EconVue Weekly Spotlight

posted by Lyric Hughes Hale on April 11, 2016 - 9:03am

At the Spring IMF/World Bank meetings this coming weekend, policymakers, economists, and investors will have much to discuss, including several looming crises. Anatole Kaletsky captures the growing sense of alarm in his essay on the current climate of crisis, Things Fall Apart . Whether or not economists will be able to divine the outcome of these crises is the subject of Alan Jay Levinovitz's piece on economics as the new astrology. Politicians were placed under even greater scrutiny than economists last week, as Bernie Saunders failed his Daily News interview. And finally, transparency took center stage with the Panama Papers, and some intriguing speculation that Russia might be behind the greatest data breach in history. Mohamed El-Erian takes this one step further, discussing the Wikileaks reveal of the debate behind Greek debt forgiveness and what should be done about it. Grexit, Brexit, the upcoming OPEC summit on April 17th, all promise to make this a spring that is impossible to predict but which we are sure to remember. You will find links to these commentaries and more below.

Stories in our Spotlight This Week
1. WikiLeaks Controversy Strengthens Case for Greek Debt Forgiveness
Article By Mohamed A. El-Erian 4/4/16 Bloomberg View
Mohamed El-Erian: "It turns out that the start of the summer could be an even more challenging period for both the EU and the euro zone. By then, Greece could be running out of money to run its economy and meet debt service payments. The U.K. will vote on whether it should remain in the EU. And Europe is likely to have found out, the difficult way, that the recent regional agreement on refugee flows is hard to implement. Europe should be taking actions now to avoid a potential confluence of problems this summer..." Greece has begun to deport refugees to Turkey.
2. When Things Fall Apart
Article By Anatole Kaletsky 3/31/16 Project Syndicate A sense of
3. 9 things Bernie Sanders should've known about but didn't in that Daily News interview
Article By Jonathan Capehart 4/5/16 Washington Post I thought I was reading Andy Borowitz.
4. The New Astrology
Article By Alan Jay Levinovitz 4/4/16 Aeon The very human need to know the future drives unrealistic expectations of economists.
5. Are the Russians actually behind the Panama Papers?
Article By Clifford G. Gaddy 4/7/16 Brookings Institution A different twist on the Panama Papers story, bringing us back to the Cold War.
6.Is the Chinese Economy Out of the Woods?
Video with Patrick Chovanec 4/8/16 Bloomberg Video Best five minutes you could possibly spend to understand what is going on in China today.

EconVue Research and Insights
Yellen Overestimates Labor Slack, Underestimates Need for Hikes, Michael Lewis 
Data Round-Up: UI Claims Remain Strong, Rail Traffic WeakensMichael Lewis 
The Oriental Economist April 2016 IssueRichard Katz 
Rethinking Healthcare,Gov: As Covered California Goes, So Goes Nation? David Johnson