This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, May 15, 2012 - Current discussions of economic events usually focus on the European malaise or the U.S. fiscal disorder. Just a few years ago it was the impending economic dominance by the so-called BRIC countries. Wither the BRICs?
BRIC is an acronym for Brazil, Russia, India and China. Not too long ago they were widely regarded as future economic powerhouses. The last few years have not been kind to that forecast, however. Even if they recover from the current downturn, they will face longer-term obstacles to realizing living standards comparable to other developed economies.