5 Of The Major Trends In International Business

As the economies of countries around the world continue to develop, foreign trade and an interdependence of firms, markets, and countries continues to growth and expand. This development has lead to intense competition among different countries, industries, and firms to claim their share within the global markets. There are several major trends influencing the growth of international business, and how the players in the international arena interact. Here are 5 of the major international business trends.

1) Forced Dynamism

International business is a complex topic because the environmentally is constantly changing. Business continually push for new ways to expand and grow, adopting new technologies in the process. The cultures and politics that shape countries and they ways in which these countries act are continually changing as well. These factors all influence the ways in which global economies develop and interact with each other.

2) Cooperation Among Countries

Countries cooperate and conduct business with each other through thousands of different international organizations, treaties, and consultations. This cooperation tends to encourage globalization because restrictions on business operations tend to become less restricted. Business and countries are able to benefit from more cooperation because they can grow their markets, solve more complex problems, and deal with concerns that lie outside of one’s territory.

3) Liberalization of Cross-Border Movements

In one way or another, every country restricts the movement across its borders of goods, services, and resources. These restrictions tend to limit international trade and business. However, countries today impose much fewer restrictions on cross-border movements than they did in the past. This has allowed companies to take advantage of opportunities, and markets, around the world. When countries are more open to cross-border movements, consumers have better access to a greater variety of goods and services at a lower price. This also creates more competition, forcing producers to become more efficient because they are competing with foreign companies.

4) Transfer of Technology

Technology transfer refers to the process by which commercial technology is disseminated to governments and businesses around the world. When two organizations agree to a technology transfer, all areas of the economy and society benefit, including research and education, transportation, employment, infrastructure, and agriculture among others.

5) Growth in Emerging Markets

The growth of emerging markets has benefited international business in two major ways. First, they have increased the potential size of markets, giving companies a greater number of people to sell their products or services too. Second, as these markets grow, they are developing an entire new generation of innovative companies that can help address the world’s most pressing issues.

Essential Tips To Take Control Of Your Personal Finances

james torpeyIf you have recently graduated from college, planning for retirement may seem like a distant concern. However, this is an incredibly important time in your life to make financial moves that will help you lay a solid foundation for the future.

Personal finances can be confusing and difficult to take control of at such a young age: it requires discipline, focus, and a lot of effort to ensure your financial well-being. But if you work hard, you can create a strong financial foundation for yourself that will pay off handsomely in years to come. If you are looking for some essential tips to take control of your personal finances, check out the comprehensive financial checklist below.

1) Be Realistic About Your Goals

It takes a lot of work and a lot of time to build wealth; saving money does not come easy. Many graduates tend to take on a lot of debt after college with the expectation of making tons of money after graduation. However, in reality it will take many years to accumulate the necessary wealth to afford nice things like a car or house. It is important to be realistic about your personal value in the workplace and live within your means. If you commit to working hard and to taking the time to build wealth, you will find yourself in a great spot 30 years down the road.

2) Find the Fun in Penny-Pinching

Learn to enjoy a frugal lifestyle. Being smart with your money is a lifestyle choice. When it comes to buying food or clothes, try and find ways to do so for as cheap as possible. See how delicious a meal you can make for the cheapest cost. Or check out a secondhand store for some cool clothes at a fraction of the cost.

3) Spend Less Than You Earn

This is probably the most obvious piece of advice you could receive, but it is still an extremely point to highlight. If you want to build wealth, then you need to spend less money than you earn! However, many people fail to live by this central idea when it comes to their finances. It does not matter how much money you are making, if you are not spending less money than you earn (and saving that money) you will find yourself in deep trouble down the road.

4) Make a Budget

To spend less money than you earn, creating a budget is essential. But you cannot just create a budget, you need to take that budget seriously. A basic guideline for efficient spending and saving is to follow the 50-30-20 rule: 50% of your income should go to necessities like rent, bills, groceries; 30% should be spendable income; and 20% should go directly into your savings. If you are looking to create a more comprehensive budget, you should consider using the site Mint.com.

5) Track Your Spending

It is important for you to know how much money you spend every week, as this is the only way to stay true to your budget. It is hard to spend less than you earn without tracking your spending. When you know how much is going out every week, and where it is going, it will help you find ways to cut costs. In order for this to really help you will need to track everything, down to every single coffee or quarter spend on laundry.

China’s Economic Growth Declines To 6.9 Percent, Six Year Low


China’s economy decelerated in the latest quarter to a six-year low of 6.9%, the slowest since early 2009 in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. The unstable Chinese economy has fueled concerns of a worsening world economy that may be entering a period of low growth that could extend into next year.

China’s economy has been under a microscope this past year as its slowdown has unnerved global financial markets and held down growth in countries that export raw materials to China, such as Brazil and Australia.

The growing concerns over China has affected the United States as well. This past month, Federal Reserve mentioned China’s slowdown and unstable economic conditions as one of the factors in their decision to not increase short-term American interest rates. The Fed’s main concern in their decision was the low U.S. inflation, which suggests that there is weakness in the United States economy as well.

China has cut interest rates five times since last November in an effort to shore up growth. However, the country has continued to experience weakening trade and manufacturing. China has also experienced a contraction in construction output, which has a significant impact on their demand for oil, iron ore and other commodities. These conditions in China have dragged down growth in Australia, Brazil and other suppliers as a result.

According to Louis Kuijs, one of the forecasters for Oxford Economics,”continued downward pressures from real estate and exports caused GDP growth to drop. But robust consumption and infrastructure prevented a sharper slowdown.”

Rising Chinese incomes has driven demand for European wines, wheat and fresh fruit from Australia and the United States, medical technology and other imports. The growth in consumption has been the one bright spot in the Chinese economy.

The rise in consumption, however, has not been enough to drive the overall economy in a positive direction. To make matters worse, some analyst are skeptical that the real numbers are even worse than reported. These analyst believe the true growth rate is likely to be below 4% and that these reported numbers have been exaggerated amid pressure from Beijing.

All Eyes On September 17: Federal Reserve Will Announce Interest Rate Decision

The Federal Reserve will meet on September 17th to decide, yet again, whether nor not to raise interest rates. The date is approaching fast with investors and economists alike focused on figuring out what is going to happen.

Following the recession, interest rates have remained at near 0 percent level, which has now spanned a total of eight years. The FED is nervous about the negative impacts which could result if they were to tighten the economy too soon. This is why they have avoided raising rates for this long and are still skeptical of whether or not the economy is finally ready.

A September interest rate was expected by many traders and economists. They have  dissected every economic data point, every comment from Federal Reserve officials, and every official statement released. But as September 17th draws closer, they are no longer so certain.

The Federal Open Market Committee released the minutes from their July meetings this past Wednesday, and based on the tone of these meetings, many are more confused about Federal Reserve’s plans now more than ever. Bank of America Merrill Lynch has reduced their predictions for a September liftoff down to a one-in-three chance.

While the liftoff may not take place in September, it is apparent that there is growing support for a change. As the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis describes in a recent research paper, after six years of quantitative easing that swelled the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet to $4.5 trillion, the policy has “has been ineffective in increasing inflation” and appears to have only boosted stock prices.

However, if no rate hike happens in September many believe that a 2015 hike will unlikely to happen at all. Societe Generale economist Aneta Markowska notes that neither October nor December are attractive options as October lacks a scheduled press conference and December coincides with lower year-end trading volumes, which would magnify a potential bond market selloff.

For now, all traders and economists can do is wait and see what the Federal Reserve decides to do. While we wait for September 17 to approach, we can be sure to expect some interesting activity on the stock market.

To learn more about the activity surrounded the Federal Reserve meeting, check out this article here.

Greece’s Road to Recovery

Greece has been on the economic ropes lately. After a headlong collision with debt, the eurozone is debating over how to handle Greece’s slip up. Currently in talks to receive their third bailout, political battles have erupted over whether or not Greece is deserving of their third and final chance. Should this latest bailout be agreed upon, Greece is set to meet some strict guidelines informing them how to use the funding. Whether or not the troubled country will be willing to meet these stringent rules has yet to be seen.

One hotly debated topic has the public ire more than roused. Greece’s debt needs to be paid off immediately, and the only viable option is to raise taxes. Naturally, this news was poorly received by a public still reeling from damaging bank closures. Though the means to solve their debt crisis is as time-tested as the taxes being raised, Greece’s citizens aren’t quite as receptive to the tightening of their belts.

The government and their spending will be under tight scrutiny over the coming months, and the debt relief program will be closely monitored after the disbursement has begun. With the threat of backsliding looming over Greece, the added resistance from public sector unions have only greased the already steep slope ahead. Fighting feverishly against the raise in taxes, citizen groups refer to this bailout as barbaric, and will stop at nothing to see that it’s overturned. A divided populace and an economy in the gutter has Greece at its own throat, desperate for a solution.

The forecast for Greece’s relief is grim. Accumulating a mountain of debt, Greece’s fate truly rests between a rock and a hard place. Without a surge in their economy, Greece will continue to need aid from the eurozone in the form of loans, increasing the ever-expanding debt chasm they have yet to leap.