In January Alex wrote: "My own pick for undervalued nation was Germany…"
This week’s (August 20-26) cover in The Economist: Germany’s Surprising Economy
Here is just one bit:
Thanks to the intense pressure that they have been under in the past few years, Germany’s big companies have restructured and cut their bloated cost base. This process has for once been helped by the trade unions, which had been a stubborn obstacle to change. German workers have belatedly recognised that change has become essential, which is why they have been ready over the past year or so to accept such innovations as more decentralised pay bargaining, longer hours and even wage cuts. Thanks in part to this new flexibility, unit labour costs, a benchmark of competitiveness, have fallen sharply relative to other countries. In the past five years, Germany, long the most costly place in Europe in which to do business, has won a new competitive edge over France, Italy, the Netherlands and even Britain. That is a big reason why, last year, it regained its position as the world’s biggest exporter.
So what today looks like the most undervalued economy? Can the lovely Croatia go so wrong? Has everyone capitalized the commodities-driven recovery of Argentina? Is it well understood how prepared Singapore is to complement the growth of China? Aren’t Arab stock markets booming? Comments are open…