ICOR’s

The gross domestic product data for the second quarter of 2014 showed that the US economy bounced back strongly, and with enough vim to justify the view that its first quarter weakness was largely due to bad weather.

However, the productivity figures provided another bad surprise. In the first quarter GDP per hour worked fell, and it would therefore have been reasonable to expect it to improve with the sharp recovery shown in the second quarter. In fact, there was another fall.

 

The Japanese government is trying to encourage the country’s companies to increase the amount they invest. This is like trying to push water uphill. Japan as a whole and in terms of business already invests too much.