David Jacks, Martin Stuermer, 07 December 2018

There is a lack of consensus on the importance of various drivers of long-run commodity prices. This column analyses a new dataset of prices and production for 15 commodities, including metals, agricultural goods, and soft commodities, between 1870 and 2015. Demand shocks due to rapid industrialisation and urbanisation have driven a substantial amount of variation in commodity price booms. While demand shocks have gained importance over time, commodity supply shocks have become less relevant. 

M. Ayhan Kose, Marco Terrones, 18 October 2012

Bouts of elevated uncertainty have been one of the defining features of the sluggish recovery from the global financial crisis. This column explores the role of uncertainty in driving macroeconomic outcomes using data from a large group of advanced countries over the past 40 years. It concludes that uncertainty appears to hinder growth.

Michael Ferrantino, Aimee Larsen, 29 August 2009

International trade has transmitted demand contractions across national boundaries throughout the crisis. This column analyses the transmission of the recession through US trade flows at the sectoral level. US imports of housing construction inputs peaked before many other popular housing indicators.

Willem Buiter, 29 April 2009

Is the global economy turning around? Analysing the situation across the globe, this column concludes that the only reasonably convincing evidence of ‘green shoots’ comes from China – but even that recovery is unlikely to be sustainable due to China's dependency on exports. A global flu pandemic, if it were to occur, would act as a negative supply and demand shock.

Kamil Yilmaz, 28 March 2009

This column introduces an index identifying how much shocks to industrial production in one country spill over to other countries. Since September 2008, the index has jumped higher than ever – countries are pulling each other down. It argues that this reinforces the case for global action and calls for coordinated policy actions by the G20.

Axel Dreher, Stephan Klasen, Andreas Fuchs, Jan-Egbert Sturm, 29 October 2008

With the world slipping into a recession of unknown magnitude, protectionist temptations appear across the globe. This column argues that finishing the Doha Round WTO negotiations would both provide a boost to the world economy and send a strong signal that beggar-thy-neighbour policies are not on the table this time.

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