Hear: What Keeps Countries Poor? : Planet Money On today's Planet Money, developing nations are caught in a cycle of debt to richer ones.
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Hear: What Keeps Countries Poor?

Hear: What Keeps Countries Poor?

As of December 2008, Zimbabwe owed $4.69 billion to international creditors. Desmond Kwande/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Desmond Kwande/AFP/Getty Images

Hear: What Keeps Countries Poor?

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On today's Planet Money:

The planet's rich nations met this week to discuss, among other issues, ways to help the planet's poor nations.

But those poor (and developing) nations have their own group. It's called the anti-G20, in a nod to the G20 collection of industrialized states. The anti-G20 met at the U.N. last month, where Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz and Martin Khor explained what keeps impoverished countries down. Answer: Their debt to the IMF and wealthier nations.

We also take a second look at the surprisingly complex financial lives of the poor, with a focus on burial societies and very alternative banks.

Bonus: A mildly sunny indicator.

Download the podcast; or subscribe. Intro music: Terry Lynn's "IMF." Find us: Twitter/ Facebook/ Flickr.

Julie writes:

I have a number for you! 10,623.

That's how much I earned last quarter on one of my retirement plans, after having posted losses, for what, a year or more?

Of course it's still worth less than when I opened it in early 2001 (just in time to see it take a big fall after 9/11... sigh) but this gain has to mean something!

For what it's worth, she's the second person this week to tell me they opened an investment statement and got good news.