There is a Misery Index put together by the financial news company, Bloomberg (this article is sourced for Bloomberg News), which puts Venezuela at the very top of the list. This index gives outlooks for the worst 62 economies on the planet and for the fifth straight year, Venezuela is ranked number one. It seems that Venezuela and a handful of others in the “most miserable” camp are fighting high inflation along with very high unemployment rates.
These two problems are a challenge, according to the article, as the cure or response must be carried out in the perfect mixture, and it seems that the Socialist governments like those in the past, do not have the right policy response as they are too rigid. The “least miserable” economy, which this year is the high flying Thailand, then Switzerland and Singapore – number 2 and 3 are reversed in 2018 and 2019.
Thailand is the least miserable? Wow. The US comes in at 13th and the UK at 16th. The swings in 2018 of central bankers minds as the hike cycles are now zero hikes, or that is the feeling in somc countries like the US. Emerging markets which rushed to tighten policy last year to counter the stronger US dollar and lurking inflation has triggered some problems. Iran and Turkey are victims of poor management and a stronger US dollar.
Joining Venezuela in the most-distressed crowd are Argentina, South Africa, Turkey, Greece and Ukraine.