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Commentaries by Stephen Roach

Stephen Roach

Senior Fellow, Yale University

Stephen S. Roach, a renowned economist and former Chairman of Morgan Stanley Asia, is a senior fellow at Yale University. He is also the author of "Unbalanced: The Codependency of America and China".
  • May 30, 2024

    The United States does not have a coherent trade policy. It has a political strategy masquerading as trade policy that has taken dead aim at China. Unsurprisingly, China has responded in kind. With the two superpowers drawing on their allies for support – the US leaning on the G7 and China turning to the Global South – economic decoupling is the least of our problems.

  • Apr 30, 2024

    After my recent trip to Beijing to attend the 25th annual China Development Forum (CDF), the country’s most important public conference, one question keeps turning over in my head: What’s the point?

  • Apr 19, 2024

    The current wave of anti-Chinese sentiment in the United States has been building for years. It started in the early 2000s, when US policymakers first raised national-security concerns about Huawei. China’s national technology champion, the market leader in developing new 5G telecommunications equipment, was accused of deploying digital backdoors that could enable Chinese espionage and cyber-attacks. US-led sanctions in 2018-19 stopped Huawei dead in its tracks.

  • Feb 29, 2024

    FBI Director Christopher Wray recently upped the ante in America’s anti-China campaign. In congressional testimony on January 31, he sounded the alarm over intensified Chinese hacking activity and warned that US infrastructure – telecommunications, energy, transportation, and water – is acutely vulnerable to the Chinese state-sponsored hacker group Volt Typhoon. Front-page coverage by the New York Times added to the sense of urgency.

  • Jan 31, 2024

    China is at a critical juncture. Its deflation-prone debt-intensive economy is seriously underperforming. Its government has become embroiled in a major superpower conflict with the United States. And it is staring down the barrel of a demographic crisis. Worst of all, Chinese authorities are responding to these challenges more with ideology and stale tactics from the past, rather than with breakthrough reforms. Imaginative solutions to tough problems are in scarce supply.

  • Dec 02, 2023

    “A Better Biden-Xi Summit?” was the title of my commentary last month, and the emphasis was on the question mark. With good reason: Last year’

  • Nov 03, 2023

    All eyes are on the upcoming leaders’ meeting of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), to be held in San Francisco from November 11-17. And with good reason: there is a distinct possibility that US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet on the sidelines of this pan-regional gathering, exactly one year after their last summit in Bali on the eve of the annual G20 summit.

  • Oct 03, 2023

    The debate over the difference between tactics and strategy is as rich as it is enduring. In his seminal 1996 article in the Harvard Business Review, Harvard’s Michael Porter tackled this issue head on. While his focus was business, his arguments can be applied much more broadly – including to today’s Sino-American rivalry.

  • Jul 27, 2023

    American politicians have a long history of mangling economic-policy debates. Some recognize reality, like when George H.W. Bush characterized so-called supply-side tax cuts as “voodoo economics.” But far too many to distort economic statistics and analysis to score political points – think of “Modern Monetary Theory” or “deficit scolds.”

  • Jun 29, 2023

    US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s long-delayed trip to Beijing has come and gone. Despite the predictable optimistic spin on the visit – both sides agreed to strengthen people-to-people exchanges and promised to continue talks – it did little to defuse the increasingly fraught conflict between the United States and China.

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