Economic Freedom of the World
The Cato Institute has released its Economic World Freedom: 2006 Annual Report. Since 1980, economic freedom has risen quite a bit; going from 5.1 to 6.5, which is a 27% increase. The top ten free economies are,
- Hong Kong–8.7,
- New Zealand–8.2,
- United States–8.2,
- the United Kingdom–8.1,
Estonia came in at number 12, and Russia is lagging way to the rear at 102 (and is in the company of such countries as Papua New Guinea, Nigeria, Mali, Sierra Leone, and Macedonia). But to be fair to Russia, they did start with a 3.7 in 1995 and 5.6 is their highest score. Interestingly enough, the U.S. peaked in terms of economic freedom back in 2000 with a score fo 8.6. And if you are curious, bringing up the rear in last place is Zimbabwe, with an impressive score of 2.8. Zimbabwe peaked in 1995 and it has been downhill ever since.
- Freedom and Wealth (James Joyner)