At a time when two big economies, the US and India, are attracting a lot of hype for their enduring strength, it is worth looking at nations that not too long ago were billed as star performers but are now breaking down. All are among the world’s 50 largest economies and, so far this decade, have suffered both a sharp decline in real per capita income growth, and a fall in their share of global gross domestic product.

Led by Canada, Chile, Germany, South Africa and Thailand, these “breakdown nations” carry a lesson. Growth is hard, sustaining it even harder, so the stars of today are not necessarily the stars of tomorrow.

Take Canada first………….