On May 31, 1970, an earthquake measuring 7.9 on the Richter scale rifled across the regions of Ancash and La Libertad in northern Peru, collapsing roads, homes and schools and unleashing an avalanche that buried the town of Yungay in a mass of rock and ice. More than 66,000 people were killed, more than 100,000 were injured, and hundreds of thousands more were left homeless. … [Read more...] about The Hidden Traumas of Natural Disasters
It's never easy to get the wealthy to pay their taxes — and Latin America is no exception. Not only do they have the political clout to fight legislation that would increase their contributions relative to low-earners. They can afford top-flight lawyers and accountants to help them maneuver around their income taxes through loopholes and offshore tax havens. As a result, tax … [Read more...] about The Problem with Taxing the Rich
2015 was without a doubt a year for raising awareness, at least as far as the environment is concerned. We closed the year with the Climate Change Summit in Paris, where 195 countries reached an agreement that aspires to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees centigrade by 2100. With that agreement, the heads of state and their representatives in attendance committed to reducing … [Read more...] about Climate Change Can Harm Your Health
Sometimes we need a little push to do things that we know are good for us. We find a “gym buddy” to somehow commit to work out. Or we bet money with a friend on who will be able to spend a month without smoking. When it comes to saving, these nudges are also important for many, even if they are not aware of it. Previous posts explored the main reasons why people in Latin … [Read more...] about Helping Latin Americans Save
What’s going on in Latin American and Caribbean economies? Growth keeps falling, but unlike the rest of the world, inflation keeps going up (see Figure 1). In this blog I outline two possible views. Policy choices—and what to expect in 2016 and beyond—may depend on the explanation. Some argue that advanced economies have entered a phase of secular stagnation (See Larry … [Read more...] about Latin American and Caribbean Macro: Secular Stagflation or (Just) a Painful Transition?