Journey To The Economic Center Of The World

Tyler Durden's picture

The most recent decade of 2000 to 2010 has seen the fastest rate of change in the global economic balance in history. During this period, a recent McKinsey research article notes, the world's economic center of gravity has shifted by about 140km per year - about 30% faster than in the period after World War II when global GDP shifted from Europe to North America. The world’s center of economic gravity has changed over past centuries. But since the mid-1980s, the pace of that shift—from the United States and Europe toward Asia— has been increasing dramatically as China is urbanizing on 100 times the scale of Britain in the 18th century and at more than 10 times the speed. One has to wonder what the difference would be were it not for the flawed economic model adopted since the 1980s that relied on debt and asset price inflation to drive demand (as opposed to wage growth linked to productivity growth).

The center of economic gravity is calculated by weighting national GDP by each nation's geographic center of gravity. They then draw a line from the center of the earth through this center of gravity to the surface.


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RacerX's picture

Ha ha, back to whence we came.

AldousHuxley's picture






Mesopotamia (Iran)






USA East

USA Central (Chicago and midwestern auto industry)

USA West (computers and internet)









BigDuke6's picture

This is just recycling of the centuries old 'heartland theory'

Of little use

apberusdisvet's picture

Better to show the center of corruption.

My guess is either the 'daisy chain room" at the Eccles Building or the Rothschild fortress in the City of London.

philipat's picture

No, that would definitely remain somewhere between Wall Street and DC. Yeah, USA still #1!!

Debtonation's picture

Is there a derivative I can buy for this?

ATM's picture

But I like to be told the sky is blue....... it's reassuring !

BBullionaire's picture

Thanks for link to that blog I'll add it to my 'collection':

falak pema's picture

this is great news for Noah and his Arc. After the deluge we will all be born again, thanks to the Arc. I wonder when the tickets on it will go on sale! 

LawsofPhysics's picture

The article's only flaw is that is assumes humanity survives in some sort of organized form of society.

Sudden Debt's picture

at least we kept onto it for about 100 years....

Sweet Chicken's picture

That's right, at least we got our names on the damn cup!!!

michael_engineer's picture

Detroit was the center of the universe at one time during the auto boom. Then it moved to Seattle / Silicon Valley with the high tech boom. Not sure where it's next stop will be.

adr's picture

Something that looks a lot like "Escape From NY" or "Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome".

joq's picture

Not only does the center shift, it also shrinks into a singularity inside very few elite individuals, that will do everything to retain their power, for themselves, for their children and for their offspring. In the micro world it is called bacteria or virus.

TahoeBilly2012's picture

No wonder we invaded Afghanistan...

q99x2's picture

I don't believe in GDP and certainly China's GDP and the world is now run on Fraud and Bribes so that's a nice article but wouldn't it have been better to have checked out babes at the beach instead of wasting words.

I guess you could have impressed them at the beach if you said you were writing an article for ZH.

Don't get me wrong I like geography. It is entertaining.

falak pema's picture

When I was in business school I met a guy who was from Mckinsey lecturing us on strategic planning and I asked him why Mckinsey  was reputed the best in the world. And he said 'cos the world does not know Boston consulting yet, and its four quadrant business model, that's where I am heading! What hubris! The guy was selling his new job to us students all the while he came with his Old business card, to make his reputation as lecturer in academia. Double whammy for him pêrsonally, unethical from my perspective.

I later found out how over-rated were both these coterie of mad men who sold prepackaged Excel worksheets and graphics as the nec plus ultra of strategic thinking. Power point before it was invented. Plenty of graphics and pithy platitudes. It was the age of Reaganomics launch; all the corporates could see was the quarterly report syndrome, instant nirvana.

What had been corporate triple motto : enrichen your client, enrichen your salaried man, enrichen your corporate shareholder became : just fuck the hell up and enrichen me fella if you want ya bonus up yar butt, ya belong to me and there is only one rule now in corporate world; there are no rules out there except that shareholder value is uber-alles. F.I.R.E. !!!!

Wowie, we were all working for Gordon Gekko. And this is what its gotten us.

The age of Mongol resuscitation! Marco Polo here I come! 

GeorgeHayduke's picture

What did you expect from the guy? After all he was teaching at a business school. Isn't that where they teach students how to fake sincerity while stealing from widows and orphans?

Just teasing, kinda. There are some decent business people out there, but their numbers have dwindled over the years as greed and corruption have taken over our society at all levels. When the basic motivation becomes making a buck instead of providing a quality product or service we end up where we are now. The question is, where do we go from here?

Bicycle Repairman's picture

The center of gravity in 2025; does it account for the US bombing the crap out of all its rivals?  I see the center being somewhere in Kansas.

Bicycle Repairman's picture

I don't make the future.  I just report it.

Chartist's picture

With all the low cost labor China has, it's no wonder.

DosZap's picture

With all the low cost labor China has, it's no wonder.

How about the NO COST labor, prisoners.

machineh's picture

So you've got a 'buy' rating on Corrections Corp. of America, I take it?

Schmuck Raker's picture

"Floor space"

[ Polite golf-clap for China]

Antifaschistische's picture

I'd love to see this exact graphic overlayed with world oil consumption...then we could argue about which direction the correlation goes.  

blindman's picture

jr a esus, i call bull shit on this one as
the numbers are all bullshit and the unit of measure
is bullshit and the people involved are all full
of shit so, there ya go. wave the flag here as
soon it will be appropriate. 4th, still, money, whatever that is, never sleeps, like rust.
Thrasher -Neil Young live Rust never sleeps !

Bunga Bunga's picture

Looks like this gravity was looking for Iceland, but then got scared.

zorba THE GREEK's picture

Maybe it's time for someone else to carry the ball.

It seems the U.S. has been fumbling a lot lately.

blindman's picture

Neil Young - Cortez The Killer
coincidentally i was reading about this Habsburg
600 years or more, stooges everywhere.
and the silver and gold stolen at the tip of
a blade. centuries worth, now digital with
blemish. cartelocracy ongoing....invisible
in plain sight
war and war stealing ongoing.
not even close to civil terms. FRAUD terms,
a ok.

bankruptcylawyer's picture


g speed's picture

TU ---this is a waste--come on ZH   stop trolling

Lord Koos's picture

If "wage growth linked to productivity growth" was an actual reality, Chinese workers would be making more than $8 a day.

slewie the pi-rat's picture

"each nation's economic center of gravity" are not economic valuations, but demographic or geographic;  maybe the amount of window surface like that tax in france, too?

if  country X has 10 times the population and 1/10th the GDP of Y they're even?  not really but that type of thinking is indicated here, imo;  they use 4 other factors also!  L0L!!!  what garbage!

first sentence:  The most recent decade of 2000 to 2010 has seen the fastest rate of change in the global economic balance in history.

that's nice!  wtf?  the "fact" that some mythical "center of gravity" changes/"evolutes" equates somehow with global economic balance?  is this a joke of some kind?  link?  this "research" doesn't actually assert that nonsense does it?

keep drinking tyler!  pretty soon you'll have the MSM quoting zH on the global econ balance L0L!!!  careful!  don't fall in the vomit there ok?

Poor Grogman's picture

Looks like it's headed for Tibet!

Im not a Mouse won't like that...

Free Tibet!

Joshua Falken's picture

McKinsey write reports with outcomes to drive their income

This whole growth scenario rests on easy debt, energy and materials.

When this scenario goes tits up, McKinsey will write another report how how they can they the storm they didn't warn you about for a nice fat fee.

Sandmann's picture

McKinsey is so far off-base its CEO had to sell insider info to get ahead. They draw pretty charts but still cannot explain their own role in Enron,, Wall Street Bust and a host of other "issues" where they have been knee-deep in slime. Merely writing glossy articles for in-house magazines does not constitute profound thought. How competitive will Asia be when it has HGerman or Swiss labour costs ?

magpie's picture

...and yet even Karl and Albrecht Haushofer were more prescient (and up todate).

The Reich's picture

Utter crap!

(At least I found out why the Nazis invaded Norway in 1940.)

Old Poor Richard's picture

The economic center of the world supposedly spent the last century hovering in the Arctic ocean.  That's a really helpful analysis.  Not.

It's a shame when grown ups come up with such amateurish horseshit 'analysis.'


yourfather's picture

would like to remind you all that the people who drafted this 'map' also predicted a worldwide market of cell phones no larger than 800,000 by the year 2000. To give you some colour, there were estimated to be 110,000,000 mobile phones by then...

printmoremoney's picture

Measuring economic life and happiness by GDP consumption only confirms that conditioning humans to be Wage Slaves or Debt Slaves bound within a Dominatrix of corporate servitude is a legitimate crime against humanity. I don't buy GDP.

Grand Supercycle's picture

More Equity Rally Expected.

Any traders predicting a multi month equity rally apart from me ?

As of today I am.

Last week was the turning point.

Further equity upside and USDX weakness expected this year according to my analysis.

However the SPX big picture remains very bearish and unfortunately this will not change.