Friday, August 04, 2006

Global information and personal choices

The actual daily attention of current global economic data, is related not just to natural curiosity , or social necessity, but it is related to the fundamental of human behaviour: To make rational decisions. From the economic point of view ,rational behaviour is defined as the best solutions given stock of data and perfect information, such as to maximize individual welfare. Prices reflect all the information needed to make decisions either from the consumer or producer perspective to allocate resources .When there is no enough information, it arises price dispersion and the individual decisions are no longer the expression of pure rationality.
The problem is that perfect information is not the kind of free available good. It has both transaction and opportunity cost. The benefit of information, is the quality of decisions made with it and the expected impact on individual welfare. Rational expectations imply that nobody will carry on additional effort to get more information , if the cost is higher than the benefit.
These days there is uncertainty everywhere, such that information is an expensive good .The implications of this is that, most decisions are based upon partial available information, which also imply that not always they are good decisions. It is the limited rationality situation. Any consumer before buying any good , do not check out his or her chances of loosing his or her job. He or she decides on the basis of expectations, such that do not need to gather all information available. The result in this case, might be a wrong decisions concerning higher consumption level ,and the subsequent debt increase whether the real probability of loosing the jobs is high. So, uncertainty is inefficient .A politician will decide public affairs based upon the result of opinion polls, but public opinion changes faster than what it is possible to measure ,because of instant global news network. So, like the consumer it might also be in the position of making wrong decisions. The same situation is for business man and global market trends.
Therefore it is crucial to reduce uncertainty throughout better information. Internet allows to get down transaction cost of getting an expensive goods, as it is information in such a situation. However, no all the internet sources all worth to trust, every user must discriminate the good from the bad sites. There is not ISO norms for internets sites. Should it be possible that before enter over internet sites, you could have a signal of quality such as the ISO norms for internet?. It would push down further transaction cost !.-
Let take as an example current global imbalances .It is clear enough that sooner or later there will be an adjustment .The uncertainty is to what extent it will impact global economy. There is no way to solve this doubt hundred percent sure, no matter what econometrics model might predict, but there are very goods internet economic sites , plus global news media, with high quality information , capable of collecting every important on the spot data to allow internet users to make the right decisions as never before. What it is the impact of such information levels on the current quality of decisions ? What is the impact on the economic expectations? .I guess it has been crucial to get the global economy moving forward to its new adjusted stage, in rather smooth way . Without this level of information, it is highly probably that the post adjustment scenario would be very different than what actually is expected to be.-.-

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