At the American Antipode

By Razib Khan | October 23, 2011 10:47 am

Argentina has famously gone from being the 10th wealthiest to the 60th wealthiest nation in the world over the past 100 years. But I was curious about the trends for its neighbors as well in a world context.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Data Analysis
MORE ABOUT: Antipodes, Argentina
  • orthonormal

    Looks like Uruguay is doing some things right- their GDP numbers increased during the global recession. Anyone know what’s behind that?

  • DK

    So, Argentina’s GDP rose 340% in nine years (1989-1998), then from that level dropped 67% in four years (1998-2002)? Am I wrong thinking that the numbers are fishy? Is this because financial sector’s illusory out of thin air wealth is included into GDP calculations? Maybe it’s just my economic illiteracy but I have hard time imagining the actual material goods produced by the country changing at this fantastic rate in the absence of the war completely destroying the country.

    Another question on migration: I just looked at all countries in S. America in 2010. Only three countries have net influx of people: Venezuela, Chile, Argentina for a total of 100K. In contrast, efflux of people from all other countries is 15X higher, 1.56 million. Where did these people settle in 2010 then? 1.5M is a big number – twelve US states have total population lower than that.

  • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp Razib Khan

    Is this because financial sector’s illusory out of thin air wealth is included into GDP calculations?

    it’s borrowing from international financial markets being channeled into production. like greece.

    Where did these people settle in 2010 then?

    lots of brazilian japanese go to japan, and lots from spanish speaking countries go to spain and other parts of southwest europe now (e.g., ppl from latin america are pretty numerous in northern italy now). that’s all i can think of.

  • Onur

    Where did these people settle in 2010 then?

    US?

  • http://www.russellturpin.com/ Russell

    Unless I’m missing something, much of Argentina’s lapse occurred prior to the decades in those graphs.

  • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp Razib Khan

    yes, google data explorer doesn’t go that far. most of it was between 1930 and 1980.

  • dilefante

    Googling I found this:
    http://freedomandprosperity.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/argentina-hong-kong-600×385.jpg
    It shows a smooth decline from 10th to 60th, starting in the late 40’s. Since it is the position in a ranking, it probably reflects failure to develop, rather than effective decline (even the increase in the number of countries affects in such a chart!).
    Considering the years where things start to go wrong, it confirms the view that the neighbours have (I’m Chilean): the single most important factor are the dismal politics, and in particular the nefarious legacy of Peronism.

  • http://lablemminglounge.blogspot.com Lab Lemming

    This is a nit pick, but is there a way to get google graphs to keep the colors assigned to contries constant between graphs? Having the scheme change with every graph makes it less easy to make quick comparisons.

  • Dwight E. Howell

    Since Spain and much of the EU is not making replacement they need to import bodies and the people of South America would largely share the same or at least a similar language and culture with south west Europe thus making ideal recruits.

  • DK

    @ Dwight E. Howell

    It seems that you got it right. I looked at Europe and the biggest importers of people in 2010 are Spain (1.75) and Italy (1.65M). #3 and #4 are Germany and France with only 550K and 500K, respectively.

  • pconroy

    @DK,

    There are about 100,000 Argentinians in Queens County, New York alone.

    There are tens of thousands of Brazilians in Ireland, where they have pretty much taken over the slaughter industry (cattle, sheep, pigs etc)

  • Latifundiário

    Rio de Janeiro’s Bairros (HDI) as European countries:

    Map
    http://a6.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/319696_2244659350991_1083347934_32044250_1067911002_n.jpg

    Data
    http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anexo:Lista_de_bairros_do_Rio_de_Janeiro_por_IDH

    Brazilian States as countries in 2008 (and Brazil grew a lot more in 2010, while many others actually fell) !
    http://www.economist.com/content/compare-cabana

  • John Emerson

    Argentina is famous both for its steep economic collapse after 2000 and its steep recovery. In between they declared bankruptcy.

    I have hard time imagining the actual material goods produced by the country changing at this fantastic rate — thinking about economics in concrete terms leads to a lot of confusion. Farmers, for example, can go bankrupt during the best production year they ever had, if commodity prices are low, or if exchange rates change, or if interest rates change, or if tariffs change, and so on.

  • Hermenauta

    “lots of brazilian japanese go to japan”

    Actually, after 2008 the economic travails of Japan forced many brazilians to come back home. I have heard there were aprox. 400 K brazilians in Japan before that.

    The latest figures show that the greatest brazilian contingent overseas is in the USA (1,38M), followed by Japan (230 K), Paraguai (200 K) and UK (180 K). I bet Paraguai numbers are underdeclared.

    http://www.brasileirosnomundo.itamaraty.gov.br/a-comunidade/estimativas-populacionais-das-comunidades/Brasileiros%20no%20Mundo%202011%20-%20Estimativas%20-%20Terceira%20Edicao%20-%20v2.pdf

    (portuguese only)

  • MSVS

    “Considering the years where things start to go wrong, it confirms the view that the neighbours have (I’m Chilean): the single most important factor are the dismal politics, and in particular the nefarious legacy of Peronism.”

    I couldn’t agree with you more (I’m Argentinian). For those who don’t know about Peronismo maybe can remember Madonna singing “Don’t cry for me Argentina” when was playing the role of Evita, Peron’s wife. They started the destruction of the country that we see now.

    “Maybe it’s just my economic illiteracy but I have hard time imagining the actual material goods produced by the country changing at this fantastic rate in the absence of the war completely destroying the country.”

    I have a hard time imagining it too. The 80′ were complicated, since we had the Malvinas war and then regained democracy. On the 90′ the Peronistas came back, they sold out the country, almost nothing was produced here. Then we had the crisis on 2001, similar to the 2008 crisis in the US, but worst because the banks took the people’s money and didn’t returned it. The agricultural production benefited from the crisis. But the Peronistas are in power so I’m pretty sure they’ll screw up once again. I don’t know what else to say, I just live in a very schizophrenic country.

    People emigrates mostly to Spain, Italy and the US.

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About Razib Khan

I have degrees in biology and biochemistry, a passion for genetics, history, and philosophy, and shrimp is my favorite food. In relation to nationality I'm a American Northwesterner, in politics I'm a reactionary, and as for religion I have none (I'm an atheist). If you want to know more, see the links at http://www.razib.com

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