Economics Roundtable

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.


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?”

September 16, 2014, 9:33 pm, 1336162

The Tax Foundation released its 2014 International Tax Competitiveness Index (ITCI) of 34 OECD countries and Canada’s overall rank was 24 out of 34 countries.  Despite our recent snagging of Burger King, we are apparently in the bottom third of OECD countries when it comes to tax competitiveness.  ...

September 16, 2014, 9:33 am, 1335784

[I am trying to explain what I think is a conceptual confusion by the "Open Borders" people. Unfortunately, my brain isn't very clear either.]

Land can't move, of course. But borders can. We can't move land across the borders, but we can move borders across the land.

So if half the people ...

September 14, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1334763

Imagine two course sections with the following grading schemes:

Section A: 4 assignments worth 5% each for a total of 20%; 35% midterm; 45% final.

Section B: 4 assignments worth 10% each for a total of 40%; 60% final.

In my experience, students often reason: "Section B places more weight on assignments. I can ...

September 13, 2014, 9:33 am, 1334365

This is a response to Brad DeLong's and David Glasner's good posts. They are good posts because they forced me to think. This is what I think.

[I really ought to spend more time on this post, but I am a little snowed under with committee work ...

September 10, 2014, 9:33 am, 1332504

The pressure to cut taxes comes from those who pay relatively more in taxes, and benefit relatively less from government spending. 

Men, on average, earn more than women. Hence they pay more taxes than women do:

September 9, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1332040

CIHI has just released its latest report on physicians – Physicians in Canada 2013 – and the key findings can be summarized as follows: (1) For the 7th year in a row, the number of physicians in Canada increased, reaching 220 per 100,000 population in 2013. (2) In ...

September 8, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1331395

Just trying to get my head clearer on some related stuff.

I have a weird thought-experiment, that I think helps us understand fractional reserve banking better. Even though, paradoxically, there are no commercial banks in my thought-experiment. There is just One Big Bank, owned and controlled by the government, that issues ...

September 7, 2014, 11:33 pm, 1330774

The most pressing issue in Canadian tax policy today is that people don't like paying taxes, and it is increasingly hard to persuade them to do so.

The heavy duty engines of tax revenue generation are the personal income tax and the federal and provincial sales taxes. Federally, personal income taxes ...

September 7, 2014, 7:33 pm, 1330755

Well, I had a quick read through Kartik B. Athreya’s Big Ideas in Macroeconomics: A Non-Technical View because I have not been near macro theory since I finished grad school nearly 25 years ago.  It seemed like a good way to re-acquaint myself with the subject and get some insight ...

September 6, 2014, 9:33 am, 1330372

Suppose, just suppose, that you believed that printing money was irreversible, or just very hard to reverse. So central banks could increase the supply of base money by printing money, but could not (or could not easily) reduce the supply of base money again by burning money.

And suppose you knew ...