Economics & Global Affairs

1068 Items

 In this June 10, 2019, file photo, a man walks past a money exchange shop decorated with different banknotes at Central, a business district of Hong Kong.

AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File

Analysis & Opinions - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

The Financial Implications of Deploying Sanctions in Hong Kong

| Aug. 19, 2019

If a symbolic denouncement is indeed the goal, Magnitsky sanctions are likely the right tool, as they would send a powerful message of solidarity with protesters to both the Hong Kong and mainland authorities. 

Blog Post - Views on the Economy and the World

Let’s Forget about 2% Inflation

| July 29, 2019

The Fed has some reasons for cutting interest rates at its meeting July 31, or subsequently if the US economy weakens. (And there are some good arguments on the other side as well, if growth remains as strong as it has been over the last year.)  But I find less persuasive one argument for easing: a perceived imperative to get inflation up to 2.0% or higher.

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke set a 2% target for the US inflation rate in January 2012.  Some other countries had already done the same.  Japan followed suit a year later. Indeed Shinzo Abe’s successful accession to prime minister in late 2012 was predicated on the promise that monetary policy would raise inflation (Japan having previously suffered from negative inflation).

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Analysis & Opinions - Globe and Mail

Central banks should forget about achieving 2 per cent inflation

| July 28, 2019

The United States Federal Reserve has some reasons to cut interest rates at its July 31 meeting, or subsequently if the U.S. economy weakens. (There is also a case for holding rates steady, if growth remains as strong as it has been over the past year.) But one argument for easing is less persuasive: a perceived imperative to get U.S. inflation up to or above 2 per cent.

Dollar bills

AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

Analysis & Opinions - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

The Consequences of Weaponizing the U.S. Dollar

| July 22, 2019

Should INSTEX itself be sanctioned, it would be a powerful signal to the rest of the world. In this scenario, critical dollar-denominated trade not currently facing sanctions, but at potential risk of being sanctioned in the future, could migrate to third party currencies, transferred through sanctions-resistant entities to an INSTEX-like body.

Capital Choices: Sectoral Politics and the Variation of Sovereign Wealth

University of Michigan Press

Book - University of Michigan Press

Capital Choices: Sectoral Politics and the Variation of Sovereign Wealth

| July 2019

Capital Choices analyzes the creation of different SWFs from a comparative political economy perspective, arguing that different state-society structures at the sectoral level are the drivers for SWF variation. Juergen Braunstein focuses on the early formation period of SWFs, a critical but little understood area given the high levels of political sensitivity and lack of transparency that surround SWF creation. Braunstein’s novel analytical framework provides practical lessons for the business and finance organizations and policymakers of countries that have created, or are planning to create, SWFs.

President Donald Trump, left, poses for a photo with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

AP Photo/Susan Walsh

Analysis & Opinions - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

A Financial Statecraft Strategy for the United States to Address the Rise of China

| July 01, 2019

Washington should adjust its coercive economic strategy to reflect a broader use of tools beyond sanctions. Given the degree of political interference in China’s banking system via formal state ownership and the indirect influence of opaque party committees, penalties imposed against the country’s banks are unlikely to produce a meaningful change in behavior.

Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren on a campaign stop

AP Photo/Charles Krupa

Analysis & Opinions - The Washington Post

Be Very Skeptical About How Much Revenue Elizabeth Warren’s Wealth Tax Could Generate

| June 28, 2019

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) has made her proposed 2 percent wealth tax on those worth more than $50 million a central part of her presidential campaign. Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman, two economists at the University of California at Berkeley, who helped developed the proposal, estimated that it it would rake in $187 billion a year.

Workers dismantle the Belt and Road Forum logo next to the “Golden Bridge of Silk Road” structure outside the media center as leaders are attending the round table summit of the Belt and Road Forum chaired by Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing, Saturday, April 27, 2019

AP Photo/Andy Wong

Paper - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

The Triangle in the Long Game

| June 19, 2019

The purpose of this paper is to analyze how China’s new power is reaching Europe, the challenges that it poses, and the European responses to this new reality. This process has to be examined in the context of the current strategic competition between China and the U.S. and its reflection on the transatlantic relationship.