Yves here. This post is important because even though the Fed is focused on the impact of QE (and hence the taper) on the domestic economy, it’s been getting enough of a hard time from central bankers of leading emerging markets economies that it least has to feign concern credibly.
The Eichengreen/Gupta paper summarized in this post concludes that, quelle surprise, the countries most vulnerable to changes in Fed policy (which really means hot money in and outflows) are those with the biggest financial markets relative to GDP. Curiously, Eichengreen and Gupta fail to note that this means the orthodox advice to developing economies, that financial “deepening” is a Good Thing and therefore should be supported by government policy, in fact reduces financial stability and makes them even more vulnerable to the moods of fickle foreign investors.
Given the extreme measures the Obama Administration has gone to to keep the pending trade deal known as the TransPacific Partnership under wraps, it’s hard to be certain where things stand. But like the Administration’s failed effort to have the US intervene in Syria, this has the potential to be one of those rare cases where the interests of ordinary citizens prevails.
We posted on the New York Times news story that opposition in the House to authorization of “fast track” authority to the Administration on its pending Pacific and Atlantic trade deals was stiffening right just before a related story broke: that Wikileaks had disclosed the end of August draft of one of the critical chapters of one of the deals. We address that oversight today.
Wow, this is amazing. Word has apparently gotten out even to Congressmen who can normally be lulled to sleep with the invocation of the magic phrase “free trade” that the pending Trans Pacific Partnership is toxic. But this isn’t over until the fat lady sings. So this is the time when it is REALLY important to call or e-mail your Representative and let him or her know how terrible this deal is and how firmly opposed to it you are.
I really enjoy speaking with Harry Shearer, both for his engaging manner and his thorough preparation. I also hope you’ll see fit to circulate this interview, since the more attention we can bring to this plan to legalize corporate pillage, the better.
Yves here. I hope you don’t mind additional coverage of the pending trade pacts, this from a European perspective. This is bar none the single most important geopolitical initiative underway, yet it’s getting virtually no media play. While this discussion overlaps with our chat on Bill Moyers, many of you have friends, family members, and colleagues who don’t have time to watch a video but would read an article. Please use whatever route you think will work best with the people you know to get the word out.
I hope you’ll enjoy this chat. Moyers gave Dean Baker and me over a half-hour on his show, so we were able to give a decent treatment of the issues surrounding the mislabeled trade deal known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership as well as the ongoing budget battle
By Yanis Varoufakis, professor of economics at the University of Athens. Cross posted from his blog
On 30th October, in its Report to Congress on Economic and Exchange Rate Policies, the US Treasury took a swipe at Germany, accusing it of exporting economic depression to the rest of Eurozone and, indeed, to the global economy. The German Finance Ministry responded the next day with a statement that: “There are no imbalances in Germany that need correction. On the contrary, the innovative German economy contributes significantly to global growth through exports and the import of components for finished products.” There are few occasions in any argument where one side is completely right and the other comprehensively wrong. This is one of them!
I’m generally very taken with Ian Welsh’s work, particularly two recent posts, A New Ideology and How to Create a Viable Ideology. He then continued with 44 Explicit Points on Creating a Better World. And I hate to say it, but the last piece was no where near as well thought out as the preceding pieces. What troubled me about his latest piece was its combination of confidence (as opposed to modesty and soliciting reactions and input) in combination with it having internal contractions and a lack of precision of language. But perhaps the biggest shortcoming was trying to finesse the question of governance.
While eyes in the US have remained focused on the budget cliffhanger in Washington, in Bali, two sets of meetings were taking place. The first was the latest set of Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations. The US, led by John Kerry (Obama was supposed to make an appearance but the budget drama kept him away) met with representatives of the 12 nations it is pressing to agree to this deliberately mis-branded “trade deal”. The reason the label is misleading is that trade is already substantially liberalized; the real point of the TPP and its cousin, the pending EU-US trade agreement, is to weaken the power of nations to regulate, which will allow multinationals to lead a race to the bottom on product and environmental safety.