Economics Roundtable

May 2014 Payroll Employment

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

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Jobs

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?


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Environmental and Urban Economics


July 29, 2016, 1:33 pm, 1658698
The NY Times reports about Beijing's use of a vehicle registration lottery to attempt to reduce traffic congestion in Beijing.   Since such lotteries do not raise the marginal cost of driving at congested rush hour times, they will not reduce road congestion.  Siqi Zheng and I discuss the ...


July 29, 2016, 11:33 am, 1658649
In 2016, we are finally allowed to talk about urban resilience to climate change.  As I have argued for 8 years now, richer cities can "take a punch".  Go visit Singapore to see proof.  The NY Times writes a "city section" piece that the recent week of extreme heat ...


July 28, 2016, 5:33 pm, 1658321
Andrew Browne has written a fascinating piece in the WSJ sketching a new tragedy of the commons such that China is using its military muscle to harvest valuable resources in disputed waters in the South China Sea. Mr. Browne tells a story that the powerful Chinese Navy is providing ...


July 26, 2016, 1:33 pm, 1657330
Mark Thoma's recent piece caused me to briefly think.  He writes about why he started blogging.   I started blogging to help market my academic work.   Think back 25 to 50 years ago when there was no email, tweets or blogs.  A few elite economists wrote for Business ...


July 25, 2016, 7:33 pm, 1657021
Jacob Mincer was a great labor economist at Columbia University. We were colleagues together in the 1990s.  He didn't think I was funny but he was very kind to me and to Dora.   Here is a Mincer Regression that I doubt he ever ran.  I take Federal Employee data ...


July 25, 2016, 7:33 pm, 1657020
I've joined an ambitious institution.   It is clear to me that USC aspires to be "Stanford South".  I respect that goal.  As the new academic year starts in 4 weeks, USC Economics welcomes five new faculty (including myself).  Here are some details.


July 24, 2016, 3:33 pm, 1656627
The NY Times reports that the Democratic Party seeks a winning issue.   Some argue that "infrastructure" could be that issue.  Why?  Such bricks and mortar would create American jobs and it would build up our capital stock and presumably this would foster long term economic growth.  What are ...


July 23, 2016, 11:33 am, 1656452
Secretary John Kerry made an interesting claim as he equates the risk from terrorism and climate change.   While I understand why he said this, I disagree with him.  I have published a paper on this topic.  

In my paper, I argue that Mother Nature is ...


July 20, 2016, 1:33 pm, 1655423
The NY Times published a piece two weeks ago making the well known points that economists endorse carbon pricing but the leading Democrats are not willing to endorse such  a policy.  One leading economist offers the quote: "


July 19, 2016, 5:33 pm, 1655139
I was very sorry to learn that Chip Case recently passed away.   I work at the intersection of environmental and urban economics.   In 2016,  environmental economics is a young person's field.  I am one of the "graybeards" in this area.   In urban economics, there are ...