"State-directed capital flows concentrated in a small number of financial institutions and corporations hamper growth….When control over capital is shifted from a few financial institutions to many, it results in an immediate increase in people looking for new businesses to finance."
—From "Capital Access Index: Emerging and Submerging Markets," a Milken Institute policy brief by economists Glenn Yago and David Goldman.
Using 17 indicators, including government debt as a percentage of GDP, allowed foreign ownership, and capital gains tax rates, the authors assess emerging economies in terms of capital access, which they consider "the most salient dimension of a country's economic environment that allows it to realize its growth potential." Singapore tops their list, while Bulgaria brings up the rear. Available on the Web at www.milken-inst.org/mod18/capacc_contents.html or by calling 310-998-2600.
For related measures of economic freedom and competitiveness, check out the Fraser Institute's "Economic Freedom of the World" (www.fraserinstitute.ca/books/econ_free/contents.html), the Heritage Foundation's 1998 Index of Economic Freedom (www.heritage.org/index), and the World Economic Forum's "Global Competitiveness Report" (www.weforum.org/publications/gcr/).