Category Archives: Free markets and their discontents

Soft Power Raises Exports

A nation’s hard power is based on its ability to coerce, while its soft power depends on the attractiveness of its culture, political ideals, and policies. This column shows that a country’s soft power has measureable effects on its exports. Countries that are admired for their positive global influence export more, holding other things constant.


Leveraged Bubbles

The risk that asset price bubbles pose for financial stability is still not clear. Drawing on 140 years of data, this column argues that leverage is the critical determinant of crisis damage. When fuelled by credit booms, asset price bubbles are associated with high financial crisis risk; upon collapse, they coincide with weaker growth and slower recoveries. Highly leveraged housing bubbles are the worst case of all.


Questus Global Capital Market, Scam Stock: an Update

Updating the bizarre story of Questus Global Capital Market, a New Brunswick-incorporated, GXG-listed, New-Zealand-FSP-brokered company of monstrously fraudulent aspect that had apparently ensnared a Malaysian billionaire, various US-based small businesses and retail investors, and a couple of princes from the royal families of Kuwait and Abu Dhabi.