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Rankings on financial development

The World Economic Forum has released the inaugural Financial Development Report. This report ranks the world's leading financial market-countries on where they stand across various parameters. See here - http://www.weforum.org/pdf/FinancialDevelopmentReport/2008.pdf

 WEF says this report will serve to  "provide a comprehensive and robust fact base related to the development of the world’s financial systems and enable a rich series of discussions and analyses for both private and public sector organizations focused on economic development." The report outlines a financial development index that is founded on 'seven pillars'. These pillars are:

1. Institutional environment

2. Business environment

3. Financial stability

4. Banks

5. Non-banks

6. Financial markets

7. Size, depth, and access

It is interesting to note that the lead academic for the project is Dr. Doom - Professor Nouriel Roubini of New York University. Dr. Roubini has attained cult status as the Nostra Damus of the credit crunch - he predicted the current crisis as far back as August 2006. What is even more interesting is the F D index ranking list- USA leads the pack with UK at no. 2. What is even more fascinating is the high ranking that tiny countries like UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Israel, South Africa command when compared to the BRIC countries.

With the fallout of the present crisis, it looks like the more financially developed the country is; the more it suffers from the credit crunch. Countries like Nigeria that are low on the list seem to be unaffected by the global crisis. Singapore scores the highest in terms of occupying top position on three of the above 7 pillars of development. Saudi and UAE rank higher on stability than the US.

I recommend reading this report keeping in mind the present hysteric state of the financial industry.  Perhaps it is best to be 'under-developed' as a financial market today and ride over these tough times!

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