News Summary: Vietnam's economy loses its roar
NEW MALAISE: Once seen as an emerging Asian dynamo racing to catch up with its neighbors, Vietnam's economy is mired in malaise, dragged down by debt-hobbled banks, inefficient and corrupt state-owned enterprises and bouts of inflation.
OLD WAYS: Vietnam's one-party Communist government has promised reforms, but it appears unwilling to give up the reins of an economy that has delivered fortunes to top officials and their business partners.
THE TOLL: House prices have crashed by up to 50 percent in some places from the boom years and jobs are reportedly drying up for school leavers. Foreign investment has dropped 34 percent this year, according to government figures.