Economics Roundtable

NOTICE 4/30/18

The Economics Roundtable is back. The technical problem that has limited the set of blogs has been resolved. The RSS feed is, however, still not working.

Flushing caches will likely cause some old posts to show up for a day or two.


Employment as a Percentage of Population

The graph below shows employment as a fraction of population for people over 16 years old.


Click on the image to get a bigger version.


March 2017 Payroll Employment

Payroll employment has not grown impressively since 2000. Some baby-boomers retired, but that does not totally account for this graph.

Click on the image to get a bigger version.


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.


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.


RSS Feed

Money and Banking


July 16, 2018, 9:04 am, 1876254

“[W]e should see the global payment system for what it really is: an essential global public good whose integrity is increasingly being challenged by malicious cyberattacks and fraud attempts....” Benoît Cœuré, Member of the Executive Board of the ECB, Speech, 26 June 2018

“I rob banks because ...


July 9, 2018, 9:04 am, 1873971

As we write, the claims of the Bundesbank on the other euro-area national central banks (NCB) through the TARGET2 system are approaching €1 trillion. What do these claims represent? Are they subsidized German loans to other euro-area countries―primarily Italy, Portugal and Spain? Do they signal further financial disintegration in Europe? ...


July 2, 2018, 8:05 am, 1872219

“[T]he principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale….” Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Taylor, 1816

Nobody likes taxes, but the objections to debt-financed government spending usually are less forceful than Jefferson’s was. Consequently, public ...


June 25, 2018, 8:05 am, 1870267

“It is not speed that kills, it is the sudden stop.” Bankers’ adage cited by Dornbusch, Goldfajn and Valdés.

After years of relative calm, in recent months several emerging economies have found the cost of attracting foreign funding is going up. Faced with a halt of external financing, Argentina ...


June 18, 2018, 9:04 am, 1868374

“[T]he concept of monetary policy in the United States at its core involves crucial elements of risk management.” Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, Remarks at Jackson Hole, August 29, 2003.

Inflation in the United States remains at levels that most people don’t really notice. Overall, the


June 11, 2018, 9:04 am, 1866287

“[S]overeign money is an unnecessary and dangerous experiment, which would inflict great damage on our country." Thomas Jordan, Chairman, Swiss National Bank,Speechat the Swiss Institute of Banking and Finance, 3 May 2018

On 10 June 2008, Switzerland held a vote on the proposal that all commercial bank demand deposits ...


June 4, 2018, 8:05 am, 1864227

Nearly a decade ago, Barry Eichengreen conjured a prescient scenario for the exit of Italy from the euro:

“Households and firms anticipating that domestic deposits would be redenominated into lira, which would then lose value against the euro, would shift their deposits to other euro area banks. In the ...


May 28, 2018, 7:44 am, 1862088

“In a monetary union with the consequent financial integration, there are features like centralised supervision, deposit insurance and resolution of banks…that are necessary for the whole framework to function effectively.” ECB Vice President Vítor Constâncio, 17 May 2018.

On 31 May 2018, Vítor Constâncio completes 18 years on the ...


May 21, 2018, 8:35 am, 1859746

“[W]hile many democratic societies have independent central banks, everyone leaves tax policy in the hands of elected officials.” Alan S. Blinder, Central Bank in Theory and Practice, page 59.

Through what administrative means should a democratic society in an advanced economy implement regulation? How can we promote the various ...


May 14, 2018, 7:44 am, 1856908

“Only 1% of 3,138 chief information officers at companies surveyed by Gartner last year said they had ‘any kind of blockchain adoption’….” The Wall Street Journal, May 7, 2018.

Blockchain is all the rage. We are constantly bombarded by reports of how it will change the world. ...