The joy of driving was once an important part of the American Dream. Take to the open roads meant freedom and adventure. The utilitarian objective of moving from one place to another just does not seem to possess the same romance. As with all reminiscences of the past, the lingering memories like to keep the good times close and block out the troubles when possible. This same trait can be applied to the distinctly national love affair with the auto. But as with all things, times move on and many in the tech community believe that the next advancement in land travel will come from an AI revolution.
When the international financial press presents their standard explanation for the panic decline in the Chinese stock market, most want to tamp down the acute apprehension that the long awaited global depression is now at hand. Well, the International Business Times in their account on the China Stock Markets, makes a very insightful appraisal.
What does a CEO do when the economy is in a persistent down turn and your business cannot expand or grow? Jump at the time tested strategy of acquisition to gain market share seems to be the response in 2015. Yet a merger is no sure thing. Anyone remember AOL’s deal to buy Time Warner. How did that turn out? Just how much additional efficiency can be squeezed out of any company? In the era of part time contract workers and low wages, all the fat has been long gone. As for research and development in new technology or products, how will such innovation be marketed in an economy infatuated with the promise of Amazon Prime drone deliveries?
The usual holiday cheer that underpins the throngs of shoppers may be missing this season. Political pundits are eager to blame potential terrorist risks as a compelling reason to avoid the crowds at malls, but knowing the sentiments of the consumer culture, it is difficult to accept that retail businesses will be empty. Nevertheless, will the economy incentivize the bargain hunters to brave the added security obstacles to storm the doors for the reward of super discount pricing?
Even to the casual observer, the financial condition of government budgets are under severe stress. Taxes have gone up consistently and have outpaced any meager adjustments in income for most taxpayers. No one can reasonably expect that municipal financing is assured by simply raising assessments and rates to keep their bloated bureaucracies solvent. Since the middle class has never recovered from the money centered meltdown, the average community struggles with diminished resources.
Celebrating Labor Day is poised for a fundamental transition. As the work force shrinks, the 21th Century version of the nature of employment is undergoing deep and primal changes. Some stats that are relevant point out that 62.8%: Labor Force Participation Has Hovered Near 37-Year-Low for 11 Months.
The paradox in the question of who wins in a currency war presupposes that any participating combatant can actually claim victory. If winning means ending up with the most cash, when the value of the money as a store of tangible wealth is debased, it is doubtful anyone can be declared the victor. The absurdity of lowering the purchasing power of a countries currency to enable exports to be more competitive is economic sacrilege that the heretical “Free Trade” mythos is based upon. Without a reliable standard of objective comparison, floating currencies maneuver their exchange rates to disguise internal imbalances in their own political and economic expenditures.
With the approval vote in the United Nation Security Council of the P5 + 1 Iranian agreement, a smorgasbord of eager trading partners claw themselves out of the woodwork. The liquid black gold rush is on. With the rescinding of sanctions put into motion, over time the wheels of commerce will be put back on track. No matter what the U.S. Congress does, the flood from international trade will start making deals with Iran.
The lethargic performance of the U.S. economy going back decades and plunging into an embedded depression, since the financial meltdown of 2007, has caused permanent damage. The business community and the financial press have yet to acknowledge that prospects are not going to improve. It does not take a commercial genius or an academic professor to look around at the shrinking middle class and conclude that the lessons of the preverbal business cycle no longer apply. In order for any economy to prosper, the fruits of commerce must improve the financial conditions of the producing contributors.
The quandary of the economic dilemma continues. A globe suffering from a deflationary financial impact, while consumer prices rise well above the reported cost of living increases, does not bode well that prospects of commercial growth can rescue the world economy. What changes can overcome this predicament? Well, some academic scholar’s offers serious concern that a long term rebound towards prosperity is no longer possible.
The working poor suffer disproportionately from the offshoring of high paying jobs. The upsurge an hour in the minimum wage economy is the net result of a consorted effort to lower the standard of living of not just the struggling impoverished but for all scrambling households. When the communist manifesto advocated a progressive income tax, the proletariat was supposed to get a sliver of social justice. Just how well did that hogwash turn out?