Two different official time series from the Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) and the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) [show the same dynamic]. There are multiple differences between the two series, but the main one is that SAFE measures FDI on a net basis, i.e., FDI inflows minus FDI outflows, while MOFCOM only measures gross FDI inflows. Both agencies include greenfield investment and mergers and acquisitions (M&A) by foreign firms in their FDI data while SAFE also includes several other items. While these additional items were large a few years ago, as explained below, they are now likely quite small. Most of the $113 billion difference between the two numbers in the first three quarters of 2023 must result from the net sale of direct investment assets by foreign investors.
- Date Posted:
- December 6, 2023
The official poverty measure has hardly changed for more than 50 years, even as social benefit payments to the average household in the bottom 20% of income earners have risen from $9,700 to $45,000 in inflation-adjusted dollars, because most of these payments simply aren’t counted as income to the recipients. When all benefits are counted, the percentage of Americans living in poverty falls to only 2.5%. Bruce Meyer of the University of Chicago and James Sullivan of the University of Notre Dame arrived at a similar figure by comparing the actual goods and services consumed by poor households in 1980 with the actual level of consumption of households that were being counted as poor in 2017. They found that only 2.8% of households in 2017 were consuming at or below the actual poverty consumption level.