Articles on Economics

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The risks facing the planet call for a new approach to economics. Red Cross/AAP

G20 climate challenge calls for a rethink of economics

Focusing on growth, the Brisbane G20 leaders’ summit has not grappled with three key issues. How much more growth can the planet survive? How can poorer nations raise their living standards to parity with…
The economic cost of Ebola is estimated at around 3% of GDP for Liberia, and this does not take into account human costs. Ahmed Jallanzo/ AAP

The economics of Ebola

Economists are being called upon to estimate the costs of the Ebola epidemic to West Africa and elsewhere. However, economists should also play a part in estimating the likelihood of the disease spreading…
Trading floors like this one – at the old American Stock Exchange in the 1980s – are at the heart of capitalism and financial speculation. David Foster/Flickr via CC BY-ND

Financial speculation: the good, the bad and the parasitic

The word “speculation” carries a connotation of negativity. And it’s probably fair to say that pretty much every financial crisis since the tulip mania of the 1630s can be attributed to some sort of mass…
Don’t confuse happy individuals with happy societies. Minerva Studio

Beyond GDP: happiness is about more than just individuals

Many readers of this piece will be aware that economists are rethinking the role of happiness and GDP. They question facile assumptions about economic growth alone being good for us. What’s the good of…
Who’s afraid of a little economic history? johnwilliamsphd/Flickr

Economics hijackers could do with a history lesson

Behind every economic policy initiative lies a narrative justifying that course of action: immigration increases unemployment; public debt is unsustainable; manufacturing is interminably declining; city…
Janet Yellen will make waves next year. International Monetary Fund

What will happen when the US Fed starts hiking rates?

As the US economy emerges from recession, the prospect of the US Federal Reserve raising interest rates grabs the attention of the financial markets more and more. US rates have been close to zero for…
Wanted: a new kind of economics. Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

Building a new economics for the #Occupy generation

After the global financial crisis in 2008, economics was in disarray. Even the Queen was moved to chide economists for failing to warn about the build-up of debt in households and banks in the major economies…
Scotland has lit a fire under sterling. mudricky

Sterling may take a pounding whatever Scotland decides

While Edinburgh and London wrestle over the future of the pound, it has has been sinking. The slide (especially against the US dollar) is widely seen as a knee-jerk reaction to the possibility of Scotland…
High-emission brown coal power generators including Hazelwood are set to be among the short-term winners from the carbon tax repeal. AAP Image/David Crosling

Who gains most from axing the carbon tax – and at what cost?

When the carbon tax was introduced, there was a lot of discussion about winners and losers. The Labor government limited the number of businesses that had to pay the tax, while it also gave carbon tax…

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