Sep

26

 A la the Hobo, while in Arusha, Tanzania and Kampala, Uganda, and Amsterdam, Netherlands and NYC on a recent trip, I counted the number of people sitting around idle vs. the number of people busy going somewhere or conducting a business. The premise is that a lot of idle people lead to low productivity and low growth and vice verse.

In Arusha, there were large numbers of idle sitting around in groups of 5-7 or more not moving. In Kampala Uganda, there were very few, maybe 3 out of 100 sitting idle. In Amsterdam there were no one not moving, consuming, working. In New York there was maybe 1 out of 1000 lying derelict in the street, but none sitting idle. All were moving fast, consuming, working.

How does the Bustle Index test out? It's interesting to note that Uganda boasts one of the fastest growing economies with almost a 10% growth rate ranking 15th in the world. Netherlands has a -3% rate of growth ranking 193. Tanzania has a 7% growth rate ranking 31st. US has a 3% growth rate. (Figures from Wolfram Alpha rounded)

So much for the Hustle and Bustle Index.


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  1. Craig Bowles on September 27, 2012 2:14 pm

    Downtown Brooklyn at during the day makes you wonder if anyone works as the sidewalks are crowded but people are just hanging around. Previously, a poor economy has car windows broken out each morning and people get lazy about picking up the dog’s business but I haven’t noticed it so much the last 13 years.

    On another note, that durable good orders number was pretty odd. We went from following a normal recovery with a growth slowdown to a growth rate that was close to the lows of 2001. That’s a crazy drop even when comparing to the mid-1970s global recession. This global recession is already over a year old in China and Europe if we believe the PMI numbers. It is odd that the debate isn’t about where stocks might bottom but rather where they might top.

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