Comparative Economics Systems Topic Index

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Civilian Unemployment Rate

European countries such as France, Germany, and Italy have succeeded in achieving a high level of per-capita income, but suffer from chronically high rates of unemployment compared to those in the U.S. and Great Britain. The culprits likely include relatively high employment taxes, rules making it difficult for employers to lay off or fire workers, and relatively generous unemployment benefits. The former Soviet Union and its Eastern Bloc satellites evaded high unemployment rates by utilizing outdated labor-intensive manufacturing facilities.

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Stock Prices: S&P 500

Factories and other production facilities are owned by government rather than by private investors in traditionally communist countries such as the former Soviet Union. Financing for capital investment is provided by the government, and consequently there are no stock markets.

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