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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Worthwhile Canadian Initiative

"Who would have thought an economics blog could be this exciting?”

July 28, 2016, 1:34 am, 1657997

You have an infinite horizon model of inflation. Your model tells you what happens to the time-path of the price level P(t) if the central bank changes monetary policy.

Please do something:

Convert your infinite horizon model into a finite horizon model. Suppose the price level at time T, when the world ...

July 27, 2016, 1:34 am, 1657532

Canada is in an abundant TP equilibrium. Washrooms in restaurants, shopping malls, museums, universities, and other public places are, generally speaking, well stocked with toilet paper (TP).

Inner Mongolia is in a scarce TP equilibrium. With the exception of elite venues such as four star hotels and airports, toilet paper is ...

July 24, 2016, 11:34 am, 1656597

Finance people are good people. Economics needs finance people. Some of my best friends are finance people. But (you heard that "but" coming), finance people (though there are of course honourable exceptions) just don't seem to get money.

I can hear the reply now: "Yeah, and money people don't get finance ...

July 22, 2016, 11:35 am, 1656226

The way women and men spend their time has changed profoundly over the past century. Women in the developed and, to some extent, the developing world are spending much less time in unpaid household work, especially in tasks like cooking, cleaning, and laundry, and much more time in paid work. Men are ...

July 15, 2016, 1:34 pm, 1654053

Airbnb undermines the distinction between short-term, "hotel", accommodation and and long-term, "apartment" accommodation. Some people seem to figure this is a bad thing. New York State legislators, for example, have passed legislation imposing heavy fines on anyone listing their entire apartment on Airbnb or a similar service. But what – if anything ...

June 30, 2016, 9:35 am, 1649802

Imagine you are at an international policy conference. Someone says "Central Banks need to coordinate their monetary policies better". You nod your head wisely in agreement, along with everyone else. Because you know that what one central bank does affects not just its own economy but the economies of other ...

June 21, 2016, 9:34 am, 1647145

To: Generation X, Generation Y and Millennials

From: The Baby Boomers

Re: Pension Savings 

Date: June 21, 2016

It has come to our attention that you are not saving sufficiently for your retirement. This does not surprise us. We haven't saved sufficiently for our retirement either. Some of us have made enough money in the housing ...

June 20, 2016, 9:34 pm, 1647004

Roger Farmer always has done interesting and different stuff. We need economists like that. But it's risky of course. What I'm trying to do here is articulate something that makes me uneasy about his recent line of macro theorising. Like his simple model here with Konstantin Platanov (pdf).

Consider ...

June 17, 2016, 9:34 am, 1646241

The Modigliani Miller Theorem says that a firm's financing policy is irrelevant. It's wrong of course, but it's a good place to start thinking about firms' financing policies.

It would be presumptuous to talk about an Irrelevance "Theorem" for Basic Income. The math is trivial, and the economics is obvious. (And ...

June 7, 2016, 11:34 am, 1643313

Let me start out with an extreme (and very silly) assumption, just so I can explain something simply. Assume that the demand for currency does not depend on the price level, nor on real income, nor on interest rates, nor on anything. It's just fixed. Every individual wants to hold ...