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Consider the following puzzle: we live in an age of apparently dizzying technological innovation, yet in the developed world productivity is almost stagnant. How do we explain this?
In his column this week, Martin Wolf canvasses a range of possible answers. It could simply be that we’re not measuring things correctly. Or that a combination of diminishing competition and rent-seeking have dissipated the potential gains of innovation. Or perhaps new technologies are just not as transformative as we thought. One thing, however, is clear: we need a solution to the productivity conundrum — and soon.
James Crabtree argues that London’s warm embrace of fugitive Indian tycoons is not going down very well in New Delhi.
Megan Greene suggests that the effects of Donald Trump’s tariffs might not be as dramatic as many have feared.
Frederick Studemann writes that the edict that all public buildings in Bavaria, the “Texas of Germany”, display a cross in their entrance is an expression of Bavarian exceptionalism.
What you’ve been saying
Gas pipeline proposals take power from EU states— Letter from Professor Kim Talus and Professor Bent Ole Mortensen:
The proposal creates a conflict with third country laws, which it would remedy through agreements negotiated by the commission. Member states would no longer be allowed to negotiate these agreements.
How far are member states willing to go in order to complicate one project? While the proposal is trying to design a legal regime that would only apply to Nord Stream 2, the impact would apply to any future pipeline project bringing gas to the EU.
Comment from Confused Desi on London as a ‘Bollygarch’ bolthole rankles with New Delhi:
A long article that tries to obfuscate a simple issue. The reason rich criminals from many countries prefer London is because the UK is quite welcoming of rich criminals, and will shield them from facing the legal consequences of their crimes. If human rights, fair trial, et. al were the real issues, then why are more of these criminals not landing up in the US, Australia, etc.? Because these countries would promptly send these criminals back home.
Quite similar to the Swiss private-banking industry that for many decades made money by banking criminal proceeds and hiding behind the excuse of their ‘banking privacy laws’. The business of providing services to rich criminals has always been quite lucrative.
President trumps pope in pardoning himself— Letter from Bruce Couchman:
Some commentators have noted that President Donald Trump’s claim to the right of self-pardon is analogous to the rights claimed by medieval kings (June 5). A more modern analogy is the power of the pope. Despite modern recording and playback technology, the pope cannot hear his own confession or grant absolution to himself. We don’t yet know whether Mr Trump claims to be infallible on any matters, but on this issue he appears to be claiming greater powers than the pope.
Bavaria crosses a line to fend off the far-right
The state is accused of violating the principle it should be neutral on faith
Forecasts of the impact of a US-China trade war fool markets
Economic models ignore that some industries and regions will be hit more than others
Instant Insight: Kim Jong Un outmanoeuvres Donald Trump in Singapore
The North Korean leader has proved himself the cannier deal maker
Spain’s government brings some hope of a modest but fresh start
Pedro Sánchez sends a signal with his cabinet choices and talk of constitutional reform
Free Lunch: The euro has come a long way
Take stock of the work already done to see what more is needed
EM Squared: Rising oil prices prompt fears of social unrest
Argentina and Turkey seen as exposed after protests hit Brazil, Jordan and Morocco
London as a ‘Bollygarch’ bolthole rankles with New Delhi
India makes no secret of its displeasure with the UK’s role as a haven for its tycoons
FT View: Spain rescues Aquarius, but Europe is still at sea
Chaotic immigration policy puts other EU priorities at risk
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