globalEDGE Blog

Second Shift: The Inside Story of the Keep GM Movement, looks at how Lansing, Michigan was able to save one of its auto plants from closing. Tomas Hult, professor and director of the International Business Center at Michigan State, co-authored the book along with David Hollister, Ray Tadgerson, and David Closs. The four authors recently gave a talk at Google, highlighting their research and perspectives on the efforts to save the General Motors plant from closing.

Check out the “Talks at Google” video here!

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The Zimbabwe central bank issued its first currency since 2009 on Monday, in an effort to ease the nation’s shortage of US dollars, which is their primary tender. This move, which was first announced back in May, has sparked outrage across the nation, leading to several violent anti-government protests and demonstrations. In order to understand the indignation of the Zimbabwean people, one must look at the past decade of currency history within the South African nation.

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File under: Oil, Global Economy, OPEC

Today, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will be conducting a highly anticipated meeting regarding the future production of oil and its prices. The main issue the meeting will focus on is the amount of oil supplied by members of OPEC, with an emphasis on the leading oil producing countries in the group. Investors are anxiously awaiting the outcome of the OPEC decision to potentially cut oil production globally. Outcomes of the previous meeting conducted in Algiers seemed hopeful, as the majority of OPEC members agreed to cut as much as 2 percent of their total oil production.

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Hacking is defined as using a computer to gain unauthorized access to data or information in a system. Often times the information is used for the financial gain of the hacker. Hackers have come to be a major drain on the global economy. It is estimated that for all of 2016 they will cost the global economy $445 billion. Data hackers have stolen information from many Fortune 500 companies, with one member of a major cyber security firm stating the all 500 Fortune 500 companies have been hacked. Small business are not safe from hackers either. Home Depot and Target are both international corporations that have had their information compromised after small third party company contractors were hacked, allowing the hackers access to the bigger companies' databases.

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globalEDGE provides a wealth of information on international business and a variety of interactive educational tools for use in the classroom or in executive training. One section that has been extensively used in a classroom setting is the Online Course Modules. The modules offer a structured way of viewing information pertaining international business through narrated slides. The modules cover several aspects of international business such as how to do business in several regions, importance of culture and ethics in conducting international business, the legal framework of international business, and a module series on exporting that has been produced in cooperation with the U.S. Commercial Service. The modules also include quizzes, case studies, and references for further study.

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The globalEDGE Business Beat features brief audio segments covering a wide range of international business topics. Hosted by Dr. Tomas Hult of Michigan State University, the Business Beat helps keep listeners up to date with global business news. In last week’s segments, Tomas discussed the U.S. Department of Education’s CIBER program, entrepreneurship, the customer service aspect of marketing, and Michigan State’s marketing and management programs. You can also check out the Business Beat archives, where you can view past segments by date or specific speaker.

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In North America, there are currently two very contradicting states between the Central Banks of Canada and the Federal Reserve of the United States. According to a senior central bank official, the Bank of Canada will not respond mechanically to any future move by the U.S. Federal Reserve to raise interest rates. Deputy Governor Timothy Lane spoke to an audience in Waterloo, Ontario and stated that “tighter monetary policy in the U.S. would lead to higher market interest rates globally, producing a tightening effect for Canada.”

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East Asia is home to three of the biggest economic powerhouses in the world: China, Japan, and South Korea. Thus, the well-being of the global economy often depends on the region's pecuniary health. Central banks already hold the utmost power in this regard; yet, in recent times, each nation's bank has led endeavors to consolidate further economic control. The effects of these measures, along with last week's global market shakeups, have paved a path of economic uncertainty. Here is a look at recent developments in East Asian central banks.

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In conjunction with our blog series on central banking policy throughout the world, today we turn our attention to Central America and the unique fiscal and monetary landscape that is often an afterthought when examining the world economy. For the purposes of this blog, when referencing Central America, we are incorporating Mexico and all other continental countries of North America that are south of the United States of America. While Europe, Japan, and the US are locked into low interest rate environments, Central America offers a unique landscape for central banking.

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