'One shock away from crisis'

Thus sayeth the president of the World Bank, Robert Zoellick , who is quite worried about the skyrocketing cost of food.

Indeed, from Q1 10 to Q1 11, the rise in the price of basic foodstuffs is astonishing:


Maize

74%

Wheat

69%

Palm oil

55%

Soybeans

36%

Beef

30%

Rice

-2%


Companies have kept prices artificially low but as soon as this fall, we will see wholesale food prices rising precipitously.

Zoellick also wants the World Bank to support the young regimes in the Middle East - including, presumably, the coming Muslim Brotherhood's triumph in Egypt. The BBC:

"Waiting for the situation to stabilise will mean lost opportunities. In revolutionary moments the status quo is not a winning hand."At the Washington meetings, turmoil in the Middle East, volatile oil prices and high unemployment were also discussed.

IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn raised particular concerns about high levels of unemployment among young people.

"It's probably too much to say that it's a jobless recovery, but it's certainly a recovery with not enough jobs," he said.

"Especially because of youth unemployment... there is now a risk that this will be turned into a life sentence, and that there is a possibility of a lost generation," he said.

There have already been a couple of lost generations in European countries with unemployment among the young pushing 25% in England, France, and other nations. With a quarter of young people not working, Europe may be facing the prospect of unemployable masses for decades to come.


Thus sayeth the president of the World Bank, Robert Zoellick , who is quite worried about the skyrocketing cost of food.

Indeed, from Q1 10 to Q1 11, the rise in the price of basic foodstuffs is astonishing:


Maize

74%

Wheat

69%

Palm oil

55%

Soybeans

36%

Beef

30%

Rice

-2%


Companies have kept prices artificially low but as soon as this fall, we will see wholesale food prices rising precipitously.

Zoellick also wants the World Bank to support the young regimes in the Middle East - including, presumably, the coming Muslim Brotherhood's triumph in Egypt. The BBC:

"Waiting for the situation to stabilise will mean lost opportunities. In revolutionary moments the status quo is not a winning hand."

At the Washington meetings, turmoil in the Middle East, volatile oil prices and high unemployment were also discussed.

IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn raised particular concerns about high levels of unemployment among young people.

"It's probably too much to say that it's a jobless recovery, but it's certainly a recovery with not enough jobs," he said.

"Especially because of youth unemployment... there is now a risk that this will be turned into a life sentence, and that there is a possibility of a lost generation," he said.

There have already been a couple of lost generations in European countries with unemployment among the young pushing 25% in England, France, and other nations. With a quarter of young people not working, Europe may be facing the prospect of unemployable masses for decades to come.


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