Asia Falling: Making Sense of the Asian Currency Crisis and Its Aftermath (BusinessWeek books)

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9780070281486: Asia Falling: Making Sense of the Asian Currency Crisis and Its Aftermath (BusinessWeek books)

Asia's recent economic troubles affect billions of people around the globe. Asia falling -- the first detailed, accessible analysis of the economic and political policies that led to Asia's currency crisis -- is the first comprehensive, authoritative analysis of Asian currency crisis and what it means to the larger world of investors.This up-to-the-minute critique, packed with solid recommendations for investors, names the countries that should emerge strongest for investors, outlines the steps. Asian economies must take to regain their worldwide luster, and provide policy-level political analysis on the actions and reactions that led to Asia's currency crisis.

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Review:

In 1997, the sky fell in Asia. Up until the moment the Thai currency crisis began in May of that year, most pundits could see no end to the "Asian miracle." Now many of those same pundits are predicting a more severe drop while others go so far as to suggest that Asia is entering a "lost decade." The hard truth, suggests Callum Henderson, the Managing Currency Analyst for Asia at Standard & Poor's, is not so dire or dramatic. While Henderson acknowledges that most of the affected countries, particularly Thailand, South Korea, Malaysia, and Indonesia, have a long way to go in transforming their economic systems, the long term outlook for Asia is good. The conditions that help to make high rates of growth possible--high savings rates, low taxation, good education systems, and high productivity--are still in place. What needs changing are the government policies that focused too heavily on exports as the main engine of economic growth.

Henderson traces how and why the currency crisis happened and finds useful parallels between it and the Mexican crisis that began in late 1994. He also offers specific remedies--such as the creation of a domestic bond market in Asia--and points to compelling opportunities in countries with mature financial systems such as Singapore. This is the first comprehensive look at the Asian financial crisis and should be useful to anyone doing business or investing in Asia. --Harry C. Edwards

From the Back Cover:

A First-Hand Analysis of the Asian Currency Crisis. For two decades, Asian economies boomed, attracting unprecendented levels of foreign direct and portfolio investment. Economic commentators proclaimed the rise of the East and the consequent decline of the West. Just as in Japan in the 1980s, huge financial market bubbles developed - and just as in Japan, they burst. So is the "Asian Miracle" over? Or is this merely a correction that will be the catalyst for much needed financial, economic, and even political reform in Asia? And where, in all of this, can astute investors find opportunities for profit? Veteran Asia-watcher Callum Henderson - Standard & Poor's senior authority on the Asian currency market and one of the few insiders to counsel caution during the heady boom days - delivers a first-hand examination of the political and economic events that led to Asia's currency crisis: Asia Falling. Written with clarity and objectivity, and supported by fact-filled case sutdies of Thailand, Indonesia, the Phillipines, and Malaysia, this timely book goes beyond the hyperbole and the punditry to: Give investors an in-depth, country-by-country analysis of the crisis, and forecast the economic effects on the region; Provide policy-level political analysis of the crisis, and forecast the economic effects on the region; Provide policy-level political analysis on governmental actions and reactions that led to Asia's ongoing currency crisis; outline specific opportunities resulting from the Asian currency crisis and its consequent economic impact.

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