Korea: Number One!

Clyde Prestowitz The South Koreans have long been confident that anything the Japanese can do, they can do better, but now they’re proving it. In the 1970s-80s, the likes of Sony, Panasonic, Sharp, Toshiba, Hitache, NEC, and Fujitsu killed off RCA, Motorola, and the rest of the American consumer electronics industry and came close to … Continue reading

"Japanese" Cars, Made in America and Ready for Export to South Korea

Matthew Yglesias Yesterday, Toyota announced that they’re going to start exporting U.S.-built Camrys from Georgetown, Kentucky to South Korea. Karl Smith wisely points out that this is a great example of what a recession isn’t. If the problem is years of "living beyond our means" the solution dictated by cosmic justice is years of laboring … Continue reading

Why Is Art So Damned Expensive?

A pile of stools for $575,000. A cabinet full of surgical instruments for a cool $2.5 million. The global economy’s in a tailspin, but among the world’s elite collectors, works are selling for record prices. Blake Gopnick Walking around Miami Beach last weekend, taking in the 10th edition of its extravagant Art Basel art fair, … Continue reading

The Mall of the World

What a Hong Kong shopping complex tells us about the true nature of globalization. GORDON MATHEWS By the time I first visited the building in 2006, Chungking Mansions had evolved into something else entirely. Over the past 15 years, south China’s emergence as the world’s manufacturer of cheap goods, coupled with Hong Kong’s relaxed visa … Continue reading

Why Foxconn’s iPad Deal is Wrong for Brazil

Brasilia’s Unhealthy Obsession With High-End Technology Ronaldo Lemos On October 13, after months of erratic negotiations, Brasilia finally reached an agreement with Foxconn, the largest global manufacturer of electronic components, to build iPads in Brazil. Production is now set to begin in December, backed by a $12 billion investment drawn in part from Brazil’s national … Continue reading

The Shadow Superpower

Forget China: the $10 trillion global black market is the world’s fastest growing economy — and its future. ROBERT NEUWIRTH With only a mobile phone and a promise of money from his uncle, David Obi did something the Nigerian government has been trying to do for decades: He figured out how to bring electricity to … Continue reading

For God and country

An influential pastor comes under scrutiny for his business dealings Big in Korea KOREA has long been a hotbed of religiosity. Before a certain Kim Il Sung began having other ideas, Pyongyang (now the capital of North Korea) used to be known as “The Jerusalem of the East”. And in today’s Seoul, practitioners of traditional … Continue reading

Trust Issues

Paul Collins Hartwick College didn’t really mean to annihilate the U.S. economy. A small liberal-arts school in the Catskills, Hartwick is the kind of sleepy institution that local worthies were in the habit of founding back in the 1790s; it counts a former ambassador to Belize among its more prominent alumni, and placidly reclines in … Continue reading

Cheap Milk?

Why ditching your fancy, organic, locavore lifestyle is good for the world’s poor. CHARLES KENNY As the U.S. government starts planning budget reductions that will slash everything from defense spending to health care to bridge repair, potential cuts worth around 0.00025 percent of the value of the deficit reduction agreed on in the recent $2 … Continue reading

China’s Making Everything in the U.S. From Bridges to Civil Rights Memorials

The Chinese invasion tells us the true problem is that America is no longer willing or able to invest in its own future. By David Sirota By arrangement with AlterNet.org. Many economic Nostradamuses have long predicted that the epitaph on America’s tombstone will ultimately read, “Made In China.” But casual observers probably didn’t think the … Continue reading

Steve Jobs Resigns as CEO of Apple

Says that the “day has come” when he can no longer meet his “duties and expectations.” Josh Voorhees Steve Jobs has resigned as Apple’s chief executive officer, the company’s board of directors announced Wednesday. Apple’s chief operating officer, Tim Cook, will take over atop the company, according to Apple. As part of the move, Jobs … Continue reading

What if Japan really is No. 1?

Clyde Prestowitz In 1979, Harvard professor and East Asia expert Ezra Vogel published Japan as Number One, a book that not only became an influential bestseller in the United States but also raced to the top of the all-time nonfiction bestseller list in Japan. Appearing at a moment when Japan’s economy was surging with a … Continue reading

Is Capitalism Doomed?

Karl Marx was right that globalization, financial intermediation, and income redistribution could lead capitalism to self-destruct. Nouriel Roubini Is capitalism on the verge of self-destructing? NEW YORK—The massive volatility and sharp equity-price correction now hitting global financial markets signal that most advanced economies are on the brink of a double-dip recession. A financial and economic … Continue reading

Red, Delicious, and Rotten

How Apple conquered China and learned to think like the Communist Party. BY CHRISTINA LARSON A friend in Beijing recently told me a story about the time a China Telecom technician came over to install the Internet connection for her Apple laptop. The man, an experienced worker, puzzled over the slim, silver device. He picked … Continue reading

When Patents Attack

Alex Blumberg and Laura Sydell Nathan Myhrvold is a genius and a polymath. He made hundreds of millions of dollars as Microsoft’s chief technology officer, he’s discovered dinosaur fossils, and he recently co-authored a six-volume cookbook that "reveals science-inspired tech­niques for prepar­ing food." Myhrvold has more than 100 patents to his name, and he’s cast … Continue reading

‘The US Is Holding the Whole World Hostage’

 AP Grasping for a solution: Obama is making little progress on the debt-ceiling dispute. With no solution to the US debt crisis in sight, the rest of the world is starting to get nervous. German commentators urge congressional leaders to get their act together. A US default would have catastrophic consequences, they warn. Both Moody’s … Continue reading

China to Trounce U.S. in Next Decade

Martin Jacques The Western financial crisis heralded a significant shift in the balance of power between the United States and China. Most starkly, it brought forward the date when the Chinese economy will overtake the US economy in size from 2027 (the Goldman Sachs projection in 2005) to 2020. The reason is simple: while the … Continue reading

You call Greece a crisis?

Try the U.S., says China Edmund Downie A day after the Greek parliament passed another round of austerity cuts to stave off the country’s financial ruin, the third quarter economic outlook report released yesterday by the Bank of China is more worried about the situation in the U.S.: The U.S. sovereign debt problem is more … Continue reading

An Unfair Deal

Fair trade is overrated. BY JOSHUA E. KEATING If paying an extra buck or two for the "fair-trade" option at your local coffee shop makes you feel more virtuous about your place in the global economy, you’re not alone. Ethical beans are big business: In 2010, the United States imported 108 million pounds of fair-trade-certified … Continue reading

China’s Bold New Plan for Economic Domination

The Chinese leadership has unveiled a strategy to lead the globe in seven of the most important industries. Is the rest of the world ready? David Gray/Reuters Over the past few months, Beijing has released several plans laying out its vision for the country’s economic future. China’s twelfth Five-Year Plan, approved in March, and a … Continue reading

Liquid Gold

The Booming Market for Human Breast Milk By Judy Dutton In an era when the benefits of breast milk are better understood and more scientifically certain than ever, demand for it has created a niche industry. Photo: Mitchell Feinberg It started with a bleary-eyed Google search: “Sell breast milk.” Desiree Espinoza had a 2-month-old baby … Continue reading

Herds on the Street

Why messaging traders are like scared fish By JONAH LEHRER What does it take to become a better investor? The answer is to think like a fish. Let me explain. When small fish face an extremely difficult problem—an attack, say, from several predators at once—they deal with it by forming a school. This is an … Continue reading

Starbucks Now No. 3 U.S. Chain Restaurant

Burger joints lose grasp on top-sellers podium. By Josh Voorhees Starbucks is now the no. 3 largest-selling chain restaurant in the United States, trailing only perennial no. 1 McDonald’s and relative podium newcomer Subway, according to the latest rankings of the top 500 selling chain restaurants in the nation. The seemingly omnipresent coffee chain managed … Continue reading

Apple to Samsung: Stop Stealing Our Ideas

By Brian X. Chen Apple claims the Galaxy Tab (right) is a shameless copy of the iPad (left). Photo: Jon Snyder/Wired.com Apple says it’s sick and tired of Samsung ripping off the iPad and iPhone, and the Cupertino, California, company is filing papers. In a lawsuit filed Friday, Apple accused Samsung of committing patent and … Continue reading

The Double Irish and the Dutch Sandwich

The Explainer’s field guide to exotic tax dodges. By J. Bryan Lowder The Dutch Sandwich: just like a quarter-pounder, only not as tasty. Bloomberg reported last October that Google Inc. used two colorfully named (but completely legal) tax avoidance schemes—the Double Irish and the Dutch Sandwich—to cut their taxes by $3.1 billion over the last … Continue reading

Beijing’s Empty Bullet Trains

Is China investing way too much in its infrastructure? By Nouriel Roubini A bullet train to BeijingI recently took two trips to China just as the government launched its 12th Five-Year Plan to rebalance the country’s long-term growth model. My visits deepened my view that there is a potentially destabilizing contradiction between China’s short- and … Continue reading

Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters

How did a drummer who never intended to make money from music end up as one of the biggest and wealthiest rock stars? By Carl Wilkinson Dave GrohlA group of record company executives, sitting down to sketch the perfect rock star, may well come up with someone a little like Dave Grohl. He has the … Continue reading

The great export dodge

By Clyde Prestowitz I can’t seem to get away from good news about exports. On Monday, the Wall Street Journal worried about foreign shocks retarding America’s "export-led rebound." Then a message from the U.S.-China Business Council emphasized that U.S. exports to China are skyrocketing on their way to early fulfillment of President Obama’s export doubling … Continue reading

Japan earthquake has implications for Moore’s Law, too

By Jon Stokes This past Friday, as the market struggled to get its collective head around the potential supply chain disruptions resulting from the Japanese megaquake and nuclear crisis, Nomura Securities released a report detailing the status of various Japanese tech companies’ facilities. Ars obtained a copy of the document, which gives a glimpse of … Continue reading

Larry Page Wants to Return Google to Its Startup Roots

By Steven Levy Illustration: Grafilu; photo: Getty One afternoon about 12 years ago, Larry Page and Sergey Brin gave John Doerr a call. A few months earlier, the Google cofounders had accepted $12.5 million from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Doerr’s venture-capital firm, as well as an equal amount from Sequoia Capital. When they took … Continue reading

Paying With Your Phone

We already have a perfectly fine way to make non-cash payments. By Farhad Manjoo Paying for stuff is considered an important part of the economy, one of those activities that civilization has been refining for thousands of years. Yet it’s still a big hassle. The major problem, of course, is cash. Paper money is a … Continue reading

From the Blockage on Huawei

By HaoJun Tan Chinese corporations need to strengthen core competencies and strengthen competitiveness in foreign markets. Translated By Alice Cwern March 1 2011 Edited by Patricia Simoni China – Xinhua – Original Article (Chinese) Recently, Huawei offered to spend £50 million to equip London’s subway system with mobile phone reception, as a congratulatory gift for … Continue reading

Made in America

small businesses buck the offshoring trend By Brendan I. Koerner, wired.com In early 2010, somewhere high above the northern hemisphere, Mark Krywko decided he’d had enough. The CEO of Sleek Audio, a purveyor of high-end earphones, Krywko was flying home to Florida after yet another frustrating visit to Dongguan, China, where a contract factory assembled … Continue reading

America’s Double-Edged Sword

and “Unrequited Love” By Wang Yusheng Translated By Liangzi He 23 February 2011 Edited by Hoishan Chan China – China Daily – Original Article (Chinese) Not long ago, during the Indian National Day, the United States formally lifted its limit on the export of technology by Indian defense and aerospace industry companies, in place since … Continue reading

The Controversial Practices of Poultry Mega-Factories

Industrialized chicken farming has become a booming business in Germany, delivering hundreds of millions of birds a year to customers around the world. But the methods they use are controversial — and opposition is growing. By Nils Klawitter REUTERS A turkey chick is fighting its way into life, hatching somewhat more slowly from its shell … Continue reading

We Are Wall Street

By Michael Stifter The New York Stock Exchange is the cradle of capitalism. It is the symbol of America’s economic power. And now it is going to become German — at least a little. Translated By Ron Argentati  Edited by Jessica Boesl Germany – Augsburger Allgemeine – Original Article (German) Big ideas often come to … Continue reading

The Dark Side of the Bird

For years we’ve exported dark chicken meat to Russia—but that market is drying up. By Nadia Arumugam A chicken There’s no question that Americans overwhelmingly prefer white chicken meat to dark. We eat chicken almost 10 times a month on average—according to data from 2007— but on less than two of those occasions do we … Continue reading

U.S. Is the Biggest Beneficiary of China’s Economic Growth

By Zhou ShiJian The modernization of China will promote America’s economic growth. Translated By Alice Cwern 13 January 2011 Edited by Gillian Palmer China – Xinhua – Original Article (Chinese) Since President Obama entered the White House, the trade tension between China and the United States has obviously increased on topics such as the value … Continue reading

I Was a Rare Earths Day Trader

How a naval confrontation in the South China Sea created a global investment bubble — and cost me half my life savings. BY JASON MIKLIAN "What’s the definition of a mine? A hole in the ground with a liar on top." The most famous aphorism about the mining business is usually credited — possibly apocryphally … Continue reading

Record sales spur Apple to $26.74 billion in 1Q FY2011 revenues

By Chris Foresman Apple has again posted record quarterly financial results for fiscal first quarter of 2011. The company sold record numbers of Macs, iPhones, and iPads, beating Wall Street estimates. It also posted revenue, profit, and earnings per share that exceeded its own estimates as well as the Street’s consensus. Apple sold 4.13 million … Continue reading

China Goes Shopping

How Beijing Plans to Turn the Chinese into Consumers By Wieland Wagner Photo Gallery: 7 Photos dpa Exports fueled the initial stages of China’s ongoing economic boom. Now, however, the government in Beijing is placing a greater emphasis on domestic consumption. The Chinese middle class, it would seem, are more than happy to toe the … Continue reading

Is investing in both fine wine and crude oil a good idea?

By stevelevine What resemblance does fine wine bear with crude oil? Too much, at least if you wish a diversified investment portfolio, say two shock-jock analysts from the International Monetary Fund. Serhan Cevik and Tahsin Saadi Sedik have attracted much attention by putting seeming opposites into the same economic model, and analyzing what comes out … Continue reading

China frustrates the world

By Ian Bremmer By Ian Bremmer and David Gordon Amid a sluggish global recovery, China’s return to go-go growth will generate plenty of resentment in 2011 — and not just in Washington. Though China has become the world’s second-largest economy, its leadership insists it must continue to manage the country’s development at a measured pace. … Continue reading

Bill shock? Consumers choose it, says Big Wireless

But new data from Consumer Reports suggests that shocking cell phone bills happen frequently. The January 2011 issue of the magazine contains a story based on Consumer Reports’ own research which shows that "One in five survey respondents reported receiving an unexpectedly high bill in the previous year, often for exceeding the plan’s voice, text, … Continue reading

The Rise of the New Global Elite

F. Scott Fitzgerald was right when he declared the rich different from you and me. But today’s super-rich are also different from yesterday’s: more hardworking and meritocratic, but less connected to the nations that granted them opportunity—and the countrymen they are leaving ever further behind. By Chrystia Freeland  Image credit: Stephen Webster/Wonderful Machine If you … Continue reading

For a good cause: Half a million people fund Wikipedia

By Nate Anderson  Back on November 15, Wikipedia announced a fundraising goal of $16 million to help fund its $20 million a year operating budget. For weeks, banner ads on the site showed the head of founder Jimmy Wales—which several Ars staffers found oddly disquieting—and asked users to donate. On January 1, the site said … Continue reading

Welcome to Minegolia

How the land of Genghis Khan became a new Gold Rush San Francisco on the steppe. BY RON GLUCKMAN For the first time in as long as anyone can seem to remember, there have been traffic jams in Ulan Bator — a place previously known mainly either as the answer to a trivia question (Which … Continue reading

Apple rumor: we’ll sell 21 million iPhones in first quarter of 2011

By Chris Foresman Apple expects to move as many as 21 million iPhones in the first quarter of 2011, up from initial estimates of 19 million. Sources inside Taiwanese component suppliers told DigiTimes that the total included as many as six million CDMA-compatible iPhones expected to launch in both North America and Asia early next … Continue reading

Too Big To Bail

Is Japan the next major world economy to tank? By Bethany McLean Is the Japanese economy tanking?When the financial world tries to anticipate the next meltdown, all eyes turn to Europe. Greece needed a bailout, then Ireland did. Talk is that Spain will follow, though the country denies that it has a problem. But a … Continue reading

Defensive Selling

How businesses cope with rage-filled customers. By Timothy Noah A senior citizen checks in at the airport using a credit card.Consuming is a two-way street. This column usually concerns itself with the customer’s plight, but every once in a while it’s worth remembering that the seller’s life has its travails, too. After my sophomore year … Continue reading