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Sheryl Sandberg CEO Facebook attends the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos in this January 25, 2013 file photo. Sandberg’s upcoming book, "Lean In," has unleashed a wave of criticism from women who say her prescriptions for female success are easier to achieve for those who share her elite background. REUTERS/Pascal Lauener/Files (SWITZERLAND - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS HEADSHOT SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY)
Sheryl Sandberg CEO Facebook attends the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos in this January 25, 2013 file photo. Sandberg’s upcoming book, "Lean In," has unleashed a wave of criticism from women who say her prescriptions for female success are easier to achieve for those who share her elite background. REUTERS/Pascal Lauener/Files (SWITZERLAND - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS HEADSHOT SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY)
(PASCAL LAUENER/REUTERS)

John Stackhouse

John Stackhouse: Nine big ideas that are changing the world

With 2,500 participants, the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland has no shortage of opinions on the state of the world and where it’s heading in 2014. Here are some that stood out after the forum wrapped up this weekend.

Happy economic days are here again

The global economy looks better than at any time since 2007. Davos veterans said it’s the first time since the financial crisis that they have not been actively using the word “crisis.” Europe is scarcely a topic of conversation. Asia has slowed only modestly. The big star? U.S. growth projections are at 3 per cent, with some talking of 4 per cent by year’s end. American consumers are back. The federal deficit is declining. An energy boom, based on shale gas, is not only driving employment growth, it’s made American manufacturers competitive again. A caveat from some veterans: With this much consensus, it may be time to short the market.