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Category Archives: Economics & Business

What OPEC can learn from the soybean history

Last year an unknown price competition was going on between oil leaders. By increasing production, and thereby lowering the market price for oil, they tried to compete each other out. On November 2016, members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and ten other countries, among them Russia, decreased part of their production. This month the same leaders decided to extend this policy for nine months. The goal is to increase the price of oil, but MarketWatch came up with an interesting thread by looking at history.

Venezuela: An Overview of the Economy

In the beginning of the 20th century the first significant oil reserves in Venezuela were found. This new natural resource sparked the interest of the government because it can be the basis of a very profitable industry for the country.  Juan Vicente Gómez, the president at the time, granted several concessions to foreign companies to explore, extract and refine oil. During the First World War, the industry was faced with a lack of technology and machinery because of the difficult and costly transportation of them. As a result, the production of oil was slowed down for the time being.

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Mechanization and automation of labor and why you should be afraid!

“ Build that wall! Build that wall!” I guess we all know where those words come from. The populist rhetoric that has been used by many political players, including the don himself has been characterized by a rising hatred towards immigration and foreign trade among others. People believe that the rising unemployment and stagnating wages might be due to foreigners taking their jobs. However, the reality might be different, and thus I’ll be trying to bring forth an alternative explanation in this article.

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The problem with Greek banks

          Greece has been in the midst of perhaps, as some say, the worst financial and economic crisis since the end of the Second World War for almost nine years now. At one moment things seem to be improving, then a harsh realization kicks in that the situation might actually be getting worse and even out of hand. This has been the reality for the Greek banking sector these last couple of years. With a series of large write-offs and big losses that the banks had to incur which have also impacted a number of people, the banking sector still faces great uncertainty and I will try to bring to the table a few of these ongoing problems to try to make the situation a bit clearer.

 

Trumponomics

Now that we have seen the first acts as Trump in his position as president of the United States, the time is now to reflect on his economic ideas and first acts. Obviously, it remains unclear how Trump will fill in the rest of his presidency, but we already are able to have a glimpse of what Trump is going to do the following four years.

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An Economic Parallel between Animals and Humans

It’s been established that when it comes to behavior, animals are not that different from humans. Both have feelings of compassion, empathy, as well as possess the ability to work in teams to consulate each other and even to free-ride. The similarities do not end there, humans and animals have been found to make the same economic decisions. We can trace the same patterns in both species’ behavior and actions when it comes to demand, consumption, and allocation of resources.

Animals, like humans, optimize their energy intake and are motivated by their material self-interest, like the need for food. They are rational and make decision in accordance with their own preferences, just like us always seeking to maximize our utility. For any kind of species gaining food and comfort is connected to incurring costs. Humans as an example need to give up part of their income, even sometimes their savings, in return for the goods and items that they desire. When looking at animals, their costs generally consist of the time and the effort they spend to gather the food needed or to build or find shelter.