By John Foley
The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.
In the history of India’s economic reforms, rhetoric has often proved to be a stronger force than substance. Scrutinizing The Indian Growth Story, a facile phrase casually tossed about by newsmakers and newswriters, reveals that. Historians, however, have documented the liberalization of the economy in 1991 — the pole around which the Story spins — furtively. A good chunk of Mihir S Sharma’s gripping first book, Restart, delves into the events of that hot summer of 1991: the colicking infancy of a reformist India and how a missed opportunity and internalised mistakes have plagued the economic agenda ever since.
It has been a week since China's State Administration for Industry and Commerce published a report accusing the e-commerce company Alibaba of selling counterfeits, infringing trademarks and other dubious business practices. The Chinese regulator has since retracted the report, but in the meantime Alibaba announced disappointing earnings for the third quarter of 2014. The company's U.S.-traded American Depositary Shares, which launched in a record-setting initial public offering in September, fell sharply after both troubling disclosures. In all, Alibaba lost $11 billion in market capitalization last week.