Paul Maidment
By the Blouin News Business staff

Posts By: Paul Maidment

The global economy’s tipping point in one chart

by in Global Economy.
Percentage of world GDP, Advanced economies vs Emerging markets, PPP basis

We may well look back on the coming year as an epochal one for the world economy. This chart, drawn from data, estimates and forecasts from the International Monetary Fund, shows that the share of the world economy, measured by purchasing power parity, accounted for by emerging markets and developing countries is expected to surpass for the first time that of the advanced nations during 2013.

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Venezuela’s now-you-see-it-now-you-don’t devaluation

by in Americas.
100 bolivar Venezuelan currency notes


100 bolivar notes. AFP/Getty Images

The widening gap between the official and black-market rates for Venezuela’s currency is heightening expectations of another devaluation of the bolivar. It is two years since the last one. Since then inflation and an exorbitantly high fiscal deficit as a result of extensive public spending in an election year have pushed the rate that  matters most to the import-dependent country to unsustainable heights. The gap between the…

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Egypt’s currency takes a pounding

by in Middle East.
Protesters in Cairo's landmark Tahrir Square on November 18, 2011
Protestors in Cairo. AFP/Getty Images/Khaled Desouki

A first read on Egypt’s introduction foreign-currency auctions at the end of last week is that the government is trying to manage an orderly devaluation of the Egyptian pound through a two-tier exchange rate. The currency’s fall to a record low of 6.30 to the U.S. dollar on Sunday suggests a measure of success, though it is success only in the sense of achieving the…

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Morales scares off more potential partners

by in Americas.
Bolivian President Evo Morales
Bolivian President Evo Morales. AFP/Getty Images/LLUIS GENE

Bolivia’s left-wing president Evo Morales has long said that when it comes to foreign investors, he wants partners not owners. He does, though, want to ensue that Bolivia is the owner when it comes to strategic industries. His latest nationalization of two power distributors, Spanish-owned Empresa de Electricidad de La Paz, or Electropaz, and Empresa de Luz y Fuerza de Oruro, or Elfeo, follows…

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Euro zone government bonds ring in the New Year with CACs

by in Europe.
New Year Fireworks, Berlin
Fireworks explode on New Year’s Eve on January 1, 2012 in Berlin, Germany. Getty Images/Andreas Rentz

From the New Year, all newly issued euro zone sovereign debt will include a legal provision that can force investors to accept losses in a crisis. Collective Action Clauses (CACs) were originally intended to give legal clout to investors from the developed world who needed to push through restructuring of the bonds of developing counties’…

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China’s Troubled Solar Panel Makers Get A New Helping Hand

by in Asia-Pacific.
100MW photovoltaic on-grid power project in Dunhuang, Gansu Province. Getty Images AsiaPac/Feng Li
100MW photovoltaic on-grid power project in Dunhuang, Gansu Province. Getty Images AsiaPac/Feng Li

China’s solar panel industry was meant to be a shining success. Trillions of yuan of government subsidies and cheap loans were poured in to what was designated as a strategic emerging industry. It was green, technologically advanced and would help China meet both the country’s growing power demands and its people’s growing expectations of a cleaner environment. It had…

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Japan’s new economics team

by in Asia-Pacific.
New Japanese Prime Minister Abe and his cabinet ministers pose for a photo session after their first cabinet meeting in Tokyo.
New Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (front row, center) and his cabinet

New Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe’s economics team are all close allies in his campaign to beat deflation and tame a strong yen with hyper-expansionary monetary policy and large-scale public works spending. Like Abe, they are mostly scions of some of the Liberal Democratic Party’s (LDP’s) most established political families. They include:
Taro Aso, finance minister, financial services minister and…

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