As job creation and an economic growth stall, the Obama administration is being criticized not just from all parts of the political spectrum in the U.S. but also from big business, which increasingly believes that the president harbors a thinly camouflaged antibusiness bias.
So far, serious currency turmoil hasn't been a part of the subprime-induced credit crunch. Nevertheless, the monetary system could be more fragile than it appears.
Not many Americans outside Washington care whether the bilateral trade agreements that the United States has negotiated with Panama, Colombia and Peru contain provisions to protect labor standards in those countries, or whether such treaties are ratified by Congress this spring.
As public interest in the threat of climate change grows in the United States, a large number of companies are announcing that they are going green. Some institutional invest ors are cajoling those who aren't.
Emotions ran high at last week's meeting of G-7 finance ministers in Essen, Germany. Euro-zone officials were annoyed with their Japanese counterparts because the yen had sunk to all-time lows against the euro, signaling trouble for the Continent's exporters.
Earlier this month I spent several days in Singapore meeting with government and business executives for a Yale project to identify key trends in Asia. It was fascinating for what I heard, and what I did not hear.With most of the emerging markets in the region entering their fifth year of an economic boom, it is no surprise that sentiment is bullish.
Over the next decade, the biggest change in the world's corporate hierarchy will be the rise of companies from developing countries. Corporations such as China's Huawei (telecommunications equipment), India's Infosys (IT and business outsourcing services) and South Africa's SABMiller (beer and beverages) are already big global enterprises.
I have generally been a worrier when it comes to thinking about risks in an ever-shrinking global economy. But not now, not on one of the critical questions facing the world in 2006: whether countries such as China, India, Turkey, Russia and other emerging markets will continue to boom, or go bust, just as they did in 1997.
The mood among the trade ministers gathering in Hong Kong this week is likely to be downbeat. That's because after two years of struggling to move global trade negotiations toward a conclusion, the 149 countries of the World Trade Organization have failed to bridge huge gaps in their respective positions.