The No-Nonsense Guide to Global Finance (No-Nonsense Guides)
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An incisive introduction to global finance—where money comes from, the current mechanisms, and the need for control and reform. It traces the origins of money as a source of exchange and a store of value and the many weird forms it now takes—visible and invisible.
The guide sets recent events into context, indicating how the flows of money directed by an unaccountable elite increasingly shape economic, political, and social activity.
Peter Stalker is a former co-editor of the New Internationalist who now works as a consultant to a number of UN agencies. He is author of the No-Nonsense Guide to International Migration.
Credit unions are strongest in North America and the Caribbean, where the ‘penetration’– the proportion of the population of working age who are members – is above 40 per cent. In Canada, the credit unions, with around 11 million ‘member-customers’ and a penetration rate of 47 per cent provide stiff competition to commercial banks. The first credit union was created Global credit unions Between 1998 and 2007 the number of credit unions globally rose from 37,623 to 49,134. In total, they had 177
were 2,223 investment funds, run by 108 companies, managing £450 billion in assets.8 What do they do with this money? Firms like Gartmore, PDFM, Schroders and Mercury in the UK put 70 to 80 per cent of their money into shares, twothirds of this in the domestic market, and invest the rest in bonds or keep it as cash. Most of these funds will claim to manage your money better than the average investor – that they will outperform the market. But of course all of them cannot. Indeed they tend to do
not well known and wants a loan in euros it may have to accept one from a European bank at an unfavorable floating rate. It may therefore make a swap with a French company that is in a position to negotiate a better, fixed rate. far exceeds the trade in the underlying commodity. For while there is a limit to how much wheat is available, for example, there need be no limit to the number of futures contracts based on its price. Many of these contracts are written by speculators who may be praised
are investment funds controlled by governments that have amassed surpluses of money which they want to invest overseas. Globally these funds control around $2.9 trillion and are growing rapidly. Assets managed by sovereign wealth funds, 2008, $ billions Country Fund UAE Abu Dhabi Investment Authority Singapore Gov. of Sing. Invest. Corp. (GIC) Norway Government Pension Fund - Global Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabian Monet. Auth. Kuwait Kuwait Invest. Auth China China Investment Corporation
your total worldly wealth is on your person right now you are unlikely to feel very secure. You hope that the cash you have in your bank account also counts as money, though it may never have taken a physical form – just an electronic entry in some remote computer. Even some of the world’s poorest communities are now receiving payments and settling accounts using mobile phones. Money is what money does. Suppose you are in a taxi, discover that you have no cash and offer to pay with your watch. Is