In the August 22, 2011 issue of Time, Thornburgh, Adams, Assinder, Cooke, Mayer, and Grose (2011) noted some similarities between the economic situation in the United Kingdom, Egypt, Tunisia, and the United States. While Thornburgh et al. focused on the violence and unrest in the United Kingdom, he observed that the United States has more income distribution inequality than the United Kingdom although more people in the United States seem more optimistic about their economic prospects than their U. K. counterparts.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development reported that income distribution inequality, as measured by the Gini coefficient, was 0.26 in Sweden; 0.30 in Germany and Australia; 0.32 in Greece, in Canada, in Japan, and in Spain; 0.34 in the U.K.; 0.35 in Italy; and 0.36 in Portugal. By comparison, the Gini was 0.38 for the United States and Yemen, 0.43 in Turkey; 0.47 in Mexico; 0.34 for Egypt, 0.40 for Tunisia, 0.42 for Syria and for Iraq, and 0.4 for Jordan.
Another apparent measure of potential unrest seems to be unemployment in various demographic groups. Table 1 shows the unemployment rate for 16-24 year-olds and overall and measures of national debt, % GDP of exports, and % college graduates.
Unemployment, national debt, export, import, and college graduation levels by country.Country Unemployment15-24 UnemploymentTotal National Debt % GDP Export % GDP Import % GDP % College Graduates Australia 11.5 5.2 11.0 22.5 23.1 33.7