about debt
China’s high ratio of debt to gross domestic product (GDP) will necessarily lead to an economic slowdown. The question is whether that can happen in a controlled manner that limits the negative effects on the country and the region, or whether it will bring China’s economy crashing down.
GIS Dossier: From Mao to Xi, China’s quest for growth
China’s explosive growth has made it the emerging hegemon of Asia and one of the most powerful engines of the global economy. But if the giant country fails to meet the challenges that lay ahead, it may also cause a lot of turmoil in the 21st century.
Central Europe will go through stress tests in 2017
As the European Union is trying to reinvent itself and the United States considers recasting its global role, the Central European nations see no obvious path to follow. The relatively prosperous region faces tests of political and economic maturity that go beyond anything it has experienced since the fall of the Iron Curtain.