Book recommendation: The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman

On a recommendation from my father-in-law, I recently started Thomas Friedman’s The World Is Flat. I’m really enjoying it.

Friedman’s thesis is that the world has become “flat” within the last decade because of globalization and technology. He doesn’t mean physically flat, he means the playing field has been flattened such that people can more easily compete with each other. Improved education, free trade, fiber optics, more open political systems have allowed people the world over to compete with each other for jobs, work, etc.

The good news is that around 1.3 billion people in China and 1.1 billion people in India are really benefiting from this. They will get paid more and have more interesting jobs. Their opportunity set in life has dramatically increased over the last decade. The majority of people outside of China and India will benefit, too, with cheaper products and more specialization.

The bad news is that some people in the United States and Europe are having a hard time competing with these new workers. Both blue and white collar jobs are getting transferred to those workers who have the most to offer at the lowest price.

I don’t agree with everything Friedman has to say, but he makes some really great points and does a wonderful job of illustrating the changes occurring. I find it particularly interesting as an investor and as a soon to be father. If you’re curious how the world economy may evolve going forward and what risks and rewards lie in wait, I highly recommend this book.

Nothing in this blog should be considered investment, financial, tax, or legal advice. The opinions, estimates and projections contained herein are subject to change without notice. Information throughout this blog has been obtained from sources believed to be accurate and reliable, but such accuracy cannot be guaranteed.