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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Brad Setser:  Follow the Money


February 17, 2017, 2:34 pm, 1721020

Few policies are less liked than China’s 2015/2016 credit-driven stimulus. Even people like me who worried that slamming the brakes on credit, in the absence of more fundamental reforms to lower China’s savings rate, risked creating a shortfall in demand were not exactly enthusiastic supporters. China would be far better ...


February 14, 2017, 6:34 pm, 1719865

Neil Irwin’s column on the border-adjustment tax spurred an interesting debate. Irwin notes that a 25 percent rise in the dollar (or even a somewhat smaller rise) would have an impact outside the United States, as the dollar is a global currency.

Dean Baker and Jared Bernstein noted ...


February 13, 2017, 6:34 pm, 1719464

$2.7 trillion is well over 3 times China’s short-term external debt (around $800 billion per the IMF). It is roughly two times China’s external debt ($1.4 trillion, counting over $200 billion in intra-company loans). It is enough to cover well over 12 months of goods and services imports ...


February 8, 2017, 4:34 pm, 1717971

Fred Bergsten of the Peterson Institute has long argued for target zones around the major exchange rates. No G-3 economy has ever decided to take Bergsten’s advice. The world’s biggest advanced economies have wanted to maintain monetary policy independence, and—Japan perhaps excepted, at least during certain periods—they haven’t viewed ...


February 6, 2017, 4:34 pm, 1717185

One important result of my theory about the sources of “dark matter” in the U.S. balance of payments is a concern that “border adjustment” might not generate the expected revenues. American multinationals would have a strong incentive to shift their offshore income on intellectual property rights that are now ...


February 2, 2017, 4:34 pm, 1716190

The debate around the House Republicans’ proposal for a border adjusted (destination-based cash flow) tax will, I think, force an important debate about the impact of corporate tax strategies on global trade flows.* My guess is that tax strategies do have a significant impact on the trade data (one ...


January 31, 2017, 4:34 pm, 1715372

I follow the news, some would say obsessively. I know there are far more important things afoot than backward looking analysis of the United States’ 2016 economic performance.

But I do think in some ways the U.S. was lucky not to have slowed more in 2016.

Why? Because import growth stalled, and ...


January 27, 2017, 4:34 pm, 1714382

The way trade is to be taxed at the border may—or may not—be about to change radically. But rather than speculate on the nature of the new world, I wanted to highlight one feature of the old.

I sometimes hear that China is loosing trade competitiveness because of rising domestic costs. ...


January 24, 2017, 2:34 pm, 1713159

Yes, this is a blog about chicken feet exports—technically, NAICS code 311615, “poultry processing.”

Welcome to the glamorous world of tit-for-tat trade spats. The biggest trade case of 2009 was the tires “421 safeguards” case, which prompted China to respond with duties on U.S. exports of chicken parts.

The possibility ...


January 18, 2017, 6:34 pm, 1711686

Late last year Tim Duy asked for an assessment of the decision to allow China’s entry into the WTO 15 years on.

Greg Ip met the call well before I did, in a remarkable essay.

But I will give my own two cents. Be warned, this isn’t a short post. ...