EconoMonitor

Economics Blog Aggregator

    Emerging Markets

  • Private Sector Development - News and views on a competitive private sector and a resilient financial sector

    Financial Risk, Resilience and Realism: ‘New Economic Thinking,’ Amid Ominous Tremors from the Eurozone

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  • Private Sector Development - News and views on a competitive private sector and a resilient financial sector

    It’s Heating Up: Industry Needs Climate-Friendly Policies to Keep Cool and Competitive

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  • iMFdirect - The IMF Blog

    Ten Take Aways from the “Rethinking Macro Policy: Progress or Confusion?”

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  • Ajay Shah's blog

    5 steps forward, 2 steps back

    The Ministry of Finance had begun: Monetary policy framework agreement (MPFA) Shift government bond market regulation to SEBI Shift commodity futures regulation to SEBI Establish the Public Debt Management Agency Shift regulation-making power for non-debt flows (under Section 6 of FEMA) from RBI to MOF Two  of these were rolled back today -- bond market regulation and PDMA. Here's a response by Ankur Bhardwaj in the Business Standard. The lack of a bond market is going to weaken the monetary policy transmission, thus making it harder for the MPFA to work. The presence of debt management at RBI is a conflict of interest, which makes it harder for the MPFA to work. The reforms could have worked because they reinforce each other. Now RBI will have excuses: lack...more

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  • iMFdirect - The IMF Blog

    Unclogging Euro Area Bank Lending

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  • iMFdirect - The IMF Blog

    Managing Capital Flows in Frontier Economies

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  • Ajay Shah's blog

    Can India leapfrog into decentralised energy?

    India woke up to telecommunications through the reforms of the late 1990s: the power of DOT was curtailed, VSNL was privatised, private and foreign companies were permitted, new methods of working were permitted. At the time, wired lines were mainstream and wireless communications was novel. However, setting up wire lines in India is very hard. India leapfrogged, and jumped into the mobile revolution for both voice and data. The concept of not having a land line at home was exotic in the US when it was normal in India. In similar fashion, India was an early adopter of electronic order matching for financial trading, and of second generation pension reforms: these things became mainstream in the world after they were done in India. Could similar leapfroggin...more

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  • Atanu Dey On India's Development

    Reading Ronald Coase

    Are you a well-read economist? You aren’t if you cannot appreciate the Coase Theorem. (That theorem is one of the most cited in all of academic literature. Note, not just econ literature but all academic literature.) In other words, understanding the Coase theorem is part of being a complete economist. Here are a few references to Ronald Coase, winner of the Economics “Nobel” Prize 1991, and his work: Ronald Coase (Dec 1910 – Sep 2013) wiki page. “The Nature of the Firm” (1937) wiki page. “The Problem of Social Cost” wiki page. It is best to read the wiki pages for a start, rather than reading the original papers. Coase did fundamental work to advance the state of the art. He even wrote a book — How China Became...more

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  • Atanu Dey On India's Development

    Ask me anything

    It’s time to have a conversation. I intend to have google hangouts on a regular basis. I am taking suggestions on the day and time. But first, would you like to join? Would the weekends be a good time for you? And if so, what time? Of course, you can ask me anything by leaving a comment on this post. I hope to hear from you on this open thread. ...more

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  • Private Sector Development - News and views on a competitive private sector and a resilient financial sector

    Sowing the Seeds of Green Entrepreneurship: Startup Bootcamps and Pitching Competitions

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  • The Gulf blog

    New Politics of Intervention of Gulf Arab States

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  • Ajay Shah's blog

    The big changes in financial reform

    Budget 2015 has been an important period for India's financial reforms. Indian Merchants Chamber, BSE and NIPFP had organised a meeting on these issues. From this show, here are two videos. Yours truly: and Ashish Chauhan: Both from our youtube channel. ...more

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  • Zambian Economist

    Changing the Retiriment Age in Zambia

    Editor's note: This is a guest post by Henry Kyambalesa, a resident contributor to Zambian Economist. He is a Zambian academic currently residing in Colorado, USA. The article makes some observations on the changes to the retirment age.In November 2014, Acting President Guy L. Scott signed Statutory Instrument No. 63 of 2014 that raised the retirement age from 55 to 65 years, or 35 years of service.In December 2014, the Minister of Labor and Social Security is quoted by Doreen Nawa of the Zambia Daily Mail as having defended the change in the country’s retirement age as follows: “We adjusted the retirement age as a way of increasing people’s life span. Information has shown that most people that have retired at 55 have died earlier because of many factors.”The M...more

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  • Zambian Economist

    Election Musings

    President Lungu this week delivered a blow to the opposition with three convincing parliamentary wins in his first electoral test as President. The PF won parliamentary by-elections in Chawama, Masaiti and Senga Hill and also picked a big chunk of ward victories held in various parts of the country.Lawrence Sichalwe (Chawama) polled 7, 500 with closest rival UPND Charles Kaselwa polling 3, 200. Michael Katambo (Masaiti) polled 5,000 against closest rival UPND Peter Mumba polling 2,150. Kapembwa Simbao (Senga Hill) polled over 8500 against his closest rival who polled around 4700.The turnout was very low at around 15% in some places. This is significantly lower than the 33% in the recent presidential by-election. A turnout of 15% means 85% of people did not vote. One wo...more

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  • Zambian Economist

    Mining Tax Reversal, 3rd Edition

    Reports are emerging that Government has indeed reverted to the 2014 two-tier mining tax regime which was abolished in the 2015 Budget. However, the mineral royalties will now be set at at 9 percent for both open-pit and underground mines. Reuters are quoting a “source in the presidency”.The 2014 two-tier mining tax regime consists of the mineral royalty tax (now at 9%), corporate income tax and profit variable tax. Crucially it allows for capital allowances and carry forward of losses which substantially eliminates potential taxable profits.Finance Alexander Chikwanda in February said the 2014 two-tier mining tax regime is “simply illusory as only two mining companies were paying Company Income Tax under the previous tax regime as most of them claimed that they w...more

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  • Atanu Dey On India's Development

    An ad from 1947: “The Uphill Task Ahead”

    My friend Veer shared this advertisement from 1947. After 68 years, Indians are still fighting a war on poverty and it is still an “Uphill Task Ahead.” Very little has changed since 1947 in the economic environment, and what little change there has been regressive. Certainly relative to 1947, Indians have progressed but relative to others, India has slipped further behind. Note that in the advertisement, the attitude is one of collectivization, that we have to mount a war on poverty by “closing ranks” and “unitedly attack”. That sets the stage for a top-down, command-and-control regime. A country of free people should not resemble an army. Soldiers inhabit a hierarchical structure where orders flow from the top and they have no f...more

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  • The Gulf blog

    What does the increasing assertiveness of Persian Gulf states mean for regional security?

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  • Michael Pettis' CHINA FINANCIAL MARKETS

    Will the AIIB one day matter?

    When Isaac, an editor at Foreign Policy, sent me an email two weeks ago asking if I could write a piece on the new Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), I quickly wrote back promising 1,200 words within a few days. I thought it would be pretty easy to come up with the points I wanted to make, and all I would need was one uninterrupted day to pull them together into a coherent article. As I see it, the creation of the AIIB is not nearly as important as everyone seems to think, and if Beijing’s decision to create the AIIB, and Washington’s decision to oppose it, was part of the struggle for future geo-political dominance in Asia, let alone the world, they were both going to be wrong. There were only two useful parts to this story, it seemed to me. First, it sho...more

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  • The Gulf blog

    The emerging military dimension to the Qatari-Turkish relationship

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  • Michael Pettis' CHINA FINANCIAL MARKETS

    When do we decide that Europe must restructure much of its debt?

    It is hard to watch the Greek drama unfold without a sense of foreboding. If it is possible for the Greek economy partially to revive in spite of its tremendous debt burden, with a lot of hard work and even more good luck we can posit scenarios that don’t involve a painful social and political breakdown, but I am pretty convinced that the Greek balance sheet itself makes growth all but impossible for many more years. The history is, to me pretty convincing. Countries with this level of debt and this level of uncertainty associated with the resolution of the debt are never able too grow out of their debt burdens, no matter how determined and how forcefully they implement the “correct” set of orthodox reforms, until the debt is resolved and the costs assigned. Greec...more

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  • Michael Pettis' CHINA FINANCIAL MARKETS

    Syriza and the French indemnity of 1871-73

    European nationalists have successfully convinced us, against all logic, that the European crisis is a conflict among nations, and not among economic sectors. Today’s Financial Times has an article discussing the travails of Greece’s new Finance Minister, Yanis Varoufakis as he takes on Germany: In a small but telling sign of the frosty relations between Berlin and the new Greek government, the German finance ministry last week criticised Mr Varoufakis for failing to follow through with a customary courtesy call following his appointment. Mr Schäuble, meanwhile, has warned Greece not to attempt to “blackmail” Berlin with demands for debt relief. This is absurd. The European debt crisis is not a conflict among nations. All economic systems— and certainly an e...more

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  • The Peking Duck

    Peter Hessler’s China Daily “article”: how low can they go?

    Now this is chutzpah: China Daily asked author Peter Hessler to participate in a Q & A with his friend and translator Li Xueshun comparing aspects of Egypt and China (both countries where Hessler has worked as a New Yorker correspondent). China Daily then had the nerve to take Hessler’s replies and shape them into what looks to the reader like a bylined article by Hessler. Li’s replies were totally removed. From Hessler’s Facebook page: [I]t omitted crucial parts, including the most important point: that I believe it’s harder to make a political change in China, where the system is deeper rooted than in Egypt, and thus the flaws are also more deeply rooted. I said that this is the reason why the current anti-corruption campaign will be a failure...more

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  • The Peking Duck

    Is it a police state?

    The best post I ever wrote (and I realize that’s not saying very much) is this one. Its simple point is that underneath a veneer of happiness, prosperity and optimism there can lurk a much darker and more dangerous side. People can be content and appreciate their government while being oblivious — willfully or not — to what it is going on beneath the surface. There have been a rash of articles in recent months of a severe crackdown in China on civil rights lawyers, professors, journalists and activists. A story from yesterday drove this home: As the year came to a close, at least seven prominent Chinese human rights lawyers rang in the New Year from a jail cell. Under President Xi Jinping, 2014 was one of the worst years in recent memory for China’s ...more

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  • The Peking Duck

    Shaun Rein wants your help marketing The End of Copycat China

    The End of Copycat China is the name of Shaun Rein’s new book that will be available come October 20. I am flattered that Shaun has included me on the mailing list he uses to blast information to his friends and colleagues, and I wanted to draw attention to how he wants his fans to do the marketing for his new book for him. Over the last three months Shaun has sent out two lengthy email blasts and I find their content to be intriguing, and to confirm some of my own thoughts about Mr. Rein. Perhaps most revealing was this paragraph: If you or a friend are looking for a keynote speaker, consider me. If organizations buy 1000 copies of my book to give to attendees between October and December, I will waive my standard speaking rates at my speaker’s bureau (my...more

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  • All Roads Lead to China

    Foxconn Moving Direct to Consumer

    I remember having conversations years ago about what Foxconn would do going forward, and whether or not they would be happy as the manufacturer to brands.   The WSJ article, Amid Margin Squeeze, Foxconn Designs Its Own Fate, puts this question to rest. Recently, the $130-billion-a-year in revenue company has ventured into handset accessories under its own brand, and sales and distribution of mobile phones. It also plans to offer telecommunications services in Taiwan. For me, this has always been a bit of a no brainer.  Foxconn has an amazing amount of talent in the firm that is not just managing the supply chain and assembling gadgets for their customer, but have for years also been bringing designs to the brands that they feel would sell well in the market. Partner ...more

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  • Frontier Nations

    ANC seen pushing market-friendly economic policy

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  • Frontier Nations

    Ethiopia builds on economic momentum

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  • Frontier Nations

    North Africa walks job creation tightrope

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  • All Roads Lead to China

    Bites of China. Finally a Show Worth Watching!

    A couple of weeks back, while riding the G train back from Nanjing, something caught my eye.  An advertisement by CCTV for what I believe could be one of the best produced shows China has put together.  At first, I had no idea what the advertisement for, but what was clear was that it was celebrating the various food flavors of China, and those who are tilling the fields and preparing the dishes. The show is called Bite of China, and I cannot recommend it enough. Sure, China is known for its fair share of food failures, including recycled oil, but watching this show has restored a bit of my love for the flavors here.  Flavors that were actually the basis for one of my earliest posts, and have provided a never ending hunt for me and my wife as we look to try new thin...more

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  • All Roads Lead to China

    What Do China’s Millennials Want ?

    For a number of years, I had it pretty good.  I had a number of teams that were under me, were stable, and were producing.  It was at a time when a lot of questions were being asked about the post 80s generation in China, but for whatever reason I was immune. But, those days are over, and just yesterday I had another millennial go AWOL on me.  So, it was perhaps interesting timing that CNBC put up the article Millennials may be more like boomers than we realize highlighting how several studies point to a generation that is looking for meaning in their job, in their company, and for balance: A new study from Deloitte also found differences in workplace attitudes between millennials and older generations, saying that the former “want to work for organizations tha...more

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  • Patrick Chovanec

    Twins!

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  • ChinaBizGov

    China's Green Car Sales in 2012

    Just a few years ago, pretty much everyone (except Chinese auto industry insiders whom I interviewed) thought China was about to take ownership of the global green car market. (Here's just one example from the excitable Tom Friedman of the New York Times.)In 2009 China's industrial planners announced plans to have 500,000 green cars ("New Energy Vehicles" or "新能源汽车" -- a combination of electrics and hybrids) on Chinese roads by the end of 2011. That obviously didn't happen, so last year, that same target of 500,000 was pushed out to 2015.So how did green car sales fare in 2012? Overall, hybrids plus electrics grew a respectable 52 percent.So while sales grew pretty well in percentage terms, it is clear that overall numbers are still inconsequential when you co...more

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  • Patrick Chovanec

    What Causes Revolutions?

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  • Patrick Chovanec

    Enter the New Year

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  • ChinaBizGov

    Comparing Corruption in China and the US

    Today's WSJ China Realtime reports on a study by a George Mason University economist who attempts to compare corruption in the US and China.  His conclusion is that corruption in America's Gilded Age (1877-1893)* was worse than corruption in China today.Perhaps the conclusion is correct, but the methodology used by this professor is flawed.  US corruption is measured by mentions of corruption in US newspapers 1870-1930.  China corruption is measured by mentions of corruption in US (not Chinese!) newspapers 1990-2011.So he is measuring corruption in two countries by the number of times the newspapers of only one of the countries mentions the word.  Even if the researcher had used Chinese newspapers, the study still would have been flawed due to Commun...more

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  • ChinaBizGov

    GM and SAIC: Trouble in Paradise?

    General Motors (GM) and Shanghai Auto (SAIC) announced in December of 2009 that they were deepening their partnership beyond their joint venture in China.  Together they created a 50:50 joint venture, registered in Hong Kong, for expansion outside of China.  Now that partnership appears to be coming apart.Initially, the plan for the HK JV was for the two sides to work together in India and possibly elsewhere in the future.  (For further insight into this particular deal, please see Chapter 4 of Designated Drivers.) As for the India venture, GM would contribute two existing factories in India, along with its Chevrolet brand, and SAIC would contribute cash -- something that GM had been seriously lacking as it had emerged from bankruptcy earlier that same ye...more

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Aaron Menenberg Policies of Scale

Aaron Menenberg is Foreign Policy and Energy analyst, and a Future Leader with Foreign Policy Initiative. He also co-hosts Podlitical Risk (@podliticalrisk). He is a graduate student in international relations at The Maxwell School of Syracuse University. Previously he has worked at Praescient Analytics, The Hudson Institute, for the Israeli Ministry of Defense, and at the IBM Corporation. The views expressed are his own, and you can follow him on Twitter @AaronMenenberg. He welcomes questions and comments at menenbergaaron@gmail.com.