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.


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Crooked Timber

"Out of the CROOKED TIMBER of humanity, no straight thing was ever made.”

July 19, 2014, 4:04 am, 1303421

I have a piece in The National Interest, looking at various recent events including the latest round of the Argentinian debt crisis, in which a New York court ruled in favor of a group of ‘vulture’ investors, led by a New York billionaire, and the agreement of the

July 10, 2014, 12:04 am, 1298938

This is going to be a long and wonkish post, so I’ll just give the dot-point summary here, and let those interested read on below the fold, for the explanations and qualifications.

The dominant model of unemployment, in academic macroeconomics at least, is based on the idea that unemployment can best ...

June 21, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1289523

My apologies for the delay in posting the second half of my reply to the symposium. I was traveling. Let me repeat at the outset my deep appreciation for the insightful comments provided by the contributors to this symposium. This is the sort of exchange that makes intellectual life rewarding. ...

June 11, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1284849

It is an author’s dream for his or her work to receive the sort of wide-ranging, substantive, thoughtful and generous reactions that this symposium on my book has elicited. So, I want to begin by expressing my deep appreciation to Chris Bertram for organizing the symposium and to all of ...

June 4, 2014, 4:04 am, 1281392

The first part of our symposium on Joseph Carens’s The Ethics of Immigration is now concluded. While we wait for Joe to compose his reply, here’s an index of the contributions:

Chris Bertram Some worries about Carens’s democratic consensus Ryan Pevnick The theory of social membership Brian Weatherson Movement within ...

May 30, 2014, 4:04 am, 1279381


There is a wonderful passage in Julian Barnes’s Flaubert’s Parrot, in which Barnes expresses his anger at a dismissive critic of Flaubert:

All in all, it seems a magisterial negligence towards a writer who must, one way and another, have paid a lot of ...

May 27, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1277758

The best explanation of the current Piketty-Financial Times brouhaha was written by Mike Konczal a few weeks before it actually happened.

As Foucault argued, the ability of social science to know something is the ability to anthropologize it, a power to define it. As such, it becomes ...

May 26, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1277361

This is the first contribution in a Crooked Timber symposium on Joseph Carens’s The Ethics of Immigration (Oxford, 2013). Over the next week there will be a number of further contributions by guests and Crooked Timber bloggers, followed at some near but later time by a response to critics ...

May 22, 2014, 12:04 am, 1275650

I’ve got a piece up at the Chronicle of Education, with the title Campus Reflections (paywalled, but there’s a version at my blog) making the point that a higher education system is, in important respects, a mirror of the society that created it, and that it helps to ...

May 18, 2014, 8:04 pm, 1273661

Like lots of other readers of Thomas Piketty’s Capital, my big concern is not with the accuracy of the diagnosis and prognosis but with the feasibility of the prescription. Piketty’s proposal for a global wealth tax requires an end to the capacity of capital to escape taxation by exploiting the ...