More on missed opportunities for change

It’s no news that the recession is over and rather than reform and set the economy on a stronger growth trajectory, we just kind of hung around waiting for oil prices to recover. They have, we are out of recession, but the non-oil economy looks like it is set of a protracted period of no growth.… Continue reading More on missed opportunities for change

The fear of zero growth

To be clear, it is always dangerous to make statements off one data point, but looking at the trend in non-oil growth, it does appear that have entered a period of no growth. If you add the fact that population is growing at around 2.9 percent, then no-growth in the non-oil sector should be very… Continue reading The fear of zero growth

Tackling competitiveness: looking beyond bureaucracy

The one where I talk about competitiveness, again. Although we should give kudos to improvements in the bureaucratic side of doing business, we need to also look beyond towards other challenges. Specifically, on driving reforms down towards the state and local governments (hat tip to the NCCN subnational competitiveness index), and towards other factors that count… Continue reading Tackling competitiveness: looking beyond bureaucracy

Markups and Concentration in South African Manufacturing Sectors

New publication in the South African Journal of Economics with Johannes Fedderke and Nicola Viegi. The result of months working with administrative tax data. Abstract: This paper uses newly available firm-level tax data to evaluate the market structure in South African manufacturing sectors in the period 2010–2012. To describe the market structure, we compute markups… Continue reading Markups and Concentration in South African Manufacturing Sectors

Are foreign loans cheaper + Is increasing taxes always desirable

Just two quick thoughts that have been in my head recently. First, one of the reasons touted by the finance minister for the attempt to switch to external debt is that it is cheaper. On the surface it does seem cheaper. Domestic bonds had yields of between 14 and 16 percent as at last week… Continue reading Are foreign loans cheaper + Is increasing taxes always desirable