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Home > Wednesday Wisdoms: Newsletter > ⌛ Make sure your evaluation looks like this...

Welcome to the 41st edition of Wednesday Wisdoms by EdGenie!

Every Wednesday I send out actionable tips, tricks and real-world application insights from my 13-year experience coaching students to achieve As and A* in their Economics and Business A Levels.

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Make sure your evaluation looks like this...

Hey Genies,

I want to focus on a critical aspect of your A-Level Economics answers – evaluation.

It's not enough to throw in phrases like "It depends on whether or not they will pass on those extra costs to the customers."

That doesn't cut it.
You need to dig deeper, providing evidence and clear explanations that point in an appropriate direction.

Here are a couple of examples of what strong evaluation looks like:

Example 1: Evaluating the Impact of Tariffs on Domestic Producers

Weak Evaluation: "It depends on whether the tariffs will actually protect domestic producers."

Strong Evaluation: "Tariffs may initially protect domestic producers by making imported goods more expensive, providing them with a competitive edge. However, if foreign producers decide to absorb the tariffs and keep their prices stable, the intended protection for domestic firms diminishes. Moreover, domestic producers could face retaliatory tariffs on their exports, making their goods less competitive abroad. For instance, during the US-China trade war, while some American steel producers benefited from tariffs on Chinese imports, other industries faced severe setbacks due to China's retaliatory measures. This dual impact highlights that while tariffs can shield some sectors, they may simultaneously harm others, leading to a net negative effect on the overall economy."

Example 2: Evaluating the Effectiveness of Supply-Side Policies on Improving UK Productivity

Weak Evaluation: "It depends on how well the policies are implemented."

Strong Evaluation:
"Supply-side policies, such as enhancing education and infrastructure investment, are pivotal for boosting productivity. However, their success hinges on consistent, long-term investment and efficient execution. For instance, investing in high-quality education increases human capital, which can drive innovation and efficiency in the workforce. Yet, the UK has historically underinvested in infrastructure, leading to a productivity gap compared to countries like Germany. Having one without the other, may limit productivity. To close this gap, the UK government must ensure sustained funding and tackle potential implementation issues, such as bureaucratic delays such as those to HS2, Brexit Free Trade deals, Heathrow/Gatwick expansion. Evidence from Germany shows that consistent investment in R&D and infrastructure over decades has significantly contributed to their high productivity levels. Thus, the UK needs a similar long-term commitment to see substantial gains."

These are just a couple of example.

Remember, effective evaluation goes beyond stating that "it depends."

Dive into the specifics, back up your points with evidence, and clearly explain the implications.

This is what will set your answers apart and push you towards that A or A*.

Keep pushing, and remember – precise, evidence-based evaluation is key.


​Biden hits Chinese electric cars and solar cells with higher tariffs


🏭 Assembly Line Operations: Employees work on the assembly line of new energy vehicles at Leapmotor's factory in Jinhua, China.
🇺🇸 Biden's Tariff Increases: US President Joe Biden is ramping up tariffs on Chinese-made electric cars, solar panels, steel, and other goods to protect US jobs from unfair policies.

🏛️ 100% Border Tax: The White House announces a 100% border tax on Chinese electric cars as part of measures to safeguard US jobs, impacting $18bn worth of imports.

🇨🇳 China's Opposition: China opposes the tariff hikes and plans retaliatory measures, warning it will severely affect bilateral cooperation.

📊 Symbolic Tariffs: Analysts suggest the tariffs are largely symbolic, aimed at gaining votes in a challenging election year, rather than making significant economic impact.

🚗 Trump's Criticism: Former President Trump criticises Biden, claiming his support for electric cars will harm the US car industry.

💬 Biden's Pledge: Biden vows to prevent China from unfairly controlling key markets, emphasising the need for a secure domestic supply of essentials.

📈 Increased Tariffs: New tariffs include a rise from 25% to 100% on electric vehicle tariffs, with significant increases on solar cells, steel, and aluminium products.

⚖️ Economic Tensions: China's commerce ministry criticises the new tariffs for harming bilateral cooperation and politicising economic issues.

🛡️ Trade Policy Shift: Biden's decision to maintain and expand tariffs reflects a dramatic shift in US trade policy, favouring protectionism over global commerce benefits.

 💵 Higher Prices for Protection: Former trade official Wendy Cutler suggests Americans may accept higher prices to protect US jobs and industries.

📉 Economic Strategy:
Economist Erica York notes both candidates favour higher trade barriers, focusing on political gains over economic sense.

 🌍 Impact on Sales:
US tariffs have made Chinese electric vehicle sales negligible, with Washington monitoring increasing sales in Europe and other regions.

 ♻️ Sustainable Transition: White House officials stress the importance of diverse green technology sources for a successful and sustainable transition.

 🧐 Europe's Next Move: The business world watches to see if Europe will adopt similar tariffs on Chinese electric cars.

 📊 New Tariff Overview: Significant increases on semiconductors, steel, aluminium, electric vehicles, lithium batteries, solar cells, cranes, and medical gloves.

 🇪🇺 Global Trade Impact: The EU and UK consider measures to curb imports of Chinese electric cars, despite potential adoption slowdowns.

🔄 Ongoing Trade War:
The US-China trade war, ongoing since 2018, has reshaped global trade patterns, raising prices for Americans.

📉 Symbolic Impact:
Oxford Economics describes the latest plans as largely symbolic, with minimal impact on inflation and growth.

A Level Economics Questions:

Q: Discuss the economic rationale behind President Biden's decision to increase tariffs on Chinese-made electric vehicles and other goods. How might these tariffs protect US jobs and industries?
A:The economic rationale behind President Biden's decision to increase tariffs on Chinese-made electric vehicles (EVs) and other goods lies in the concept of trade protectionism. By imposing tariffs, the US government aims to make imported goods more expensive, thereby reducing their competitiveness compared to domestically produced goods. This can protect US jobs and industries by encouraging consumers and businesses to buy American products. Additionally, tariffs can serve as a response to perceived unfair trade practices, such as subsidies that allow Chinese firms to undercut US prices. Ultimately, the goal is to level the playing field and support domestic manufacturing.

Q: How might these tariffs affect bilateral cooperation between the two countries?
A:The increased US tariffs on Chinese goods are likely to strain US-China trade relations further. Such measures can lead to retaliatory tariffs from China, reducing the volume of trade between the two nations and potentially escalating into a trade war. This could harm bilateral cooperation in other areas, such as technology and environmental initiatives. Economically, both countries might suffer from reduced market access, higher costs for consumers and businesses, and disruptions in supply chains. Politically, heightened tensions could impact global trade dynamics and influence other countries' trade policies.

Q: Assess the impact of the increased tariffs on US consumers and businesses. How might these tariffs affect economic efficiency and consumer welfare?
A: The increased tariffs are likely to lead to higher prices for imported goods, which can negatively impact US consumers by reducing their purchasing power. Businesses that rely on imported inputs may face higher production costs, leading to increased prices for their products. While the tariffs aim to protect domestic industries and jobs, they can also result in economic inefficiencies by encouraging production in less competitive sectors. The trade-offs between protecting domestic industries and maintaining economic efficiency include potential short-term gains in employment and industry protection versus long-term costs in terms of higher prices, reduced consumer welfare, and decreased global competitiveness.

Q: How might the tariffs on Chinese electric vehicles and solar panels affect global efforts to combat climate change?

A: The tariffs on Chinese electric vehicles and solar panels could slow the adoption of green technologies by making them more expensive in the US. This could hinder global efforts to combat climate change by reducing the availability and affordability of clean energy solutions. On the other hand, the tariffs might encourage the development of domestic green technology industries, potentially leading to innovation and increased competitiveness in the long run. However, the short-term impact may be a delay in the transition to more sustainable energy sources.

Possible A Level Economics 25 Marker Question

What are the long-term strategic implications of the US imposing higher tariffs on Chinese goods, particularly in the context of global trade dynamics?

Infographic of the Week

Top 10 Countries Most in Debt to the IMF

Established in 1944, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) provides financial aid and policy guidance to support countries' economic growth, stability, and job creation. Countries borrow from the IMF to tackle economic crises, stabilise currencies, implement structural reforms, and address balance of payments issues. This graphic visualises the 10 countries most indebted to the IMF, based on the latest debt data as of April 29, 2024. Argentina leads the list, with an IMF debt equivalent to 5.3% of its GDP, totalling over $32 billion. The list also includes Egypt, Ukraine, Pakistan, Ecuador, Colombia, Angola, Kenya, Ghana, and Ivory Coast, with debts ranging from $2 billion to $11 billion. Notably, five of these countries are in Africa, three in South America, and one, Ukraine, in Europe. Ukraine's debt of $9 billion reflects the severe economic impact of the conflict with Russia. Overall, nearly 100 countries owe the IMF a total of $111 billion, with the top 10 countries accounting for about 69% of this amount.

Chart of the Week

Jobs Most at Risk of Automation by 2032

Technological advancements have historically transformed the workforce, rendering some occupations obsolete while creating new ones. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' latest Occupational Employment Projections report for 2022-2032 identifies jobs most at risk from automation and other technological shifts. Cashiers are expected to see the largest decline, with a projected loss of 348,100 jobs due to the rise of self-checkout systems. Secretaries, office clerks, and customer service representatives also face significant declines, each losing over 150,000 jobs. Other notable declines include positions like bookkeeping clerks and fast food cooks. Relative employment changes show that word processors and typists, as well as watch and clock repairers, are particularly vulnerable, with declines of 39% and 30%, respectively. This trend highlights the ongoing impact of technology on job markets and the importance of adapting to these changes.

Macroeconomic Data

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I'm Emre, and I've got a big goal - to make A* education accessible to all A-level students.
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Emre Aksahin
Chief Learning Officer at Edgenie