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From the document,
International comparisons of economic growth also rely on exchange rates.
In the last 5 years, Europe was not the growth-centre of the world and the
strength of the euro probably depressed some European exports. But the
EU market nevertheless added nearly €1.5 trillion to its value between 2001
and 2006. Because the euro increased in value, this expansion amounts to
US$6 trillion. In comparison, the USA added US$3 trillion, China and India
together added US$2 trillion and Japan added less than US$0.3 trillion over
the same period.
Both Asia and the US grew faster than the EU.  I think the article is correct that one factor was the strenghtening of the Euro over this period, making EU products more expensive on the global markets.  And I also think Europe is doing just fine.  My biggest concern for Europe is the same concern I have for the US--the demographic impact of an aging population, and the resulting impact on consumer spending, a major component of demand.  

I think this is a useful document. But let's remember that it is intended as a marketing piece to promote direct investment in Europe.  It's going to present that case in the best light.  I would sure do that if I was writing it, and if you pull out a similar document from the US Department of Commerce, they will of course do the same thing.  There is nothing wrong with presenting data in a positive light.  But your comment Jerome goes beyond what the people presenting the data in the most positive light would say.

by wchurchill on Thu Mar 29th, 2007 at 05:14:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]

 But let's remember that it is intended as a marketing piece to promote direct investment in Europe.  It's going to present that case in the best light.

I fully agree. The fact is that this presentation is no less true than the one e endlessly get in the media all over the place, i.e. that the US "free-market" economy is superior to Europe's sclerotic version. THAT's also a "marketing piece". That's the point I'm trying to make. The reality we're being sold is just marketing ans has only a tenuous link to reality.

Thus my version provides balance and perspective, and it's even technically true.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Thu Mar 29th, 2007 at 05:20:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, I empathize with your view, in the sense of MSM.  The lack of insight and intelligence on their part, coupled with their tendency to take a point of view and just pound on it is very frustrating.  I feel the same way when they pound away on US healthcare, and frankly many other issues.  There's normally a grain of truth, but then where they go is ridiculous.

But my comment was addressed at true marketing, not the idiots in MSM.  There is nothing wrong with the US Dept of Commerce or the French and German equivalents presenting things in the best light.  But we should do our best to stay factual and objective.

Personally, as I've said before, I like both the US and European models.  It's an incredible opportunity, imo, for us to have both models, so you get a chance to pick and choose--in some cases combine--the models, evolving toward something that is better than both.  For example, there are elements of the French healthcare approach that I think would be very instructive for the US.  Not in the sense of just adopting it wholesale.  But rather in the sense of taking some elements, that if I understand it right, really make sense for the US, and combining with existing aspects of the US system.

The EU is doing more than fine in growth.  The EU is certainly not declining nor stagnating.  But they're just not the economic locomotive of the world, at least not yet--"and it's even technically true",,,,well, not really.

by wchurchill on Thu Mar 29th, 2007 at 06:04:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The version you posted is not biased. The fact the Euro appreciated shows the markets think that european are producing more value. Who is to criticize the perfect allocation of funds by The Market TM ? Socialist government statistical agencies? Nah.

Un roi sans divertissement est un homme plein de misères
by linca (antonin POINT lucas AROBASE gmail.com) on Fri Mar 30th, 2007 at 09:27:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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