Jim O’Neill

Jim O’Neill believes, not for the first time, that economists and policy makers have got it wrong. They underestimate how much the growth of China and other emerging markets has transformed the world economy, and the implications for Europe.

“If we carry on with global trade patterns as they are, the legitimacy of European monetary union is increasingly in doubt,” he said during the Ambrosetti forum in Cernobbio, Italy, held last weekend. 

Jim O’Neill, former chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, says Chinese markets are “cheap and attractive” despite lower growth. He talks to FT personal finance editor Jonathan Eley about the benefits of a mixed investment strategy.

Jim O’Neill, retiring chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management and author of the “Bric” acronym, has no idea what he will do after he clears out his office on London’s Fleet Street in a few weeks.

The candid Mr O’Neill, a Mancunian to his core, mulls the question as if to put the matter to rest. 

By Gerardo Rodriguez, former Mexican under secretary of finance

When Jim O’Neill published his seminal piece “Building Better Global Economic BRICs” in 2001 he never imagined the economic and political impact he would trigger just by coining the term Brics. Few now remember that the main argument of his essay, which was a suggestion on how to improve global economic and financial governance, turned out to be off target. 

Jim O'NeillIt’s the end of an era. Jim O’Neill, aka Mr Bric, is retiring from Goldman Sachs later this year, the bank said in a surprise announcement on Tuesday.

A larger-than-life figure who made a big impression wherever he went, be it in the foreign exchange trading room where he started his financial career or at Manchester United, the football club he has long supported and once tried to buy. Professionally, he will always be associated with Goldman Sachs, where he rose to be chief economist and later chairman of its asset management arm. 

Beyondbrics is aware of the adage of throwing stones in glass houses – we’re rather wedded to the acronym brics, for one. But we still can’t help but smile at WPP’s quarterly trading statement.

Never shy of using a marketing-friendly term, WPP chief Sir Martin Sorrell has added Mist to the Brics, Civets, and Next11. 

Mexico, led by president Felipe Calderon (pictured),  should use its G20 presidency to push for a streamlined membership and a radical overhaul of the G7 at its core, an influential voice in global economics has said.

In an interview with the FT, Jim O’Neill, chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, said that a new-look G7 could consist of the US, Japan, a single seat to represent eurozone countries, and the four so-called Bric nations of Brazil, Russia, India and China. 

As 2011 draws to a close, beyondbrics is running its first ever annual quiz. There are 10 questions. We will publish the results on Monday, but one of any correct set of answers left in the comments below will receive a prize. Something lying around the FT office, probably. Good luck. 

Jim O’Neill, the Goldman Sachs economist who invented the Bric acronym, may be distancing himself from his creation, preferring the label ‘growth markets’. But his employer is still busy pushing what some are now calling a Bloody Ridiculous Investment Concept. Here’s what Goldman forecasts for the Brics in 2050. 

So, was he right? Ten years ago Jim O’Neill of Goldman Sachs looked at four growth economies – Brazil, China, India and Russia – put their first letters into an acronym, and the Brics (as a concept) were born.

So how have they fared? What if you invested in the Brics ten years ago – where would you be now? Chart of the week finds out. 

Russia is often singled out as the Bric country that doesn’t belong in the Brics.  Critics say that with its ageing population, dependence on oil and gas and widespread corruption, it’s not in the same league as its dynamic rivals – Brazil, India and China.

Jim O’Neill, the Brics’ inventor, disagrees. In The Growth Map, a book marking the 10th anniversary of his coining of the acronym, he rejects suggestions that Russia should be dropped from the team. He argues, in his characteristically forthright way, that in terms of GDP her head, Russia has the potential to beat not just the other Brics but “all other European countries” – and join the European Union. 

Jim O'Neill
‘Growth markets’ is the latest Goldman Sachs bid to redefine the world of emerging markets. Since it comes from the man who coined the term Bric it should be taken seriously. But it doesn’t quite have the same ring about it, does it?

As Jennifer Hughes reports in Monday’s FT, Jim O’Neill, chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, plans to add Mexico, South Korea, Turkey and Indonesia to a new grouping with the Brics – Brazil, Russia, India and China – and dub them all “growth markets”. 

A good story is worth repeating. And there are few better economic stories in the world today than the rise of the emerging markets consumer.

Jim O’Neill, chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, is among its earliest and most enthusiastic proponents. In GSAM’s latest report the man who coined the term Bric forecasts that the rise of emerging markets consumers “will be the biggest development in the global economy in the next decade and beyond”, with Bric consumers becoming as large as the US consumers as early as 2019.