2022’s unlikely economic winners – The Economist

by | Dec 18, 2022 | Financial

In financial terms the past year has been bad for almost everyone. Inflation of 10% year-on-year across the rich world has slashed household incomes. Investors have lost out as global stockmarkets have plunged by 15%. Yet this poor aggregate performance hides wide differences: some countries have done pretty well. In order to assess these differences, The Economist has compiled data on five economic and financial indicators—gdp, inflation, inflation breadth, stockmarket performance and government debt—for 34 mostly rich countries. We have ranked each economy according to how well it has done on each measure, creating an overall score. The table below shows the ranking, and includes some unexpected results. For the first time in a while, the economic party is happening in the Mediterranean. Top of our list is Greece. Other countries that plumbed the economic depths in the early 2010s, such as Portugal and Spain, also score highly. They are not the only pleasant surprises. Despite political chaos, Israel did well. Meanwhile, despite political stability, Germany is an underperformer. Two Baltic countries, Estonia and Latvia, which won plaudits in the 2010s for speedy reforms, come bottom. gdp, usually the best measure of economic health, is our first indicator. Norway (helped by high oil prices) and Turkey (by sanctions-busting trade with Russia) have done better than most. The fallout from covid-19 also looms large. Thanks to super-strict lockdowns and a collapse in inbound tourism, a year ago much of southern Europe was in dire straits. The region was due a decent year. Tourist visits to the Balearics recently surpassed their pre-pandemic level. As your correspondent discovered on a recent trip, Ibiza is so busy it is …

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