Economics Roundtable

May 2014 Payroll Employment

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

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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?

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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U.S. Food Policy (Parke Wilde)

"U.S. Food Policy and Economics from a Public Interest Perspective”

January 21, 2016, 9:03 am, 1600757
Alan Bjerga and Erik Wasson at Bloombergyesterday report that a bi-partisan agreement in the Senate Agriculture Committee this week preserves key parts of the First Lady's school nutrition goals, while still allowing all sides to claim victory.

After half-a-decade of trying to dismember Michelle Obama's signature effort to ...

January 7, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1596855
The federal government's Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015 were released this morning. This official publication of the Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services will offend nobody. Certainly, any student of food policy can appreciate why its authors made the decisions they made. The departments are under intense ...

January 5, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1596091
What would federal policy look like if Republicans and Democrats worked together to reduce U.S. hunger?

It would probably look like this new reportreleased yesterday by the bipartisan National Commission on Hunger.

Key features of a bipartisan approach:
The membership really would be bipartisan.The commission included leading ...

December 29, 2015, 5:03 pm, 1594681
by Parke Wilde and Yue Huang
The U.S. Trade Representative this fall released the text of the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a controversial trade agreement for the United States and other countries that border the Pacific Ocean.

Critics argue that the TPP will endanger U.S. food safety, ...

December 28, 2015, 11:03 am, 1594291
by Ellen Messer
We lost two Pats in 2015. And I’m not talking about season-ending injuries to gigantic players on our favorite New England football team, but about two small heroes in Team America’s fight against hunger.

One, Patricia Kutzner, founded the World Hunger Education Service ...

December 17, 2015, 7:03 pm, 1592133
In this skeptical and critical video about canned food drives, from Adam Ruins Everything and Upworthy, a food bank administrator offers a good balanced summary of the main point:

Canned food drives don't suck, [but] they're not the most efficient way to give.

To allow food banks and food pantries to ...

December 14, 2015, 11:03 am, 1590552
I enjoyed a recent interviewwith Project Bread, a leading anti-hunger organization in New England and organizer of the annual Walk for Hunger in Boston.

What is the biggest cause of food insecurity in the United States?
There are multiple reasons why people lack sufficient income to meet ...

December 9, 2015, 3:03 pm, 1588636
By Melissa Hudec and Parke Wilde
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is proposing a new Nutrition Facts Panel that identifies added sugars (rather than just mixing added sugars in with all other sugars).

The proposed label supports a recommendation from the 2015 Dietary Guidelines ...

December 5, 2015, 3:03 pm, 1586682
There are few roles in the U.S. food system as tough as being an immigrant farmworker ... especially one without documentation. There has been enormous advocacy in recent years to improve farmworker wages and working conditions.
Yet, in addition to advocacy, it is worthwhile to stay informed about the economic ...

December 5, 2015, 3:03 pm, 1586681
In early 2015, FDA wrote a warning letter to KIND Snacks, calling out the company for using the term "healthy" on nut-filled snacks that -- among other things -- had a level of total fat level exceeding the official standards for "healthy" foods.

At the time, media sources ...