The link below is to a podcast by Martin Wolf of the Financial Times. It considers a new book, Fault Lines by Raghu Rajan of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Rajan argues that the global economy is severely unbalanced:
There is a fair amount of consensus that the world economy is in need of rebalancing. Countries like Iceland, Greece, Spain, and the United States overspent prior to the crisis, financing the spending with government or private borrowing, while countries like Germany, Japan, and China supplied those countries goods even while financing their spending habits. Simply put, the consensus now requires U.S. households to save more and Chinese households to spend more in order to achieve the necessary rebalancing.
Martin Wolf identifies these imbalances and discusses various possible solutions. The problem is that what may seem sensible economically is not always feasible politically.
Three years and new fault lines threaten Financial Times podcasts, Martin Wolf (13/8/10)
Three years and new fault lines threaten (transcript of podcast) Financial Times podcasts, Martin Wolf (13/8/10)
- What are the fault lines that Martin Wolf identifies?
- Have they become more acute since the credit crunch and subsequent recession?
- What risks do these fault lines pose to the future health of the global economy?
- How do political relationships make integrating the world economy more difficult? What insights does game theory provide for understanding the tensions in these relationships?
- Is a policy of export-led growth a wise one for the UK to pursue?
- Explain why global demand may be structurally deficient.