Economics Roundtable

May 2014 Payroll Employment

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

Click on the image to get a bigger version.


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 .

Click on the image to get a bigger version.

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?

Click on the chart for a larger version.


The Economics Roundtable is sponsored by EconModel.

The Classic Economic Models cover micro, macro, and financial markets.

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Stumbling and Mumbling

"An extremist, not a fanatic”

July 20, 2014, 10:35 am, 1303693

"Workplace autonomy plays an important causal role in determining well-being" conclude Alex Coad and Martin Binder in a new paper. This is consistent with research by Alois Stutzer which shows that procedural utility matters; people care not just about outcomes but about having in ...

July 19, 2014, 6:35 am, 1303442

Rachel Tomlinson's plagiarized letter to pupils has been attacked by two of our nation's greatest living dickheads. There's one line in it, however, which is importantly and true. It's that there are many ways of being smart.

First, cleverness ...

July 17, 2014, 10:35 am, 1302385

Earlier today, Tim Montgomerie, referring to a Times leader, tweeted:

(1) Record, unexpected jobs growth. (2) Massive reform of welfare incentives. Could the two be connected?

The answer could be: not much.

To see why, let's ask the question we must ask about all theories ...

July 16, 2014, 10:35 am, 1301762

How lumpy is the labour market? Several recent posts prompt me to ask.

Here's what I mean. Think of two possible extreme mental models of the labour market. At one extreme, the market is flat, and workers are easily substitutable between jobs. At the other extreme, the ...

July 15, 2014, 6:35 am, 1301028

Several tweeters, such as Anna and Hopi, have expressed dismay at the fact that Iain Duncan Smith has kept his job in the cabinet (re)shuffle, despite his gross inadequacies. His survival, however, highlights an important fact - that, sometimes, organizations and markets ...

July 14, 2014, 10:36 am, 1300613

Google boss Larry Page recently called for the end of the conventional 40-hour working week. Some new research suggests this could have more profound cultural effects than generally thought.

Anne-Laure Sellier and Tamar Avnet primed people to choose between organizing ...

July 11, 2014, 10:35 am, 1299734

James Bloodworth says we need stronger unions. Unions, he says, give us higher pay and greater equality.

But what do they do to productivity? The standard Tory line for years has been that militant unions are wreckers. The facts, though, tell a different story.

July 10, 2014, 10:35 am, 1299168

Today's strikes have led to complaints about kids' education being disrupted. This, though, poses the question: why fret so much about the loss of one day's schooling and so little about the countless other things that undermine good education, from the bad management that forces thousands ...

July 9, 2014, 10:35 am, 1298565

Everyone knows there is a cost of living crisis; real wages are 8.5% lower than they were in 2008. However, the fact that workers are doing badly does not mean that capitalists are doing well. Today's figures from the ONS show that the return on capital ...

July 8, 2014, 10:35 am, 1298001

Back in 1987 my first boss in investment banking used to say that if he got into the office before nine o'clock he had to switch the lights on. This 1964 BBC programme about stockbrokers shows he had a point. "The day begins" says the narrator ...