Category: Podcasts and Webcasts

This podcast is from Times Online and is an interview with Jonathan Waghorn, of Investec Global Energy Fund, who “says the price of oil is set to rise over the long term, as it becomes increasingly difficult to find. This spells bad news for motorists, but good news for investors.”

Podcast: The oil price Times Online (4/8/09)

Questions

  1. Why have oil prices fluctuated so much over the past year?
  2. What is likely to happen to the price of oil over the next few months and why?
  3. Why is the price of oil likely to rise faster than the rate of inflation over the long term?
  4. How are the price, income and cross elasticities of demand and the price elasticity of supply relevant to explaining the likely long-term trend in oil prices?
  5. If the price of crude oil goes up by x per cent, is the price of petrol at the pump likely to go up by x per cent or by more or less than x per cent? Explain your answer.

The following link is to a video charting the growth of China and the UK over the past 200 years and projecting forward to 2014. The video is from Gapminder, a site that allows you to compare countries’ performance in terms of a large range of economic and social indicators.

The introduction to this video states, “200 years ago, United Kingdom was a leading nation of the world – both in regard to health and economy. In this video, Hans Rosling details UK’s 200-year journey, to present time, and also shows that China, in the coming five years, will narrow the gap to UK faster than ever.”

Crisis narrows China–UK gap Hans Rosling, Gapminder (2/6/09)

Questions

  1. Why has the gap in GDP per head narrowed between the China and the UK?
  2. Why is the gap likely to narrow further over the next five years?
  3. Identify the factors that will determine how much the gap is likely to narrow in this period.

While deflation was quite common right up to World War II, it has not been seen in the UK since 1947. The podcast considers whether it might return and looks at the impact of deflation on economic activity. There is a short case study on the deflationary years suffered by Japan between 1997 and 2006 and a consideration of policies that might be appropriate to overcome defaltionary pressures.

Billions of plastic bags are used and discarded each year around the world and these cause considerable environmental damage – a form of market failure. In this podcast we consider the extent of the problem and policies that countries around the world are adopting to try to minimise this market failure. Many countries, including China, have banned single-use plastic bags completely, while others, such as Ireland, have chosen to tax them to try to limit their use.

The possibility of recession in the UK, the USA and Europe has attracted a great deal of media attention and in this podcast Andy Beharrell considers whether there is any real evidence of recession. The podcast considers the definition of recession, the causes of recession and the different approaches taken by governments to try to keep their economies out of recession. While the UK and Europe have adopted essentially rules-based policy approaches, the USA has taken a more interventionist and discretionary approach with a significant loosening of both monetary and fiscal policy.