Business news readers are not only continually bombarded with various “indices” concocted by the Corporate Media, but we are regularly having new ones inflicted upon us. The purpose of these contrived numbers is obvious.
Any/every economic index is (supposedly) “derived from” economic fundamentals, while hiding the raw data from us upon which the index is based. This makes these indices wonderful propaganda tools. Much like many forms of “processed food” strip-out most/all of the food-value of the raw material which went into them, the same is true (in economic terms) with these indices.
I thus offer readers a refreshing change: an economic index which actually means something. Presenting the “McDonalds Economic Index.” The premise behind the index is simple. With McDonalds now being firmly established across the (decaying) economies of the West, and rapidly becoming established in the (dynamic) “emerging economies” of much of the Rest of the World; McDonalds sales now provide a useful snapshot of overall global economic health.
Note that unlike regular food consumption, purchases at McDonalds are discretionary. They will rise when the economy is robust, and sag as the economy slows. The one weakness in this “index” is that like all other retail sales data (and most economic data in general) it does not strip-out inflation from its sales numbers, so we will have to make that adjustment ourselves.
What also makes the McDonalds Economic Index useful (for all Western-centric readers) is that it reports its sales with a clear Western perspective. Sales are broken down into three regions: the U.S. (5% of the world’s population); Europe (5% of the world’s population); and APMEA (“Asia/Pacific, Middle East, Africa”) – i.e. the Rest of the World.
Of course such a classification makes sense from a corporate perspective. It separates its divisions into the already-saturated U.S. market (which presumably includes Canada); the nearly-saturated European market; and McDonalds’ still-growing, Rest-of-the-World operations...
Read the rest: