Economics Roundtable

March 2017 Fed Funds Rate

What is the effect of a 0.25% change in the Fed Funds rate?.

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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.

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May 2014 Payroll Employment

After 76 months, we finally got back to the prerecession level of payroll employment.

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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 Economics Roundtable is sponsored by EconModel.

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April 24, 2017, 4:04 am, 1740340

Lim had told me that Singapore holds a strategic sand reserve, for emergencies.  It lies somewhere near the area called Bedok, I said.  I spotted it one day as I rode past in a taxi.  The site was strewn with No Trespassing signs, installed by the Housing and Development ...

April 24, 2017, 2:04 am, 1740317

Dennis was actually the first stagnation theorist I read, at about the age of eighteen, due to a recommendation from Walter Grinder.  His strength is to tie stagnationist claims into the political economy of war.  This is from 1940 (book link here), I hope it is no ...

April 24, 2017, 12:34 am, 1740303
By: Brittany Hunter

Women in the workforce are constantly bombarded by rhetoric intended to make us feel less appreciated than our male colleagues. Politicians and Hollywood celebrities — many of whom have never worked one day in a traditional office ...

April 23, 2017, 10:45 pm, 1740281
Investment growth in emerging market and developing economies has slowed sharply since 2010. This column argues that this slowdown reflects a range of factors, including negative terms-of-trade shocks, slowing FDI inflows, weak activity, and rising private debt burdens and political risk. Policymakers can boost investment directly through public investment, and ...

April 23, 2017, 10:45 pm, 1740280
Nine years after the onset of the Global Crisis, the problem of non-performing assets is still acute in the Eurozone. This column takes stock of the different proposals to deal with the issue. It argues that a Eurozone-level asset management company can resolve bank fragility and spur economic recovery, but ...

April 23, 2017, 10:04 pm, 1740276
(Don Boudreaux)

Here’s a letter to the Wall Street ...

April 23, 2017, 9:03 pm, 1740270
Schedule for Week of Apr 23, 2017

• At 8:30 AM ET, Chicago Fed National Activity Index for March. This is a composite index of other data.

• At 10:30 AM, Dallas Fed Survey of Manufacturing Activity for April.

From ...

April 23, 2017, 8:04 pm, 1740267

With France’s most pivotal election looming, what might a Le Pen or a Macron presidency mean for the future of the country? ...

April 23, 2017, 5:33 pm, 1740255

Sunday afternoon links

1. Venn Diagram of the Day (above). Inspired by the March 6, 2013 article Salon article titled “Hugo ...

April 23, 2017, 4:04 pm, 1740238
(Don Boudreaux)

Here’s a letter to NPR:

Regarding today’s report on the first 100 days of the terms ...

April 23, 2017, 3:33 pm, 1740235
Last week Paul Krugman pointed out the negative labor market consequences of the rise of Amazon over downtown retail. Today, the University of Chicago's new Dean of the Harris School suggests that the health care sector should reduce its labor/output ratio in order to reduce its costs.

Here ...

April 23, 2017, 3:03 pm, 1740227
The automakers will report April vehicle sales on Tuesday, May 2nd.

Note: There were 26 selling days in April 2017, down from 27 in April 2016.

From WardsAuto: U.S. Forecast: Mild Sales, Growing Inventory

The report puts the seasonally adjusted annual rate of sales for the ...

April 23, 2017, 2:34 pm, 1740226
By: Hunter Lewis

“What Does Steve Bannon Want?" is the title of an article Christopher Caldwell, a senior editor at the “ conservative” Weekly Standard, wrote for the New York Times on February 26, 2017.Mr. Caldwell gets to the essence of ...

April 23, 2017, 2:34 pm, 1740225

There is no better example of use of the memory hole in the service of doublethink than Republican opposition to the individual mandate that is at the heart of   Obamacare. Requiring all individuals, even young and healthy ones, to purchase health insurance through markets was a Republican idea, advanced ...

April 23, 2017, 2:04 pm, 1740224

1. Profile of Macron.

2. Is Facebook bad for you?

3. “Take back control? Make America great again? Restore the caliphate? We can do better than these. Storytellers, now is the time to try.”  Link here.

4. Ben Casnocha on The Complacent Class.


April 23, 2017, 12:34 pm, 1740217
By: Hunter Lewis

A march for science is a contradiction in terms.Marching is an expression of our subjective emotions. Science is an attempt to put ...

April 23, 2017, 12:04 pm, 1740215

April 23, 2017, 11:33 am, 1740214
The NY Times Magazine has published a whole issue today about climate change. I've skimmed all of the articles and I believe that the magazine chose to avoid the economists (except in a brief correct quote here) for some insights. Below is a "subtle" cartoon from the ...

April 23, 2017, 11:33 am, 1740213

April 23, 2017, 10:04 am, 1740204
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 48 of the 1964 Harper Torchbooks edition of Karl Popper’s profound 1957 book, The ...

April 23, 2017, 9:34 am, 1740202

In the early 1960s, Canadian economic historianMarvin McInnisstarted diggingthrough the Dominion Bureau of Statistics archives,looking for city-level information on rental prices. While there, he discovered something strange and disturbing:

A prominent theme of my career has been to reveal anomalies in what has been put forward as evidence. ...

April 23, 2017, 9:34 am, 1740201

Albert E. Gator does a good thing.

April 23, 2017, 8:35 am, 1740187

Labour wants us to have more bank holidays. There might be a good economic case for this.

My chart hints at the point. It shows that, across 35 OECD nations, there is a very strong negative correlation (of minus 0.77) between annual working hours and ...

April 23, 2017, 8:04 am, 1740186
(April 23, 2017 07:02 AM, by Alberto Mingardi) Any book is the child of its own times, rather obviously. This means that sometimes parts of even great books do not necessarily age well. Examples the author uses to make his case may appear rather obvious to the contemporary... (0 COMMENTS)

April 23, 2017, 5:34 am, 1740173

"The best offense is a good defense."

Related: for all information needs prior to this week's draft, see the rather amazing Draft Breakdown.

April 23, 2017, 4:04 am, 1740163

In general, I am skeptical of such results and their typical interpretations, still economics plays a role in this paper and perhaps it is worth at least a casual ponder:

The Dark Triad traits (i.e., narcissism, psychopathy, and Machiavellianism) have been associated with the desire for power, status, and social ...

April 23, 2017, 4:04 am, 1740162
My regular column is available to subscribers on This is an excerpt. It is hard to think it was only two years ago. Then, in the run-up to the 2015 election, it was important to dig into the...

April 23, 2017, 2:04 am, 1740146

Beggars in Jinan in China’s eastern province of Shandong use QR codes, the technology used by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s [NYSE:BABA] Alipay and Tencent Holdings Ltd.’s [HKG:0700] WeChat Wallet, in hopes of getting money transferred to them by passersby with smartphones.

April 23, 2017, 12:04 am, 1740137
I am generally very very impressed by Paul Waldman at the Plum line blog (for one thing I admire the lack of Ego he demonstrates by writing for a blog subtitled “Greg Sargent’s take from a liberal perspective). Waldman is reliably brilliant (so is Sargent). Now finally I find something ...