South Africa’s Pravin Gordhan: Grace Under Pressure

WASHINGTON: South Africa’s finance minister Pravin Gordhan is at the center of a political storm.  Four months ago he was brought back to head the finance ministry when his successor was abruptly fired by president Jacob Zuma and replaced with a little known lawmaker. That move shook investor confidence and sent the currency tumbling.  Four days later business leaders and senior ruling party leaders forced … Continue reading South Africa’s Pravin Gordhan: Grace Under Pressure

Zimbabwe’s Transition to What?

Zimbabwe is entering an unsteady transition politically and economically.  Robert Mugabe, its sole leader since independence in 1980, turns 90 on February 21st.  He can’t live forever.  Who will follow Mugabe and what course will his successors steer? After four years of gradual improvement, the economy is again deteriorating.  Money is in short supply. Workers are losing jobs.  Government is starved of tax revenue because … Continue reading Zimbabwe’s Transition to What?

A Stunning Lack of US Support for the IMF

Thessaloniki, Greece.  Some years back, I wrote that the annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund in Washington was Davos on the Potomac. It is, but it is much more.  Held two out of every three years in the IMF headquarters city, it is a much larger and more important gathering than the World Economic Forum.   Marco Annunziata of GE, formerly the chief economist at … Continue reading A Stunning Lack of US Support for the IMF