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The dangers of haste

Short-term thinking is hurting the recovery

All of the main UK political parties are agreed—short-termism is a bad thing. Ed Miliband has spoken of the “short-termism that blights British enterprise.” The coalition government set up a review team, headed by John Kay, the economist, which recently proposed some solutions to the problem. Everyone, it seems, is out to “Get Shorty.” But what exactly is short-termism? How big of a problem is it? And what could be done to lean against it?

Short-termism is far from being a new phenomenon. The earliest economists saw it as an intrinsic…

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