Source: PriceWaterhouse Coopers
The 2012 global multichannel retail consumer survey was completed by more than 11,000 respondents from 11 different countries. For PwC, this is our most comprehensive research to date on multichannel retailing. In order to truly understand the trends and spot the patterns in multichannel shopping, we surveyed only those consumers who self-identified as online shoppers.
The 11 countries covered in the survey were:
- United Kingdom
- United States
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)
A handful of developing countries are becoming major players in the global economy due, in part, to their large populations, rising trade flows, and rapidly growing economies. These evolving economies are likely to be of increasing interest to the 113th Congress. Led by China, these rising economic powers (REPs) include Brazil, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Russia, and Turkey. Based on purchasing power parity estimates, China, India, Brazil, and Russia are now among the 10 largest economies in the world and Mexico (#11), Indonesia (#15) and Turkey (#16) are not far behind. With large economies and rising shares of world trade flows, the REPs have greater involvement in World Trade Organization (WTO) negotiations and dispute settlement cases, have protested with greater frequency U.S. economic and trade policies, and are more able and willing to deflect or reject U.S. trade and market access demands.
Although they have made great economic strides, any of these REPs could stumble if they do not take steps to improve their business climates by undertaking a range of trade, regulatory, and structural reforms. At the same time, other large developing countries that have enormous economic potential, such as Egypt, Iran, Nigeria, and Vietnam could rise if they successfully address underlying political and economic challenges.
U.S. exports to the REPs and other developing countries have become an increasingly important source of growth for the U.S. economy. If the United States is to maximize its export potential and boost its living standards, U.S. exporters and investors may need to have better access to the REP markets. Trade and investment barriers remain considerably higher in most of the REPs than in the United States and other advanced countries. Efforts have stalled in these countries to reduce their barriers further, and several REPs have reactivated industrial policies or found ways to take advantage of gaps in the world trade rules to promote home companies at the expense of foreign companies.
The United States’ ability to persuade these emerging economic powers to embrace the principles of free and fair trade is constrained by growing differences over the role of the state in economic activity. The more interventionist practices and philosophies of REP governments coincide with a desire to maintain “policy space” to promote development of their economies via policies that often appear to violate the letter or spirit of WTO rules and obligations. Persuading the REPs that a strengthened multilateral trading system is squarely in their national economic interests and a way to move their domestic economic reforms forward remains a challenge.
As global power and prosperity is reconfigured, U.S. trade policymakers face a number of overlapping and complex issues relating to the role of future trade liberalizing negotiations, U.S. leverage in influencing REP economic reforms, and the management of the global trading system. Given the checkered history of the Doha Round, future progress on trade liberalization within the WTO may require new approaches. Principles that have guided multilateral trade negotiations in the past, such as unconditional most-favored-nation (MFN) and special and differential treatment (S&D), may need to be reexamined. Similarly, if the United States wishes to negotiate free trade agreements (FTAs) with large and more significant trading partners, it may need to consider deviations from its standard FTA template. At the same time, ongoing Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations and a potential comprehensive U.S. FTA with the European Union (EU) could serve as incentives for the REPs to view multilateral or bilateral negotiations more favorably.
Current Tobacco Use and Secondhand Smoke Exposure Among Women of Reproductive Age — 14 Countries, 2008–2010
Source: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (CDC)
Tobacco use and secondhand smoke (SHS) exposure in reproductive-aged women can cause adverse reproductive health outcomes, such as pregnancy complications, fetal growth restriction, preterm delivery, stillbirths, and infant death (1–3). Data on tobacco use and SHS exposure among reproductive-aged women in low- and middle-income countries are scarce. To examine current tobacco use and SHS exposure in women aged 15–49 years, data were analyzed from the 2008–2010 Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) from 14 low- and middle-income countries: Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Egypt, India, Mexico, Philippines, Poland, Russia, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, Uruguay, and Vietnam. The results of this analysis indicated that, among reproductive-aged women, current tobacco smoking ranged from 0.4% in Egypt to 30.8% in Russia, current smokeless tobacco use was <1% in most countries, but common in Bangladesh (20.1%) and India (14.9%), and SHS exposure at home was common in all countries, ranging from 17.8% in Mexico to 72.3% in Vietnam. High tobacco smoking prevalence in some countries suggests that strategies promoting cessation should be a priority, whereas low prevalence in other countries suggests that strategies should focus on preventing smoking initiation. Promoting cessation and preventing initiation among both men and women would help to reduce the exposure of reproductive-aged women to SHS.
Adult Awareness of Tobacco Advertising, Promotion, and Sponsorship — 14 Countries
Source: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (CDC)
According to the 2012 Report of the U.S. Surgeon General, exposure to tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship (TAPS) is associated with the initiation and continuation of smoking among young persons. The World Health Organization (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) requires countries to prohibit all forms of TAPS (2); the United States signed the agreement in 2004, but the action has not yet been ratified. Many countries have adopted partial bans covering direct advertising in traditional media channels; however, few countries have adopted comprehensive bans on all types of direct and indirect marketing. To assess progress toward elimination of TAPS and the level of awareness of TAPS among persons aged ≥15 years, CDC used data from the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) collected in 14 countries during 2008–2010. Awareness of any TAPS ranged from 12.4% in Turkey to 70.4% in the Philippines. In the four countries where awareness of TAPs was ≤15%, three of the countries had comprehensive bans covering all nine channels assessed by GATS, and the fourth country banned seven of the nine channels. In 12 countries, more persons were aware of advertising in stores than advertising via any other channel. Reducing exposure to TAPS is important to prevent initiation of tobacco use by youths and young adults and to help smokers quit.
Country Analysis Brief: Brazil
Source: Energy Information Administration
Brazil is the ninth largest energy consumer in the world and the third largest in the Western Hemisphere, behind the United States and Canada. Total primary energy consumption in Brazil has increased by close to a third in the last decade, due to sustained economic growth. In addition, Brazil has made great strides in increasing its total energy production, particularly oil and ethanol. Increasing domestic oil production has been a long-term goal of the Brazilian government, and recent discoveries of large offshore, pre-salt oil deposits could transform Brazil into one of the largest oil producers in the world.
- Brazil and Sub-Saharan Africa are re-establishing a robust engagement, after over 200 years. The two regions are natural partners with strong historic and cultural links and similar geological and climatic conditions. Because of these shared conditions, Brazilian technology is easily adapted to Africa.
- Brazil has emerged as one of the world’s strongest economies and is playing an important role in redefining “the global south” in the changing world architecture. Africa is rapidly changing and Brazil has expressed growing interest in supporting and taking part in its development.
- Brazil’s economic growth, its success in narrowing social inequality and its development experience offer lessons for African countries.
- Countries in Sub-Saharan Africa have requested cooperation from Brazil in five key areas: tropical agriculture, tropical medicine, vocational training, energy and social protection.
- Brazil’s trade with Sub-Saharan Africa increased between 2000 and 2010 from U$2 billion to U$12 billion; with expectations of continuous growth in the coming years. There are some obstacles that are being addressed like ease of transport (air and maritime) and telecommunications.
- South-South partnering will play a major role in global knowledge, trade and investments in the coming years.
- The World Bank can play a key role in supporting ongoing partnerships between Sub-Saharan Africa and Brazil and South-south relations as a whole.
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Amber Waves — December 2011
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture
Featured in the December issue:
- How local foods are marketed
- Modernizing food safety policy
- Farm practices reflect structural shifts
- NAFTA countries reach out on trade
- Brazil’s future as ethanol supplier
Rising Economic Powers and the Global Economy: Trends and Issues for Congress (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)
A small group of developing countries are transforming the global economic landscape. Led by China, India, and Brazil, these rising economic powers pose varied challenges and opportunities for U.S. economic interests and leadership of the global economy. They also raise significant policy issues for Congress, including the future direction of U.S. trade policy and negotiations, as well as for the multilateral economic institutions that have historically served as the foundation of an open and rules-based global economy.
This report addresses ongoing shifts in global trade and finance and projected future trends resulting from the emergence of these economies. It is the first of a three-part CRS series that focuses on how the Rising Economic Powers are affecting U.S. interests and raising challenges for congressional oversight of U.S. international trade and financial policies.
The major trends in the global economy identified and discussed in this report are:
- The balance of global economic power is shifting from the United States and Europe to a number of fast-growing and large developing countries. These economies account for rising shares of global GDP, manufacturing, and trade, including a significant expansion of trade among the developing countries (South-South trade). These shifts are driven by growing economic integration and interdependence among economies, particularly through new global production and supply chains that incorporate inputs from many different countries.
- Rising economic powers are becoming more important players in international finance. They have increased holdings of foreign exchange reserves, established sovereign wealth funds, borrowed capital from international capital markets, and attracted substantial foreign investment. Their multinational corporations, many state-owned, are investing assets globally and are competing with U.S. firms for natural resources and access to other developing-country markets.
- The long-standing distinction between advanced and developing countries, particularly for rising economic powers, is blurring. The advanced countries may still be the richest countries in terms of per capita income, but their economies may no longer be the largest, the fastest-growing, or the most dynamic. Rising economic powers are exerting greater influence in global trade and financial policies and in the multilateral institutions that have underpinned the global economy since World War II. These developments, in turn, have implications for U.S. global leadership that are subject to debate.
- While the impact of the rising economic powers is considered by most economists to be strongly positive for the U.S. economy overall, not all groups of Americans have benefitted equally. Highly educated workers are seen gaining more job opportunities and higher wages than workers with less education.
Issues for Congress on the international trade and finance policies raised by the changing global landscape could include:
- Seizing full advantage of growing markets for U.S. manufacturers, service providers, agricultural producers, and their workers, including preparing for increased competition.
- The future direction of U.S. trade negotiations and the global trading system, as well as specific policies and issues raised by the global economy. These might include the increasing role of state-owned enterprises, access to developing country markets for services and government procurement, the future role of the dollar as the primary reserve currency, and U.S. participation in global supply chains, among other issues.
- The evolution of international frameworks for financial integration, as well as multilateral and bilateral frameworks for foreign direct investment and sovereign wealth funds.
This report will be updated as events warrant.
Brazil-U.S. Relations (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via U.S. Department of State Foreign Press Center)
As its economy has grown to be the eighth largest in the world, Brazil has consolidated its power in South America, extended its influence to the broader region, and become increasingly prominent on the world stage. The Obama Administration’s national security strategy regards Brazil as an emerging center of influence, whose leadership it welcomes “to pursue progress on bilateral, hemispheric, and global issues.” In recent years, U.S.-Brazil relations have generally been positive despite Brazil’s prioritization of strengthening relations with neighboring countries and expanding ties with nontraditional partners in the “developing South.” Although some disagreements have emerged, Brazil and the United States continue to engage on a number of issues, including counternarcotics, counterterrorism, energy security, trade, human rights, and the environment.
Dilma Rousseff of the ruling center-left Workers’ Party was inaugurated to a four-year presidential term on January 1, 2011. She is Brazil’s first female president. Rousseff inherits a country that has benefited from what many analysts consider 16 years of stable and capable governance under Presidents Cardoso (1995-2002) and Lula (2003-2010). Since taking office, she has maintained generally orthodox economic policies while continuing to assert a role for the state in development. Her 10-party electoral coalition holds significant majorities in both houses of Brazil’s legislature; however, keeping the unwieldy coalition together has already proven challenging. Elements of the governing coalition have criticized Rousseff and even voted with the opposition on key pieces of legislation to express displeasure over her attempts to constrain spending and her quick dismissal of a number of officials accused of corruption. Nonetheless, Rousseff remains relatively popular among the general population, with 49% of Brazilians considering her performance good or excellent in June 2011.
With a gross national income (GNI) of $1.6 trillion, Brazil is the largest economy in Latin America. Over the past eight years, the country has enjoyed average annual growth of over 4%. This growth has been driven by a boom in international demand for its commodity exports and the increased purchasing power of Brazil’s fast-growing middle class. In 2010, the value of Brazil’s exports reached some $202 billion, contributing to a trade surplus of $20.3 billion. The country’s current economic strength is the result of a series of policy reforms implemented over the course of two decades that reduced inflation, established stability, and fostered growth. These policies have also enabled Brazil to better absorb international shocks like the recent global financial crisis, from which Brazil emerged relatively unscathed. Although current conditions and Brazil’s recent performance suggest the country will sustain solid economic growth rates in the near term, several constraints on mid- and long-term growth remain.
The 112th Congress has maintained interest in U.S.-Brazil relations. Several pieces of legislation have been introduced, including bills that would suspend foreign assistance to Brazil (H.R. 2246) and the issuance of visas to Brazilian nationals (H.R. 2556) until the country amends its constitution to allow for the extradition of its citizens. Additionally, the House adopted legislation (H.R. 2112) that includes a provision (H.Amdt. 454) that would prevent any funds made available under the Act from being used to provide payments to the Brazil Cotton Institute.
This report analyzes Brazil’s political, economic, and social conditions, and how those conditions affect its role in the world and its relationship with the United States.
Focus: Rise of emerging markets in energy: How China and other BRIC nations are changing the game
The global economy is undergoing a paradigm shift, from a Western-dominated economic model to one that is more complex and perhaps multi-polar. The centers of consumption, production, and innovation are no longer concentrated solely in Western economies but are shifting to Asia, specifically China and India, as well as other emerging economies such as Brazil and Russia.
Deloitte’s global Energy & Resources industry group and Deloitte China hosted the inaugural Asia Pacific Natural Resources Forum in Beijing, China on 13 July 2011. This one-day event was focused on China’s globalization of its natural resources sector, which includes Oil & Gas, Mining, Shipping, and Power & Utilities.
Explore this collection of reports to learn more about how China and other emerging nations like Brazil, Russia, and India are impacting the future of energy across the world. Contact us to to learn more about Deloitte’s global Energy & Resources industry group.
The Hidden Costs of U.S. Health Care for Consumers
From press release:
Rising health care costs, coupled with the current state of the economy, have prompted many consumers across the globe to delay care, alter household spending and worry about their ability to pay for future health care costs according to the 4th annual Deloitte Center for Health Solutions “2011 Survey of Health Care Consumers.”
Deloitte surveyed more than 15,000 health care consumers in 12 different countries including Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Mexico, Portugal, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States during April and May.
In the United States, three in four (75 percent) consumers say the recent economic slowdown has impacted their health care spending. Four in 10 (41 percent) are being more cautious about it, 20 percent cut back on spending, and 13 percent have reduced it considerably. In addition, 63 percent say their monthly health care spending limits their household’s ability to purchase other essentials such as housing, groceries, fuel and education. To save money, 36 percent of prescription medication users have asked their doctor to prescribe a generic drug instead of a brand name drug. These findings follow Deloitte’s, “The Hidden Costs of U.S. Health Care for Consumers: A Comprehensive Analysis,” published in March 2011, which revealed consumers spend $363 billion more on health care than traditionally reported, outpacing housing and utility costs as a discretionary household expense.
Additionally, one in four (25 percent) U.S. consumers skipped seeing a doctor when sick or injured. Of those consumers who decided not to see a doctor in the past year, those that did so due to costs ranged from a high of 49 percent in the United States, followed by Belgium (39 percent), China (35 percent) and Mexico (34 percent), to a low of 5 percent in Canada and 7 percent in the United Kingdom and Luxembourg.
More than half of all respondents from the 12 countries surveyed, with the exception of the United Kingdom (24 percent) and Canada (39 percent), also confirmed that household spending on health care limits their ability to spend on other household essentials. Additionally, between 4 in 10 and 5 in 10 respondents experienced an increase in household spending on health care in the past year with the exception of the United Kingdom (22 percent), Canada (29 percent) and China (37 percent).
Sexual Satisfaction and Relationship Happiness in Midlife and Older Couples in Five Countries (PDF)
Source: Archives of Sexual Behavior (via Kinsey Institute)
Sexuality research focuses almost exclusively on individuals rather than couples, though ongoing relationships are very important for most people and cultures. The present study was the first to examine sexual and relationship parameters of middle-aged and older couples in committed relationships of 1–51 years duration. Survey research was conducted in Brazil, Germany, Japan, Spain, and the U.S. targeting 200 men aged 40–70 and their female partners in each country, with 1,009 couples in the final sample. Key demographic, health, physical intimacy, sexual behavior, sexual function, and sexual history variables were used to model relationship happiness and sexual satisfaction. The median ages were 55 for men and 52 for women; median relationship duration was 25 years. Relationship satisfaction in men depended on health, physical intimacy, and sexual functioning, while in women only sexual functioning predicted relationship satisfaction. Models predicting sexual satisfaction included significant physical intimacy and sexual functioning for both genders and, for men, more frequent recent sexual activity and fewer lifetime partners. Longer relationship duration predicted greater relationship happiness and sexual satisfaction for men. However, women in relationships of 20 to 40 years were significantly less likely than men to report relationship happiness. Compared to men, women showed lower sexual satisfaction early in the relationship and greater sexual satisfaction later. Within the long-term committed relationship context, there were signiﬁcant gender differences in correlates of sexual and relationship satisfaction, with sexual functioning a common predictor of both types of satisfaction and physical intimacy a more consistent and salient predictor for men.
Brazil’s Ethanol Industry: Looking Forward
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service
This report profiles and analyzes Brazil’s ethanol industry, providing information on the policy environment that enabled the development of feedstock and processing sectors, and discusses the various opportunities and challenges to face the industry over the next decade.
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Brazil’s Cotton Industry: Economic Reform and Development
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture
This report identifies the factors contributing to the cycles in Brazil’s cotton production and exports that have made the country both an important market for U.S. cotton exports and now a competitor with U.S. cotton producers since 1990.
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