Economy and Development

Taxing with Dictators and Democrats in Argentina

Sunday, December 14, 2014 - 08:00

Latin American nations are notoriously poor tax collectors and Argentina is among the least effective. Despite a relatively high level of development, Argentina’s governments are unable or unwilling to extract at levels comparable even to the surrounding nations. One possible source of this weakness is Argentina’s political structure, including its fiscal federalism and the incentives provided by elections and national governance. Crucially, taxing is unpopular, so politicians that face reelection or can gain resources elsewhere will avoid it.

Argentina's Vulture Fund Odyssey: An End to Latin American Debt Dependence?

Monday, December 15, 2014 - 13:15

On July 31st 2014 the clock ran out on the deadline for Argentina’s government to make a $539 million interest payment to the 93 percent of its bondholders which had agreed to debt restructuring in the years since the country’s 2001/2 economic and political crisis. At that time Argentina had been forced to declare the largest sovereign default in world history, but with the latest deadline having been missed, the South American nation is now once again in ‘technical default’ with the doom merchants forecasting profound economic upheaval.

Paid to Wait: Effects of the Venezuelan Economic Crisis

Friday, January 30, 2015 - 10:30

While much of the United States has been figuratively dancing in the streets about the incredibly low gas prices as of late, others have not been so fortunate to enjoy the plummet. Rather, their economies have been suffering because of it. One such nation is Venezuela, which has recently entered into a recession due to the global lack of demand for oil. Oil has been Venezuela’s primary export for years, which accounts for 96 percent of its foreign currency reception.1 The central Venezuelan bank also noted 63.6 percent inflation between November 2013 and November 2014.

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