As Congress debates whether to grant President Obama authority to complete the most ambitious trade agenda in a generation, the most important organized voice for America’s workforce is once again in a familiar place — standing outside, screaming for lawmakers to stop.
Steven A. Tananbaum Senior Fellow for International Economics Robert Kahn argues that it is time for central banks to debate whether a higher inflation target would improve the operation of monetary policy.
As a relatively new field, gender in macroeconomics suffers from incomplete data and from insufficient focus outside official institutions. In “Citi GPS Women in the Economy: Global Growth Generators,” CFR Senior Fellow Heidi Crebo-Rediker in a report co-authored with Tina M. Fordham of Citi, CFR Adjunct Senior Fellow Willem Buiter, and Ebrahim Rahbari of Citi revisit the “Global Growth Generators” thesis and argue that new policy responses, as well as learning from best practice, could improve female labor force participation with significant benefits that are not just economic but have social implications as well.
Tesla is planning to scale up production of its lithium-ion batteries, which today power electric vehicles but tomorrow could back up the electricity grid, by building a massive “Gigafactory” in Nevada. Varun Sivaram argues that while positive in the short run, Tesla’s mediocre battery could crowd out more promising, advanced battery technologies in the long run, impeding long-term progress on climate change.
For fifty years, Moore’s Law has governed the startling pace of innovation in the computer chip industry. That Moore’s Law is an extraordinary phenomenon, unique to a single industry, is often forgotten by clean energy commentators who misappropriate it for predicting the progress of technologies like solar panels and batteries. Varun Sivaram argues that this sort of analogy is misleading, and that the clean energy sector should aspire to Moore-esque advances.
Poised to revive its nuclear industry, Japan should continue to encourage investment in solar as well, which could help meet its energy goals and set an example for the world, writes CFR’s Varun Sivaram.
As supporters of the Trans-Pacific Partnership try to round up backers, they increasingly emphasise the geopolitical case for concluding a deal. But too often they overstate the case—and, in doing so, generate real geopolitical risks of their own, while also jeopardising the agreement they seek.
Authors: Benn Steil and Dinah Walker Forbes Online
Benn Steil’s Forbes op-ed with Dinah Walker examines why Walmart is raising its minimum starting wage. Contrary to arguments from popular commentators, there is no logical reason to suggest hidden motives related to political pressure. Walmart remains as relentless on costs as ever; wage pressures in the retail sector, we show, are wholly sufficient to explain the company’s move.
The new House budget sets a deadline of October 1 to “cut waste, eliminate redundancies and end the abuse or misuse of taxpayer dollars,” and it specifically targets the Department of Defense (DOD) for spending “part of their budget studying climate change.” Varun Sivaram highlights how the military’s broad portfolio of climate change adaptation efforts should not be considered redundant or wasteful because it bolsters American national security interests.
In his testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Africa and Global Health Policy, Thomas J. Bollyky argues that continued U.S. and private sector leadership on the unfinished health agenda in Africa is as important now as it has been in the past and for the same reasons: a peaceful, inclusive economy presupposes healthier, more productive lives.
Benn Steil’s new Forbes op-ed examines Paul Krugman's data analysis purporting to document definitively that "austerity," defined by declines in real government purchases, damaged growth between 2010 and 2013. He shows that this finding collapses entirely when he excludes countries without independent monetary policies, such as those in the Eurozone. For countries with independent monetary policies, changes in real government purchases had no effect on growth.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government recently set a target of 100 GW of solar panels in India by 2022, a target that would leapfrog India over all developed countries. Varun Sivaram critically examines how realistic the Modi Government’s ambition is for India to become the “renewable energy capital of the world.”
In Market Madness: A Century of Oil Panics, Crises, and Crashes, stock analyst Blake C. Clayton tempers the craze surrounding oil exhaustion through a combination of historical investigation and sober, persuasive analysis. His book is a lucid, credible riposte to apocalyptic ravings about “peak oil.” Clayton examines how such panics have persisted through the decades, all unfounded, yet devastating to the market. Market Madness enjoins consumers, policymakers, and brokers to abstain from hysteria and remain informed about what the future of energy truly holds.
Steven A. Tananbaum Senior Fellow for International Economics Robert Kahn argues that while new collective action clauses are a step forward in dealing with sovereign debt crises, countries must work to change old debt that lacks the clauses to the new standard as quickly as possible.
After three years of unusual stability around $100 a barrel, oil prices fell steeply in the second half of 2014, dropping from $115 a barrel in June to around $60 by December. With oil critical to national economies, international security and climate change, what does the apparent new world of oil mean?
The WHO’s tobacco treaty in 2005 was hailed as a crucial tool for controlling one of the world’s most lethal substances and as a model for confronting other global health problems. Ten years later it is a qualified success, write CFR’s Thomas J. Bollyky and David P. Fidler.
Speakers: Michael Gfoeller, David Goldwyn, and Angela E. Stent Presider: Michael A. Levi
Michael Gfoeller, advisor at The Chertoff Group, David Goldwyn, president of Goldwyn Global Strategies, and Angela E. Stent, professor at Georgetown University, join CFR’S Michael A. Levi, David M. Rubenstein Senior Fellow for Energy and the Environment, to discuss the geopolitical implications of low oil prices.
In Market Madness, Blake C. Clayton shows that predictions of dwindling oil supplies and a rise in prices have been empirically proven incorrect. Technological advances and geopolitical shifts have repeatedly prompted sudden, severe drops in oil prices—exactly like the one we are experiencing today.
In By All Means Necessary, Elizabeth C. Economy and Michael Levi explore the unrivaled expansion of the Chinese economy. China is now engaged in a far-flung quest, hunting around the world for resources, and deploying whatever it needs in the economic, political, and military spheres to secure them. More
In Money, Markets, and Sovereignty, the authors present a fascinating intellectual history of monetary nationalism from the ancient world to the present and explore why, in its modern incarnation, it represents the single greatest threat to globalization. More
In The Closing of the American Border, Edward Alden goes behind the scenes to tell the story of the Bush administration's struggle to balance security and openness in the wake of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. More