22 January, 2016
What matters most in the oil price collapse is not how far the price falls, but how long it stays low. Oil-producing countries with nothing in common beyond their excessive dependence on oil all failed to diversify their economies. They are now unable to continue provide their citizens with cheap bread — or even circuses like the World Cup.

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15 January, 2016
The conspiracy theories advanced to explain the collapse in oil prices are silly nonsense. The end of the Chinese growth story has gutted oil and all other commodities. But this mega-event is having — and will continue to have — huge consequences across the world, to the point of undermining the supposed pillars of the current world order.

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Idols crumbling

08 January, 2016
Bungled government intervention has triggered a renewed plunge in the Chinese equity market. But the much greater collapse underway in China — of the real economy — is also caused by a failed government intervention on an epic scale. This week has shattered the misplaced belief in the wisdom and omnipotence of governments and central banks, whether in Beijing or Washington.

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Feet on the ground

December 25, 2015
American real estate is not bubbling anymore. Despite the availability of cheap money, demand is low and supply is ample — the exact opposite of the situation in 2006, when the real estate mania peaked. The reversal is being driven not just by finance and economics, but by a new behavioral paradigm, in which renting one’s home has become acceptable and even sensible.

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