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Archive for 8. März 2018

Ein Handelskrieg für Pittsburgh

Posted by hkarner - 8. März 2018

Warum Präsident Donald Trump auf einmal so schnell Strafzölle durchpeitschen will, hat vor allem einen Grund: die Nachwahl in der Stahlstadt Pittsburgh.

Washington. Donald Trump spielt seine Lieblingsrolle: Der US-Präsident gibt den gewieften Manager, der seine Ziele mit einer Mischung aus Drohungen, Bluff und Zugeständnissen erreicht. Kurz vor der geplanten Verkündung der angedrohten Strafzölle der USA auf Einfuhren von Stahl und Aluminium am Donnerstag liefen in Washington die Telefondrähte heiß. Mehr als hundert Politiker aus Trumps republikanischer Partei forderten, die Strafmaßnahmen müssten so zugeschnitten werden, dass ein großflächiger Handelskrieg vermieden werde. Der Präsident gestand bereits Ausnahmen für Kanada, den Hauptlieferanten der amerikanischen Stahl- und Aluminiumindustrie, sowie Mexiko zu. Das Feilschen wird vermutlich noch wochenlang weitergehen.

Lockangebote für „wahre Freunde“ Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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A Brexit Gentlemen’s Agreement

Posted by hkarner - 8. März 2018

Daniel Gros is Director of the Brussels-based Center for European Policy Studies. He has worked for the International Monetary Fund, and served as an economic adviser to the European Commission, the European Parliament, and the French prime minister and finance minister. He is the editor of Economie Internationale and International Finance.

The main barrier to keeping the UK in the EU’s customs union is political: a country with the heft and influence of the UK cannot be viewed as merely following EU decisions, over which it has no influence. Yet this problem can be solved – or, rather, finessed – with an informal agreement by the EU to take UK interests into account.

BRUSSELS – In her latest speech on Brexit, British Prime Minister Theresa May rejected the prospect of the United Kingdom remaining in the European Union’s customs union, on the grounds that the UK wants its own trade policy. This is not in the best interest of either the UK or the EU.

It is true that Norway and Switzerland, both of which are highly integrated into the EU market, have customs borders with the bloc. These countries need an independent commercial policy to provide greater protection than the EU offers to their domestic agricultural sectors, which in both cases can never be efficient, owing to mountainous terrain. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Macron’s Education Revolution

Posted by hkarner - 8. März 2018

Philippe Aghion

Philippe Aghion is a professor at the Collège de France and at the London School of Economics, and a fellow of the Econometric Society and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Benedicte Berner is a lecturer at Sciences Po in Paris, chair of Civil Rights Defenders, and an associate at Harvard University’s Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies.

French President Emmanuel Macron has drawn fire for his pro-growth economic reforms, which some critics have characterized as giveaways to corporations and the wealthy. But, when considered in full, Macron’s agenda is clearly aimed at reducing inequality and boosting social mobility.

PARIS – Since eliminating a wealth tax and imposing a flat tax on capital gains, French President Emmanuel Macron opponents have quite maliciously compared him to US President Donald Trump, who slashed taxes for the wealthiest Americans in December. Some of his harshest critics even refer to Macron as a “president for the rich.”

Nothing could be further from the truth. Viewed in full, Macron’s reform agenda offers a new and promising approach to tackling inequality and social immobility in France. And, at any rate, the United States and France are hardly comparable on these issues. Although income inequality has increased in France since 1990, it remains well below that of other developed countries. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Danger Ahead for the Eurozone

Posted by hkarner - 8. März 2018

Date: 07-03-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Policy makers needs to think carefully about what discretion the central bank should retain in a crisis.

Mario Draghi, head of the European Central Bank.

A recent flurry of activity between Paris and Berlin has raised hopes that the eurozone may be on the verge of a much-needed overhaul. The policy tools available to the European Central Bank are, however, receiving surprisingly little attention in this debate. This is worrisome, since experience has shown that when crisis shakes the eurozone, the central bank is the first line of defense.

Various reform proposals could de facto deny the ECB the discretion it has used to good effect in the past. In 2011, the bank was able to accept sovereign bonds as collateral for three-year loans to cash-squeezed banks (the LTRO program). In 2012, ECB President Mario Draghi developed a program to buy government bonds in the secondary market if necessary (the OMT program). In 2015, the ECB started buying government bonds as it proved the eurozone could engage in unorthodox monetary policies such as quantitative easing. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Is the US Ready for a Trade War?

Posted by hkarner - 8. März 2018

Date: 07-03-2018
Source: YaleGlobal

Donald Trump won the US presidency by promising trade battles to restore manufacturing jobs that have also been decimated by automation. After announcing plans to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, he maintained that “trade wars are good, and easy to win.” Scott Kennedy, with the Center for Strategic and International Studies, agrees that China distorts the global economy with discriminatory policies, seeking to dominate key industries through subsidies and over-production. Yet he also maintains that the United States is woefully unprepared for a potential trade war in five ways: by expecting China to fold quickly, not knowing what it wants, not preparing US citizens for higher prices and other sacrifices, not coordinating allies and even aggravating them, and not preparing for details that include possible court challenges. Trump’s threat to impose tariffs presents many unknowns and may yet prove to be bluster. If he proceeds, he will alienate many of his supporters while confronting a formidable opponent in a united China. – YaleGlobal

Triggering trade wars may seem easy for world’s largest economy, but the US is not ready for retaliation Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The U.S.-China Rivalry Is, More Than Ever, a Fight Over Tech

Posted by hkarner - 8. März 2018

Date: 07-03-2018
Source: The New York Times

The chip maker Qualcomm is the target of a hostile takeover bid by Broadcom, a proposal that the United States government has said could give Chinese rivals an advantage.

WASHINGTON — As the United States and China look to protect their national security needs and economic interests, the fight between the two financial superpowers is increasingly focused on a single area: technology.

The clash erupted in public on Tuesday after the United States government, citing national security concerns, called for a full investigation into a hostile bid to buy the American chip stalwart Qualcomm — a review that is often a death knell for a corporate deal.

The proposed acquisition by the Singapore-based Broadcom would have been the largest deal in technology history, creating a major force in the development of the computer chips that power smartphones and many internet-connected devices. But a government panel said the takeover could weaken Qualcomm and give its Chinese rivals an advantage. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Beleaguered GE Hopes Energy Storage Is Its Next Big Business

Posted by hkarner - 8. März 2018

Date: 07-03-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

The battery-storage market is expected to grow fast in the next decade, with Tesla Inc. and Siemens AG among other new entrants

General Electric is set to announce GE Reservoir, a giant new battery platform for storing power generated by wind turbines and solar panels. Shown, an engineer climbing out of a GE turbine at a wind farm in Mongolia in 2016.

HOUSTON— General Electric Co. plans to unveil a new battery platform Wednesday as it seeks to become a leader in the emerging market of storing electricity.

The giant platform called GE Reservoir will be able to store power generated by wind turbines and solar panels for later use. It will also be able to be used to add jolts of power when needed to stabilize voltage and frequency on the electric grid. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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