Analysis


The American Century’s Last Man Friday, June 14th, 2019

For those of us who were blessed – some might say cursed – to have spent important parts of our careers with Richard Holbrooke, the journalist George Packer’s masterful biography of the American diplomat had to clear a high bar. I, for one, opened Our Man with a sense of dread as to what..

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Taking on Tehran

US President Donald Trump’s administration has singled out Iran – even more than Russia, China, or North Korea – with sustained pressure over the past two and a half years. The United States has withdrawn from the 2015 nuclear deal (the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA),..

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China Is Courting Disaster in Hong Kong Thursday, June 13th, 2019

The world has been riveted by the protests raging in Hong Kong against the city government’s proposed law to allow the extradition of criminal suspects to mainland China. About one million people – roughly one-seventh of the former British colony’s population – took to the streets on June 9..

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What Automation Means for the Gender Gap

Recent trends, and the broader history of technological change, indicate that automation will usher in major shifts in labor markets over the next decade, displacing millions of workers but also creating millions of new jobs that require new skills. The McKinsey Global Institute, having documented..

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Can UBI Survive Financialization?

Universal basic income is hardly a new concept, but it has taken on a new life in recent years. Voices on both the left and the right now argue that a UBI could be the key to addressing major social and structural problems, including technological unemployment and underemployment, extreme poverty,..

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The US Economy’s Strange Decade Wednesday, June 12th, 2019

The current US economic expansion is extraordinary. Not only does it rival the longest on post-war record, but, unlike previous periods of sustained growth, it has not unleashed much inflation. Corporate profits have soared to unprecedented levels. And economic inequality in the United States is at..

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Halting Latin America’s Economic Slide Tuesday, June 11th, 2019

“Nobody’s backyard: The rise of Latin America” was the headline on the cover of The Economist on September 11, 2010. Inside was a special report that presented an optimistic view of the region’s future. And little wonder, given that high commodity prices were enabling most Latin American..

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America’s Unusual Recovery is Now Also its Longest

Data released over the next few months will show that the current US economic expansion is the longest on record. But while the United States continues to outperform other advanced economies, this success has yet to dispel many Americans’ persistent sense of economic insecurity and frustration;..

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Unconventional Thinking about Unconventional Monetary Policies Monday, June 10th, 2019

The policy interest rates of advanced-country central banks are stuck at uncomfortably low levels. And not just for the moment: a growing body of evidence suggests that this awkward condition is likely to persist. Inflation in the United States, Europe, and Japan continues to undershoot official..

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The Rule of Law Needs a Soul

The Anglo-American world, once a shining beacon of the “rule of law,” is sliding into constitutional disarray. In the United States, President Donald Trump’s administration is testing the resilience of the system of checks and balances to the breaking point. In Brexit Britain, meanwhile, the..

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Is Womenomics Working? Saturday, June 8th, 2019

When I first introduced the concept of “Womenomics” in a Goldman Sachs report 20 years ago, I argued that Japan’s need for greater gender diversity and inclusion was as much an economic as a cultural or social issue. After all, labor, capital, and productivity are the three determinants of..

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Why Universal Basic Income Is a Bad Idea Friday, June 7th, 2019

Owing to the inadequacy of the social safety net in the United States and other developed countries, proposals for a universal basic income (UBI) are gaining in popularity. The gap between the rich and everyone else has expanded significantly in recent years, and many fear that automation and..

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Why Economics Must Go Digital

One of the biggest concerns about today’s tech giants is their market power. At least outside China, Google, Facebook, and Amazon dominate online search, social media, and online retail, respectively. And yet economists have largely failed to address these concerns in a coherent way. To help..

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Snubs, Bumps and Donald Trump in Britain Thursday, June 6th, 2019

He may not be popular in Britain, but he still has shavings of appeal. For a country that has time for Nigel Farage, pro-Brexit enthusiast and full-time hypocrite (he is a member of the European Parliament, the very same institution he detests), President Donald Trump will garner a gaggle of..

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As Populists Rise, Latin America’s Economies Will Fall

Though US President Donald Trump tends to grab most of the headlines, he is hardly a global exception. Populist autocrats have enjoyed a breathtaking rise to power in countries around the world, and nowhere is the trend more pronounced than in Latin America following the elections of Mexico’s..

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The US Economy’s Dirty Secret Wednesday, June 5th, 2019

There is a dirty little secret in economics today: the United States has benefited – and continues to benefit – from the global slump. The US economy is humming along, even while protesters in the United Kingdom hurl milkshakes at Brexiteers, French President Emmanuel Macron confronts nihilist..

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Trump’s Trade-War Miscalculation Monday, June 3rd, 2019

Just when a trade agreement between the United States and China appeared to be in sight, negotiators found themselves back at square one. The immediate reason for the disruption was China’s insistence on a substantially rewritten draft agreement, which, according to US President Donald Trump’s..

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Deng Xiaoping’s Victory

China’s massive protest movement in the spring of 1989, centered in (but not confined to) Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, seems to have been the anti-Communist revolt that failed. As the brutal crackdown on and following June 3-4 played out, political freedom was being won in Central Europe –..

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WILL CHINA MEND IT’S WAYS AFTER HONG KONG PROTESTS ? Sunday, June 16th, 2019

The massive street march and peaceful protests by the Hong Kong citizens against the extradition law must have rattled the Chinese government, which has quickly..

The American Century’s Last Man Friday, June 14th, 2019

Taking on Tehran Friday, June 14th, 2019

China Is Courting Disaster in Hong Kong Thursday, June 13th, 2019

What Automation Means for the Gender Gap Thursday, June 13th, 2019