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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The Aleph Blog (David Markel)


September 19, 2014, 5:23 am, 1337771

Photo Credit: Matt Cavanagh

There is a saying in the markets that volatility is not risk. In general this is true, and helps to explain why measures like beta and standard deviation of returns do not measure risk, and ...


September 18, 2014, 11:23 am, 1337275

Recently I was approached by Moneytips to ask my opinions about retirement. They sent me a long survey of which I picked a number of questions to answer. You can get the benefits of the efforts of those writing on this topic today in a free e-book, which is located ...


September 17, 2014, 3:23 pm, 1336680

Photo Credit: DonkeyHotey

July 2014September 2014CommentsInformation received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in June indicates that growth in economic activity rebounded in the second quarter.Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in July suggests ...


September 17, 2014, 7:23 am, 1336377

Photo Credit: B Gilmour

Yesterday I was at a conference for Registered Investment Advisors. There were about 11 of us in the room, and a variety of different parties pitched us on their services. Some of the ...


September 12, 2014, 7:23 am, 1333809

Photo Credit: Jemma D

I was asked to contribute to a survey recently, and one question made me think.  It was a question about why don’t more people consult investment professionals, and What keeps them from doing so.  I gave ...


September 9, 2014, 5:23 am, 1331633

Over time, I have reviewed a decent number of “Little Books.”  I have a theory as to why I like some of them, and not others.  I like the ones that take a relatively narrow concept and summarize it.  An example of that would ...


September 9, 2014, 5:23 am, 1331632

Every 100 posts or so, I take a step back and think about where I have been, and maybe, where things are heading.  This time, things are a little different.

It started when there was a series of articles published where they were measuring the amount of social media influence various ...


September 7, 2014, 3:23 am, 1330575

Photo Credit: hounddiggity

This is the third time I have written this article during this bull market.  Here are the other two times, with dates:

Goes Down Double-Speed 2/17/2011Goes Down Double-Speed (Updated) 5/22/2013

The first time, we had doubled since ...


September 6, 2014, 5:23 am, 1330318

Photo Credit: Bill Selak

Buybacks are not my favorite way to redeploy excess capital, in general.  But let me describe to you when they are useful and when they are not [taken from this article]:

Buybacks are preferred on ...


September 6, 2014, 5:23 am, 1330317

Photo Credit: thecrazysquirrel

I’ve written about this before, but if the FSOC wants to prove that they don’t know what they are doing, they should define a large life insurer to be a systemic threat.

It is rich, ...