This column takes a look at The Economist’s Big Mac index, the newspaper’s tongue-in-cheek way of determining whether currencies are over- or undervalued relative to the U.S. dollar. . . . → Read More: Burgernomics

The trillion dollar club

London 2012’s economic gold, silver, and bronze went to the U.S., China, and India. What will be the economic standings by the time of Rio 2016 or of Istanbul 2020? . . . → Read More: The trillion dollar club

The nature of economic development

An acquaintance asked me about Africa. Why are Africans so poor, still threatened by periodic famines? This led to a wider discussion on economic development. Here is a discussion of geography and economic development. . . . → Read More: The nature of economic development

Costa Rica

Costa Rica enjoys well-deserved recognition as the peaceful country that abolished its armed forces in 1948, invests in its population, and successfully protects its vast biodiversity. With two oceans, it attracts plenty of tourists and retirees. It seems like paradise. But there are problems as well. . . . → Read More: Costa Rica

Income inequality, globally compared

Latin America appears, on average, to be richer than Africa. But this may be a misperception due to the very high levels of income inequality prevailing in the Americas. Despite the glitz and glamor of its leading cities, Latin America may soon become the world’s most backward economic laggard—an unsavory prospect. . . . → Read More: Income inequality, globally compared

A Joyous United Nations of Football

In case you wondered: China, Colombia, Israel, Norway, Romania, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia also play in the World Cup 2010 in South Africa. How come? . . . → Read More: A Joyous United Nations of Football

The African Cup of Nations: Wars Push, Money Pulls

From 10 to 31 January 2010, 16 nations compete for the African Cup of Nations, an important continental soccer competition. Who will win? My co-authors and I bet on England or France. Find out why. . . . → Read More: The African Cup of Nations: Wars Push, Money Pulls

Will the Real Crisis Please Stand Up?

The column explains why the global economic and financial crisis of 2008/9 is mild when compared with the economic cost of the ongoing violence crisis that wrecks many economies around the globe. . . . → Read More: Will the Real Crisis Please Stand Up?

A Cosmopolitan Ball

Soccer fans, no doubt, watched all the Euro2008 championship matches they could catch. A German/Portuguese team of economists also watched, and what THEY saw may surprise you. . . . → Read More: A Cosmopolitan Ball


For 2001 to 2006, how does per capita average income growth compare across the major economies of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the U.K., and the U.S.? And how do the G7 compare with Brazil, Russia, India, and China? Click and find out. . . . → Read More: Ranks

In Whole or in Part? The Value of the U.S. Dollar

The 2008 Economic Report of the President has just been released. Here is a look at the value of the U.S. dollar, and at the composition of U.S. exports. Strangest finding: despite the lower dollar, capital goods exports continue to plummet while exports of industrial supplies and materials surge. What’s going on? . . . → Read More: In Whole or in Part? The Value of the U.S. Dollar

Power Shift: East and West

At $100 for a barrel of oil, we have barely seen the beginning of the coming fight over energy sources. There is only one way out. Read on. . . . → Read More: Power Shift: East and West