InterTrade Economic Forum

On the 28th of April InterTrade Ireland held their second Economic Forum entitled Shaping Recovery. Speakers included Barry Eichengreen (Berkley), Linda Yueh (Oxford), Will Hutton (Work Foundation) and Michael O’Sullivan (Credit Suisse). The presentations have now been put on the web and can be found here. As the speakers took a wider perspective the presentations are still relevant.

Barry Eichengreen argued that Zarnowitz’s Law – the deeper the recession the stronger the recovery – would not hold this time. While he argued that the US won’t experience a double dip, he also thinks that current projections are to optimistic. He believes that Europe will underperform relative to the US. He also had a few words on Greece.

Linda Yueh focused on Asia. She was upbeat but also highlighted the issue of global rebalancing. She pointed out that as China has a very poorly developed financial system the exposure to the financial crisis had been minimal. However, internal rebalancing and re-orientation of the economy towards domestic consumption were important challenges. She highlighted that China is becoming a capital exporter particularly in relation to energy, minerals and other raw materials (this has implications for Europe).

Will Hutton focused on innovation. He also commented on the economic problems in the UK and Ireland (he made a few comments that might provoke some debate – unfortunately he had to leave the discussion early). In general he argued that since innovation depends on the cumulative stock of scientific and technological knowledge most innovation will continue to take place in the EU, US and Japan but that it was important to put the appropriate structures in place.

Michael O’Sullivan took a closer look at Ireland, outlining achievements, comparing the latest crash with previous ones and argued for institutional reform He also had a very interesting quote about the Irish by Fridrich Engels that I had not heard before. His graph on the growth of Irish golf clubs also caught attention!

All in all  there was plenty of food for thought including lots of interesting graphs and I suggest you have a look yourself. You can also listen to the presentations.