The phrase “emerging markets” is said to have emerged from deep within the bowels of the World Bank bureaucracy in 1983. From there it spread and captured global attention.
The phrase is undoubtedly an evocative one, suggesting a dynamism that was absent in all previous descriptions of countries such as ours: poor (hopeless), less developed (a polite way to describe laggards) or developing (admittedly more positive than the earlier alternatives but clearly lacking the zing of “emerging markets”).
Is it time yet again for new nomenclature? Writing recently in the Financial Times, Marko Dimitrijevic argues that the phrase “emerging markets” is no longer relevant: So-called emerging markets have well-developed financial markets—and represent half the world’s economy.
Just in case: We wonder what will happen to all those fancy financial products and indexes that sport the emerging markets moniker.
Another concern: should we now call the West submerging markets?