Friday, 19 August 2011

Company News: SHLD, HPQ, EK, APKT, CREE, NTAP, OFC, GS, TRW, TXR.

By Zacks Investment Research Aug 19, 2011, 8:40 AM Author's Website  
• Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD) posted a Q2 loss of $1.13, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate for a loss of $0.64 per share. Revenues for the quarter fell 1.2% year-over-year to $10.33 billion, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $10.097 billion
• Tech giant Hewlett-Packard’s (NYSE:HPQ) reported adjusted earnings of $1.10 per share on revenues of $31.2 billion for the third quarter, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimates of $1.09 and $31.1 billion
• According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, Eastman Kodak Co. (NYSE:EK) is looking to sell off its digital imaging patents. Following this development, shares of the company gained 13.38% to close at $3.05
• Shares of tech providers Acme Packet Inc. (NASDAQ:APKT) plunged 17.38% after analysts at Pacific Crest downgraded the stock from “Outperform” rating to “Sector Perform” rating
• On Wednesday, energy efficient lighting makers Cree, Inc. (NASDAQ:CREE) announced it has acquired Ruud Lighting Inc. in a deal worth around $525 million in cash and stock
• Shares of NetApp Inc. (NASDAQ:NTAP) were downgraded by analysts at William Blair to a “Market Perform” rating from an “Outperform” rating
• Shares of Corp Office Props (NYSE:OFC) were downgraded by analysts at Stifel Nicolaus to “Hold” rating from “Buy” rating
• Analysts at Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) downgraded TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. (NYSE:TRW) to a “Neutral” rating from a “Buy” rating
• Analysts at Oppenheimer downgraded shares of Texas Roadhouse (NASDAQ:TXRH) from an “Outperform” rating to a “Perform” rating.

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Economy review of Canada


Panel forecasts Canada GDP up 2.2-3.2 pct this year
* Expects Canadian dollar will be steady near par
* Interest rates to rise gradually to end year at 2 pct
By Ka Yan Ng
TORONTO, Jan 6 (Reuters) - Canada's economy, which outperformed its Group of Seven peers through the financial crisis, is seen losing some of its shine this year, with growth slowing from 2010 and likely lagging the United States.
Top economists at the country's biggest banks on Thursday predicted modest growth of 2.2 to 3.2 percent in 2011, with a firm Canadian dollar constraining exports and the Bank of Canada expected to resume its rate hike campaign.
"It isn't going to be a gangbuster, but it's also not going to be a bad year," said Craig Alexander, chief economist at Toronto-Dominion Bank.
Canada was the star performer among the hard-hit G7 developed economies during the global recession, helped by its sound banking system and the fact it avoided the property crash seen in the United States and much of Europe. Unemployment has also been much lower than in its southern neighbor.
While final numbers are not in, the Bank of Canada and most economists expect the Canadian economy grew 3 percent last year well ahead of most G7 peers. ECONPOLL1
But Canada's central bank, which began hiking its key policy rate from a record low last June, expects growth to slow to 2.3 percent this year, weaker than the 2.7 percent growth many expect for the United States.
Even so, a panel of chief economists from Canada's five largest banks told a business audience on Thursday that the country's central bank will likely resume tightening. They see interest rates doubling to 2 percent by year end.
By contrast the U.S. Federal Reserve is likely to hold off on raising interest rates from record lows for a third straight year, even as the U.S. consumer boosts growth there, said Sherry Cooper, chief economist at BMO Capital Markets.
Warren Jestin, Bank of Nova Scotia's chief economist, said the "pedal to the metal" fiscal stimulus policies, particularly in the United States, should be enough to keep the North American economy growing around 2.5-3 percent, while Europe and Japan grow at a slower pace.
Jestin said it was clear there was a two-track recovery, and that emerging market economies such as Brazil, China, India and Russia will be increasingly important to global growth.
The panel noted that demand for commodities from these growing economies will remain firm and should benefit exports from Canada's resource-based economy.
They also agreed the Canadian dollar would probably trade near equal value with U.S. currency this year, supported by continued growth and rising rates. This matched median expectations in a recent Reuters currency poll. [CAD/POLL]
But CIBC chief economist Avery Shenfeld warned the Canadian dollar and other commodity-linked currencies could be vulnerable to a reversal in resource prices.
Shenfeld was cautious about resources, noting that oil and other commodities have been trading more like financial assets than as the materials used to fuel cars or build things.
"Commodities today may have actually overshot supply and demand fundamentals," he said. "I wouldn't be surprised if in the first half of the year we start to see commodities prices edge a bit lower from where we are now."
PUBLIC STILL WARY ON OUTLOOK
Even as the country's top economists predicted further growth, a poll showed many Canadians are less optimistic about the state of the economy than they were a year ago.
Almost 30 percent of survey respondents expect moderate economic growth ahead, compared with 17 percent in December 2009. But only 38 percent of Canadians think the economy will improve in the next 12 months, compared to 54 percent who felt that way in December 2009, according to the Economic Club of Canada/Pollara poll published on Thursday.
One in five Canadians feel the economy will worsen this year, compared to 14 percent who felt that way one year ago.
The survey was taken between Dec. 10-15, shortly before a recent spate of U.S. and Canadian economic data deepened hopes that the recovery is entrenched.
"The recession is over. If people aren't getting more optimistic almost by the day, then they're probably not paying attention," said Craig Wright, chief economist at Royal Bank of Canada.

Economy of Colombia


Economy - overview

The SANTOS administration has highlighted five "locomotives" to stimulate economic growth: extractive industries; agriculture; infrastructure; housing; and innovation. Colombia is third largest exporter of oil to the United States. President SANTOS, inaugurated in August 2010, introduced unprecedented legislation to better distribute extractive industry royalties and compensate Colombians who lost their land due to decades of violence. He also seeks to build on improvements in domestic security and on President URIBE's promarket economic policies. Foreign direct investment reached a record $10 billion in 2008, but dropped to $7.2 billion in 2009, before beginning to recover in 2010, notably in the oil sector. Pro-business reforms in the oil and gas sectors and export-led growth, fueled mainly by the Andean Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act, have enhanced Colombia's investment climate. Inequality, underemployment, and narcotrafficking remain significant challenges, and Colombia's infrastructure requires major improvements to sustain economic expansion. Because of the global financial crisis and weakening demand for Colombia's exports, Colombia's economy grew only 2.7% in 2008, and 0.8% in 2009 but rebounded to around 4.4% in 2010. In late 2010, Colombia experienced its most severe flooding in decades, with damages estimated to exceed $6 billion. The government has encouraged exporters to diversify their customer base beyond the United States and Venezuela, traditionally Colombia's largest trading partners; the SANTOS administration continues to pursue free trade agreements with Asian and South American partners and a trade accord with Canada is expected to go into effect in 2011, while a negotiated trade agreement with the EU has yet to be approved by the EU parliament. Improved relations with Venezuela have eased worries about restrictions on bilateral trade, but the business sector remains concerned about the pending US Congressional approval of the US-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement.

GDP (purchasing power parity)

$435.4 billion (2010 est.)
$417.4 billion (2009 est.)
$411.4 billion (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate)

$285.5 billion (2010 est.)

GDP - real growth rate

4.3% (2010 est.)
1.5% (2009 est.)
3.5% (2008 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP)

$9,800 (2010 est.)
$9,600 (2009 est.)
$9,500 (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector

agriculture: 9.3%
industry: 38%
services: 52.7% (2010 est.)

Population below poverty line

45.5% (2009)

Labor force

21.27 million (2010 est.)

Labor force - by occupation

agriculture: 18%
industry: 13%
services: 68% (2010 est.)

Unemployment rate

11.8% (2010 est.)
12% (2009 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 0.8%
highest 10%: 45% (2008)

Distribution of family income - Gini index

58.5 (2009)
53.8 (1996)

Investment (gross fixed)

22.8% of GDP (2010 est.)

Budget

revenues: $74.2 billion
expenditures: $83.9 billion (2011 est.)

Public debt

44.8% of GDP (2010 est.)
45.3% of GDP (2009 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

3.1% (2010 est.)
4% (2009 est.)

Central bank discount rate

3% (31 October 2010)
5.5% (31 December 2009)

Commercial bank prime lending rate

12.98% (31 December 2009 est.)
17.18% (31 December 2008 est.)

Stock of money

$25.01 billion (31 December 2009)
$21.58 billion (31 December 2008)

Stock of quasi money

$26.57 billion (31 December 2008)
$27.25 billion (31 December 2007)

Stock of domestic credit

$123 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$96.66 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Industries

textiles, food processing, oil, clothing and footwear, beverages, chemicals, cement; gold, coal, emeralds

Industrial production growth rate

5.5% (2010 est.)

Electricity - production

50.58 billion kWh (2007)

Electricity - production by source

fossil fuel: 26%
hydro: 72.7%
nuclear: 0%
other: 1.3% (2001)

Electricity - consumption

38.59 billion kWh (2007)

Electricity - exports

876.7 million kWh (2007)

Electricity - imports

39.4 million kWh (2007)

Oil - production

785,000 bbl/day (2010 est.)

Oil - consumption

288,000 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - imports

16,540 bbl/day (2007 est.)

Oil - exports

294,000 bbl/day (2008 est.)

Oil - proved reserves

1.9 billion bbl (1 January 2010 est.)

Natural gas - production

9 billion cu m (2008 est.)

Natural gas - consumption

8.1 billion cu m (2008 est.)

Natural gas - exports

900 million cu m (2008 est.)

Natural gas - imports

0 cu m (2008 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves

112 billion cu m (1 January 2010 est.)

Current Account Balance

$-5.946 billion (2010 est.)
$-4.991 billion (2009 est.)

Agriculture - products

coffee, cut flowers, bananas, rice, tobacco, corn, sugarcane, cocoa beans, oilseed, vegetables; forest products; shrimp

Exports

$40.24 billion (2010 est.)
$32.08 billion (2009)

Exports - commodities

petroleum, coffee, coal, nickel, emeralds, apparel, bananas, cut flowers

Exports - partners

US 42%, EU 12.6%, China 5.2%, Ecuador 4.5% (2010 est.)

Imports

$36.26 billion (2010 est.)
$32.49 billion (2009)

Imports - commodities

industrial equipment, transportation equipment, consumer goods, chemicals, paper products, fuels, electricity

Imports - partners

US 25.5%, China 13.4%, Mexico 9.4%, Brazil 5.9%, Germany 4.1% (2010 est.)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$28.5 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$25.35 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Debt - external

$57.74 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$52.9 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home

$84.62 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$75.22 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad

$19.2 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$16.2 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares

$217.3 billion (31 December 2010)
$133.3 billion (31 December 2009)
$87.03 billion (31 December 2008)

Exchange rates

Colombian pesos (COP) per US dollar -
1,869.9 (2010)
2,157.6 (2009)
2,243.6 (2008)
2,013.8 (2007)
2,358.6 (2006)


Source : http://www.indexmundi.com/colombia/economy_profile.html

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Australia Economy Profile 2011


Economy - overview

Australia's abundant and diverse natural resources attract high levels of foreign investment and include extensive reserves of coal, iron ore, copper, gold, natural gas, uranium, and renewable energy sources. A series of major investments, such as the US$40 billion Gorgon Liquid Natural Gas project, will significantly expand the resources sector. Australia also has a large services sector and is a significant exporter of natural resources, energy, and food. Key tenets of Australia's trade policy include support for open trade and the successful culmination of the Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations, particularly for agriculture and services. The Australian economy grew for 17 consecutive years before the global financial crisis. Subsequently, the Rudd government introduced a fiscal stimulus package worth over US$50 billion to offset the effect of the slowing world economy, while the Reserve Bank of Australia cut interest rates to historic lows. These policies - and continued demand for commodities, especially from China - helped the Australian economy rebound after just one quarter of negative growth. The economy grew by 1.2% during 2009 - the best performance in the OECD - and by 3.3% in 2010. Unemployment, originally expected to reach 8-10%, peaked at 5.7% in late 2009 and fell to 5.1% in 2010. As a result of an improved economy, the budget deficit is expected to peak below 4.2% of GDP and the government could return to budget surpluses as early as 2015. Australia was one of the first advanced economies to raise interest rates, with seven rate hikes between October 2009 and November 2010. The GILLARD government is focused on raising Australia's economic productivity to ensure the sustainability of growth, and continues to manage the symbiotic, but sometimes tense, economic relationship with China. Australia is engaged in the Trans-Pacific Partnership talks and ongoing free trade agreement negotiations with China, Japan, and Korea.

GDP (purchasing power parity)

$882.4 billion (2010 est.)
$858.8 billion (2009 est.)
$847.5 billion (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate)

$1.236 trillion (2010 est.)

GDP - real growth rate

2.7% (2010 est.)
1.3% (2009 est.)
2.6% (2008 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP)

$41,000 (2010 est.)
$40,400 (2009 est.)
$40,300 (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector

agriculture: 4%
industry: 24.8%
services: 71.2% (2010 est.)

Population below poverty line

NA%

Labor force

11.62 million (2010 est.)

Labor force - by occupation

agriculture: 3.6%
industry: 21.1%
services: 75% (2009 est.)

Unemployment rate

5.1% (2010 est.)
5.6% (2009 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 2%
highest 10%: 25.4% (1994)

Distribution of family income - Gini index

30.5 (2006)
35.2 (1994)

Investment (gross fixed)

27.4% of GDP (2010 est.)

Budget

revenues: $396.1 billion
expenditures: $426.5 billion (2010 est.)

Public debt

22.4% of GDP (2010 est.)
22.1% of GDP (2009 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices)

2.9% (2010 est.)
1.8% (2009 est.)

Central bank discount rate

4% (31 March 2010)
4.25% (3 December 2008)
note: this is the Reserve Bank of Australia's "cash rate target," or policy rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

6.02% (31 December 2009 est.)
8.91% (31 December 2008 est.)

Stock of money

$248.5 billion (31 December 2008)
$298.5 billion (31 December 2007)

Stock of quasi money

$617 billion (31 December 2008)
$667.2 billion (31 December 2007)

Stock of domestic credit

$1.731 trillion (31 December 2010 est.)
$1.407 trillion (31 December 2009 est.)

Industries

mining, industrial and transportation equipment, food processing, chemicals, steel

Industrial production growth rate

3% (2010 est.)

Electricity - production

239.9 billion kWh (2007 est.)

Electricity - production by source

fossil fuel: 90.8%
hydro: 8.3%
nuclear: 0%
other: 0.9% (2001)

Electricity - consumption

222 billion kWh (2007 est.)

Electricity - exports

0 kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - imports

0 kWh (2008 est.)

Oil - production

589,200 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - consumption

946,300 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - imports

716,700 bbl/day (2008 est.)

Oil - exports

311,900 bbl/day (2008 est.)

Oil - proved reserves

3.318 billion bbl (1 January 2010 est.)

Natural gas - production

42.33 billion cu m (2009 est.)

Natural gas - consumption

26.59 billion cu m (2009 est.)

Natural gas - exports

22.3 billion cu m (2009 est.)

Natural gas - imports

6.56 billion cu m (2009 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves

3.115 trillion cu m (1 January 2010 est.)

Current Account Balance

$-35.23 billion (2010 est.)
$-41.33 billion (2009 est.)

Agriculture - products

wheat, barley, sugarcane, fruits; cattle, sheep, poultry

Exports

$210.7 billion (2010 est.)
$154.8 billion (2009 est.)

Exports - commodities

coal, iron ore, gold, meat, wool, alumina, wheat, machinery and transport equipment

Exports - partners

China 21.8%, Japan 19.2%, South Korea 7.9%, India 7.5%, US 4.9%, UK 4.4%, NZ 4.1% (2009)

Imports

$200.4 billion (2010 est.)
$160.4 billion (2009 est.)

Imports - commodities

machinery and transport equipment, computers and office machines, telecommunication equipment and parts; crude oil and petroleum products

Imports - partners

China 17.9%, US 11.3%, Japan 8.4%, Thailand 5.8%, Singapore 5.5%, Germany 5.3% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

$38.62 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$41.74 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Debt - external

$1.169 trillion (31 December 2010 est.)
$1.094 trillion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home

$329.1 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$295.9 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad

$245.9 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$221.1 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares

$1.258 trillion (31 December 2009)
$675.6 billion (31 December 2008)
$1.298 trillion (31 December 2007)

Exchange rates

Australian dollars (AUD) per US dollar -
1.0902 (2010)
1.2822 (2009)
1.2059 (2008)
1.2137 (2007)
1.3285 (2006)


 Source : http://www.indexmundi.com/australia/economy_profile.html

Economic Survey of Sweden 2011


Sweden has weathered the recent global financial and economic crisis well thanks to strong economic institutions and fundamentals, not least a sound fiscal position. The main challenge going forward is to strengthen institutions and fundamentals even further so as to keep enhancing resilience and sustainable long-term growth.
Maintaining a strong fiscal position. In the face of the crisis, Sweden’s healthy public finances proved a major asset. Sweden is in a better shape than most other OECD countries to face fiscal pressures coming from population ageing. Going forward, maintaining a sound fiscal framework, encouraging greater labour force participation and further increasing the efficiency of public spending would help cope with future negative shocks and various fiscal pressures.
Further improving monetary and financial policy frameworks. Aggressive interest rates cuts, unconventional policy measures and exceptional government support to the financial system all helped contain the depth and length of the recession. As the expansion unfolds, the monetary policy stance needs to continue to tighten and support to the financial system needs to be scaled back. To strengthen the monetary policy framework even further, the central bank could improve communication. Some features of the financial system’s institutional framework need to be reviewed to clarify the allocation of responsibilities and ensure that regulations and toolkits are well designed and assigned.
Limiting long-term unemployment and raising overall hours worked. Past reforms and measures taken during the crisis have limited the fall in employment and exits from the labour market. But, as in the last deep crisis Sweden faced, there is a risk of a permanent increase in unemployment. Reducing the duality of employment protection legislation would foster the inclusion of groups at the margin of the labour market and improving the wage bargaining framework would ease labour market adjustments. The efficiency of active labour market policies could be raised by increasing the use of training, targeting it towards those who need it the most, and improving cooperation between institutions. Further reforms of the social benefit and tax systems are needed to provide the right incentives for increasing hours worked.
Sweden has decoupled its GHG emissions from growth
Enhancing the cost-effectiveness of climate change policies. Sweden has developed an ambitious policy framework to limit greenhouse gas emissions and has achieved impressive results. Reducing them further could be very expensive, making it important to do so at the lowest possible cost. The carbon price should be made even more central and more uniform across sectors. A larger share of greenhouse gas emission reductions should be achieved in sectors covered by the EU emission trading scheme as well as outside Sweden. The overlaps between targets and policies ought to be limited. Improving the assessment of Sweden’s climate change policies would help in making progress in these directions.

Monday, 8 August 2011

Economy of Barazil


BRAZIL has a lot to be proud of. A decade of faster growth and progressive social policies has brought a prosperity that is ever more widely shared. The unemployment rate for April, at 6.4%, is the lowest on record. Credit is booming, particularly to the swelling numbers who have moved out of poverty and into the middle class. Income inequality, though still high, has fallen sharply. For most Brazilians life has never been so good.
That success is partly thanks to good luck, in the form of booming commodity prices. But it is also the result of good policies. A country once known for its macroeconomic incompetence has maintained an enviable stability, deftly navigating the 2008 financial crisis as well as the more recent influx of foreign capital. Not surprisingly, perhaps, many of Brazil’s economic officials now have an air of smugness about them, as they argue that the rest of the world has more to learn from Brazil than vice versa.
Inflation is 6.5% and rising. It is driven (as elsewhere) by food and fuel costs, but the tightness of Brazil’s labour market suggests that it could easily become entrenched as workers expect higher prices and demand higher wages. The jobless rate is well below the level that is consistent with stable prices. Although professional forecasters’ expectations of future inflation have stabilised, the proportion of ordinary folk expecting higher prices has risen. Wage gains in some sectors are already running into double digits. If the labour market remains red-hot, stubborn and creeping inflation seems all too likely—especially if (as seems probable) foreign investors eventually become alarmed and the exchange rate weakens.
The timing of such complacency could not be worse. The economy is overheating. The government is stalling on a deeper reform agenda that is essential to boost Brazil’s long-term growth and fiscal stability. President Dilma Rousseff’s growing political problems do not help: her chief of staff, Antonio Palocci, is under fire over fat consulting fees. All this adds up to a warning: Brazil’s economy is heading for trouble.
Give it a squeeze
The best way to counter the inflation risk is through tighter macroeconomic policies. Brazil’s central bank has been raising interest rates, but monetary conditions are still looser than before the financial crisis in 2008, when joblessness was much higher. Brazilians fret, reasonably, that faster rate rises will attract even more foreign capital. Lured by high interest rates, investors have piled into the country, sending the currency soaring to an increasingly overvalued rate, despite an expanding arsenal of taxes designed to deter them. Brazilian officials are right to worry about the impact of foreign capital flows, but their emphasis on controls and fear of raising rates have distracted them from a more potent tool: tighter fiscal policy.
Ms Rousseff’s government brags about its fiscal squeeze. Thanks to strong revenues and a slowdown in investment spending, the primary budget (ie, excluding interest payments) is on track to hit a surplus of almost 3% of GDP. But that is not nearly bold enough. To dampen overall demand growth and reduce Brazil’s real interest rates, the government needs far more ambitious fiscal consolidation: with the economy growing strongly, the overall budget (ie, including interest payments) should be in surplus, especially if the government is to have the scope for a fiscal stimulus when the next recession comes. Worse, today’s gains are coming from the wrong sources; rather than slowing investment, the state should be squeezing its transfer payments. Nor are the gains likely to be sustained. Under current rules, Brazil’s minimum wage will rise by 7.5% in real terms next year—at huge fiscal cost, since pension payments are linked to the minimum wage.
Tighter fiscal policy is Brazil’s best defence against short-term economic trouble. An overhaul of government is also the route to boosting longer-term growth. A streamlined state will improve productivity growth as well as Brazil’s saving and investment rates. Pension reform is urgently needed in a country that is ageing fast, has absurdly generous pensions and in which the average woman retires at 51. So, too, is an overhaul of Brazil’s fiendishly complicated and distortive tax system.
Such reforms are difficult, and tempting to put off. But without them Latin America’s biggest success story will start to look a lot less lustrous.

Saturday, 6 August 2011

The World Economy


Great Financial Crisis? What Great Financial Crisis?

That seems to be the attitude in 2011. Which worries us at EconomyWatch.com, because we do not believe that the underlying problems have been solved. If anything, they have been exacerbated.
But first, the numbers, taken as ever from our Economic Statistics Database.
World Economic Statistics at a Glance - 2011 Forecast
World GDP (PPP): $78.092 trillion
GDP Growth Rate: 3.3%
GDP Per Capita (PPP): $11,100
GDP By Sector: Services 63.4%, Industry 30.8%, Agriculture 5.8%
Growth In Trade Volume: 6.953%
Industrial Production Growth Rate: 4.6%
Population: 6.768 billion
Population Growth Rate: 1.133%
Urban Population: 50.5%
Urbanization Rate: 1.85% (125 million people move to cities every year)
The Poor (Income below $2 per day): Approx 3.25 billion (~ 50%)
Millionaires: Approx 10 million (~ 0.15%)
Labor Force: 3.232 billion
Inflation Rate - Developed Countries: 2.5%
Inflation Rate - Developing Countries: 5.6%
Unemployment Rate: 8.8%
Investment: 23.4% of GDP
Public Debt: 58.3% of GDP
Market Value of Publicly Traded Companies: $48.85 trillion, or 62.6% of World GDP
Sources: EconomyWatch.com Economic Statistics Database, CIA World Factbook, IMF, World Bank
The World Economy in 2010 was worth $74.007 trillion in GDP terms, using the Purchasing Price Parity (PPP) method of valuation. This is expected to grow to $78.092 trillion in 2011.
The overall global economy averaged a 3.2 per cent growth rate between 2000 and 2007, suffering a slight dip in 2001 - 2002 thanks to the Dot Com Crash, but continuing to grow throughout that period. In fact 2004 - 2007 were boom years. The Emerging Markets, led by the giants of China, India, Russia and Brazil (the BRIC countries) had been posting 7 per cent - 10 per cent growth rates for years. Property and stock market booms had brought consistent growth in North America and Europe. Investment was bringing economic development to much of the Middle East and Africa, and even Japan was recovering from its deflationary 'Lost Years'.
Economic conditions within these countries play a major role in setting the economic atmosphere of less well-to-do nations and their economies. In many aspects, developing and less developed economies depend on the developed countries for their economic wellbeing.
Theories were even circulating that thanks to the growth of the developing world, we might enjoy years of unfettered growth, as new markets would go through successive growth spurts and counter the effects of slowing growth elsewhere. It was suggested that Asia was 'decoupling' from the US and able to grow under its own steam thanks to its two 'Awakening Giants'.
Sadly, that turned out to be hogwash, as deregulation allowed western banks to build up unsustainable levels of debt that brought the global economy to the brink of depression.
As the 'Sub-Prime' Crisis morphed into a fully fledged crash then global Financial Crisis, 2008 started to bomb and 2009 became the first year that the world recorded a loss in GDP since World War II. 2.031% was wiped out of the global economy - or $3.3 trillion of value.

Source : wikipedia.com
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