Indexfundfan\’s blog (new URL is Indextown.com)

August 17, 2006

For the American Pessimists

Filed under: Investing — indexfundfan @ 8:00 am

Due to the twin budget deficits and other problems in the U.S., many investors in Singapore seem to write off investing in the U.S, thinking that America is losing its global lead in technology.

The following is an article from Economist.com, titled Venturesome Consumption, “in praise of America’s fearless consumers of new ideas and products”.

For a growing number of economists and policymakers, however, the greatest fear of all—not least because its long-term consequences may be so deep—is that America is losing its global lead in technology. In the battle to invent and innovate, China and India, in particular, with their gazillion-strong cohorts of engineering and science graduates, will soon overwhelm the dullards and liberal arts students churned out by America’s education system.

The most important part of innovation may be the willingness of consumers, whether individuals or firms, to try new products and services, says Mr Bhidé. In his view, it is America’s venturesome consumers that drive the country’s leadership in innovation. Particularly important has been the venturesome consumption of new innovations by American firms. Although America has a lowish overall investment rate compared with other rich countries, it has a very high rate of adoption of information technology (IT). Contrast that with Japan (the original technology bogeyman from the East) where, despite an abundance of inventive scientists and engineers, many firms remain primitive in their use of IT.

One reason why American firms are able to be so venturesome is that they have the managers capable of adapting their organisations to embrace innovation, says Mr Bhidé. Pressure to be venturesome may have come from America’s highly competitive markets. And America’s downstream firms are arguably the world’s leaders in finding ways to encourage consumers to try new things, not least through their enormous marketing arms and by ensuring that there is a lavish supply of credit.

PS. The title of this post is inspired by post 52278 from the Diehards forum.

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1 Comment »

  1. FINANCE, personal finance, business finance, Financial economics, Experimental finance, Financial instruments on http://finance.realresult.us – best web resources for finance, search information site.
    …Personal financial decisions may involve paying for education, financing durable goods such as real estate and cars, buying insurance, e.g. health and property insurance, investing and saving for retirement.

    Comment by finance — September 10, 2006 @ 7:00 am


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