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.

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Economics Unbound (Mike Mandel)

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502420

This morning Warren Buffet's company Berkshire Hathaway announced that it was buying Burlington Northern Santa Fe in a deal valued at $44 billion. In the announcement, Buffett called the purchase an "all-in wager on the economic future of the United States."

Is Buffett right that a bet on Burlington Northern is ...

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502421

Ford's 3rd quarter earnings report, released this morning, showed a surprisingly large net income of almost $1 billion. The company reported that it:

...reduced its Automotive structural costs by $1 billion in the quarter, largely driven by lower manufacturing and engineering costs, which included benefits from improved productivity, personnel reduction ...

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502422

One of my favorite commenters, Ajay, writes:

Wow, when the chief economist at Businessweek is capable of writing a sentence like "if U.S.-based companies are doing their research and product development overseas and their production there as well, it's tough to see how ordinary workers in the U.S. will gain," it's ...

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502423

Posting for Michael, who’s traveling:

If you care about R&D, product design, worker training, or any of that other good stuff, you might want to look at my new cover story. I’ll be adding to this over the weekend.

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502419

I'm about to go down to DC to attend this conference (I'm giving the after-dinner remarks as well)

Measurement Issues Arising from the Growth of Globalization

This is a very important conference as we try to figure what is *really* going on in the U.S. economy. I'll be writing ...

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502418

This morning's productivity numbers showed a huge gain in output per hour in the third quarter--up at an annual rate of 9.5% in the nonfarm business sector.

But here's something else. If we are to believe these numbers, the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression has actually produced ...

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502415

...if anyone is interested.

Following my usual practice, I regret to inform you that I've reduced my investments in domestic equities. I think this play still has another unhappy act to run before the (perhaps) happy ending. But is there an intermission?

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502416

Over the next week, as I clean up my desk, I'm going to be doing short reviews of books that I have been meaning to write about. Let's start with Profit Power Economics, a fascinating new book which combines corporate strategy and economics. The author, Mia de Kuijper, runs her ...

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502417

In recent months, I've repeatedly made the point that the financial crisis was a symptom, not a cause. Innovation was weaker than expected, private sector job growth outside of healthcare was virtually nonexistent, while real wages and real stock values showed little gains from the late 1990s to the end ...

July 5, 2015, 1:03 am, 1502414

Here's more bad news for jobs.

According to this morning's trade report, the advanced technology trade deficit widened to $18.2 billion in the third quarter, up from $12.9 billion in the second quarter of 2009 (advanced technology products include 10 categories, such as information and communications, biotechnology, and ...