Economics Roundtable

Technical Problems 1/21/15

The website was down for a day and a half, but is back up now.

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.


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Economics Unbound (Mike Mandel)

July 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294946

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 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294947

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 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294948

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 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294949

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 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294945

...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 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294944

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 ...

July 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294941

To confirm the rumors: I was not offered a position by Bloomberg.

To my friends at BusinessWeek, both old and new: We had a fantastic run, and I loved working with you all. Sometimes we were good, sometimes we were great, but we always had integrity and soul (yes, that's ...

July 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294942

The headline number for this morning's PPI report was an 0.6% decline in the price of finished goods less food and energy ("core PPI"). In fact, core finished goods PPI has fallen for 4 out of the past 6 months. So if we just look at this number, inflation ...

July 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294943

Next week I'm looking forward to speaking at two important innovation-related conferences. On Thursday I will be in Chicago at "Innovating Our Way to Prosperity" put on by The Institute for Work and the Economy. It's obviously a critical topic these days, given the weak state of the job ...

July 2, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1294940

You can find my next blog at

I'm taking a hiatus from blogging for about a month. But I will be focusing on innovation and growth.

(If there's any problem with getting to the blog, let me know)