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Sarkozy: Enough with the GDP

September 15, 2009|Times Wire Reports

President Nicolas Sarkozy asked world leaders to join a "revolution" in the measurement of economic progress by dropping their obsession with gross domestic product to account for factors such as healthcare availability and leisure time.

In a speech on the first anniversary of the collapse of Lehman Bros., the French president said the financial crisis has shown the need for a better way of calculating a country's economic health.

His own country, known for its leisurely meals, long vacations and labor protections, could outshine more profit-focused economies if nations act on new recommendations in a report headed by two Nobel economists commissioned 18 months ago. The report offers a raft of factors that governments should take into account when making policy, such as environmental sustainability.

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