John Micklethwait
Editor, The Economist

John Micklethwait Discusses New Opportunities in the Global Recession

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John Micklethwait Discusses New Opportunities in the Global Recession.

John Micklethwait

John Micklethwait is Editor-in-Chief of The Economist. Before that he edited the US section of the newspaper (1999 - 2006) and ran the New York Bureau for two years, having edited the Business Section of the newspaper for the previous four years. His other roles have included setting up The Economist's office in Los Angeles, where he worked from 1990 - 1993 and being Media Correspondent. He has covered business and politics from the United States, Latin America, Continental Europe, Southern Africa and most of Asia. He is a frequent broadcaster and has appeared on CNN, ABC News, BBC and NPR. He is the co-author of "The Witch Doctors", "A Future Perfect: the Challenge and Hidden Promise of Globalisation" and "The Company: A Short History of a Revolutionary Idea" and "The Right Nation", a study of conservatism in America, with Adrian Wooldridge, also an Economist journalist.

Question: Where is the next big opportunity in the global economy?

Micklethwait:    When in times of investment, you’re very unwise to take investment advice from me, you see as a man who invested in [Euro channels] attempt to go through [Chang Tong to get help] necessarily investors to get money. I think in general terms, the way in which the economy is probably going to recover is going to be through a solid, structural industry and things which people really need, that’s pretty much always what happens when economies come back, you’ve seen that this time and you’ve seen it at some level whereby things like consumer goods and stuff like that, people… and people still want to buy and don’t see it as ridiculously expensive to buy Coca-Cola or washing [bottles] or those type of things.  If I had to look for a kind of a particular bit which I would imagine really coming back, I would focus actually on that… that site which I lead a bit earlier, there is a billion people who have been dragged out of absolute poverty into something which is a sort of middle class life, maybe not by American standards but certainly both standards of India, China, Brazil, all those places and that… those are the people who are just beginning to start to buy stuff, you know, they’re the ones who are buying scooters, if not, perhaps cars, maybe the [Tarto Nano’s], the first [nano’s] the one which is going to bring the people in but on the whole, these are people who… you know, they’re trying to invest in their children’s education, they’re trying to spend on their… on stuff, on clothes, on food, on more than just a subsistence level, they are actually trying to invest in what they’re doing and that I think is a broad class of people in which… if companies are aiming at them have done… could do extremely well.