Peterson Institute for International Economics Update Newsletter
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PIIE Update Newsletter
January 17, 2014

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  The German Case of Competitiveness with High Wages
Wednesday, January 22, 2014
12:30–2:00 pm (EST)
Calendar  Add to calendar
  Michael Sommer, head of the German Trade Union Federation (DGB) and of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), will discuss labor and business cooperation in Germany and what to expect from Germany's new minimum wage on Wednesday, January 22, 2014. The event will be cohosted by the Peterson Institute for International Economics, the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, the German Embassy, and the AFL-CIO.
  Policy Brief 14-2
Addressing Currency Manipulation Through Trade Agreements

C. Fred Bergsten
  C. Fred Bergsten Currency manipulation—the practice of governments suppressing the value of their currencies to increase net exports at others' expense—has vexed the United States for decades. It has driven the dollar systematically to overvalued levels and widened the US current account deficit to as much as $500 billion a year. Many in Congress are agitating for a ban on currency manipulation as a condition of agreeing to future trade deals, alarming many who fear that such a move will kill the deals outright. In this Policy Brief, Bergsten argues that including such a provision in trade deals and US trade promotion authority legislation will actually secure their passage and clear the way for a more open global economy. More importantly, he proposes practical ways for such a provision to be crafted and implemented.

>> Read full policy brief [pdf]

Europe's Institutional Mismatches Will Create More Turbulence in 2014 than in 2013

Nicolas Véron
Op-ed in China 2014, a special issue of the magazine Caixin
  Nicolas Veron Despite the financial and political turmoil in Italy and Cyprus in 2013, global investors were largely reassured by promises from European policymakers in 2012 to do "whatever it takes" to defend the integrity of the euro area. Among the positive steps were the creation of a European Banking Union and the European Central Bank's program to purchase sovereign debt. Several factors suggest that 2014 will be a bumpier year for Europe, however. The implementation of a banking union and the assessment of the banks' financial soundness, known as asset quality review, could expose more weaknesses in the financial system. The banking union remains incomplete, moreover, and the ECB's continued reluctance to engage in unconventional monetary policies suggests that the European economy will remain anemic.

>> Read full op-ed

North Korea and the Right to Food

Marcus Noland
  Marcus Noland In the 1990s North Korea suffered one of the worst famines of the 20th century, a man-made, preventable tragedy. By hindering aid efforts and not using resources at its disposal, North Korea is clearly culpable in the denial of the right of food. Establishing such culpability is difficult, but the United Nations' Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights can still document the actions of the regime and hold it accountable. While there is no real ethical choice other than to provide assistance, aid must be delivered in ways consistent with the values and obligations under international law by assuring that food is less likely to be diverted to the elite, sending it to the most affected areas, and insisting on improved monitoring.

>> Read full testimony [pdf]

Peterson Perspectives Interviews

audio  The IMF Gets Shut Out Again in Washington
Douglas A. Rediker says the failure of the Obama administration to win Congressional approval of funding and governance legislation for the International Monetary Fund is a blow to US credibility around the world.

Recent Blog Posts

RealTime Economic Issues Watch   China Economic Watch    North Korea:  Witness to Transformation
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A Dark Day for International Cooperation

Why the European Central Bank Will Likely Shrink from Quantitative Easing

Russia-Ukraine: An Unlikely Union

Calm Seas in Europe in 2014?

Canada's Patent Practices Threaten Medical Innovation

  The Unrelenting Weight of Waiting: China's Reserve Accumulation in 2013 and Outlook for 2014

Are Chinese Interest Rates Too High?

A Bad Year for Chinese Stocks

New National Audit on Local Government Borrowing in China: Three Years Later, Little Progress

A World of Known Unknowns: A Closer Look at the Allocation of China's Foreign Exchange Reserves
  We've Got A Plan. (Sort of.)

Rare Earths

The Persecution of Christians: The Open Doors World Watch List

What to Look for in the New Year: The Push for Foreign Investment

"Secret State of North Korea" Airing January 14th

Preview of Next Issue

Policy Brief
Income Inequality Developments in the Great Recession
Tomas Hellebrandt

The Impact of the Volcker Rule on Job Creators
Simon Johnson

In This Issue

José De Gregorio How Latin America Weathered the Global Financial Crisis

José De Gregorio, former governor of the Central Bank of Chile, presents the main conclusions of his latest book.
Tomomi Inada Japan's Breakthrough in Its Economic Revitalization—Our Efforts in Regulatory Reform

Tomomi Inada, Japanese Minister for Regulatory Reform, discusses regulatory reform in Japan.


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