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.

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

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Greg Mankiw’s Blog

"Random Observations for Students of Economics”

October 1, 2014, 9:33 am, 1344356
The IMF endorses the free-lunch view of infrastructure spending. That is, an IMF study suggests that the expansionary effects are sufficiently large that debt-financed infrastructure spending could reduce the debt-GDP ratio over time. 

Certainly this outcome is theoretically possible (just like self-financing tax cuts), but you can count me as skeptical ...

September 26, 2014, 7:33 am, 1341683

September 25, 2014, 7:33 am, 1341057
Here is a website that give up-to-date graphs of several policy rules.

September 24, 2014, 7:33 am, 1340366
An instructor in introductory economics asks:

I have a question that may be of interest to the students and faculty who read your blog. In searching the archives of your blog, I did not see a blog post on the ...

September 21, 2014, 9:33 am, 1338665

September 17, 2014, 11:33 am, 1336533
Lars Christensen plots with recent data a version of the Taylor rule I proposed some years ago (published here).  I suggested this rule as an approximate description of Alan Greenspan's monetary policy in the 1990s. Here is the plot:

September 13, 2014, 9:33 am, 1334364
Noah Smith puts it well:

most of our arguments are over things like Obamacare, or antipoverty programs, or financial regulation-- issues on which reasonable people can and do disagree. If you’re uncivil in this sort of situation -- if you ...

September 12, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1334189
A friend sends the following puzzle.  Find the X that fits in this sequence:

16  06  68  88  X  98

September 8, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1331316

September 7, 2014, 7:33 am, 1330657
I much enjoyed this article by Steven Pinker.  An excerpt:

It seems to me that educated people should know something about the 13-billion-year prehistory of our species and the basic laws governing the physical and living world, including our bodies and brains. They should ...