The World Economic Cycle at a Critical Juncture

When demand is replaced by speculation

In April 2006, the IMF issued an overall extremely positive appraisal of the world economic development for the third consecutive year in this decade. The impression created is that the turbulent times of the second half of the 90s and the crises of the beginning of this decade have been overcome, the lessons of failed economic policy have been learned and the course has been set for uninterrupted positive development in the coming years. However, this impression is deceptive, writes Jörg Huffschmid.

On the one hand there are risks, already mentioned by the IMF in previous reports, that continue or have even become more severe: high oil prices, unstable financial markets, global imbalances. On the other hand, the central problem of distribution remains occluded...

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