Once-over-lightly perspectives on what might be in store for major sectors of American business and society through the turn of the century. While plainly mine intent on guidance than stock values, the authors (both members of the Washington-based publishing clan) manage to reach a fair number of provocative, even contrarian, conclusions ill the course of their consistently upbeat survey. By way of example, the Kiplingers pooh-pooh the notion that America is deindustrializing; nor do they put much stock in the contention that productivity and poverty rates or other measures of national prosperity indicate trouble ahead. In like vein, the authors offer comforting words on federal budget deficits (declining as a percentage of GNP), trade imbalances (overstated because US exports are undercounted), military expenditures (in eclipse, thanks to an easing of superpower tensions), and the amount of domestic debt held by foreign lenders (probably just $325 billion, about 16% of the total). The Kiplingers also offer short-take assessments of prospects in industries ranging from agriculture through financial services, telecommunications, and transport. Among other outcomes, they expect American and Japanese companies to engage in more joint ventures in high-tech enterprises (biosciences, computers, superconductors, et al.) as Common Market countries close ranks in 1992. Japan Inc. will encounter tougher going in the near future, the authors predict, in part because of an aging population whose demand for consumer goods as well as social services is growing amidst increased competition from Pacific Basin neighbors; also noteworthy is the fact that the island nation is an essentially closed society that does not make full use of human resources, including women and immigrants. Covered as well are broad trends in demographics, education, employment, civil liberties, and investment. During the next decade, the Kiplingers forecast, the Dow Jones industrial average could more than double, and, thanks to an increasingly interdependent international economy, foreign securities will comprise significant portions of domestic portfolios. Owing to their newsletter-like format, the authors do not explore the implications of all or even most of their findings. But they do provide a road map for the near-to-intermediate term, which includes clear directions for reaching the main highways.