Friday, 31 August 2012

When the chips are down, the trades are up!

by Daniel Hearn
poker, trading, teen economist, economics for teens, economics for teenagers, financial markets, stocks, shares, traders

Poker – a game of luck where the player with the strongest hand always wins, right? Well, not always and in fact it can be very rare that the strongest hand actually does win! So surely, this doesn’t relate to modern day trading where other peoples’ money is invested. You’d be surprised! Poker (a bluffing game of luck) is seen by many as having direct links with trading…

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Dead Perfect

body image, distortion by Salma Rana

Body-image and general self-image is an issue that haunts the minds of all kinds of people, both young and old. The media tells us that we live in a world full of ‘perfect’ people. Television, magazines and adverts reinforce this on a daily basis and even though they are doing this in order to encourage people to buy their products - they seem to have distorted a woman’s perception of what a healthy weight is and seemed to have made them want to look a certain kind of ‘beautiful’.

Although the pressure to be perfect is increasing for both men and women, this article will be heavily focusing on women. 

Monday, 27 August 2012

Thought for the Week (27/08/12)

by Shireen Avasthi

I love humanity, but I hate people.                            
- Edna St. Vincent Millay 
This is a very special quote. This is because (in my opinion) everyone's interpretation of it will be different. A person's interpretation could be worlds apart from the person next to them's, or it could be uncannily similar.

My interpretation of this quote is that Millay is trying to say there is a distinction between the idea of humanity and the cold hard reality of humans: she is saying that she loves the idea of humanity; she loves the idea of people putting the well-being of another person before their own.

Sadly, people no longer abide by the rules of humanity (surely they must have done so at some point in history!), and due to this Millay has started to "hate" the human race. They have tarnished the name of humanity and run wild and high on selfishness.

I'm sure that a lot of people think that Millay's point of view is extreme, but the thought of people going about their buisness and not caring what happens to the other beings around them probably makes any lover of humanity cringe.

Would it hurt to try and be more aware of the people around you and the situation they're in? Probably not. So be more compassionate towards your fellow human beings this week. I'm certain you'll find it's worth the effort ;)

Thursday, 23 August 2012

What is Time?

by Sparshita Dey
time, clock, economics for teens, economics for teenagers, teenage economist, teen economist

Time is a complicated topic itself but it has become an everyday thing for all of us. We are constantly basing our day to day activities on “time” and even the fact that we exist on it (i.e. birthdays). But is that all time is – made up numbers and units to base our lives on? Or is there much more? And exactly what is time besides the continuous ticks of a clock?

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Stephanomics Review: Whose fault is the economic crisis?

by Viva Avasthi

"Who deserves most blame for the financial mess we're all in? Is it the bankers? Or should we also save some time for the economists?"

Stephanie Flanders, the BBC's Economics Editor, asks these questions in an episode of Stephanomics, her programme on economics. The episode reviewed here focuses on the economics of the global financial crisis and the problems regarding the Eurozone. This article is, in sorts, a summary of the discussion Stephanie Flanders had with the billionaire investor George Soros, Sir Howard Davies (former chairman of the Financial Services Authority and former deputy governor of the Bank of England), and Dr DeAnne Julius (chairman of Chatham House and a former member of the Bank of England's monetary policy committee). Only the discussion about the global financial crisis has been summarised to prevent the article from becoming too long. To read an article explaining the problems in the Eurozone, click here.
Dr DeAnne Julius, economics for teens, economics for teenagers, stephanomics
Dr DeAnne Julius

George Soros
George Soros
Sir Howard Davies, economics for teens, economics for teenagers, stephanomics
Sir Howard Davies

Saturday, 11 August 2012

7 Reasons for the Chinese Economic Miracle

The Chinese economy has been growing at an average rate of 10% for the past three decades. This unprecedented growth has astounded onlookers, but many who do not read into the Chinese economic miracle have little to say about why this has happened. They often chalk it up to exports and the manufacturing boom, often represented by a 'made in China' signature on the bottoms of cheap plastic products. That is only a small part of why China is rivalling the United States as the world's industrial powerhouse. Here are seven reasons for the Chinese economic miracle.

1. Peasants could farm a section of land for themselves

Previously, both the ownership and use of land was collectivised. Farms were people's communes, whereby all the peasants working the land owned it, and they farmed collectively. The reform that ended 20 years of collective farming didn't redistribute land ownership; rather, it allocated the use of land through a contract, so that peasants could choose how they wanted to farm the land. This reform took place over 5 years and considerably increased efficiency and output.

2. The relaxation of price controls on foodstuffs
Before the reforms, basic foods such as grain, meat and eggs were distributed using a strict rationing system by the government. The price that was paid by the government for these foods was so low that firms didn't want to produce them. It led to bad food quality and inefficient production.
The farming reforms were the first step out of three to undo the pricing controls. The second step was the introduction of free local markets to support the first reform. And the third step involved aggressively raising the price ceilings, which helped suppliers and promoted productivity. The government also lowered the price for agricultural machinery to promote farming mechanisation.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

China at a Glance

by Chris Pearson

china, money, chinese economicsChina is becoming much more important in the world economy, meaning recent reports of a slowdown cast doubts into the minds of pundits abroad. China's GDP is fast approaching that of the US and this means that news about the Chinese economy holds much sway with global markets. 

Many assume that China is growing through its export revenue - but they are wrong - rather, 92% of  its growth comes from investment spending. Expected then, are those who believe that this surging investment level is fueling a fixed-asset price bubble -  like what happened in Japan and to the Asian tigers in the 90s. The difference between investment in China and the investment in the Asian tigers, prior to 1997, is the different sources of money used to invest. China's funds cannot be pulled out from under itself as easily as what happened to the Asian tigers because it does not rely on foreigners' money to fund its investment. 

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Fame: A Secret Formula?

by Karen Birnie

Is there something that all famous people have in common? Is there some special thing that some people have which guarantees recognition? Or is it just plain hard work?

There's no doubt that to make it into the public eye in any field, one must be prepared to work extremely hard. Actors, singers, even scientists; to be renowned, your work must be of a supreme quality.

But surely there's a secret formula that leads to success, a secret ingredient in the mix of skill and hard work. Some people just seem to attract the limelight. What is it about these people? Do they make an extra effort, or are they born with it?

                             Audrey Hepburn, the highly successful actress...what was her secret?

Monday, 6 August 2012

Thought for the Week (06/08/12)

by Shireen Avasthi
nate williams, gandhi
Image created by Nate Williams
Be the change you want to see in the world.
What Mahatma Gandhi means by this is that change starts from you.

For example, if you want to live in a better society, you should set an example for others by being a better member of society.

If you want the world to change, you'll have to change yourself first. It's impossible to change others without first changing yourself.

Do what Gandhi did; lead by example. You cant expect others to do anything without someone to show them the way: you should be that someone.

Just remember, if you want to change something badly enough, you will find a way to be the one to change it.

Try initiating change this week; you might just find yourself enjoying it ;)

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

China's One Child Policy: a Good Idea?

by Shireen Avasthi

china, one child policyHow big is your family? How many siblings do you have? If you'd been born in China, you wouldn't have any: you would be an only child.

Is that fair? should a government be allowed to decide how many children a couple have? Whether or not a child has brothers and sisters to play with. Should anyone have the right to decide if a child has an enjoyable childhood?

If you have siblings, think about all the fun you've had together. Of course you have your arguments, but above all, you genuinely have a good time together.

I'm sure children with no siblings also have a fun-filled childhood; all the extra attention from parents must be great, but imaging doing all those exciting things with someone closer to your age to share them with. Wouldn't that be great?

I'm not denying that China's one child policy is a sensible way to try and control their immense population problem: it is. But are the rights families and children are required to give up in order to enforce this too heavy a price to pay?