Who will win the trade war, and how? If the job market is so strong, why does your paycheck seem so meager? What will drive the economy of the future? Stephanomics, a podcast hosted by Bloomberg Economics head Stephanie Flanders, the former BBC economics editor and chief market strategist for Europe at JPMorgan Asset Management, will take listeners on location each week to answer questions like these and bring the global economy to life.
European Central Bank President Mario Draghi earned the ire of Donald Trump this week with his farewell speech at a major annual conference. Editor Paul Gordon was there at the prestigious gathering in Sintra, Portugal, and breaks down Draghi's comments with host Stephanie Flanders. Then hear a special recording of Stephanie's engaging live panel discussion this week in London with two of the city's most prominent economic voices, HSBC Chief Economist Janet Henry and the Chief Economic Advisor to the UK Treasury, Clare Lombardelli. They discuss an increasingly hazy outlook for the world economy and offer their unique perspective on women and diversity in the economics profession -- or lack thereof.
Workers around the globe are in for a shock in coming decades as automation transforms the workplace and maybe destroys their jobs. But for Nobel-winning economist Christopher Pissarides, it's not all dismal. Host Stephanie Flanders has an extended talk with the London School of Economics professor about the upsides of automation and how Europe may actually be well-positioned to survive this transition. They also discuss the risk of another Eurozone crisis and the need for a broader measure of economic success than national output or GDP. Then Stephanie catches up with Bloomberg reporter Shawn Donnan for an update on the U.S.-China trade war and his observations from a recent visit to the Asian nation.
If you live in the U.K., your workweek could soon be a day shorter if the political winds tilt more heavily toward the left. Jess Shankleman reports on how the proposal is gaining momentum and how it might affect Britain, then Bloomberg Opinion columnist Noah Smith joins host Stephanie Flanders for a deeper look at the economic questions raised by the four-day week.
On this week's episode, former Obama administration official Wendy Cutler draws on her deep experience as a trade negotiator to offer her views on the tariff standoff between the U.S. and China. Guest host Tom Orlik, Bloomberg's chief economist, also gets an inside look at the talks from reporter Jenny Leonard in Washington.Meanwhile, reporter Ivan Levingston sheds light on how Israel is desperate to fill jobs and is turning to a religious group that's also crucial to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's ruling coalition.
“What Goes Up” is a new show from Bloomberg that tracks the main themes influencing global markets. Hosts Sarah Ponczek and Mike Regan speak with guests about the wildest movements in markets and what they mean for your investments. The show is out now, and can be found on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen.
Bloomberg and Wondery Present: The Shrink Next Door
Marty Markowitz had his share of problems. His parents had recently died. He had troubles at work. A failing relationship. He needed someone to help him through this rough patch in his life. So he decided to get some professional help from a psychiatrist. What he did not count on, was what happened in his life over the next twenty-nine years. This is a story about power, control, and turning to the wrong person for help. Listen now at bloomberg.com/shrinknextdoor
The longest economic expansion in the developed world may not be much longer for this world -- and that fear helped drive the shock election result in Australia last week. In the country where GDP has been growing for an amazing almost 28 years, Bloomberg's Chris Bourke explores how the cratering real estate market is threatening the first recession since Vanilla Ice topped the music charts. Host Stephanie Flanders also talks with Bloomberg editor Malcolm Scott and economist Tamara Henderson about what the conservative government's re-election means for the economy Down Under. Then Stephanie catches up with Federal Reserve reporter Chris Condon about the central bank's sweeping review of how it approaches policy.
Germany's engineering prowess has driven the nation's economic success for decades. Now that model is being questioned thanks to rising protectionism, slowing global growth, new technologies and Germany's own underinvestment in its infrastructure. Bloomberg's Catherine Bosley has a report from the factory floor, then host Stephanie Flanders talks with columnist Ferdinando Giugliano about what's ailing Europe's powerhouse. Stephanie also hears from economic editor Paul Gordon about another hot topic where Germany's influence is uncertain: the race for the next president of the European Central Bank.
Where are there more millennials than in North America, Europe and the Middle East combined, who are vastly different from their parents' generation? China, of course. Kevin Hamlin reports on how these young people are redefining the world's second-biggest economy -- and also the world. Host Stephanie Flanders then turns to Andrew Browne, head of Bloomberg's New Economy Forum, and Bloomberg chief economist Tom Orlik for their perspective what makes Chinese millennials special and the impact they will have. Finally, Bloomberg senior trade reporter Shawn Donnan returns to Stephanomics to talk about the latest developments in the U.S.-China tariff war.
These days about one in three bites of food you eat wouldn’t be possible without commercial bee pollination. And the economic value of insect pollination worldwide is estimated to be about $217 billion. But as important as bees have become for farming, there’s also increasing signs that bees are in trouble. In the decade-plus since the first cases of Colony Collapse Disorder were reported, bees are still dying in record numbers, and important questions remain unanswered. On this new miniseries, host Adam Allington and environment reporters David Schultz and Tiffany Stecker travel to all corners of the honeybee ecosystem from Washington, D.C., to the California almond fields, and orchards of the upper Midwest to find answers to these questions.
Many older Americans are living longer and are happy to keep working. Others can't afford to retire. Those are just a couple of the reasons why people over age 65 are swelling the ranks of U.S. employees in recent decades. On this week's episode of Stephanomics, Matthew Boesler takes a closer look at this phenomenon and how it's reshaping the world's largest economy. Stephanie Flanders delves deeper into this issue in an interview with Teresa Ghilarducci, an economist at the New School for Social Research, from the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California. Then Stephanie visits Bloomberg's Los Angeles bureau to chat with reporter Anousha Sakoui about the new economics of global cinema following the record-setting haul of the latest Avengers film.
Will a dose of free-market policies -- from a populist politician, no less -- finally bring Latin America's biggest economy back to life? On this week's episode of Stephanomics, Bruce Douglas visits the region's busiest port to get a taste of what's ailing Brazil -- and the possible cure. Stephanie also brings you the second part of her interview with Harvard University economist Larry Summers -- the former U.S. Treasury secretary and Obama adviser -- with his comments on Brazil's economy and the new thinking on progressive U.S. fiscal policy. Finally, Stephanie talks with editor Catarina Saraiva about Bloomberg’s dreaded Misery Index.
Of the many forces driving the wave of hiring across the U.S. in recent years, technology is typically not on the list because automation and artificial intelligence tend to be seen as job-killing rather than job-enhancing. On this week's episode of Stephanomics, reporter Craig Torres visits a hospital where new technologies are actually creating the need for more -- not fewer -- employees.Then, Stephanie interviews Larry Summers -- the Harvard University economist and former U.S. Treasury secretary -- for his predictions on technology and employment, plus his thoughts on the U.S. economy and Federal Reserve. Finally, Stephanie talks with Bloomberg reporter Jeanna Smialek about how central bankers may be reduced to using what one economist calls "poor man's monetary policy."
Introducing "What Goes Up," A New Show From Bloomberg
On this new show from Bloomberg, hosts Mike Regan and Sarah Ponczek speak with expert guests each week about the main themes influencing global markets. They explore everything from stocks to bonds to currencies and commodities, and how each asset class affects trading in the others. Whether you’re a financial professional or just a curious retirement saver, What Goes Up keeps you apprised of the latest buzz on Wall Street and what the wildest movements in markets will mean for your investments.
The trade war between the U.S. and China is taking a toll on growth in the world's two largest economies, but there's another nation where the tariff battle is producing a clear winner: Vietnam. This week, reporters Michelle Jamrisko and Uyen Nguyen visit a furniture maker in Hanoi to get a sense of how companies are profiting from the U.S.-China tensions. Stephanie also talks with Bloomberg Opinion columnist Daniel Moss about the trade war and other forces shaping Asia's economies, then catches up with Bloomberg trade-coverage czar Brendan Murray about the implications of an interesting recent World Trade Organization decision.
Fortnite may be the biggest video-game phenomenon with more than 200 million registered players. It's also a good place to start if you want to understand globalization -- and the new directions the global economy is taking today. In the premiere episode of Stephanomics, hosted by Bloomberg Economics head Stephanie Flanders, reporter Shawn Donnan explains how Fortnite has not only bypassed the U.S.-China trade war, but is also a key example of what's happening in the new digital economy. Then Stephanie talks with economist Richard Baldwin about how technology is crossing borders and changing the labor market.
Stephanie Flanders, Bloomberg's head of economics, takes you on location each week to bring the global economy to life. From Asia's factories to Brazil's ports and America's hospital corridors, Stephanomics delivers on-the-ground reporting from the Bloomberg Economics team around the world and talks with experts for analysis of hot topics.
Introducing "Works For Me," A New Podcast From Bloomberg
On this new show from Bloomberg, hosts Francesca Levy and Rebecca Greenfield navigate the productivity industry by way of their own experiences. In each episode, one of the two becomes a human guinea pig as she tries to solve a specific work-related problem. Using the advice of so-called productivity experts, the duo tackles obstacles like ineffective to-do lists, overflowing inboxes and unruly meetings. Follow along with their attempts, insights and missteps, and maybe find a solution that will work for you.
Most U.S. economic data, such as jobs and consumer spending, is based not on actual data, but on surveys of Americans and businesses. What if you could look at every single purchase that people make, or peek at the bank accounts of every small business? The JPMorgan Chase Institute is trying to do just that -- using the bank's vast customer data -- and sniff out trends in the economy that are invisible in the official numbers.
Wildfires and hurricanes are causing increasing destruction, part of how climate change is reshaping economies around the world. There are also business and investment opportunities in dealing with the effects -- though you may have to think in the very long term.
With power-shifting elections, emerging-market turbulence and a trade war making waves, how does it all add up for the world economy in 2019? Catherine Mann, chief global economist at Citigroup, joins Benchmark for a tour of major economies including the U.S., China and Japan, highlighting what's going to be OK, what's not, and why it's wrong to think of "emerging markets" as their own entity.
Look beyond headlines on unemployment and job creation and you'll see a bigger transformation. The global market for labor was boosted for three decades by a handful of historical flukes now going into reverse. Robots everywhere, including China, will be at the forefront of this change, says Andrew Schwedel, a partner at Bain & Co. He tells Bloomberg Opinion's Daniel Moss and Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News why the era of plentiful labor is ending.
What’s the most sure-fire way to get a flight upgrade? How can you find the best, secret local restaurants by asking just one question? What's the first thing you should do when you get into a hotel room? On Bloomberg's new podcast Travel Genius, we'll give you those answers—and plenty more—as hosts Nikki Ekstein and Mark Ellwood quiz the world’s most experienced globetrotters for their tried-and-true travel hacks. Listen weekly, and even your work trips will go from a necessary evil to an expert art form. Plus, you'll be padding out your bucket list with dreams of amazing future vacations.
Where does a medical cure come from? 100 years ago, it wasn't uncommon for scientists to test medicines by taking a dose themselves. As medical technologies get cheaper and more accessible, patients and DIY tinkerers are trying something similar—and mainstream medicine is racing to catch up. Prognosis explores the leading edge of medical advances, and asks who gets—or should get—access to them. We look at how innovation happens, when it fails, and what it means to the people with a disease trying to feel better, live longer, or avoid death.
Paul Volcker made his mark as the inflation-defeating chairman of the Federal Reserve. Now at age 91, he's just published a new memoir called "Keeping At It." His collaborator happens to be Bloomberg Markets editor Christine Harper, who shares the inside story of what it was like to work with him.
The U.S. Economy Is Doing Great. Why Isn't Housing?
The housing market is one of the few sectors of the U.S. economy that isn't sharing in the recent pickup in growth. Purchases are slowing down, builders aren't building so much, and some people are even reluctant to post their properties for sale. Scott Lanman digs into the details with Bloomberg reporter Prashant Gopal and Bloomberg economist Yelena Shulyatyeva.
Bloomberg’s head of economics Stephanie Flanders calls on Bloomberg's worldwide network of reporters and expert commentators to cast a fresh eye on looming challenges for the world economy which affect us all.This 6 part podcast combines on the ground reporting with expert discussion on the future of cities, finance and technology, trade, global governance and making growth more inclusive. It's the start of a global conversation on how to confront these issues which will continue in Singapore in early November, when around 400 top business leaders and thinkers from across the globe will gather in Singapore for the first New Economy Forum.
In the final episode of our special series on China's Belt and Road initiative, we go to Europe to learn more about how that continent is involved with the giant infrastructure project. Bloomberg reporter Tom Mackensie takes us to a sprawling port in Athens dubbed the "Dragon's Head," and run by China in partnership with Costco; and then to a small town in Germany that is being transformed by the project.
The creation story of the first exchange-traded fund is actually the best way to understand how they work. And it's not just educational, it's entertaining. Like the PC and the MP3, the story of the creation of SPY -- which turned 30 this year -- is full of characters, twists and turns, and subplots. In the end, the product launched an industry that's reshaping not just investing but the entire financial ecosystem. This six-episode miniseries will weave together interviews with the founding fathers and other key players that help investors better understand the ETF and how we got here.
Don't fret too much about tariffs and trade deficits. The real competition between the U.S. and China will be in artificial intelligence and data, says Kai-Fu Lee, author of "AI Superpowers: China, Silicon Valley and the New World Order." Lee explores who wins in this struggle for influence, and how it affects workers.
In the third episode of this four-part series on China's Belt and Road initiative, we look at Kenya and how Chinese investment in cargo and commuter railways between Mombasa and Nairobi is impacting economic development in the region. Bloomberg TV producer Rosalind Chin and series host David Tweed discuss how strengthening ties between these two countries may play out.
"Best Economy" Ever? A Historian Tackles Trump's Claim
The job numbers are strong and GDP growth looks great, but is it really the "best economy" in U.S. history as President Donald Trump says? Robert Gordon, a Northwestern University professor and author of the 2016 book “The Rise and Fall of American Growth,'' dives into the history and discusses what's not so great about the current situation.
Jeffrey Sachs On Making Foreign Policy Reflect Economics
For all the current strength of American economy, the country lacks the economic clout to bend the world to its liking. The U.S. lacks a foreign policy that truly reflects the shift in commercial gravity toward Asia, says Jeffrey Sachs, one of the world's most prominent economists. Sachs tells Bloomberg Opinion's Daniel Moss and Bloomberg News's Scott Lanman that it's time for a new brand of statecraft to match the retreat in U.S. economic muscle.
In the second of this four-part series on China's Belt and Road initiative, we talk to Haslinda Amin, who hosts the second episode of Bloomberg's TV series on the initiative and has traveled extensively through Southeast and Central Asia for the project. She looks at the complex ways countries in the region view China's sprawling infrastructure investment. India, for example, has one of the world's largest rail networks, and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank has committed in excess of 3 billion dollars to the country's transportation system. This episode explores the political and strategic reasons China is interested in contributing to boosting India's infrastructure.
Brazil's Wild Election Holds Key to Region's Economy
Can South America's largest economy get any worse? It may all depend on the outcome of next month's presidential election in Brazil. The campaign has already seen its share of drama, and investors are spooked about a return to heavy government intervention in the economy that could see banks forced to offer cheap credit. Scott Lanman and Daniel Moss discuss the election with Bloomberg editor Bruce Douglas in Brasilia.
The force of the trade war unleashed by Donald Trump goes beyond peeved farmers and pricier gadgets. The entire economic model of modern corporations is up for grabs, just as China is undergoing a huge internal shift that's likely to upend supply chains. Frances Lim of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts shares with Daniel Moss of Bloomberg Opinion her conclusions from a recent trip to the epicenter.
As a special bonus, we’re bringing Benchmark listeners the first peek at a four-part series on China’s Belt and Road Initiative. President Xi Jinping calls it the project of the century: a massive infrastructure spending program that hopes to enhance trade and connectivity throughout Eurasia. Through a networks of projects that span the transportation, finance, telecom and power industries, the economic corridors and maritime roads that span Eurasia could fundamentally change the dynamics of global business. In the first of four episodes, we find out what Belt and Road is, and why it’s been described as everything from “an exercise in empire building” to “a new world order.”
The auto industry is being buffeted from all sides. Consumer tastes have shifted, forcing manufacturers to retool product lines. President Donald Trump is threatening tariffs on imported autos. And the move toward electric vehicles and autonomous cars could have profound implications for our world. Ellen Hughes-Cromwick of the University of Michigan, a former chief economist at Ford and the Commerce Department, discusses these topics with Bloomberg's Scott Lanman.
Economic divisions in the U.S. brought an end to World War II as much as the atomic bombs. On the anniversary of Japan's surrender, historian Marc Gallicchio explains how bitter fights between business, unions and Congress marred the final months of the conflict.
Americans Get Lots of Government Money, And They Still Hate Washington
Why do so many Americans ignore their hip pocket? Portions of the country where citizens are increasingly dependent on government programs, like Kentucky, have become the most conservative. This transformation in the nation's economics and politics goes beyond Donald Trump; some of the most anti-government lawmakers come from Kentucky. Cornell University's Suzanne Mettler discusses this paradox with Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg Opinion.
What You Need to Know About Turkey's Financial Crunch
Turkey's currency plunged this month after President Donald Trump stepped up economic sanctions in a dispute over a detained pastor. It was already going downhill after the nation's leader vowed to shun the traditional playbook of dealing with soaring inflation. And global investors are spooked. Onur Ant, a reporter for Bloomberg in Turkey, discusses the situation and how we got here with Scott Lanman. Note: This episode was recorded on Tuesday, Aug. 14.
Bitcoin was recently called a combination of a bubble, a Ponzi scheme and an environmental disaster by one of the world's leading authorities on finance and economics. But underneath that sensational description, cryptocurrencies are saddled with underlying technological flaws that will likely prevent them from living up to the hype or merely becoming a more commonly used currency. Hyun Song Shin, head of research at the Bank for International Settlements in Switzerland, discusses the topic with Bloomberg News economics editor Scott Lanman.
It's not tastebuds or the latest fetish at trendy health food stores that's driving the boom in bug gastronomy. Broad economic forces like climate change and population growth mean insects and grubs are appearing on more menus around the world. Bloomberg's Agnieszka de Sousa talks with Scott and Dan about how little critters can avert a food crisis, while Olympia Yarger talks about her bug-food startup.
President Donald Trump's trade war is hitting a wide variety of goods produced in America, and Alaska's fisheries are caught in the crossfire. The industry has become highly dependent on ties with China, thanks to shipments that head there for processing and are then exported again. How is a state that voted big for Trump and Republicans in 2016 coping with the threat to one of its most vital economic sectors? Alexa Tonkovich, executive director of the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, and Ralph Townsend, an economist at the University of Alaska Anchorage, discuss the issue with Scott Lanman and Reade Pickert of Bloomberg News.
Trump's election wasn't a fluke. Nor are tariffs a passing fad. They reflect deep-seated trauma at the country's decline relative to China. So enraged and befuddled is the U.S. that it's a danger to itself, its closest allies and the global trading system, says former Australian foreign minister Bob Carr. A long-time lover of Americana and leader of the Chester A. Arthur Society, Carr is no crazy leftie. He tells Dan Moss of Bloomberg Opinion and Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News why he's just about given up on the U.S.
How many times have you heard India and China mentioned in the same breath? We may be looking at the South Asian giant all wrong. The best comparison might be with the robber-baron era in America, rather than China's state capitalism, says author James Crabtree. Crabtree explains to Dan and Scott what inspired his new book “The Billionaire Raj: A Journey Through India's New Gilded Age” and how India has become the financial powerhouse of world cricket.
Is a trade war or surging debt the biggest threat to China's economy? Try declining fertility. While the nation recently relaxed its one-child policy, such moves are unlikely to head off a projected plunge in population that will constrain the country in coming decades. In the second of a two-part episode on falling global fertility, Scott Lanman talks with Cai Yong, an expert in Chinese demographics at the University of North Carolina, about the challenges facing the world's second-biggest economy.
How Falling Fertility Threatens the Global Economy
Around the world, women are having far fewer children than they were 50 years ago. This decline in fertility threatens to cause falling populations in many countries, which weighs on economic growth because it means fewer workers who can produce goods and services. In the first of a two-part episode of Benchmark, Scott Lanman talks with Elizabeth Katkin, author of the new book "Conceivability," about why it's so hard for many couples to overcome struggles with fertility -- and how countries differ on their approach to the issue.
The U.S. and China are on the verge of a trade war, one that President Donald Trump says will be easy to win. So how will it really impact China's economy? Is the nation's GDP really growing at an incredible 7 percent rate, or is it about to collapse from a mountain of debt and aging population? Jeff Kearns, a Bloomberg editor who just finished a three-year stint in Beijing, helps separate myth from fact with host Scott Lanman, himself a former China economy editor.
How Countries Are Grappling With The Gender Pay Gap
Globally, women make 50 percent less than men. In the U.S. and U.K., it's about 20 percent. Why? What are some countries trying to do to fix it? And is this even possible? Rebecca Greenfield, host of Bloomberg's "The Pay Check" podcast, joins Scott Lanman to discuss some of the findings and stories from her show.
With the U.S. jobless rate at the lowest level since 2000, where can employers turn to fill positions and keep up with demand? There's a huge corps of Baby Boomers and slightly younger Americans who are perfectly willing to do so. But businesses may need to overcome their inclination to go younger -- and if they do, it could prove profitable for them and the economy. Jean Setzfand of AARP and Keith Hutchison of energy utility National Grid talk with Bloomberg's Scott Lanman and Chris Condon about the benefits of employing older workers.
How the Opium Wars Shaped China's Approach to Trump's Trade Threats
No need to be caught off guard by the latest tweet from Donald Trump about tariffs and China. The underlying nature of Western economic links with the Asian nation today follows a pattern set by events almost 200 years ago. Britain, then the world's pre-eminent industrial power, wanted to reduce its trade deficit with China and muscled Beijing to reduce barriers. The result was a conflict that weakened Imperial China irrevocably, but framed President Xi Jinping's view of foreign relations. Stephen R. Platt, author of a new history of the opium conflict, speaks with Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg Opinion about how much -- and how little -- has changed.
The U.S. is producing more oil than ever. So why are oil prices rising so much that a gallon of gasoline now costs almost $3? Wasn't shale oil supposed to make OPEC irrelevant? How much higher can prices go, and how is it all impacting the global economy? Javier Blas, chief energy correspondent for Bloomberg News, discusses all this and more with Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg Opinion.
How Argentina Ended Up With Interest Rates At 40 Percent
In Argentina, the cost of borrowing is shooting up to stratospheric levels with interest rates rising to 40 percent. The country's leadership promised a new era that put this sort of trajectory behind it. But now, Argentina finds itself in talks with the International Monetary Fund for loans to shore up its finances. Federico Kaune, head of emerging markets fixed income at UBS Asset Management, tells Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg Opinion how Argentina got to this point, how the country can make it right and how this is part of a larger challenge facing emerging markets.
Listeners are probably familiar with China's economic and strategic ambitions in the South China Sea. But have you heard about what China is up to in Vanuatu? (Hint: It's not the beaches.) China is pouring money into this South Pacific nation by investing in local infrastructure projects. That's got the region's traditional powers, the U.S. and Australia, breaking out in a sweat, and it’s raising eyebrows in France, a colonial power. Jonathan Pryke of the Lowy Institute explains to Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg Opinion what’s at stake.
It’s a big, expensive, global mystery. Why do women still make less money—a lot less—than men? In the US, the average woman makes 80 cents to every dollar a man makes. Launching May 9, the Pay Check is an in-depth investigation into what that 20 percent difference looks like. In this miniseries we'll show you how the gender pay gap plays out in real life. We'll hear from Lily Ledbetter, Mo’Nique, and a lot of other women who weren’t happy to be paid less. We'll find out what happens when a whole country tries to tackle the pay gap. And we'll talk to some women who are taking things into their own hands.
The U.S. unemployment rate may be at the lowest level since 2000, but some economists want the federal government to go further and guarantee a job for every American. Several potential Democratic presidential candidates support the idea, but the plan faces plenty of hurdles, from how to pay for it to how it would actually get up and running. Economics professor L. Randall Wray, one of the plan's principal authors, and Evercore ISI analyst Ernie Tedeschi discuss the issue with Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg Opinion.
How Artificial Intelligence is Taking Over the Economy
From self-driving cars to robot-powered factories, artificial intelligence is taking over significant pieces of the global economy. But while this is good news for the businesses incorporating robots into their workplaces, it also means more and more people will lose their jobs to computers. Joshua Gans, co-author of the recent book "Prediction Machines: The Simple Economics of Artificial Intelligence," explains to hosts Scott Lanman and Christopher Condon what this shift means for the economy, and how it will also impact issues like inequality, monopolies and geopolitical competition.
How Water Will Determine the Global Economy's Winners and Losers
For years, oil was the major determinant of which countries rose to -- and lost -- power in the global economy. Today, that commodity increasingly is water. This week on Benchmark, we hear about the water crisis in Cape Town, where authorities are warning they may need to turn off the taps, from local Bloomberg editor Robert Brand. Then, we take a journey through global water issues with Helen Mountford of the World Resources Institute. They speak with Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View.
Does This Crazy Stock Market Mean Trouble for the U.S. Economy?
It's been a wild ride for investors in the U.S. stock market these past couple months. Yet for all the chaos on Wall Street, Main Street seems to be doing fine. So are equities signaling trouble for the economy, or will this storm blow over? Jim Paulsen, a veteran market strategist with a doctorate in economics, gives his take to Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View.
What if it's not the economy, stupid? The Great Recession and the long, moderate expansion that's followed gets blamed for a lot of political upheaval. But, William Galston of the Brookings Institution says that's a misreading. The former adviser to President Bill Clinton tells Bloomberg News' Jeanna Smialek and Bloomberg View's Daniel Moss that the populist wave moving across the world is also born out of anxiety about immigration.
You've heard about Xi Jinping now becoming China's leader for life. But did you know about his new economic team? They are the ones who could help direct -- or deflect -- a possible trade war between the U.S. and China. China economy expert Nicholas Lardy gives the lowdown on these men to Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View.
How The Uber Economy Helps Riders At The Expense Of Drivers
It may be hard to remember, but not too long ago, hailing a taxi in many cities was often a hassle. Ever since companies like Uber and Lyft entered the world, it's become a lot easier for consumers to catch a ride -- and a lot tougher for drivers to make a living. Henry Farber, a Princeton University economist, joins Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View to explain the dynamics of this industry -- and how it may be upended once again by driverless cars.
Donald Trump's tariffs on steel and aluminum don't add up to a trade war. It's more like a frontier skirmish. But, what would a real conflict look like? Who would win and who would lose? Shannon O'Neil of the Council on Foreign Relations joins Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View to explore these questions, and what tariffs might mean for you.
The North American Free Trade Agreement has been labeled everything from an unfair deal for U.S. workers to a boon for commerce across the continent. Less well known is that it's helped cause a big expansion in Mexican waistlines. Simon Barquera, executive director of the Nutrition and Health Research Center at Mexico's National Institute of Public Health, explains the nation's rise in obesity to Scott Lanman and Bloomberg intern Shelly Hagan.
This Tropical Paradise Is the Scene of a New Cold War
The Maldives, known as an exotic and luxurious tropical vacation spot, is fast becoming one of the world's most important geopolitical footballs. China is investing heavily in the island chain in a bid for economic and strategic supremacy, stoking the ire of India -- just miles away. Eurasia Group's Shailesh Kumar explains to Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View how this honeymoon destination got caught up in a great-power rivalry.
There's a crisis in coffee. On Java, the Indonesian island that gives your morning shot its nickname, the bean is struggling. A booming Asian middle class is spurring demand just as climate change is eroding farmland and changing the taste along the way. Indonesia is now being forced to import coffee from Brazil and Vietnam just to keep up. It's a bit like Saudi Arabia importing oil. Jamal Gawi, a climate change consultant in Jakarta, explains what's going on to Bloomberg News' Scott Lanman and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View.
Why Nearly A Tenth Of Denmark's Labor Force May Disappear
Almost one-tenth of Denmark's labor force is made up of foreign workers. But with quality of life standards increasing in eastern European countries, many of these people are considering returning to their native nations. Karen Haekkerup, CEO of the Danish Agriculture and Food Council, talks with Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View on what this means for Denmark, which is already facing a severe labor shortage.
This month, Bloomberg is excited to bring you a brand new show. Every Friday on What'd You Miss This Week, we'll feature the most interesting interviews from Bloomberg's daily market close show, "What'd You Miss" hosted by Scarlet Fu, Julia Chatterley and Joe Weisenthal. We want to take you beyond the headlines and bring you a unique perspective on the week's top stories, and those you may just have missed. It's the perfect way to kick off your weekend. Be sure to subscribe now, so you don't miss a thing!
Amazon, JPMorgan Chase and Berkshire Hathaway recently announced they're joining forces to tackle America's expensive health care system. Health care is probably the most reliably growing piece of U.S. GDP -- and until recently, a strong driver of inflation -- but that could change as Amazon moves into that space. Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News speaks with Bloomberg reporter Spencer Soper and economist Laura Rosner of MacroPolicy Perspectives about Amazon's history of disrupting industries, and whether or not our current health care system could go the way of bookstores.
Why a Big Gender-Pay Gap Exists for Selling Clothes
You may have heard of a gender-pay gap in America, but here's a statistic that's really eye-opening: Workers at men's apparel stores earn 56 percent more than employees at womenswear retailers. It's a huge gap, and yet it can be explained in part by supply and demand -- and could even be a sign that worker pay will finally pick up more broadly across the U.S. Bloomberg reporters Katia Dmitrieva and Lindsey Rupp join Benchmark to discuss the topic with Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View.
When Japanese People Die, Their Land Goes Into Purgatory
What happens to someone's land when the owner dies? In Japan, no one knows. In fact, no one knows who owns more than 10 percent of the nation's landmass -- about 16,000 square miles, equivalent to the size of Denmark. Without knowing who owns the land, it can't be sold or redeveloped -- and that limits economic growth or prevents the government from collecting taxes, at a time when Japan is already suffering from severe depopulation outside of major cities. Bloomberg reporter Yoshi Nohara discusses the issue with Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News and Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View.
As #MeToo Sweeps the World, Economics Profession Has Its Own Reckoning
An online discussion board where women are frequent subjects of vitriolic attacks. A lack of diversity in top positions. Strong evidence of discrimination against females. These are all issues that the economics profession is grappling with as part of a broader reckoning with sexual harassment and misconduct in American society. Economist Heidi Hartmann discusses these issues and her petition drive to address misogyny in the field, while Bloomberg reporter Jeanna Smialek talks about her recent coverage of this topic with Daniel Moss of Bloomberg View and Scott Lanman of Bloomberg News.
The American South will keep rising and Dallas will eclipse New York. The city that never sleeps has had its obituary written plenty of times, but it may just have met its match in native son Donald Trump. His tax-cut law is more than just a deficit-busting giveaway to the rich; it affirms the economic and political rise of the South. Even New York's famed cultural and intellectual scene is in jeopardy along with financial primacy. Jared Dillian, publisher of the `Daily Dirtnap' and a Bloomberg View contributor explains how to Dan and Scott.
How a Secretive Conclave Decides When U.S. Recessions Happen
Whether the U.S. tips into recession this year or not, chances are you won't hear about it until well after it happens. That's because the decision on whether the economy is in a serious slump or merely having a bad day rests with a little-known group of academics who deliberate behind the scenes. Ten years after the economy entered the worst downturn since the Great Depression, the group's chair, Stanford University professor Robert Hall, gives Dan and Scott an inside look into how the panel makes its calls -- and shares his thoughts on whether another recession could be in store soon.
Benchmark's Look Ahead to the Biggest Economic Stories of 2018
What will be the most surprising economic development of 2018? Who will be the most influential people that you haven't heard of? What kind of non-economic developments will have biggest impact? Benchmark delivers answers from around the world in part two of our year-end special. Joining Dan and Scott to give their picks are three members of Bloomberg's global economy team: European editor Jana Randow, Latin America editor Vivianne Rodrigues and Asia correspondent Enda Curran.
Benchmark's Look Back at the Biggest Economic Stories of 2017
What was the year's most surprising economic development? Who were the most influential people that you haven't heard of? What were the non-economic developments that had the biggest impact? Benchmark goes around the world to deliver the answers in part one of our year-end special. Joining Dan and Scott to give their picks are three members of Bloomberg's global economy team: European editor Jana Randow, Latin America editor Vivianne Rodrigues and Asia correspondent Enda Curran.
This Market Says Maybe America Isn't So Great Again Yet
America's GDP is growing at an amazing 3 percent! Unemployment is at the lowest level in 16 years! The stock market is reaching a new record high every day! The U.S. economy is just going to keep on booming, right? Well, not so fast. The stock market might be surging, but the bond market is painting a more nuanced picture. David Ader, chief macro strategist at Informa Financial Intelligence, joins Dan and Scott for a tutorial on Treasuries.
The Trade War Didn't Happen. Here's Why and What's Next
Wait! There wasn't a trade war this year. Wasn't Donald Trump's election supposed to mean a rejection of open commerce between nations? Bloomberg's Andrew Mayeda explains the surprise increase in goods and services exchanged across national boundaries. Don't think the protectionist bullet's necessarily been dodged; there's more going on than just Trump. Arancha Gonzalez, executive director of the International Trade Center tells Dan and Scott what more needs to be done. Gonzalez shares her perspective on China's expanding role in the international system and opines on Xi Jinping's big speeches in Davos and Geneva.
Having a Resume Gap Is Becoming Less of a Job Hurdle
For many women and an increasing number of men, it's been hard to get a job again if you take some time off for family reasons and have a long gap on your resume. But that's starting to change in the U.S., where the unemployment rate is at the lowest in almost 17 years. With the labor market getting tighter, companies are looking at potential workers they previously might not have considered. Carol Fishman Cohen, a consultant who helps companies develop programs for returning workers, shares her story of returning to work after having four children and talks about how she is getting companies to take a look at more workers like her. Bloomberg reporter Craig Torres also joins to explain the trend to Dan and Scott.
Money goes where it's treated best. That simple truth is a big reason why more and more money—trillions, in fact—flows into a powerful, low-cost tool that's quietly transformed investing in recent years. Exchange-traded funds, or ETFs, let you invest in everything from the stock market to gold like never before. This podcast will demystify them—and delight you in the process.
How a Red State City Fell in Love With Muslim Immigrants (Rebroadcast)
Benchmark takes the week off for the Thanksgiving holiday and re-runs an episode from March. Post-industrial Midwestern America helped propel Donald Trump to the nation's top job. You've heard that a hundred times. But did you hear about St Louis? A wave of Bosnian refugees, many of them Muslim, arrive in the city, starting in the mid-1990s. The result: a surge in business and job creation, revitalization of the community and help in the transition from a manufacturing to a service economy. Sadik Kukic tells Dan and Michelle about his journey from Balkan concentration camps to a pillar of the local community: He's now president of the Bosnian Chamber of Commerce. What could be more American?
Figuring out the global economy has always involved looking at the data. But only in recent years has big data, such as that contained in satellite imagery, become a factor in helping understand what's going on. One place where it's particularly useful is China, where official figures are far less comprehensive than in the U.S. and most other developed nations. It's also provided badly-needed insight into poverty across Africa. Scott and Dan get the scoop from UC-Berkeley professor Joshua Blumenstock and Bloomberg China economy editor Jeff Kearns.
By picking Jerome Powell to replace Janet Yellen as Federal Reserve chief, President Donald Trump is making a historic gamble that his five predecessors did not: appointing a new leader of the central bank in his first term instead of retaining the existing one. That move could have massive ramifications for the U.S. and global economies. But how did the Fed get so powerful? And how powerful is it really? Peter Conti-Brown, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, joins Scott and guest host Chris Condon, a Federal Reserve reporter at Bloomberg, for a deep dive into the Fed's history and how Powell fits in.
Mexico just didn't see it coming. The free-trade backlash and anti-Mexican rhetoric that helped fuel Donald Trump's rise came as a surprise to officials and executives in the U.S.'s southern neighbor. Now they are scrambling to save not just NAFTA, but an entire economic model based around global supply chains and ever closer ties with the U.S. Thrown into the mix are elections in Mexico that could propel their own populists into the presidency and congress. Shannon O'Neil from the Council on Foreign Relations explains the stakes to Dan and Scott. Intriguing footnote: Maybe the NAFTA debate is really about China.
The biggest challenge refugees face is economic. A couple of financial market insiders are here to help and have recruited some of the biggest names on Wall Street. PIMCO's Greg Sharenow and Trailstone's Michelle Brouhard tell Dan and Scott about their foundation, Interfaith Refugee Project, and how to integrate refugees into the U.S. economic fabric. It's also personal: Greg describes his grandmother's flight from 1930s Germany through Panama.
How do you create a new country? For Catalonians looking for independence from Spain, secession can give you an emotional high, but what about the bills? Every nation needs a sense of identity and community, of shared heritage and geography. That won't feed people. There's revenue to be collected and bills to be paid, not to mention possibly issuing currency and creating a central bank. And don't forget about picking up the trash. Bloomberg's Maria Tadeo and Maxime Sbaihi explain the building blocks of statehood to Scott and Dan.
Puerto Rico's Economic Devastation Can Barely Be Measured
Before Hurricane Maria made landfall on Puerto Rico three weeks ago, the U.S. territory's economy was already in shambles, thanks in part to an overload of debt and decades of misguided policies. Now, after a terrible storm, things are much, much worse for the 3.4 million people there, and they're likely to stay that way for a while -- though measuring just how bad is the tricky part. Bloomberg reporter Jordyn Holman shares her recent experience reporting there, and Arthur MacEwan, an expert on the territory's economy, tells Scott how it got so bad in the first place.
Forget Oil. Religion Is Big Business in Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia may be best known for its vast supply of oil, but outside of that industry, Islamic tourism is one of the kingdom's biggest businesses. Hajj, the annual Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca, as well as other Muslim pilgrimages throughout the year, have been driving growth in tourism, with a building boom to match. The country is seeking to remain a destination, while liberalizing its ultra-conservative rules such as the ban on female drivers. Scott is joined by Siraj Datoo, a Bloomberg editor in London, to discuss his recent hajj experience and the economics of the pilgrimage, as well as Donna Abu-Nasr, a Bloomberg reporter who covers the Middle Eastern economy.
Will the World's Most Powerful People Lose Their Jobs?
Some of the planet's most powerful people may be out of a job in the next two years. Beginning in the next few months, terms start ending for the central bankers who control the price of money in the world. First Janet Yellen, whose term ends February. Up next, Haruhiko Kuroda in April. England's Mark Carney departs in 2019 as does Mario Draghi of the European Central Bank. How many of them will survive and, if they depart, what will be their legacy? Guest Adam Posen, president of the Peterson Institute for International Economics, walks Dan and Scott through the horse race.
North Korea seems an unlikely place for capitalism to take hold. But markets are playing a bigger role in daily life in the country. While that's created a degree of economic stability in the short run, it's also inexorably undermining the power of the state and making ruler Kim Jong-Un more vulnerable over the longer term. What role does the economy play in the outcome of today's nuclear standoff? Professor and author Byung-Yeon Kim explains to Dan and Scott.
This Food Company Is the Lehman Brothers of Croatia
A troubled company threatens a nation's entire economy. It's not Lehman Brothers a decade ago -- and it's not even a bank. No, this time it's Agrokor, Croatia's dominant food maker -- and its potential collapse could even extend Russia's influence in Eastern Europe. Scott and Dan get the scoop from Bloomberg reporters Luca Casiraghi and Jasmina Kuzmanovic.
As India and Pakistan celebrate their 70th birthdays, Benchmark looks at the economic partition of colonial India into the two independent nations. The violence and human tragedy that accompanied the division has been widely chronicled. Less discussed, but no less important, is the economic divergence between the two. How did Pakistan's economy stumble after a promising start? What happened to India in the early 1990s that led it to take off after a sluggish couple of decades? Faris Khan tells Dan and Scott about his own family's journey to Pakistan while Nisid Hajari injects a note of caution into India's bullish assumptions.
Most Companies Talk Creativity; Few Walk It. Art Can Help
Western Capitalism is supposed to thrive on Joseph Schumpeter's idea of creative destruction. Yet few companies really nurture creativity. Beancounters loom, ready to take away the canvas that the next big thing is sketched on. Take heart: Thinking about art can help business and finance executives get to Point B. They don't always have to know what Point B looks like before they begin. New York University Professor and author Amy Whitaker explains why to Dan and Scott. Along the way she shares anecdotes about investment bankers in pinstripes mucking it up in a London studio. And how did Oscar-winning `Dallas Buyers Club' almost not get made?
Thucydides's Trap Has Implications for Economics, Not Just Conflict
What is Thucydides's trap and how does it foretell the future of U.S.-China economic ties? Much has been said about China's strategic challenges to America. Less talked about is the financial tussle between the two. Harvard's Graham Allison walks Dan through his latest book and explains why a conflict is more likely than many people imagine. Along the way, Allison talks about North Korea and how dealing with a "nutty regime" fits into the broader competition between Washington and Beijing.
What is the U.S. debt ceiling, where did it come from and why does it matter? This time the familiar Washington ritual has a twist. And investors are starting to anticipate something new: The most critical of deadlines may be missed. How can this happen when the White House and Congress are controlled, nominally, by the same party? Why even have a debt ceiling? Special guests Alex Harris and Brian Chappatta join Dan to explain that this time it actually could be different.
The Benchmark crew celebrates the podcast's 100th episode with a trip through highlights as picked by hosts and producers, both past and present. From the Nobel Prize to Duke Bootee, Dan and Scott — along with some special guests — share the moments that put a human face on that thing we call economics. And we look forward at what the next 100 episodes will bring.
Why does the U.S. still dominate discussion in a major Chinese city? On a multi-week trip to Asia, Dan discovers a surprising place where America's dominance in Asia is unparalleled and gains some insight into Japan's labor market during a busy lunch hour in Tokyo's financial district. Guest host Joe Weisenthal from Bloomberg's `Odd Lots' podcast holds Dan to account and road tests some of his theories.
Why Everyone Needs to Care About the Fed's Shrinking Balance Sheet
The Federal Reserve said this week that it's about to try something that's never been done on this scale in the annals of central banking: reduce its $4.5 trillion stockpile of assets. The ramifications could be felt everywhere from mortgage rates, to the cost of vacationing in Thailand, even to President Donald Trump's attitude toward the Fed. Bloomberg reporter Chris Condon joins Scott to explain what's happening and try to come up with a better name than "balance sheet normalization" for the whole process.
What Our Trump Time Machine Got Right -- and Wrong -- About the Economy
One year ago, the Benchmark crew ventured into the future -- July 2017 -- to imagine what was then all but unimaginable: How would the U.S. economy fare in the first six months under President Donald J. Trump? Now that it's all come to pass, Scott and guest co-host Jeanna Smialek speak with our seer from 2016, Neil Dutta from Renaissance Macro Research, to explain what we got right and wrong -- and what we can expect for the rest of the president's term.
You Just Missed Your Chance to Get Rich on Toronto Real Estate
Home prices in Canada's largest city have been on a tear. But the party could be on the verge of ending, at least temporarily. The Bank of Canada's decision this week to raise interest rates -- the first hike in seven years -- makes mortgages more expensive. A string of government tightening measures and a liquidity crunch at a Toronto mortgage lender are adding to concerns a price correction is around the corner. This week on Benchmark, Dan, Chris Fournier and Katia Dmitrieva speak to Phil Soper, chief executive officer at Royal LePage, a unit of Brookfield Real Estate Services, about what the latest developments mean for Toronto housing.
The U.S. labor market looked pretty strong in June, with more Americans getting jobs and unemployment close to a 16-year low. All strong, with one glaring exception: Wages still just aren't rising that quickly. The question is, why? Yelena Shulyatyeva, a Bloomberg Intelligence senior economist, helps Scott and Dan break it down.
The World's First Modern Financial Crisis: 1997 Edition
Twenty years ago this week, a momentous event more than a century in the making finally occurred: Hong Kong's handover to China. Turns out, that wasn't even close to the biggest story that year. What really did transfix the world in 1997 was the financial crisis that exploded a day after the handover -- in, of all places, Bangkok. Today on Benchmark, Dan, a former Malaysia bureau chief, and Hong Kong-based Malcolm Scott look back at the crisis and the wrenching economic and political changes it wrought. They're joined by Alec McCabe, who covered the drama from Hong Kong, and Lee Miller, then Bangkok bureau chief and now a professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing. One conclusion: Asia's convulsions were the first modern global financial crisis and a harbinger of a much greater shakeout in the U.S. a decade later.
Why New York's Summer of Hell Matters to More Than Commuters
New York subway riders and commuters, already mired in a miserable year, are bracing for a summer like no other amid rising delays, service cuts and overcrowding. It all underscores the perils of under-investment in rail systems that should be key drivers of growth. What the heck is going on? Can anything be done? Two guests think they have the answers: Jim Venturi, creator of the ReThinkNYC plan to overhaul regional transport links, and Tracy Gordon, senior fellow at the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center. Scott hosts along with Bloomberg City Hall reporter Henry Goldman.
Sushi Robots Show Way to Surprise Japanese Recovery
Surprise! Japan's economy is no longer down and out. Instead, it may just be the next big growth surprise. Almost three decades since the collapse of Japan's stratospheric property bubble, bank lending is back, the jobless rate is below 3 percent and corporate profits have never been fatter. Technology and AI are again leading the way, compensating for the nation's shrinking population. Investor Peter Tasker joins Dan and guest co-host Chris Anstey to share his reasons for optimism. Along the way, Tasker reminisces about Japan's go-go years in the 1970s and '80s -- how his fictional anti-hero Mori survived all those long years of economic stagnation.
Central banks tend to be more comfortable pulling levers of economic policy than being on the front line of crimefighting. For the monetary gurus of Indonesia, those two worlds have collided. Central bankers say the mafia is driving up the price of chili peppers, the Southeast Asian nation's favorite spice. This is one situation where raising interest rates -- the common tool to fight rising prices -- won't be enough. Dan and Scott talk with Karlis Salna, an economics reporter in Bloomberg's Jakarta bureau, to get the story.
Why Millions of Americans Still Live Paycheck-to-Paycheck
Millions of middle-class Americans face an unexpected reality in today's era of economic growth: their paychecks vary so much that paying bills and saving for the future is exhausting and challenging month after month. This week on Benchmark, Dan and Scott speak with Jonathan Morduch and Rachel Schneider, whose book, "The Financial Diaries," vividly illustrates the financial struggles of more than 200 U.S. families.
What on earth is going on in Brazil? Less than a year after impeaching one president for fiddling fiscal accounts, her successor is on the ropes amid allegations of graft. Dig a little deeper and the real problem is a recession deeper than any the country has ever experienced. With Brazil one of the world's 10 largest economies -- and Latin America's largest -- it matters beyond the nation's borders. Sao Paulo native Vivianne Rodrigues, who runs Latin American political news at Bloomberg, joins Dan and Scott to explain what gives. We also hear that the gas station in Brasilia at the center of the scandal doesn't actually have a car wash!
Donald Trump's road to 3 percent growth might run through New Zealand. The faraway nation is the only developed economy that's been expanding at such a torrid pace, thanks to the one factor that Trump railed against on the campaign trail: immigration. How did the land of "Lord of the Rings" become such a desired destination, and how are all those people squeezing into such a small country? Joining Dan and Scott is Tracy Withers, who has spent almost two decades covering the economy of his native land as a Bloomberg reporter in Wellington.
Why Labor Unions Don't Have the Clout They Used To
A major puzzle in the U.S. economy is why wage gains have been relatively subdued in the last couple of years, even as all signs point to a tight job market where employers are having trouble filling positions. One reason is that labor unions just don't have the clout they used to in America. While there are occasional victories, the situation is a far cry from the glory days of the 1970s, and it's also helping reshape the political landscape. Jared Bernstein, former chief economist to Vice President Joe Biden and an expert on labor economics, joins Scott and guest co-host Patricia Laya to explain.
Never Mind the Chewing Gum, Singapore is Global Trade Colossus
The world's easiest place to do business, the second-largest container port and the biggest center for commodities trading. There's a lot more to Singapore than a ban on chewing gum, which is mostly honored in the breach. Smaller than Rhode Island, settlements around modern-day Singapore rose and fell centuries ago on the China maritime trade. Think of it as an Oceanic version of the Silk Road. And as China's economic power expands, the little entrepot is well positioned to keep rising. John Curtis Perry, author of "Singapore: Unlikely Power" tells all to Dan and Scott.
Israel's economy is so innovative that it's forcing otherwise hostile Arab neighbors to look at ways they could also benefit -- and the result could eventually be a gradual normalization of relations, if all continues to go smoothly. One example: trade and collaboration in technology and intelligence are flourishing below the radar between Israel and a host of Arab states. Sure, there are a lot of caveats, and whether this will affect relations with Palestinians or Iran is another question, but just the fact that Israelis and Saudis are quietly getting along in one way is a start. Jonathan Ferziger, a reporter for Bloomberg in Tel Aviv, joins Dan and Scott to tell the story.
How Surfers Ride the Wave to the Next Economic Boom
Here's an economic statistic you don't see very often: Top-flight surfing breaks can drive growth. Fresh from his 11-year-old daughter's surfing lesson just outside Sydney, Mike Heath asks guest Sam Wills to run through experiments that he says confirm the theory, especially during El Niño years. Stay tuned as Dan pines for the apartment he left behind in Bondi Beach two decades ago.
G, a D and a P. Three letters, lots of trouble. Gross Domestic Product is the world's most common way to measure the value of all goods and services produced in an economy. But does it really deserve its pedestal? Lorenzo Fioramonti, a professor at the University of Pretoria, tells Dan and Scott that the acronym should actually stand for "Gross Dumb Product." He argues that it's responsible for all manner of sins, ranging from the pillaging of a South Pacific island to an instrument used by austerity-craven northern Europeans to hammer Greece. Time for a revolution, Fioramonti insists. Just make sure investors don't crucify you.
Here's What Happens When a Chinese Firm Buys a Closed GM Plant
President Donald Trump spent plenty of time on the campaign trail accusing China of stealing American jobs by taking away factories and using unfair trade practices. But China is actually giving a lifeline in one hard-hit part of the Rust Belt. That makes things between the two nations more complicated than Trump might want to admit as he meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping for the first time. Michael Davis, economic development director for Moraine, Ohio, and Case Western Reserve University professor Susan Helper explain the story to Scott Lanman and guest host Andrew Mayeda.
We usually don't think about economics as a life-or-death subject. But for white Americans without a college degree, there's no other way to describe it. With job opportunities limited and an opioid epidemic in full throttle, death rates among this group are skyrocketing, an issue that probably helped elect Donald Trump as president. Anne Case and Angus Deaton, the married academic couple who brought this issue to the forefront, have just issued a followup paper to their groundbreaking 2015 study on the subject. Case returns to Benchmark to discuss the latest findings with Dan and Scott -- and offers her ominous take on what it portends for the future of the nation.
How a Red State City Fell in Love With Muslim Immigrants
Post-industrial Midwestern America helped propel Donald Trump to the nation's top job. You've heard that a hundred times. But did you hear about St Louis? A wave of Bosnian refugees, many of them Muslim, arrive in the city, starting in the mid-1990s. The result: a surge in business and job creation, revitalization of the community and help in the transition from a manufacturing to a service economy. Sadik Kukic tells Dan and Michelle about his journey from Balkan concentration camps to a pillar of the local community: He's now president of the Bosnian Chamber of Commerce. What could be more American?
Inflation Makes Duke Bootee Wonder How I Keep From Going Under
Who says economics has to be all about numbers? Take a trip back in time with the Benchmark crew to the early 1980s, when double-digit inflation was such a scourge that it inspired a lyric in the hip-hop classic "The Message." Ed "Duke Bootee" Fletcher, who wrote most of the song, joins Scott and Dan to talk about those lyrics -- and a whole lot more. Then Alice Rivlin, a former Fed vice chair, gives perspective on inflation from her decades in the economic-policy world.
Americans like to think of themselves as great risk takers, rolling back frontiers and imbued since birth with a spirit of entrepreneurship. But what if the technological revolutions spawned in Silicon Valley were, ironically, symptoms of a risk-averse country? Underneath the latest app for sex or music, we are becoming older and more comfortable with stasis and statism, according to guest Tyler Cowen. Dan and Scott ask him why we've become more like Europe and poster children for sclerosis: France, Germany and Italy.
Trump Can Party On With This Blueprint From Europe
Forget Vladimir Putin. If Donald Trump and the Republicans want to stay in power, they could do well to emulate the approach of Poland's Law and Justice Party. After sweeping to victory in 2015, the conservative party has mixed nationalist rhetoric, populist economic policies and social conservatism to maintain a healthy lead in polls while driving liberals and the media crazy. So what's in the secret sauce, besides an unpronounceable brand of beer? Scott and Dan are joined by two Polish colleagues who can answer that question: Wojciech Moskwa, Bloomberg's Warsaw bureau chief, and Kasia Klimasinska, a Bloomberg reporter in Washington.
Widening inequality is a blight on the modern economy and will ultimately undermine growth. But wait. Let's not hurry to fix it because history shows it can only really be addressed by total war, total revolution, state collapse or Black Death-like pandemics. That's the conclusion of Stanford professor Walter Scheidel, who joins Dan and Scott. Scheidel takes us on a tour-de-force of the rise and fall of inequality from cave societies through the bubonic plague to the two World Wars. He's not an optimist.
`Hamilton the Protectionist' Is a Show Trump Might Like
Donald Trump has had plenty to say about the smash hit musical "Hamilton": "Highly overrated," for one. But if we focus instead on Hamilton's economic policy, the president might find something to applaud. The first U.S. Treasury secretary wanted to protect industry. Hamilton also sought to roll back globalization and replace foreign-made goods with domestically produced ones. Sound familiar? Bloomberg's Rich Miller joins Dan and Scott to explain.
The nation's leader takes a sudden action that only a handful of people know about beforehand. His populist base loves it, even if it could disrupt the economy. Donald Trump's executive order on immigration? No, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's move to invalidate more than 80 percent of currency in circulation, a bid to stamp out corruption. Three months later, do the benefits outweigh the costs? Or will the hit to the economy be felt for years to come? Cornell University professor Eswar Prasad and Bloomberg reporter Sho Chandra join Scott to share their recent firsthand experiences from India and help explain why the action might just end up working.
Trump Heartland Depends on -- And Loathes -- Globalization
Even in Deep Red America, the cosmopolitan world of Chardonnay and dual passport-holders is alive and well. Right alongside is a middle class enmeshed in that same world -- yet infuriated by it, a rage that opened the door to Donald Trump. Sure, this alternate universe may be shrinking, but it's still kicking up a lot of dust. Such are the revelations from a series of coast-to-coast road trips by bestselling author Robert D. Kaplan. Driving between New York and San Diego, Kaplan marvels at the strength of America's geography and its ability to project global political and economic leadership -- if only the middle class still wants it.
Trump Says the Jobless Rate is Phony. Try These Stats Instead
"Make America Great Again," Donald Trump's campaign slogan, became the government's guiding policy when he was sworn in last week as the 45th U.S. president. But how will we know just how great America is becoming? Forget GDP or unemployment: we'll tell you all about five Trumpian economic indicators you need to follow, including the share of workers with full-time jobs, the pace of business creation and how many prime-age Americans are in the labor force. Bloomberg Intelligence chief U.S. economist Carl Riccadonna and Bloomberg News economy editor Vince Golle join Scott to give you the rundown.
The Swiss Steak Heist And How The Central Bank Made It Happen
Too often the study of economics and exchange rates can seem very arcane. What does it mean in real life? For one meat smuggler, the end of 15 years of car trips to and from France with a trunk full of pork, beef and lamb. The Swiss franc's surge and the euro's swoon has encouraged more and more people to turn their hand to smuggling. There could be more to come. Catherine Bosley, a Bloomberg economics reporter in Zurich explains why to Dan and guest host Joe Weisenthal. And then there is the case of the $30,000 cash found in a sunglasses case.
70: Cafe Con Leche Can Track Hyperinflation in Venezuela
Everyone knows inflation is out of control in Venezuela. But the government long ago stopped publishing figures on a regular basis, leaving economists to dial up what are essentially wild guesses. Enter the Bloomberg Cafe Con Leche Inflation Index. It tracks just one item: A piping hot coffee at a bakery in eastern Caracas. Yet it provides a unique look at inflation in one of the world's most dysfunctional economies. David Papadopoulos, a Bloomberg managing editor in New York, and Fabiola Zerpa, a Bloomberg correspondent in Caracas, join Scott to talk about the gauge, and just how bad things really are in the nation.
Brexit. A Trump win. 2016 was full of unexpected surprises that rocked the global economy in ways that even most experienced market observers couldn't have predicted. But what does 2017 have in store? Benchmark hosts Dan Moss and Kate Smith speak with Bloomberg's John Fraher, creator of "The Pessimist Guide," to see what's in store in a worst-case scenario of the year to come.
68: Taking the Long (240-Year) View of U.S.-China Relations
Donald Trump has pledged to get tough with China on trade and currency, already tensing up relations with the world's second-largest economy. But it could be worse: President Woodrow Wilson signed a treaty that gave Japan control of part of China, and that didn't go over too well. John Pomfret joins us to take the long view of relations between the U.S. and China. The longtime China correspondent for the Washington Post and author of the new book "The Beautiful Country and the Middle Kingdom" joins Dan and Scott to discuss what the incoming U.S. president can learn from two centuries of contact, and how, as he puts it, stable ties with the U.S. can "make China great again."
America's central bank finally got around to raising interest rates for the first time in a year and signaled borrowing costs will keep rising from their currently low levels. Should you rush out to buy that house? Will savers get more bang for their bucks? Are more people going to drown in credit-card debt? Join Dan, Scott and special guest Steve Matthews, a longtime Bloomberg Fed reporter, as we discuss just why, exactly, you should care.
From a fatal highway bridge collapse in Minneapolis to LaGuardia Airport's "third-world" experience, America's failing infrastructure is no secret. To bring the country up to date, advisers to President-elect Donald Trump have floated the idea of a federal infrastructure bank, allowing cities and states to borrow at exceptionally low interest rates and encouraging private investment. Will it work? We check in on America's neighbor to the north, where Francois-Philippe Champagne, Canada's parliamentary secretary to the finance minister, joins Kate and Scott to explain that nation's newly announced Infrastructure Bank and what the U.S. might be able to learn.
65: Dear Donald, Some Advice on China. Sincerely, Jon Huntsman
President-elect Donald Trump is on the verge of igniting a trade war with China. He might want to first listen to Jon Huntsman's thoughts on why that's a bad idea. The former ambassador to China, Utah governor and onetime GOP presidential candidate shares his insights into the Middle Kingdom at a time when the nation is undergoing its own economic transformation and faces a political crossroads. You won't want to miss the hints he gives Scott Lanman and Daniel Moss at his own political future in the U.S.
First came Brexit. Then Trump. Now the world's attention turns once again across the Atlantic to France, where a presidential election is coming up and far-right candidate Marine Le Pen could be the next politician to upend the establishment. The nation is reeling from terror attacks, the economy is in lousy shape, and President Francois Hollande's popularity is dismal. Nicolas Veron, a scholar at think tanks Bruegel and the Peterson Institute for International Economics, joins Scott and Kate to gauge the odds -- and potential impact of -- this next political earthquake.
Millions of Americans could help solve a looming labor shortage for certain U.S. industries. Problem is, they're felons. Are ex-cons who can't get jobs holding back economic growth? Join us on Benchmark this week to hear from Keri Blakinger, who served time in state prison for heroin possession before getting out, finishing college (at Cornell) and managing to get a job in, of all things, journalism. What's it like to go to an office cubicle from a prison cell?
In the wake of Donald Trump's surprise presidential victory, the Benchmark team has a few questions: Is trade with Mexico destined to end? Is our relationship with China about to drastically shift? Is the U.S. about to experience a Reagan-esque stimulus? Take a trip around the world as Kate, Dan and Scott discuss what the president-elect means for the global economy as we know it.
61: Thanksgiving Will Be Cheaper This Year and That's Not Good
Falling food prices may be good for your Thanksgiving tab this year, but they're doing a number on the U.S. economy. Food commodity prices have fallen over 20 percent from early 2015, helping to keep inflation at bay and wages stagnant, according to a research note from Goldman Sachs. As prices have fallen, the cost of eating out has stayed the same - what gives? This week, co-hosts Kate Smith and Dan Moss are joined by Al Di Meglio, the chef behind buzzy new South Williamsburg restaurant Barano, to talk about what falling food prices mean for the notoriously difficult restaurant business.
How tight is the U.S. labor market? So much that one trucking company is offering $5,000 signing bonuses to lure new drivers. Yet millions of Americans remain out of the workforce -- people who might be candidates for a job that, while tough, takes relatively little training and can't be shipped overseas. What's going on here? Two guests share their theories with co-hosts Scott Lanman and Kate Smith: Scott's uncle, Kenny Hahn, a professional truck driver for almost four decades, and Justin Fox, a Bloomberg View columnist who has written about the industry.
If U.S. childcare costs are so expensive, why do people who walk your dog make more money than the workers who take care of your kids? Is there any way it could become cheaper to send your kid to day care than to attend a public university? Our co-hosts are interested: Scott because he has two young daughters in preschool, and Kate because she pays a sizable sum to have her dog walked. Joining them are Scott Cotter, CEO of Childcare Network, which operates 249 centers across the southeastern U.S., and fellow Bloomberg podcaster Rebecca Greenfield, who takes time from her Game Plan show to discuss her reporting on childcare costs.
57: JD Vance and the Rise of the White Working Class
How did a diminishing slice of Western economies come to so dominate the political narrative? The roar of the white working class, mainly in onetime industrial powerhouses, put Donald Trump within shouting distance of the White House, ejected Britain from the EU and fueled the surge of far-right parties in France and Germany. J.D. Vance, bestselling author of "Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis" tells Daniel Moss and Scott Lanman how we got here. The onetime resident of Middletown, Ohio shares his tip on who will win Ohio and, in the process, the presidency.
56: Actually, You Probably Can't Make It in New York
And you might want to cross San Francisco off the list, too. In the past 30 years, the most expensive metro areas in the U.S. have seen their housing prices grow at a much faster pace than the least expensive markets, according to a new report out from Trulia. That rapid increase has caused certain areas - especially New York's long-envied Manhattan borough - to be closed off to not only the successful and wealthy, but those that were also raised by the successful and wealthy. Kate Smith and Dan Moss talk to one half of the Case-Shiller Index and the authority on housing prices, Robert Shiller, on what's driving the prices up and whether New York real estate is all it's cracked up to be.
Benchmark Special: Here's What You Need to Know About the Fed
The world's most powerful central bank kept interest rates unchanged today, but the Federal Reserve also suggested an increase is imminent -- perhaps as soon as December. Join Dan, Scott and Fed reporter Matt Boesler on a special Benchmark podcast to figure out what's new and what's not.
Can a nation's entire economy fit on one smartphone app? In China, that day is almost here. More than 700 million Chinese -- more than double the entire U.S. population -- use WeChat. It's an all-purpose super-app that does the job of Facebook, Uber, Paypal, Tinder and many other apps, making it an invaluable tool for the Asian nation's rising middle class. That's helped give WeChat's parent Tencent, a stock-market valuation larger than any other company outside the U.S. -- even bigger than Wal-Mart. But does WeChat actually contribute to China's GDP? Or are there better ways to measure its value? Economist Gan Li, who splits his time between the U.S. and China, and Dune Lawrence, a former Bloomberg correspondent in Beijing, join Kate and Scott to pin down the answers.
More than a decade after the first Internet boom, U.S. productivity growth has stagnated and the economy has been unable to break out of 2 percent expansion. This situation is testing even the most optimistic of forecasters, but in contrast to our recent guest Robert Gordon, MIT professor Erik Brynjolfsson is unbowed. Brynjolfsson -- who's also director of MIT's Initiative on the Digital Economy, and co-author of the book "The Second Machine Age" -- joins Daniel Moss and Scott Lanman to explain why he thinks the current wave of advances in technology means we don't have to worry about secular stagnation after all.
Benchmark Special: Five Questions From the August Jobs Report
Sometimes the monthly U.S. jobs report delivers a clear signal on the labor market and the economy. This is not one of those times. Fortunately, the Bloomberg Benchmark crew is here to talk about the burning questions raised by the latest report, including the implications for the Federal Reserve and what the wage numbers mean. In this special bonus episode of the Benchmark podcast, reporter Jeanna Smialek joins hosts Dan Moss and Scott Lanman to break it all down.
53: Why Are Weddings So Expensive? Blame Econ 101.
Happily ever after doesn't come cheap in the U.S. Couples looking to tie the knot pay an average of about $30,000 between things like caterers, flowers and photographers to capture the day. But why is it that weddings cost more than other large-scale parties? In this week's Benchmark, former White House economic adviser Austan Goolsbee explains how the concepts that we learned in freshman year economics class determine why celebrating eternal love costs so much. Kate Smith is also joined by guest host Brian Chappatta, a government bonds reporter at Bloomberg News and soon-to-be married man, who gives us his experience in planning a wedding.
52: Ever Since Texting, It's Been Downhill for the U.S. Economy
When phone companies implored U.S. customers in 2003 to text more because they were lagging behind the rest of the world, it was all over. Almost. While we're used to a dizzying array of new apps each month and new "sharing economy" companies such as Uber and AirBnB transform the way we do business, one of the greatest periods of U.S. productivity was already behind us by 2005. The little gadgets we're addicted to now are nothing compared with the invention and adoption of the electric light, indoor plumbing and the automobile. That's according to Robert J. Gordon, author of "The Rise and Fall of American Growth" and a professor at Northwestern University. There's not much on the horizon to change all that, Gordon tells Scott Lanman and Daniel Moss. But take heart: A recession isn't likely anytime soon!
51: Fancy Face Cream, South Korea's Next Economic Engine
This week the Benchmark team takes a look at one of South Korea's most promising new exports: beauty products. Seoul is pivoting away from the country's reliance on government-sponsored companies like Samsung and LG and instead attempting to capitalize on its multi-generation tradition of expensive, multi-step skincare regimens. Women - and men - around the world are buying into the trend, helping overseas beauty sales for Korean beauty products to rise 73 last year. Co-hosts Kate Smith and Scott Lanman are joined by Nina Bahadur, a senior editor at Conde Nast, and Alicia Yoon, founder of the cult K-beauty e-commerce company Peach and Lily, to see just how much fancy face creams are helping South Korea's economy.
50: 'Hamilton' -- From Smash Musical to Economics Syllabus
As much as economics permeates our lives, the concepts behind the subject can often be rather dry. Fortunately, the smash Broadway musical "Hamilton" takes some of those concepts and sets them to catchy hip-hop tunes. Matt Rousu, an economics professor at Susquehanna University in Pennsylvania, is already creating lessons for his students based on some of the musical's songs as well as numbers in other Broadway shows. Scott Lanman and Dan Moss break down some of the music with Matt and find the connections between the songs and talking about the Federal Reserve -- who knew?
Now that slavery, of all things, has popped up as one of the weirder talking points in the bizarre U.S. presidential campaign, we figured it might be time to examine just how much of a link slavery -- and everything it connotes -- has to do with international economics. And yes, we did get into Brazil just last week, but with the Olympics starting this month, what better region to focus on than Latin America? Join Dan Moss and Kate Smith, along with Sao Paulo-born Vivianne Rodrigues, who runs economic and government news in the region, as we discuss why some nations clung so long to plantation-based economies that they lagged in making the leap to industrialization.
48: Why Do Sports Make Sane People Lose Their (Economic) Minds?
Police strikes, threats of Zika and a $20 billion tab: Welcome to the 2016 Summer Olympics games in Brazil. But Rio's position isn't just matter of bad luck. It was actually self-imposed. Every four years countries vie to be the next host of the summer Olympics, despite cautionary tales of unnecessary stadium spending from places like Montreal and Athens. What is it about sports that make otherwise rational politicians make irrational decisions? To help answer that question, Dan and Kate are joined this week by Neil deMause, an expert in the world of publicly financed sports facilities.
Benchmark Special: Five Things to Know About the Fed Meeting
No one thinks the Fed is going to raise interest rates at its next meeting. Chair Janet Yellen isn't scheduled to hold a press conference, and there won't be any new rate projections from Fed officials. So what should you look for when the central bank issues its statement on Wednesday? In this special bonus episode, reporters Chris Condon and Jeanna Smialek join host Scott Lanman to tell you the five things you need to know to become an expert translator of the next iteration of Fed-speak.
47: Looking Back on President Trump's First Six Months
How would the U.S. economy fare under President Donald J. Trump? Hosts Scott Lanman and Kate Smith journey one year into the future to track the Benchmark podcast from July 21, 2017. Joning them is Neil Dutta from Renaissance Macro Partners, who helps explain just what's happened during Trump's first six months -- and we also learn just how crazy this Pokemon Go thing has gotten.
China wasn't on the ballot when U.K. citizens made the surprise decision to leave the European Union. But it has played a major role in the forces of globalization that Britons rebelled against with their vote in June. How does one connect the dots from Deng Xiaoping's opening up of the Chinese economy in 1978 to Brexit in 2016? Marc Champion, a reporter for Bloomberg News in London, joins Dan and new co-hosts Kate Smith and Scott Lanman to talk all about it -- once Scott stops showing off his Mandarin skills.
45: The Economics Behind the Boom in Anti-Immigration Sentiment
From the U.S. to the U.K., immigration and its consequences are flaring up as never before. But how exactly do they shape the economy, and how are native workers affected when immigrants enter the labor force? For answers to these questions as well as a frank discussion on where policy should go from here, Tori and Aki talk to Giovanni Peri, a professor at the University of California at Davis and one of the top economists in the field of human migration.
Drug companies and researchers have made huge advances in recent years to treat cancer, possibly the world's leading cause of death. And more breakthroughs are likely. But it will come with a big price tag, and getting all the way to a cure will be tricky. What does it all have to do with the global economy? And what's a moonshot, anyway? Dr. Louis Weiner, director of the Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center in Washington, explains it all to Dan Moss and guest host Scott Lanman, who has a deep personal connection to the topic at hand.
Why is Norway attracting attention in a post-Brexit Britain? Saleha Mohsin, who followed Norwegian politics and economics for Bloomberg, joins Dan Moss to explain `EU Decaf.' How does it work and how is it different, if at all, than being a full member of the EU? You get freedom of goods, services, capital and -- critically -- labor. Norway even contributes to the EU budget! Yet Norwegians are happy with EU Decaf. Oh, and an EU referendum was defeated there as well. Twice.
Have British voters rejected more than the EU? The vote to leave the Union, which grew from the idea seven decades ago that enmeshed economies won't wage war on one another, is a blow to the liberal order that's prevailed since 1945. It's also a shot across the bow of modern family life. Paul Gordon from London joins Dan Moss to explain why. We also find out what the barista said to Paul as dawn broke in London and how he will greet his German wife when he comes home to Frankfurt.
Will the government still feed me when I'm 64? How about 74, or even 84? Americans are living longer than ever, but the retirement age has barely budged from the original 65. How can Washington adjust the public retirement system -- a political third rail -- without enraging millions of U.S. workers? What the heck do we mean by a third rail? Join us for a chat with Peter Coy, economics editor at Bloomberg Businessweek, Dan Moss and guest host Kate Smith about the future of Social Security and why you should care right now.
Venezuela, home to the world's biggest oil reserves, is in the throes of economic crisis. With inflation projected at nearly 300 percent this year, how do Venezuelans live amid six-hour lines for groceries, crumbling hospitals and growing violence? Nathan Crooks, Bloomberg's Caracas bureau chief, walks Aki and guest co-host Catarina Saraiva through his daily life, how things got so bad and what's next for the troubled country.
Every day the gig economy gets bigger, whether you're talking about drivers on Uber or programmers on Upwork. Are these workers freed from the drudgery and rigidity of full-time jobs, or are they exploited by companies that want to sidestep the commitments and the costs of traditional employees? Danny Margulies, who catapulted from unemployment in 2012 to a freelance copywriter commanding as much as $250 an hour, joins Aki and guest co-host Saleha Mohsin this week to offer a peek into his own life. Danny loves his arrangement, but as Benchmark's own Tori Stilwell reports this week, some economists worry it's leading to a more precarious labor market for middle and low-wage workers.
39: What Al Franken Really Thinks About Deadlock in Washington
Washington is once again mired in political gridlock, this time involving the Supreme Court. A seat on the highest court in the land has been open since February, and it probably won't be filled until a new president is elected. How do businesses fare in the face of so much uncertainty? For answers, Tori speaks with Al Franken, the junior senator from Minnesota and a former star of Saturday Night Live, along with Bloomberg's Supreme Court reporter Greg Stohr. As an added bonus, Franken shares his thoughts on Donald Trump, the Benchmark theme song, and rumors he may be Hillary Clinton's vice president.
38: The Quiet Epidemic That's Killing White Americans in Droves
After decades of progress in U.S. mortality rates, scores of white middle-aged Americans are dying or reporting that their health is deteriorating and life is increasingly painful. What does this have to do with the economy, and even the election? More than you might think. To discuss, Tori and Aki talk to Princeton professor Anne Case, whose work with husband Angus Deaton has documented the stunning regression.
For criminals looking to sell drugs, fund terrorism, evade taxes or bribe government officials, cash is king. That's why a growing chorus of academics and policy makers want to do away with high-denomination bills around the world, culminating last week in the European Central Bank's decision to stop printing the 500 euro note. But does this put us on a slippery slope toward a cashless society, where Big Brother can monitor our every financial move? Tori and Aki discuss with Peter Sands, a senior fellow at Harvard's Kennedy School and the former CEO Standard Chartered Bank, whose research helped spark the debate.
36: Puerto Rico's $70 Billion Crisis Just Might Be Catastrophic
Puerto Rico missed a $400 million debt payment on Sunday, and bigger, more consequential defaults could follow. But how did things get so bad in the first place? Michelle Kaske, Bloomberg's municipal bonds reporter, joins Dan and Aki to discuss the best- and worst-case scenarios for the U.S. Territory as its next payment deadline approaches.
The Affordable Care Act is back in the news, as insurers around the nation complain they're losing money in exchanges designed to bring health coverage to millions of Americans. A host of economic woes have been ascribed to Obamacare, including a higher incidence of part-time work and sour business sentiment, which opponents cite as evidence the federal government shouldn't have tried to remake the health insurance market. Supporters, meantime, argue the law achieved its primary goals and just needs further refinement. They also point to a jobless rate of 5 percent and ask how on earth can it be hurting employment? For both sides of the story, Tori and Dan are joined by Kathleen Sebelius, the former secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services who helped shepherd the law through Congress, and Jim Capretta, a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center who has spent more than two decades studying U.S. health care policy.
Japan's been having a tough time lately. The central bank used unorthodox tools to jumpstart growth -- and has little to show for it. It's closing in on deflationary territory. And now, the nation also has to worry about a strengthening yen, which has the potential to worsen both those issues. Dan and Tori discuss Japan's options, joined by Bloomberg reporter Toru Fujioka on the ground in Tokyo, and Jeff Young, co-founder and chief economist at DeepMacro LLC.
33: How Monetary Policy is Now Being Outsourced (Sort Of)
The Federal Reserve has two mandates: price stability and full employment. Yet now many wonder whether the Fed, like many large and powerful organizations, has outsourced policy. And no, we're not talking about China or Mexico -- but rather to the financial markets. Instead of setting policy and letting markets respond, are investors really in the driver's seat? Is the Fed merely following their cue? Bloomberg's Rich Miller discusses the new dynamic with Dan, while Bob Burgess and Madeleine Lim try to let him know who's boss.
32: Your Sex Drive Is Widening the Income Inequality Gap
It seems as if everywhere you turn these days you hear the same refrain: The rich are getting richer at the expense of the poor. Economists blame everything from from technology to globalization and tax policies. Now you here's another reason: The rise of associative mating, or when people marry others who share the same educational or socioeconomic status. So how can we fix who we fall in love with? Richard Reeves of the Brookings Institution joins Aki and Tori to discuss the latest research, the downside of online dating and what the future holds for social mobility across the world.
Home prices are surging around the world and in many of our favorite U.S. cities. It doesn't get much worse than tech-fueled San Francisco, where the price of a single starter home will fetch you 40 houses in Detroit. What can the rest of the world learn from the Bay Area? Ken Rosen of UC Berkeley joins Tori and Aki to discuss, and offers Aki some tips as she prepares to move back to California from Japan.
30: Everything You Thought You Knew About Saudi Arabia Is Wrong
Yes, women in Saudi Arabia know how to drive. They can vote, at least in local elections. And every Saudi citizen, men and women, may be about to see the end of generous, oil-driven subsidies that explain a lack of income taxes and utility costs so low as to be practically free. Change is coming to the House of Saud -- and it's accelerating as the most destructive crash in oil prices in a generation forces the Kingdom's rulers to reset the economy.
29: From Apple to Chick-fil-A: When Companies Play Politics
As U.S. election rhetoric reaches a fever pitch, politicians aren't the only ones taking a stand on issues. Some of the biggest brands around -- Chipotle, Chick-fil-A and Apple -- are wading into politics, a behavior that may only intensify as November approaches. Georgetown researchers Kurt Carlson and Chris Hydock join Tori to discuss the economic consequences companies face when they take a position on divisive issues, and how it's easier than ever for consumers to vote with their wallets.
Worries about China's slowdown have dominated headlines since the beginning of the year. But beneath the day-to-day volatility is a simmering crisis: A rapidly aging population and an already shrinking workforce. Enda Curran, Bloomberg's chief Asia economics correspondent, joins Aki to discuss what these demographic trends will mean for a country still in the midst of transitioning from a developing to developed economy, and how China won't be alone in facing the consequences of an older society.
Episode 27: Can Slow Growth and the American Dream Coexist?
Presidential candidates including Donald Trump, Bernie Sanders and Jeb Bush have touted plans that will inspire growth twice as fast as what the U.S. has seen during the recovery. But can they actually follow through on those promises, or is the U.S. consigned to expansions that pale in comparison to decades past? Jason Furman, chairman of President Barack Obama's Council of Economic Advisers, joins Tori and Dan to discuss how fast the economy can expect to grow given population and productivity trends, and whether that changes the reality of the American Dream.
India has the world's fastest-growing major economy and a population that's on course to be the world's largest -- eclipsing China -- within a decade. The nation's leaders are just as ambitious, launching the global "Make in India" campaign to buttress its status as a manufacturing powerhouse for cars, electronics and engineering equipment.
Maybe you've seen the billboards in Hannover or San Francisco. It's the sort of issue that Prime Minister Narendra Modi campaigned on two years ago. He won in a landslide of epic proportions, but since then much of his agenda has stalled. What's holding India back? Bloomberg's Unni Krishnan, who covers Indian politics and economics in New Delhi, joins us this week to explain.
Episode 25: Negative Rates -- Another (Delayed) 2008 Hangover
The Bank of Japan's new rules on negative interest rates went into effect this week, with a quarter of the global economy now run by central banks that have deployed this unorthodox tool to stimulate growth. With stock markets in turmoil and recession fears running high, Federal Reserve officials are being asked if they'll consider going negative should economic conditions deteriorate. Karen Shaw Petrou, co-founder of Federal Financial Analytics, joins the hosts to explain exactly what negative interest-rate policies mean and what dangers -- and benefits -- may come with such an extraordinary step.
Episode 24: The World's Best Country for Working Women
If there's one place in the world that's close to cracking the secret on gender equality, it's Norway. But even this Scandinavian utopia has some way to go. Bloomberg Oslo correspondent Saleha Mohsin joins Tori and Aki this week to talk about Norway's successes and failures, weaving in her own experiences as a mother, a wife and a young woman with a career.
Episode 23: Kill A Mosquito, Help The Global Economy
Mosquitoes don't have very many redeeming qualities. They drink our blood, they make us itch and they carry illnesses like Zika, a virus that's exploding across Latin America. They can also do some serious economic damage. From health care expenses to productivity losses -- even harm done to quality of life -- the economic costs associated with mosquitoes add up. So shouldn't we get rid of them all? Tori discusses this and more with Don Shepard, a health economist at Brandeis University.
Episode 22: Has Cheap Oil Become Bad For The Economy?
The U.S. is awash in inexpensive oil. That's usually been a plus for the economy, because even though energy companies get squeezed, drivers get a break at the pump. Now, that relationship's gotten a bit hairier. Oil producers have slashed jobs and investment, yet consumers haven't picked up the slack you'd expect from more affordable gas. So here's the question: Is cheap oil now bad for the economy? Ryan Sweet, a senior economist at Moody's Analytics, joins Benchmark co-hosts Tori and Dan to discuss.
Episode 21: What Are Your Odds of Becoming a Millionaire?
Who wants to be a millionaire? Most people we know, at least. But individuals' odds of accumulating that much wealth diverge wildly as race, age and education are factored in, according to an exclusive dataset created by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis for Bloomberg News. Researchers William Emmons and Bryan Noeth join Aki and Tori to discuss the way these three traits shape financial success, and how the deck is clearly stacked against some Americans.
Episode 20: Stocks are Melting Down. Is The Economy Next?
Financial markets around the world have been rocked as investors worry that a slowdown in China will spread to other nations as well. But how closely is the stock market actually linked to what's happening in the economy? Bloomberg stocks reporter Oliver Renick joins Tori and Aki to discuss whether the turbulence is a warning about growth prospects, or if stock-market jitters will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Episode 19: 7 Economics Tricks To Help Keep Resolutions
(Bloomberg) -- Every year, millions of people make New Year's resolutions. Every year, millions fail, often wasting money and working against their best interest in the process. That doesn't sound very rational. Katy Milkman, an associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School, joins Aki and Tori to walk through seven proven strategies to stay on target by harnessing economics research aimed at saving us from ourselves.
(Bloomberg) -- As everyone else makes predictions for 2016, we zoom ahead to 2024. Which jobs will be on the rise, and which jobs will disappear? Heidi Shierholz, chief economist at the U.S. Labor Department, joins the hosts to navigate the government's projections for this brave new world, and offers tips for all of us to stay employable.
(Bloomberg) -- This year has been full of cheaters. From bad boy pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli to the Patriots' Tom Brady to Volkswagen, allegations and incidents of cheating have been front-page news fodder. But is there sometimes an economic case to be made for such duplicitous dealings? Robert Stonebraker, a professor at Winthrop University, joins Benchmark podcast hosts Aki Ito and Tori Stilwell to discuss how the decision to cheat is a rational one, and why it's becoming an easier one to make thanks to globalization.
Episode 16: The Fed Finally Raised Interest Rates. Now What?
(Bloomberg) -- The Federal Reserve finally raised its main interest rate, after years of keeping it near zero to help pull the U.S. out of a severe recession. What does that mean for Americans' everyday lives? Michelle Meyer, deputy head of U.S. economics at Bank of America, joins the hosts to break down why this week's event was so significant for the economy, and how consumers, businesses and the government could all be affected by the central bank's move.
(Bloomberg) -- Many soon-to-be parents worry about the impact that paternal leave will have on their careers. One of them is our very own Dan Moss, who's expecting a baby daughter any day now. Tori and Aki enlist the help of Willem Adema, a senior Paris-based economist with the OECD, to walk Dan through everything economics has to say about his next few weeks, and how nations around the world approach time off for new parents.
(Bloomberg) -- Adele's new album, "25," has been flying off the shelves. Was she smart to withhold it from Spotify? Tori and Aki discuss the economics of a brutally transformed recording industry, with the help of Bloomberg entertainment reporter Lucas Shaw, who gives us a peek into how we'll be consuming music in the future.
Episode 13: How to Give Holiday Presents Like an Economist
(Bloomberg) -- With Black Friday kicking off retailers' most important shopping season of the year, economist Joel Waldfogel shares his advice for buying presents: Don't. Waldfogel, author of the book "Scroogenomics," discusses his notorious theory on the inefficiencies of bad gift-giving, with suggestions for what to do instead.
(Bloomberg) -- Americans now owe a record $1.2 trillion in student loans, and a growing chorus is asking why they should even have to go into debt to get a college degree. Other countries provide free higher education. Could the U.S.? Education reporter Janet Lorin joins Tori, Dan and Aki to discuss.
(Bloomberg) -- How much money do you need to be rich, ultra rich and out-of-your-mind rich? Tori and Aki discuss, along with what growing income inequality means for the U.S. economy. Executive pay reporter Caleb Melby drops by to recount his exchanges with billionaires, including Donald Trump.
Episode 10: Does Manufacturing Still Matter for America?
(Bloomberg) -- It's been both a depressing month and decade for U.S. manufacturing. But with the economy transitioning to one driven by services, why do economists continue to pay close attention to factory data? Tori, Dan and Aki discuss the role manufacturing still plays in America, with the help of Tori's mom, who's spent four decades in North Carolina's factories.
Episode 9: The U.S. Government's $18 Trillion Debt Problem
(Bloomberg) -- It's that time of the year again, when Washington erupts in heated debate over the decision to raise the U.S. debt ceiling. How worried should you really be? Hosts Tori, Dan and Aki discuss with debt historian John Steele Gordon, who also channels his inner Alexander Hamilton to offer advice to contemporary lawmakers.
Episode 8: How to Keep a Robot from Stealing Your Job
(Bloomberg) -- Are social skills the last barrier between you, your job and a robotic replacement? Aki, Tori and Dan, with a little help from Siri, explain which jobs are the most resistant to automation. Meantime, Dan is forced to defend his humanity.
(Bloomberg) -- There's one honor that trumps all others in economics, and it's winning the Nobel Prize. Tori catches up with the 2015 winner Angus Deaton, who talks about the 6:10 a.m. phone call congratulating him, the research that earned him the award and how his work ended up on Orange is the New Black.
(Bloomberg) -- Hosts Aki and Tori discuss foreign exchange markets through the lens of a very special event: the Portguese wedding of Bloomberg data editor Catarina Saraiva. Find out why the dollar is strengthening over the euro, and what that dynamic says about their respective economies.
Episode 5: The World Isn't Getting Pricier Fast Enough
Prices around the globe aren't rising as fast as they need to, a phenomenon that's got economists and central bankers debating how to fix it. But what's so wrong with stagnant prices in the first place? Hosts Aki, Tori and Dan discuss, with help from Carl Riccadonna, chief U.S. economist at Bloomberg Intelligence.
(Bloomberg) -- With Dan on vacation, Tori and Aki take the chance to talk about their generation: the millennials. They push past the stereotypes and fact-check some common assumptions using real data. Listen to find out if millennials are forever scarred by the recession, when they'll start having children, and just how big the consequences of their economic decision-making could be.
(Bloomberg) -- Hosts Tori Stilwell, Aki Ito and Dan Moss talk paychecks. Why have Americans' wages been stagnant for more than six years, when will that change and which industries' workers are in the best position for a raise? The hosts use Labor Department data and a Magic 8 ball to get to the bottom of things.
(Bloomberg) -- When stocks crash in the world's second-largest economy, people pay attention. In this bonus episode, Brookings senior fellow Kenneth Lieberthal joins the team to discuss what's happening in China, where its economy is heading and what Dan discovered while back-to-school shopping for his son.
(Bloomberg) -- Every week, hosts Tori Stilwell, Dan Moss, and Aki Ito bring you a jargon-free dive into the stories that drive the global economy. In this episode, the team enlists Brookings senior fellow Barry Bosworth to discuss productivity. Productivity growth has come to a screeching halt in America, and economists are really worried. So what exactly is productivity? Why should you care? And what does it have to do with Twitter? Listen to find out.
(Bloomberg) -- Welcome to episode zero of the Bloomberg Benchmark Podcast! Every week, hosts Tori Stilwell, Dan Moss, and Aki Ito bring you a jargon-free dive into the stories that drive the global economy. In this short episode, Tori and Dan tell you what to expect.