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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Economic Principals (David Warsh)
For all the talk about scandals in Washington, the news that caught my eye was the differing treatment accorded the latest benchmark in the global warming debate. Atmospheric carbon dioxide reached 400 parts per million earlier this month, as measured by two monitors installed in Mauna Loa, Hawaii, in the middle ...
Enthusiasm for budget-balancing swept Europe in 2010 in the wake of the financial crisis, just as the Tea Party movement was taking root in the United States. (See this four-minute history of the American events to refresh your memory.) The difference is that, in Europe, “expansionary austerity” was taking ...
The list of genuine heroes of the financial crisis of 2007-08 is a short one, as opposed to the roll of pretenders, which is as long as my arm. High on the former are Carmen Reinhart, of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and Kenneth Rogoff, of the university’s economics department. ...
For three years as a young man, I worked for a business magazine in New York. Fortune, Business Week, Barron’s were fast cutters in relation to the mighty vessel that was The Wall Street Journal, but none in those days sailed closer to the wind than Forbes (the present-day iteration ...
In the aftermath of a very long week in Massachusetts, two things about the response to the Boston Marathon bombing seem clear.
One is that command and control of the investigation was a mess. Rival federal agencies and police that couldn’t agree among themselves on Wednesday long enough to call a ...
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You could fault me, I suppose, for having spent the week thinking about marriage, and, by extension, about families. Listening to the justices of the Supreme Court turning over the possibility of extending to same-sex couples the right to enter into the kind of matrimonial contracts devised over the ...
Like many others in the commentary business, I went back last week and read what I was writing around the time of the US invasion of Iraq. I was not very happy at what I found. In The Risk-Taker, on March 16, I was a reluctant endorser of what ...
Economic Principals is not writing this week, having been laid low by a flu virus (despite inoculation).