Monday, December 23, 2013

Beggar thy neighbor's kids

Ed Lazeer says economic growth is for those who think young;
The importance of youth is illustrated by the stark contrast between two neighboring countries, Japan and Korea. Using the GEM [Global Entrepreneurship Monitor] survey data, we found that Japan's rate of entrepreneurship (the proportion of individuals who own a business that they founded in the past 42 months) is just 1.5%. In Korea the rate is a much higher, 8%. The median age in Japan is 43; in Korea it is 34. The U.S., with an entrepreneurship rate of 4.4% and a median age of 36, is in the middle of the pack on both entrepreneurship rates and median age.
More surprisingly, our analysis of the GEM survey finds that a country with a population that is just three years younger—Brazil as compared with Argentina, for instance—has about 21% more entrepreneurship. For Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development countries, cutting the median age by two years (like the difference between the younger U.S. and older U.K.) implies about a 10% increase in new business formation.
....If Japan, a rapidly aging country with famously prohibitive immigration laws, teaches us anything, it is this: If you want to avoid a "lost decade," open your doors to immigrants.
But don't expect to sell them a lot of health insurance policies.

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