Economics Roundtable

Technical Problems 1/21/15

The website was down for a day and a half, but is back up now.


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.


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?


Click on the chart for a larger version.


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Marginal Revolution

"Small steps toward a much better world”


January 23, 2015, 2:05 am, 1408537

This is just published in the Journal of Development Economics, from Chris Bidner and Mukesh Eswaran, and the title is “A Gender-Based Theory of the Origin of the Caste System of India”:

We propose a theory of the origins of India’s caste system by explicitly recognizing the productivity of ...


January 22, 2015, 6:05 pm, 1408341

Fighters for one of the factions battling for control of Libya seized the Benghazi branch of the country’s central bank on Thursday, threatening to set off an armed scramble for the bank’s vast stores of money and gold, and cripple one of the last functioning ...


January 22, 2015, 2:05 pm, 1408189

An Oxford Don, he wrote one of my all-time favorite books:

“Elegy for Iris” — titled “Iris: A Memoir” in Britain — appeared in 1998, when Murdoch was in the final stages of her disease. She died in February 1999 at age 79.

One obituary is here, more are


January 22, 2015, 2:05 pm, 1408188

Ian Morris, Foragers, Farmers, and Fossil Fuels: How Human Values Evolve.

A Tanner Lecture, with comments by Richard Seaford, Jonathan D. Spence, Christine Korsgaard, and Margaret Atwood, and edited by Stephen Macedo.  Due out March 22.


January 22, 2015, 2:05 pm, 1408187

From the letters page of the FT:

Sir, Whether the European Central Bank chooses to embark on a programme of sovereign QE (or quantitative easing, as it used to be known) is of little ...


January 22, 2015, 10:05 am, 1408010

Here is an update from Japan:

Four years after the Bank of Japan set a 2 percent inflation target, price gains may still be coming up short, according to a survey of economists by Bloomberg News.

Consumer prices will rise an average 1.4 percent the fiscal year through ...


January 22, 2015, 8:05 am, 1407925

1. Toilet paper is shrinking, the individual sheets that is.  (That is probably the closest we will get to hyperinflation.)  Does the average American really use 46 sheets a day?  That sounds like an overstatement.

In contrast to this commodity, I usually want for food portion sizes — especially ...


January 22, 2015, 2:05 am, 1407751

January 22, 2015, 2:05 am, 1407752

Stomp on the gas in a new Ford Mustang or F-150 and you’ll hear a meaty, throaty rumble — the same style roar that Americans have associated with auto power and performance for decades.

It’s a sham. The engine growl in some of America’s best-selling cars and trucks is actually a ...


January 21, 2015, 3:40 pm, 1407488