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Thursday, June 26, 2014

Who wins the 2014 Economic World Cup (Preliminary Stages)

We will be abnormally busy tomorrow with this and that, so today's posting will be our 'Weekender' and carry until our next on Monday 6/30..

The World Cup is winding down its preliminary matches today, then an off day tomorrow followed by the beginning of single-elimination 'Sweet Sixteen'..

We love following the World Cup no matter if the US makes it into playoffs or is eliminated a little later this afternoon, so in that spirit, we decided for fun to see who would win an economic WC

We kept all group participants exactly the same as the real WC but who wins or loses is determined by how that nation's economy is doing vs others.
Having a gigantic economy with large geography and population doesn't guarantee success in this 'tournament'..

What matters is how that economy is functioning today vs the competition..  Is it strong, on financial life support or somewhere in between?

So.. Let's to a quick summary of how the 2014 Economic World Cup plays out

First the preliminary rounds.  For those who aren't following the WC, there are eight groups, A to H with four nations competing in a round-robin to see which two advance from each group and which two go home..

From there, its set up where you play other nations in the playoffs based on whether you finished first or second..

The later rounds we will wrap up Monday but for today, we focus only on group stages..
Group A:  Brazil, Cameroon, Croatia, Mexico

Just like with the real tourney, Brazil and Mexico both make it to next round with ease with Brazil topping Mexico as #1 in this grouping.

Brazil is a developing country with lots of natural resources and Mexico benefits greatly from NAFTA.
Group B:  Australia, Chile, Netherlands, Spain

Netherlands advances and Spain is trounced and sent packing here just like the real soccer teams.

We should say right now no PIIGS nation (Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece, Spain) will be advancing--

The EU has wasted trillions of Euros keeping these morbid economies afloat when they All should have had the political courage to default and made the global banks take the pain which instead their populaces are currently feeling

As for the Aussies v Chileans, Chile wins and take the #2 spot...  They're considered one of the most stable in South America if not the world while the nation 'Down Under' keeps having to manipulate interest rates lower to stimulate spending and borrowing..  Never a good sign..
Group C:  Colombia, Greece, Ivory Coast, Japan

This grouping its a blowout..  Colombia and Ivory Coast advances.

Greece's economy is Horrid and Japan's economy is spinning out of control as its economic leaders keep dramatically cutting interest rates and increasing the circulation of Yen to try to get them out of a second dead decade in a row..

Colombia takes the #1 spot because Ivory Coast is a politically unstable nation and only compared to drek like Greece and Japan does its economy shine..
Group D:  Costa Rica, England, Italy and Uruguay

Costa Rica's economy is very very stable and Uruguay has a strong export market particular in agriculture, while Italy is part of the PIIGS and England is in a recession

Both nations are very close but we give the nod to Costa Rica as #1 seed just because its also #1 in the real Group D seeding over Uruguay.

Its quite shocking how accurate the results are of the real WC are compared to ours when we're not taking soccer skills into consideration

The only difference so far in our tally and the real WC is Greece advancing for real when economically, they're in the toilet and no signs of real improvement..

Continuing..
Group E: Ecuador, France, Honduras, Switzerland

France is the 2nd largest economy in Europe but things are so bad there, that for the highest earners, taxes have been raised to 75% with 8,000 individuals even taxed at 100% if you can imagine that..  No way they advance..

As for the other three nations, Switzerland and Ecuador advance because Honduras is heavily indebted to that US created scoundrel bank called the International Monetary Fund (IMF) when lends distressed nations money then bleeds it dry with high interest followed by ultimate privitazation (allowing private companies to come in and buy/own a nation's infrastructure)

Switzerland gets the nudge to #1 over Ecuador
Group F:  Argentina, Bosnia-Herzegovena, Iran, Nigeria

This is a tough group to figure who advances out of..

Argentina's economy is very weak and heavily indebted with ministers recently saying they're being pushed to default, so obviously they don't advance.

Bosnia just secured more IMF loans to deal with flooding issues and they're a tiny nation with a weak economy to begin with..

Iran and Nigeria advance because both are oil producing nations and in the case of Iran, they actually would win this group because they are only one of Three nations on the entire Earth who do not owe a penny to the IMF or World Bank
Group G:  Germany, Ghana, Portugal, USA

Germany tops this grouping with a robust economy; the nation that pretty much rules over the EU, and Portugal does not advance because they're a PIIGS nation..

So its between Ghana and USA to see who advances..

The last five years thanks to oil export, Ghana's economy showed consistent GDP gains of over 8%.  For the 1Q of 2014, it dropped a bit...  to +6.7%.   The USA's GDP in the same period Sank to a -2.9%.   The last time GDP in the US grew by 6% or higher in a Quarter was in 2005
Ghana's unemployment rate is 11% vs our 'official' 6.3% but of course everyone with half a brain knows that tally is fiction based on selective data and we're really over 14% with over 100mil people in a population of 315+ million who for whatever reason (age, disability, unemployment, etc,,) do not work..

That's 1 in 3

Add to it, the fact that Ghana does not have over $17 trillion over its head in Debt and even though the USA is Obviously the more powerful and overall prosperous nation, at this moment our economy is in deep trouble-  nothing from 2008 was fixed..

Sorry to say but Ghana's economy this moment is stronger than the US which is a slap in the cheek indicator of how bad a fix we're in.. just most don't realize it

Not yet anyways..

Ghana advances..
Group H:  Algeria, Belgium, Russia, S. Korea

Russia has a growing economy.. Its one of the BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China) and their GDP has grown in 4 years from -7.9% in 2009 to +3.2% today...

Belgium's economy has been pretty flatlined the past few years due to the economic pressure on the small nation to prop up the other deadbeats in its European Union so they don't advance..

Now its between Algeria and S. Korea..  What makes S Korea advance is Algeria can't seem to attract foreign investment while the Koreans are a major exporter of technology such as automobiles, appliances, etc..

Its Russia first and S. Korea second..
Based on how the World Cup seeds those who advance to the Stage of 16, here is how things look as we go into Monday for battle for 2014 Economic World Cup Supremacy..

Brazil v Chile (just like real WC)
Mexico v. Netherlands  (just like real WC)
Colombia v Uruguay   (just like real WC)
Costa Rica v Ivory Coast
Switzerland v. Nigeria
Iran v. Ecuador
Germany v S. Korea
Russia v. Ghana
Some shockers we know, but like we said before, this competition isn't based on the amount of GDP, geography size, population, etc but simply one which nations are the most economically healthy and growing vs those stagnant or in the midst of recession or worse..

Have a good weekend and enjoy watching the real matches~