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.

The Classic Economic Models cover micro, macro, and financial markets.

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Worthwhile Canadian Initiative

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

February 8, 2016, 9:34 pm, 1606587

Remember all the old Canadian nationalists? The ones who said that the (Canada-US) Free Trade Agreement would destroy Canadian culture? The ones we economists defeated back in the 1988 election? I'm beginning to wish we hadn't defeated them quite so thoroughly.

They were wrong. But they sorta, kinda, did ...

February 7, 2016, 7:34 pm, 1606205

As university employees, professors have a fiduciary obligation to act in their employer's best interests.†The number one interest of a university is financial survival, and the key to survival is reputation, because reputation attracts students, faculty, and donors.

A university's reputation, to the extent that it is at all malleable, can ...

February 7, 2016, 1:34 pm, 1606174

Real GDP growth in Canada slowed down during 2015 with the drop in the price of oil and the crash in the resource sector. The economic contribution of the main resource producing provinces to Canada’s economic performance is particularly important when it comes to recent capital formation as an economic ...

February 4, 2016, 9:34 am, 1605280

There are two problems with musical chairs:

The obvious problem: there aren't enough chairs for the kids that want to sit on them. The less obvious problem: chairs and kids are heterogeneous, so if kids grab any chair they can get, some tall kids will be sitting on short chairs and some ...

February 3, 2016, 9:34 am, 1604891

The Canadian government decides to run an experiment to see if fiscal policy works. It throws 100 darts at a map of Canada. One dart lands on Wawa Ontario, so it spends an extra $1 million in Wawa. Local GDP in Wawa, and local GDP in all the ...

February 1, 2016, 11:34 am, 1604116

In "Phishing for Phools", George Akerlof and Robert Shiller suggest that:

...the harms of alcohol could be comparable to the harms of cigarettes, affecting not just 3 or 4 percent of the population, as a chronic life-downer, but, rather, affecting 15 to 30 percent; the higher number especially if ...

February 1, 2016, 7:34 am, 1604042

This is not really a blog post; it's an experiment. I have no idea if it will work, but the downside costs seem trivial.

If you subscribe to Review of Keynesian Economics, or if your university has a subscription, you can read my article "Keynesian Parables of Thrift and ...

January 29, 2016, 1:34 pm, 1603501

From time to time, I like to ruminate on what could be done to better develop or improve the delivery of government services especially given the tendency of government ministries to overlap when providing services. This gets a further push when I am teaching public finance - as I am ...

January 29, 2016, 7:34 am, 1603361

Tiered negative interest rates are just a mirror-image of required reserves with positive interest rates.

Think back to the olden days. Interest rates were always positive, except for currency that paid 0% interest, and banks had minimum required reserves. So for a 10% required reserve ratio, for every $100 of demand ...

January 25, 2016, 5:34 pm, 1601885

I don't know if I'm re-inventing the wheel. I don't normally do this sort of micro, or any micro.

Talking about "Public Club Investment goods" will sound oxymoronic to an economist. But the investment goods I'm talking about are a bit of both. They look like club goods from one angle, ...