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 .
June Payroll Employment
The slowndown in employment growth over the past few months is starting to become more apparent in the graph below.
Click on the image to get a bigger version.
Focus on the Problem
U.S. payroll employment peaked at 132.5 million jobs in February 2001. For April 2012, U.S. payroll employment had reached 133.0 million jobs, marking the third month in a row above the February 2001 level.
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.
Looking Up At 2001
In February 2001, U.S. payroll employment peaked at 132.5 million. The November 2011 figure of 131.7 million still falls 800,000 jobs short of the earlier peak.
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”
Do we over-rate the importance of individual talents to organizational performance? I ask because of this finding by Sander Hoogendoorn:
Team performance exhibits an inverse u-shaped relationship with ability dispersion.
This comes from a study of MBA students' collaborations on business projects. But it is consistent ...
Does pre-tax inequality matter? I ask because of a dispute between Aditya and Tim. Aditya says that inequality is back at 1920s levels - which is true if we consider the share of the richest 1% - to which Tim replies that the relevant ...
In the row over the "mad, swivel-eyed loons" remarks, something is being missed - that, from an economists' perspective, we'd expect political activists to be disproportionately mad.
By "mad" I do not mean the content of activists' beliefs, but rather the intensity with which they ...
UKIP claims that its tax policies are derived from Adam Smith. But what would the great man make of its anti-immigration policies? I suspect the answer is: not much.
Now, immigration was not much of an issue in Smith's time so he said little about ...
Richard Exell draws attention to figures from the US's BLS, which show that since the early 90s, manufacturing productivity growth in the UK has far outstripped real wage growth. This strikes me as odd. It poses the question: if UK manufacturers have been increasing ...
Can social democratic policies reconcile capitalism with leftist conceptions of social justice? This is an old question which I ask because of a new paper which finds that, in Germany:
a 1 euro increase in [corporate] tax liabilities yields a 77 cent decrease in ...
Peter Taylor-Gooby points out that, as inequality has risen, attitudes towards the poor and benefit recipients have hardened.He suggests ...
The virtue of such a policy is that it increases the salience of the cost of policing immigration, and ...
Rob Marrs says something true and important:
Ferguson has more in common with the likes of Busby, Stein, Shankly and Paisley than he does with most of today's managers.
This hints at a significant fact about the truly great managers in British football ...
Here are two interesting new papers on inequality. First, LSE researchers say:
Household characteristics account for only part of the cross-country variation in household wealth and its distribution. The largest share of the differences remains unexplained pointing towards the importance of country specific effects.