Eighteen months ago, when the world was awash in asset bubbles, there was perhaps no market more overheated than commodities. Prices of everything from iron ore to palm oil to corn reached dizzying heights.
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe was celebrating his 85th birthday with a lavish all-day party Saturday despite the fact that the country is gripped by an economic and health crisis. Mugabe’s ZANU-PF party said it raised at least $250,000 to hold the party in Mugabe’s hometown of Chinhoyi, about 120 kilometers (75 miles) outside of the capital, Harare. Critics of the president say the country is desperate for that amount of money to be spent instead on its citizens, who are suffering from a cholera outbreak, food shortages, and spiraling hyperinflation.