In the modern world many citizens worry about the economy and how the American gross domestic product (GDP) often feels like it is seconds away from a monumental crash. Capitalism without Capital by Jonathan Haskel and Stian Westlake looks at how, in the world’s poorer countries, a slowing of GDP often correlates with how the country measures intangible investment.
The same kind of thought can be transferred to major markets that are growing in the Midwest of the U.S., such as online shopping and ride sharing. For online mogul Amazon, the Midwest has become a focal point for movement of their actual tangible capital, like the products they sell on their website (an intangible asset).
Intangible investment is present in everything involved with business that is not physical, including every piece of code, organizational counseling, marketing, research and development, and brand recognition. However, it is not a simple addition of money spent, because that would look at the input and not the possible output that these investments would payout.
The book is an excellent exploration of the implications that come with an ever-increasing market for intangible goods and how the ideas and patents that are created in our intangible era are just as important as the actual capital found in businesses of the past. The authors also explore the idea of scalability, or the spike that is commonly seen in intangible heavy industries.
About the Author
Chris Boyce is a student at Rockhurst University studying Business and Accounting.