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Noel Maurer
I'm a university professor.
Interests: My current research asks whether foreign governments or international institutions can improve economic governance. Is it possible to alter a country’s property rights system from the outside? This research has two prongs. The first is a historical work, tentatively entitled Imperial Experiments: Intervention, Economic Growth, and Property Rights, which tests various hypotheses about the success and failure of American attempts to improve economic governance outside the United States and protect the property rights of U.S. investors before World War II. The second is a series of contemporary case studies about attempts to alter nations’ internal economic governance from the outside: bilateral investment treaties, investor protection clauses in trade agreements, conditional loans, the “mortgaging” of export revenues, vulture funds, and military intervention. I also watch a lot of baseball, enjoy very bad music, and do a lot of travelling. The travel tends to be either in total luxury, or to places where I need to wear body armor and live in constant fear of, well, death.
Recent Activity
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The new Brexit deal seemed like a weird animal to me. The old Brexit deal kept the whole U.K. in a customs union with the E.U. since nobody wanted a customs border running down the Irish Sea. The new Brexit... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at The Power and the Money
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So, the Trump administration just announced tariffs on a swathe of European imports, and the Europeans announced they would retaliate. More Trumpian trumpety trump? No. The WTO is working as it is supposed to work, regardless of the predilections of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 4, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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So, yesterday the President of Peru dissolved Congress and called for new legislative elections. The Congress called that illegal, and deposed the President. What’s going on? Constitutionally, we have a bit of a mess. The reason, however, isn’t really that... Continue reading
Posted Oct 1, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Abad and Maurer here, with some thoughts on the next 50 days. President Macri has only one chance at re-election. That is to villify his opponent. The markets tanked when it looked like Fernández might win, he has to say.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 11, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Leticia Abad and Noel Maurer here again, reporting on some news that while not unexpected, has arrived unexpectedly prematurely. Imagine you are a banker in the mid-19th century. All of a sudden, you observe more and more people demanding that... Continue reading
Posted Sep 2, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Back in September 2016, Ian Bremmer made a very silly post in an attempt to be contrarian. It boiled down to: “The CEOs I talk to say that they are not worried about Trump, therefore he won’t do anything radical.”... Continue reading
Posted Sep 1, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Leticia Arroyo Abad here, our woman in the Southern Cone. Argentines have been battling a recession, several mini-crises, and high inflation for a while now. The result was a resounding defeat for the incumbent administration in the recent primary elections.... Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Back in 2009, I made the modest proposal that Iceland become an unincorporated territory of the United States. It wasn’t serious. But it looks like the Trump administration is serious about buying Greenland. Or, well, “serious,” because it is the... Continue reading
Posted Aug 22, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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In a technical sense, today’s primary elections in Argentina mean nothing. They are, as indicated by the name, primaries in an election where both major candidates are running unopposed for their party’s nomination. But ... voting is obligatory in Argentina... Continue reading
Posted Aug 12, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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I am in Argentina, my favorite country among all countries. Some of you may know that Argentina is in the middle of a presidential election campaign. Background: The two main tickets are Macri-Pichetto and Fernández-Fernández. Mauricio Macri is the current... Continue reading
Posted Jul 30, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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I think I should use that quote from Macri for all my Argentine posts. So what explains the high electricity prices from the new generation tendered in 2017 and 2018? Short version: these were peaker plants intended to provide capacity... Continue reading
Posted Jun 1, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Given that the name of this blog is “The Power and the Money,” I have to write the following post. I am sympathetic to President Macri, I really am. He got hit with a crisis not of his making. But... Continue reading
Posted Jun 1, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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I am union-bound to say this, I suppose. The Mexican tariffs are stupid. First, they will not achieve their stated goal, which is to get Mexico to stop Central Americans from arriving at the U.S. border. Consider what the Mexican... Continue reading
Posted May 31, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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What would I fear if I were an investor in Mexico? (Oh, wait, I am!) It is plausible to say, “Not much.” For all the ups-and-downs of AMLO’s first six months, country risk remains low. In fact, it remains as... Continue reading
Posted May 30, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Back when she was president, Cristina Fernández (CFK), her chief of staff, Aníbal Fernández, claimed that Argentina had less poverty than Germany. A popular Argentine joke is that he forgot to say “east.” In 2015, it was obvious that Argentina... Continue reading
Posted May 15, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Another Argentine election is upon us. Which means old friends from New Jersey asking me what I think! And so, after telling them, I go to a conference where other people reinforce my preconceived notions. And what better thing to... Continue reading
Posted May 15, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Many judicial conservatives decry the use of international law, treaties, and precedent to make decisions. They fear that allowing such inputs into decisions will weaken American constitutional norms. I think they are almost certainly wrong, at least in the case... Continue reading
Posted Apr 25, 2019 at The Power and the Money
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Bloomberg reports that President Trump is moving towards making good on at least one of his campaign promises: making a profit off American overseas deployments. The story is that he plans to introduce “Cost plus 50” as the standard: i.e.,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 8, 2019 at The Power and the Money
In the Western Hemisphere, birthright citizenship is close to universal. I thought that this included the Republic of Colombia, as did the author of this article in the Harvard Human Rights Journal. But it turns out that Colombia is an... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2018 at The Power and the Money
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The Venezuelan crisis is massive. Millions of people are fleeing the country. Brookings scholars project that a third of the population may leave before the end of next year. The outflow could surpass Syria’s. But why? Yes, there is a... Continue reading
Posted Dec 18, 2018 at The Power and the Money
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Obamacare is back in the news because of this insane ruling by this judge in Texas. I am not going to talk about that. What I am going to talk about, however, is the argument between Obama and Clinton over... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2018 at The Power and the Money
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I am on record as being relatively unworried about the AMLO administration. That is not because I do not think that President López Obrador will make capricious and counterproductive decisions. Rather, it is because I do not think that he... Continue reading
Posted Dec 15, 2018 at The Power and the Money
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There is a recurring criticism of President Trump’s trade policy: it is badly designed to obtain its ostensible ends. The tariffs against China are supposed to pressure Beijing into changing its intellectual property policy. But the strategy is poorly designed... Continue reading
Posted Oct 6, 2018 at The Power and the Money
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I am not as worried about the prospect of a conservative Supreme Court for the same reasons as most progressives. Now, I think that lessening the protections of Roe v. Wade will be a disaster for poor women living in... Continue reading
Posted Sep 28, 2018 at The Power and the Money
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To repeat the obvious, Mexico is a big federal country. A gigantic federal country, in fact. Which does not make it an advertisement for federalism. Quite the opposite, actually. For while there are a few success stories about states and... Continue reading
Posted Aug 21, 2018 at The Power and the Money