History repeating?

Photograph: Central Press

Seeking Trump's Future in New Zealand's Past

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Feisty, Protectionist Populism? They Tried That Down Under

More than 40 years before Donald Trump entered U.S. politics, another western leader poured money into infrastructure, insulted foreign dignitaries, sparred with the press, and scorned expert counsel — all to the delight of television viewers. Spoiler alert: It didn’t end well. Tyler Cowen recounts the saga of Robert Muldoon, New Zealand’s eccentric former prime minister.

Solving the Riddle of Venezuela’s Economy

Reliable economic information is as scarce as toilet paper in the Bolivarian Republic — government figures are unreliable and contradictory (when they’re published at all), but private data isn’t much more trustworthy. As a result, Mac Margolis says, investors in the country with the world’s biggest oil reserves are pretty much running blind.

Why Europe Is Warning of Pax Americana’s End

This year’s venerable Munich Security Report considers a world in which the U.S. is retreating from its superpower ambitions. Leonid Bershidsky mulls over the once-unthinkable possibility that the European Union might fill the vacuum.

World’s Biggest Debt Market Faces a Yuge Test From Trump

Donald Trump doesn’t talk about exports much, but he should pay attention to Treasuries: They’re America’s top export, and foreign demand is slipping. Tracy Alloway warns that this is a rare case where the president’s brand of hyperbole might be justified. 

Ritholtz’s Reads

  • Why falling home prices could be a good thing (The Upshot)
  • The importance of bubbles that didn’t burst (Financial Times)
  • Book recommendations from billionaire Charlie Munger that will make you smarter (Medium)

(Read Barry Ritholtz’s full daily news roundup.)

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