Much Ado About Dubai
Global markets sank sharply at the end of last week on fears that Dubai World, a subsidiary of the government of Dubai, was on the verge of defaulting on approximately $60 billion of the emirate's $80 billion in total debt held by creditors world-wide. The rush of news stories added to the wildfire of panicky speculation, with headlines ranging from "Dubai Default Risk May be Big US Bank Problem," to "Dubai Shows Limits of Government Rescues."
Can an Eagle Hug a Panda?
Having spent a week in Asia and three intense days in China, President Barack Obama set a constructive tone for the future. He welcomed the emergence of China as a new force in the global economy and rebuffed suggestions that its rise should be seen as a sign of American decline. Chinese officials expressed concern about a weak dollar but committed to working with the U.S. to stabilize the global system. Hardly anything concrete was accomplished, but the trip cemented the centrality of the U.S.-China economic relationship and the fact that the two economies are, for now, intertwined.
For China trip, lose the old baggage
When President Obama sits down next week with Chinese leader Hu Jintao in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, the two are likely to cover the familiar terrain that has marked relations between their nations: the global economy, currency and trade disputes, carbon emissions and the upcoming Copenhagen summit, and, of course, Taiwan.