Thursday, July 14, 2011

Who is Responsible for the Global Crisis

Many blame financial institutions, mostly in the US, for causing the global crisis. But these views do not seem to be universally held. In the recently released 2010 Life in Transition Survey database by EBRD, 1000 Armenian households were asked (along with those in 33 other countries) which country they blame for the global economic crisis. The raw data shows that 45 percent responded that the Armenian government is partly responsible (question q803aa), 27 percent the US, and so on. When asked who is the most responsible, the Armenian government was held to blame by 37 percent (question q803b). Another 28 percent did not know who to blame.

It is difficult to make the case that much of the population is ill informed. But if the LiTS survey is representative of Armenian households, then this raises questions on a number of fronts with financial literacy way at the top. The bad news is that the blame does not seem to vary much with education (probit estimates). The good news is that Armenia is not alone; similar findings can be obtained for a handful of other countries.

Who is most responsible for the economic crisis?
(computed from the 2010 LiTS Armenia sub-sample)

Note: above are not weighted as sampling weights are not reported on the released file.