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The average weekly income in the US has been going up in the last fifty years, at least in nominal terms, as seen in the first graph. The price of a gallon of gas has been trending up as well, with spikes beginning in 2002 up to 2008, when gas prices decreased dramatically as a consequence of the economic recession. In 2010 gas prices increased again and continue rising to this day, as seen in the second graph. It is worth noting that the number of gallons of gas that can be purchased by a person earning an average income has been decreasing steadily since 1998.
India is a country with extraordinary problems due to the size of its population. At the same time, it has extraordinary potential which may be realized if it can implement some major changes best identified in a paper released by Goldman Sachs in 2008 (PDF). According to the study, there are ten key areas where reform is needed:
- Improve governance
- Raise educational achievement
- Increase quality and quantity of universities
- Control inflation
- Introduce a credible fiscal policy
- Liberalize financial markets
- Increase trade with neighbors
- Increase agricultural productivity
- Improve infrastructure
- Improve environmental quality
I believe the only controversial item in the list above may be number six, given the disastrous effects that financial market deregulation had in the US in recent years. Nevertheless, the nine other recommendations are still highly relevant and fundamentally sound. Do you agree?