Aug 29, 2014 10:20 UTC
Edward Hadas

Review: A pained call for radical financial reform

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By Edward Hadas

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are her own.

Martin Wolf is still recovering from the financial crisis. In his new book, the Financial Times economics commentator admits to being surprised at the depth, breadth and length of the economic malaise which followed the near collapse of the global financial system in 2008.

Aug 22, 2014 15:11 UTC

Review: Paul Ryan changes delivery but not direction

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By Stephanie Rogan

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are her own. 

Paul Ryan has written a book, just like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama before him. Unlike those of his Democratic rivals, though, the U.S. congressman and former vice presidential candidate’s is less memoir than campaign manifesto. Ryan’s fiscal prescriptions are familiar, but it’s also obvious he is trying to find a broader audience for them. Though it’s tempting to dismiss “The Way Forward” as just the musings of another presidential wannabe, the book’s title probably accurately reflects the notion that its contents will guide the Republican strategy in the years to come.

Jul 11, 2014 06:08 UTC

Review: Putting a face on China’s vague ambition

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By Peter Thal Larsen

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Can a large country be summed up in a single book? The notion may seem preposterous. When it comes to China, however, too many foreign writers seem determined to try to cram a state of more than 1.3 billion people into a few hundred pages. Few would dare attempt anything similar with the United States, which has a quarter of the population.

COMMENT

I will have to read this book, “Age of Ambition.” I see a lot of parallels with China and the U.S. I love this paragraph and I presume China talks about us the same way – ” It is either an economic powerhouse or a financial crisis waiting to happen. The Party has either come up with a better form of governance, or is in thrall to the corrupt elite, which is struggling to keep its grip on power. The country is either a belligerent military superpower preparing to impose its will on the rest of the globe, or run by a government that defensively stokes nationalist sentiments to give some sense of purpose to a restless population.” Thanks Peter.

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Jul 4, 2014 09:49 UTC
Edward Hadas

Review: An American-Chinese morality tale

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By Edward Hadas

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

The subtitle of Stephen Roach’s new book has an arresting image. “Unbalanced: the Codependency of America and China” describes two economies with mutually reinforcing dysfunctions. This approach is sometimes helpful, but the book’s strongest argument concerns the retired Morgan Stanley economist’s homeland. He makes a persuasive case that “most of America’s deep-seated economic problems…are of its own making.”

COMMENT

As a chinese-american with american heart and knowledge of the china, I will say the falling of the usa and the west nations, there are 2 reason, number, the globalization, the west CEOs just think make quick money, do not look at the long way, so, they just ship the jobs and technology to china without the trade balance, number two, china is one party with a few top leaders without election and with corruption. so, everything is not real business, every is the plan of the communist party, so, the plan of the communist party, is , use all power to make china stronger and weaker the west, for the reason of the value. china was and still is nz-mafia-communist nation, china was not and is not a real communist nation,china is controlled by afew people, with the goal to control the world

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Jun 27, 2014 14:57 UTC

Review: Rebooting banking – with Google’s help

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 By Dominic Elliott

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Brett King may be, as his own author’s note claims, “the foremost global expert on retail banking innovation.” But his latest book is let down by an excess of acronyms and gushing advertorial.

Jun 20, 2014 05:44 UTC

Review: ‘Leftover Women’ may hinder China’s growth

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By Katrina Hamlin

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are her own.

Women’s rights have taken a step backwards in China. A new book by Leta Hong Fincher blames that on the ruling Communist Party’s desire for social stability. But China may be depriving itself of an economic opportunity.

Jun 13, 2014 14:27 UTC

Review: “House of Debt” diagnosis beats remedies

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By Martin Hutchinson

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Atif Mian and Amir Sufi are better at diagnosis than cure. In their book, “House of Debt: How They (and You) Caused the Great Recession, and How We Can Prevent It from Happening Again,” the two professors make a compelling case that excess consumer debt caused the severity of the U.S. Great Recession. Unfortunately their mortgage bailout proposal would worsen future such problems. Another idea, shared value mortgages, might work partially – but tighter monetary policy would work better still.

Jun 6, 2014 09:29 UTC

Review: China gives Africa handy investment lesson

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By Stephanie Rogan

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are her own.

In the last decade nearly a million Chinese citizens have taken up residence in Africa. In his vivid new book, “China’s Second Continent,” Howard French tells stories of these migrants and the Africans whose lives they affect. The book weaves anecdotes and interviews with historical and geopolitical background to tell a larger tale of the PRC’s economic engagement in the continent. The result is an unflattering portrait of China’s involvement.

May 27, 2014 06:56 UTC

Piketty spreadsheets set bad Excel example

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By Richard Beales

The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own.

Thomas Piketty has had a bad few days. The Financial Times has launched a critique of the data behind the French economist’s bestseller “Capital in the Twenty-First Century.” In such a sweeping study, errors are almost inevitable. But he has also fallen prey to sloppy spreadsheets.

COMMENT

Unfortunate mistake, similar to the Reinhart and Rogoff mistake that was discovered by graduate student.

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May 2, 2014 10:17 UTC
Guest Contributor

Review: The UK’s EU choice is safety or adventure

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By Eric Chaney

Eric Chaney is chief economist at AXA Group. The opinions expressed are his own.

Hugo Dixon has thrown his intellectual weight into the European Union membership debate. The founder of Breakingviews has written a compact and yet comprehensive little book, “The In/Out Question.” His answer is neat and clear: “it would be a historic error to pull out. Our economy would suffer if we quit. Our global influence would also be diminished.” In the war of ideas, he does not take any prisoners.