With the pro-EU Emmanuel Macron seemingly headed toward the French presidency, the immediate threat to the EU and the eurozone appears to have subsided. But unless Europe addresses flaws in growth patterns and pursues urgent reforms, the longer-term risks to its survival will continue to mount.
The election called by UK Prime Minister Theresa May for June will transform Britain’s politics and its relationship with Europe, but not necessarily in the way implied by a large majority for May’s Conservatives. Britain’s pro-European progressive forces could still snatch victory from the jaws of defeat for three related reasons.
Slowly but surely, a bruised and battered global economy now appears to be shaking off its deep post-2008 malaise. But this hardly means that the world is returning to normal; on the contrary, the global growth dynamic has undergone an extraordinary transformation during the last nine years.
Reducing the US trade deficit requires Americans to save more or invest less. On their own, policies that open other countries’ markets to US products, or close US markets to foreign products, will not change the overall trade balance.
The rise of anti-globalization political movements and the threat of trade protectionism have led some people to wonder whether a stronger multilateral core for the world economy would reduce the risk of damaging fragmentation. If so, enhancing the role of the IMF's incipient global currency may be the best option.
After failing to "repeal and replace" the Affordable Care Act, US President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans are now pursing tax reform, as if this will be any easier. It won’t be, as evidenced by the fact that all of the Republicans’ initial proposals are already dead in the water.
Donald Trump’s comments about China during the US presidential campaign didn’t exactly bolster high hopes for Sino-American relations once he was elected. But the two leaders' summit at Mar-a-Lago showed that even a president as reckless as Trump knows that the US cannot afford to antagonize the Chinese.
After nine dreary years of downgrading their GDP forecasts, macroeconomic policymakers around the world are shaking their heads in disbelief. Despite a populist-propelled wave of political tumult, global growth is actually set to outperform expectations in 2017.
Vladimir Putin and other post-communist autocrats sell their system of “illiberal democracy” on the basis of pragmatism, not some universal theory of history. But while they have certainly been effective in stirring nationalist sentiment and stifling dissent, they have been less successful at nurturing long-term economic growth.
US President Donald Trump owes his electoral victory largely to the older white middle- and working-class voters who have missed out on the benefits of economic growth over the last 30 years. But his administration's economic program will not deliver the reversal of economic fortune his key constituency was promised.