Economics Roundtable

May 2014 Payroll Employment

After 76 months, we finally got back to the prerecession level of payroll employment.

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Jobs

The best summary of the state of our economy is the graph (below) of employment as a fraction of population for people over 16 years old. The decrease is large, but the most troubling feature of the graph is the flat trend .


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Graph-of-the-Year Candidates

Donald Marron likes European interest rates. Click on the image to get a bigger version. Can you find three distinct subperiods?

Brad DeLong favors the U.S. gdp gap.


Remember M1?

Money Supply M1 growth is now over 20% per year over a 12 month lag. M1 growth has touched 20% before, but not with excess reserves of $1.6 trillion. Where is M1 headed?


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Stumbling and Mumbling

"An extremist, not a fanatic”


October 31, 2014, 10:34 am, 1361565

What is the case against evidence-based policy? This is one question prompted by David Cameron's refusal to legalize drugs in the face of evidence that criminalization of them doesn't reduce their use.

The question, of course, generalizes. Many of us would argue that ...


October 29, 2014, 10:34 am, 1359812

The Sunderland Echo has a useful phrase - a "culture of mistakes". In fact, such a culture extends far beyond the Mackems. In a world of complexity, bounded rationality and limited knowledge, mistakes are inevitable and ubiquitous. The


October 28, 2014, 10:34 am, 1359001

Last night, we saw a great example of how cognitive biases can have catastrophic effects when Corrie's Rob confessed to the World's Most Perfect Woman that he had killed Tina.

I suspect he did so because of the false consensus effect - our tendency to ...


October 27, 2014, 10:34 am, 1358206

There's something I find depressing about the response to my post on Russell Brand - that it has received far more attention than almost all my other posts even though many of those are on what I'd regard as more important matters.

Now I know that writing ...


October 26, 2014, 10:34 am, 1357882

Everyone has been having a pop at Russell Brand. Focusing upon his foibles, however, serves to distract us from some fundamental defects of our political culture.

Take these quotes from him:

The economy is just a metaphorical device, it’s not real, that’s why it’s got the ...


October 23, 2014, 10:34 am, 1356290

John Harris writes:

Perhaps those who reduce people’s worries and fears [about immigration] to mere bigotry should go back to first principles, and consider whether, in such laissez-faire conditions, free movement has been of most benefit to capital or labour.

Let's do this. ...


October 23, 2014, 10:34 am, 1356289

John Harris writes:

Perhaps those who reduce people’s worries and fears [about immigration] to mere bigotry should go back to first principles, and consider whether, in such laissez-faire conditions, free movement has been of most benefit to capital or labour.

Let's do this. ...


October 22, 2014, 10:34 am, 1355499

Mark Thoma's point that apparently strong econometric results are often the product of specification mining prompts Lars Syll to remind us that eminent economists have long been wary of what econometrics can achieve.

I doubt if many people have ever thought ...


October 21, 2014, 10:34 am, 1354756

Jeremy Duns accuses Owen Jones of some factual errors. Insofar as he's right, this actually strengthen the substance of Owen's big contention - that the Establishment is a self-regarding clique.

Owen's errors are not decisive ones; the claims he has got wrong are not load-bearing ...


October 20, 2014, 10:35 am, 1354035

I have long been sceptical of the feasibility and desireability of social mobility. Today's report by the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission, though, makes me wonder: is social mobility an out-dated idea?

To see my point, imagine two ...