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.


The Economics Roundtable is sponsored by EconModel.

The Classic Economic Models cover micro, macro, and financial markets.

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- Recent Entries

May 26, 2016, 7:33 pm, 1640259
I will be teaching Econ 101 at USC this fall. There will be at least 150 students in my class. There are several Principles textbooks I could use that charge different prices. Greg Mankiw's book is priced at $219. Joe Stiglitz's book is priced at $176. Paul ...

May 26, 2016, 7:33 pm, 1640258

We know from basic economics that capital and labor are substitutes in the production process, and the more expensive labor is, the more incentive there is for firms ...

May 26, 2016, 6:44 pm, 1640238

May 26, 2016, 6:34 pm, 1640237

May 26, 2016, 6:04 pm, 1640235
I got hit while parking today. Driver in front of me, parked with no lights or flashers, backed her van up into my car because she wasn’t actually parking, just dropping one of her kids off at school. For a moment, I’m all, like, WTF? She immediately gets out of ...

May 26, 2016, 6:04 pm, 1640234

“College graduates,” said Paul Ryan in the best line of his 2012 vice presidential acceptance speech, “should not have to live out their twenties in their childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters and wondering when they can move out and get going with life.”

Today Ryan occupies the seat ...

May 26, 2016, 5:03 pm, 1640201

Tim Duy:

Powell, Data, by Tim Duy: Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell kept the prospects for a near-term rate hike alive and well in a speech today:

For the near term, my baseline expectation is that our economy will continue on its path of growth at around 2 ...

May 26, 2016, 4:44 pm, 1640200

May 26, 2016, 4:44 pm, 1640199

May 26, 2016, 4:05 pm, 1640195

Changsha is the ugliest and most ungainly Chinese city I have seen, which is saying something.  Nonetheless for a food pilgrimage it is a serious rival for #1 spot in the world, perhaps surpassing Chengdu for the quality and novelty of its dishes.  Very little effort ...

May 26, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1640194

May 26, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1640193

Each party is on track to nominate the only candidate who could possibly lose the election to the other. In the latest Washington Post-ABC poll, a sizable majority of Americans considered Donald Trump unqualified to be president. But Hillary Clinton is so unpopular that they still preferred Trump ...

May 26, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1640192

Charter schools have proved to be a contentious education issue since their start in 1991. Proponents argue that charters serve as leaders in education innovation and can offer better educational opportunities in underprivileged areas. Opponents cite charters’ oversight issues and lack of diversity as strong drawbacks.

Arguments on both sides are well-developed ...

May 26, 2016, 3:03 pm, 1640158
The automakers will report May vehicle sales on Wednesday, June 1st.

Note: There were 24 selling days in May, down from 26 in May 2015.

From WardsAuto: May Forecast Calls for Improved Sales, Days’ Supply

WardsAuto forecast calls for U.S. automakers to deliver 1.52 million light ...

May 26, 2016, 2:44 pm, 1640157

H.R. 5278, containing debt restructuring authority and an oversight board for Puerto Rico, inched closer to passage after ...

May 26, 2016, 2:34 pm, 1640156
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssGlobal EconomyMoney and BankingPrivate PropertyWhat Would Ludwig von Mises Do in Venezuela? ...

May 26, 2016, 2:34 pm, 1640155
A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssDeist: "We Have to Decentralize" 0 Views

May 26, 2016, 2:34 pm, 1640154

by the IMF, in their magazine Finance & Development. Here is the link. The piece is written by the IMF's Prakash Loungani, who has gone back and fished out vignettes that even I had forgotten. Here is the opening:

The triumph of markets over ...

May 26, 2016, 2:04 pm, 1640148

May 26, 2016, 2:04 pm, 1640147
(May 26, 2016 01:44 PM, by Scott Sumner) [This is aimed at clarifying my previous post, which David commented on.] Bryan almost always takes the consensus view in any bet. The view a betting market would take, if one existed. When I first hear about a new Caplan... (0 COMMENTS)

May 26, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1640113

[wsj-responsive-image P="//
428ph_P_20160428104258.jpg" J="//
428ph_J_20160428104258.jpg" M="//
428ph_M_20160428104258.jpg" caption="Crude oil's return to around $50 a barrel is pushing gasoline prices up ahead of the summer travel season, but consumers are still seeing relatively low prices." credit="Reuters" placement="Inline" suppressEnlarge="false" ]

Gasoline prices are hitting their highest level of the year just in time for Memorial Day ...

May 26, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1640112

From the Brookings Institution:

On negative effects of vouchers, by Mark Dynarski: Executive summary Recent research on statewide voucher programs in Louisiana and Indiana has found that public school students that received vouchers to attend private schools subsequently scored lower on reading and math tests compared to similar students ...

May 26, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1640111

Today, we are pleased to present a guest column written by Jeffrey Frankel, Harpel Professor at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and formerly a member of the White House Council of Economic Advisers. This is an extended version of a column appearing at Project Syndicate.

As the ...

May 26, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1640110
From the Kansas City Fed: Tenth District Manufacturing Activity Declined Modestly

The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City released the May Manufacturing Survey today. According to Chad Wilkerson, vice president and economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, the survey revealed that Tenth District manufacturing activity declined ...

May 26, 2016, 12:44 pm, 1640109

May 26, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1640108

“Sustainability” is a popular buzzword in the public discussion of energy and environment policies generally and in the defense of subsidies for “renewable” energy in particular. But the definition of that term is highly elusive, as illustrated by the Environmental Protection Agency’s discussion:

Sustainability is based on a simple principle: Everything ...

May 26, 2016, 11:34 am, 1640103

Steve Horwitz

Over at FEE, my new column is a list of 12 articles I think all aspiring economists should read. Here's the intro:

First, my imagined audience is an undergraduate who intends to enter a PhD program in economics, although the list could be interesting and ...

May 26, 2016, 11:33 am, 1640102
An active research topic in macro focuses on "productivity wedges". Many scholars are building on Hsieh and Klenow's work to measure how large are the differences in the marginal productivity of firms with respect to their use of capital and land. Intuitively, a benevolent planner would allocate capital across ...

May 26, 2016, 11:03 am, 1640071

Today is May 26, the anniversary of the Quill v. North Dakota decision of 1992, when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld “the continuing validity” of restricting state sales tax powers only to businesses with property or employees in the state. This decision is why Internet-based retailers are not required to collect ...

May 26, 2016, 11:03 am, 1640070

[wsj-responsive-image P="//
506co_P_20160505103403.jpg" J="//
506co_J_20160505103403.jpg" M="//
506co_M_20160505103403.jpg" caption="People with greater access to credit when they’re laid off are able to take longer to find work, and go on to make more money and work at larger and more productive firms when they’re rehired." credit="Kai Pfaffenbach/Reuters" placement="Inline" suppressEnlarge="false" ]

Credit cards often help workers bridge the ...

May 26, 2016, 11:03 am, 1640069
From the NAR: Pending Home Sales Lift Off in April to Over 10-Year High

Pending home sales rose for the third consecutive month in April and reached their highest level in over a decade, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All major regions saw gains in contract activity ...

May 26, 2016, 10:44 am, 1640068

May 26, 2016, 10:04 am, 1640066
Resident Scholar Norm Ornstein discusses the current state of the public's trust in government.

May 26, 2016, 10:04 am, 1640065

It was conventional wisdom among the political cognoscenti during most of the primary season that Donald Trump could not win the general election. The evidence seemed strong.

Over 12 months of polling from May 2015 to April 2016, Hillary Clinton ran ahead of Trump in 63 national polls, while Trump led ...

May 26, 2016, 9:35 am, 1640062

Just a simple "teaching" post.

There are two different ways of thinking about central bank profits (of doing the accounting). A simple numerical example will illustrate the difference.

Assume 2% inflation, and 1% real GDP growth, so Nominal GDP grows at 3%. Assume the stock of currency is 5% of annual NGDP. ...

May 26, 2016, 9:34 am, 1640061

May 26, 2016, 9:34 am, 1640059

Richard G. Newell named next president of RFF:

Resources for the Future (RFF) today announced the appointment of Richard G. Newell of Duke University as its next president.

He will succeed current RFF president and former US congressman Phil Sharp, who will retire at the end of June after 11 years at ...

May 26, 2016, 9:34 am, 1640060

Law of Demand: As prices go up, the amount demanded goes down, and vice-versa.

Impact: As prices rise two things happen, people demand less of that which costs more, and people will switch to what are now relativelycheaper substitutes


And Andy Puzder, CEO of Carl's Jr. and Hardee's, told Business Insider ...

May 26, 2016, 9:34 am, 1640058

May 26, 2016, 9:23 am, 1640057

A few readers have asked me about where I stand on UK, EU and Brexit.

These are some personal notes – not necessarily economic (or coherent!)

I will probably vote Remain, though not with any particular enthusiasm. I do identify as both British and European. I would like to see Britain act closely ...

May 26, 2016, 9:03 am, 1640034

[wsj-responsive-image P="//
orker_P_20160524193043.jpg" J="//
orker_J_20160524193043.jpg" M="//
orker_M_20160524193043.jpg" caption="In a new study, economists found that giving your employees meaningful work gets more out of them at a lower cost to employers" credit="ANDREW CABALLERO/AFP/Getty Images" placement="Inline" suppressEnlarge="false" ]

A new study walks through a solution to an age-old conundrum for employers: how to make employees work harder without paying them ...

May 26, 2016, 9:03 am, 1640033
The DOL reported:

In the week ending May 21, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 268,000, a decrease of 10,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 278,000. The 4-week moving average was 278,500, an increase of 2,750 from the previous week's unrevised average of 275,750.

May 26, 2016, 8:44 am, 1640032

May 26, 2016, 8:35 am, 1640031

US economic growth in the second quarter is widely expected to rebound after Q1’s stall-speed rise of just 0.5% (seasonally adjusted annual rate). The question is how much a rebound will we see when the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) publishes this year’s “advance” Q2 GDP report on July ...

May 26, 2016, 8:04 am, 1640030
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 56 of the 2013 Liberty Fund edition of Israel Kirzner’s path-breaking 1973 volume, Competition and ...

May 26, 2016, 7:34 am, 1640026

"The challenge is remembering that the next time your toddler intentionally throws a plastic fire truck at your infant's head after they both refused to nap all day and you just realized there's no food in the house for dinner. Man, these are the days."


May 26, 2016, 7:34 am, 1640025

May 26, 2016, 7:34 am, 1640023

Based on tourist visits per capita. The "least overrun" countries aren't surprising. But #1 on the "most" list I never would have guessed.

May 26, 2016, 7:34 am, 1640024

May 26, 2016, 7:34 am, 1640022

. . . after noting the "cancerous leadership" of Harry Reid. Fabulous.

May 26, 2016, 6:44 am, 1639997
With the spotlight narrowing to Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, some advantages that Mr. Trump carries into the presidential race are coming into sharper focus.

May 26, 2016, 6:44 am, 1639996

May 26, 2016, 6:35 am, 1639995

● Markit: US Service Sector Weakened in May; Outlier or Warning? | Barron’s
● US house prices +1.9% in Q1–19th straight quarterly rise | Builder
● US mortgage applications post another tepid gain last week | HW
● Why the global trade slowdown may matter |

May 26, 2016, 5:23 am, 1639993

Finding the cost of EU membership to the UK is not straightforward. If you Google ‘Cost of EU membership’ you will see many different figures reflecting different methodologies. For example, those keen to leave the EU may include all the gross costs, plus estimated bureaucratic costs and not include any ...

May 26, 2016, 5:03 am, 1639969

Following up our discussion of the priorities of the TSA (a.k.a. the Transportation Security Administration), we thought it might be worth looking at the priorities of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as measured by how it directed the money it was authorized ...

May 26, 2016, 4:04 am, 1639968
(May 26, 2016 02:04 AM, by David Henderson) I'm still scratching my head at co-blogger Scott Sumner's recent post titled "You're not special." It seems like a combination of extreme subjectivism, denial of subjectivism, putting his thumb on the obvious, and argument from authority. Extreme Subjectivism Scott writes,... (0 COMMENTS)

May 26, 2016, 3:03 am, 1639949

May 26, 2016, 3:03 am, 1639948

From the American Sociological Association

Study dispels myth about millionaire migration in the US., EurekAlert: The view that the rich are highly mobile has gained much political traction in recent years and has become a central argument in debates about whether there should be "millionaire taxes" on top-income earners. ...

May 26, 2016, 2:05 am, 1639946

One strategy I sometimes recommend to people is that early in their career they live in the place where their industry is headquartered. Bay Area for tech, New York for finance and publishing, LA for movies, Michigan for furniture and cars, Nashville for country music, etc. Soak up everyone’s ...

May 26, 2016, 2:05 am, 1639945

There are so, so many environmental lawsuits, often brought by non-profits backed by philanthropists.  These institutions, among other things, target polluting corporations and bring lawsuits against them for purposes of constructing a deterrent against yet more pollution.  The Sierra Club and Greenpeace would be two examples, and of ...

May 26, 2016, 12:34 am, 1639933
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssMedia and CultureInterventionismPolitical TheoryHow the Census Bureau Invented "Hispanics"

May 26, 2016, 12:05 am, 1639928

Hogan’s lawsuit was not “frivolous”—at least, not in the mind of the judge, who allowed the suit to proceed over Gawker’s many appeals, nor in the minds of members of the jury, who were so disgusted by Gawker’s conduct that they ordered the mischievous media mavens to pay Hogan ...

May 26, 2016, 12:04 am, 1639927
(May 26, 2016 12:05 AM, by Bryan Caplan) The welfare state is an appealing rationale for migration restrictions. Normally, of course, it's a rationale for international migration restrictions. In Maoist China, however, the urban welfare state swiftly became a rationale for restricting domestic migration from the countryside, enforced... (0 COMMENTS)

May 25, 2016, 9:34 pm, 1639900

I have consolidated my blog and my website on squarespace. If all goes according to plan: you will be able to find new andexisting blogposts ...

May 25, 2016, 9:03 pm, 1639895

I don’t know if it counts as a “disaster”, but Kansas continues to lag its neighbors in economic activity, and to under-perform what is to be expected from historical correlations.

May 25, 2016, 9:03 pm, 1639894
• At 8:30 AM ET, The initial weekly unemployment claims report will be released. The consensus is for 275 thousand initial claims, down from 278 thousand the previous week.

• Also at 8:30 AM, Durable Goods Orders for April from the Census Bureau. The consensus is for a ...

May 25, 2016, 8:44 pm, 1639893

When machines make workers more productive do workers wages rise? Does technology destroy jobs across the entire economy? These were two of the key questions EconTalk host Russ Roberts explored this week in his conversation with James Bessen.

As always, we'd like to continue the conversation with you...Let ...

May 25, 2016, 8:34 pm, 1639892

He gets three half answers.

“Just how much third-party holdings of U.S. debt does Saudi Arabia have?”

Wish I knew. The custodial data doesn’t really help us out much. $117 billion—around 20 percent of reserves—certainly seems too low. So it is likely that the ultimate beneficiaries of some of the Treasuries ...

May 25, 2016, 7:03 pm, 1639866
From the Philly Fed:

he Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia has released the coincident indexes for the 50 states for April 2016. In the past month, the indexes increased in 39 states, decreased in seven, and remained stable in four, for a one-month diffusion index of 64. Over ...

May 25, 2016, 6:44 pm, 1639865

May 25, 2016, 6:04 pm, 1639861

On Memorial Day, we honor the men and women who serve in the US military and remember those who have sacrificed their lives in defense of our country and its freedoms. This year, Memorial Day also coincides with an election year, and polls show most Americans associate both events with ...

May 25, 2016, 5:03 pm, 1639835

In addition to the federal estate tax of 40 percent (which is fourth highest in the OECD), many U.S. states levy their own estate and inheritance taxes.  Estate taxes are charged against the estate regardless of who inherits the assets, while inheritance taxes are levied on the transfer of ...

May 25, 2016, 5:03 pm, 1639834

Simply raising the minimum wage won’t be enough to solve the country’s affordable housing crisis for low-income renters.

Even in cities that have raised the hourly minimum wage, the amount earned continues to fall well short of what is needed to afford an apartment, according to a report to be ...

May 25, 2016, 4:34 pm, 1639833
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssTaxes and SpendingU.S. EconomyThe Lens on Saturday's Mises Circle in Seattle

May 25, 2016, 4:34 pm, 1639832
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssFree MarketsCapital and Interest TheoryPrivate PropertyHow Capitalism Improves the Welfare of All ...

May 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1639830
(May 25, 2016 03:42 PM, by Scott Sumner) You may like your outgoing and family oriented culture, or your introspective and individualistic culture. But that fact, by itself, doesn't make your culture better than another. (Put aside the question of whether it is better, a much more difficult... (0 COMMENTS)

May 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1639829
(Don Boudreaux)

In the current (July 2016) issue of Reason, Deirdre McCloskey reviews

May 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1639828

Have you ever attended a sporting event where billboards flashed advertisements? Quite likely. Have you ever been to a conference with sponsored events, shuttles and meals? Happens all the time. In these cases, and many more, advertisers in effect help subsidize your ticket purchase. The practice is so common as ...

May 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1639827

My first book, Homeland Security and Federalism: Protecting America from Outside the Beltway (with a Foreword by the Honorable Edwin Meese III), is now available in paperback and the timing couldn’t be better. When the book first came out, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Daesh) did ...

May 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1639826

Policy is only half of the equation.

Yesterday, I released a report on the role of rights and responsibilities in education laws across the United States. In it, I argue that if states want school choice truly to work, they must turn a critical eye to how laws treat parents, ...

May 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1639825

One of the biggest challenges facing America’s economy is low workforce participation. While the latest jobs report showed the private sector adding over 150,000 jobs for seven consecutive months, the labor force participation rate keeps declining. The civilian labor force participation rate has dipped to 62.8%, the lowest level in ...

May 25, 2016, 3:03 pm, 1639789

[wsj-responsive-image P="//
523im_P_20160523114130.jpg" J="//
523im_J_20160523114130.jpg" M="//
523im_M_20160523114130.jpg" caption="Protesters take part in a demonstration against the reform package in front of the Greek Parliament in Athens this week. Greece struck a deal Wednesday to unlock desperately-needed bailout funds for the debt-ridden nation." credit="Angelos Tzortzinis/Agence France-Presse" placement="Inline" suppressEnlarge="false" ]

The International Monetary Fund acted tough on Greek debt ...

May 25, 2016, 2:05 pm, 1639782

A nice example of incentives in action from Jason Furman speaking at the World Bank (based on a good GAO report):

Prior to the [2009] law’s enactment, the tax rates on roll-your-own tobacco and ...

May 25, 2016, 2:05 pm, 1639781

Jinan is the second largest city in Shandong province, and a good place to see “normal China”; it is much more in the “concrete and motorbikes” mode than is Qingdao.

Qufu is the birthplace of Confucius, and a longstanding home of the Chinese nobility and Chinese scholars, with ...

May 25, 2016, 1:34 pm, 1639778

Scott Summner posted this beautiful exchange between Ronald Reagan and George Bush Sr. on immigration. Direct link(youtube).

Scott titles the post "when the GOP still had some decency," which I think he should more accurately state ...

May 25, 2016, 1:34 pm, 1639777

May 25, 2016, 1:33 pm, 1639776
On the front page of the WSJ today, there is an article about the Congress passing bipartisan legislation intended to reduce consumer exposure to dangerous chemicals. The tone of the article is optimistic that this new regulation is better than the old TSCA regulation. The interesting part of the ...

May 25, 2016, 1:33 pm, 1639775

The computer package displayed above (computer, monitor, keyboard and printer) sold at Best Buy in 1994 for $1,998, as featured in its weekly flyer and ...

May 25, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1639744
Economist Tom Lawler sent me the table below of short sales, foreclosures and all cash sales for selected cities in April.

On distressed: Total "distressed" share is down in all of these markets.

Short sales and foreclosures are down in all of these areas.

TheAll Cash ...

May 25, 2016, 12:44 pm, 1639743

May 25, 2016, 12:34 pm, 1639742

May 25, 2016, 12:34 pm, 1639741

May 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1639740

May 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1639739
Clinton’s aides say they have settled on the big story they want to tell about Trump: He is a business fraud who has cheated working people for his own gain, and his ideas, temperament and moves to marginalize people by race, gender and creed make him simply unacceptable as commander ...

May 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1639738

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Washington, DC (May 24) American Enterprise Institute (AEI) president Arthur Brooks announced today that Michael R. Strain has been named Director of Economic Policy Studies at AEI. He replaces Kevin A. Hassett, who will become Director of Research for Domestic Policy in addition to holding the State ...

May 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1639736

A lot has been made of the tech world’s growing involvement in politics — from accusations that social media sites such as Facebook are politically biased, to questions over certain Silicon Valley leaders’ endorsements, to the sector’s support of issues such as more high-skill immigration.

Republicans and other on the right bemoan that Silicon ...

May 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1639737

The recent congressional debate about what is to be done about Puerto Rico’s economic and financial crisis seems to lack an air of reality, since it very much avoids trying to quantify the enormity of the island’s economic problems. That avoidance is unfortunate since it downplays the urgency of the ...

May 25, 2016, 11:33 am, 1639734

From the back story of Tuesday's NY Times Morning Brief:

Strains of Edward Elgar’s “Pomp and Circumstance” March No. 1 are echoing across the land this commencement season.

For hundreds of thousands of undergraduates, higher education was made possible, in part, by the U.S. government’s two Morrill Acts. The legislation helped ...

May 25, 2016, 11:33 am, 1639733

Exxon doesn't seem to be incorporating all available information:

At the company’s planned annual meeting on Wednesday in Dallas, shareholders will vote on a resolution to prod Exxon Mobil to disclose the risks of climate change to its business.

Such resolutions have been floated ...

May 25, 2016, 11:33 am, 1639732

May 25, 2016, 11:03 am, 1639699

Today is May 25, the day when you might see people walking around with towels. It's also the one-month anniversary of Lunch Links, which we launched to gauge interest in us providing a daily list of interesting tax-related links. A month in, an average of 1,989 people click on ...

May 25, 2016, 11:03 am, 1639698

[wsj-responsive-image P="//
rade0_P_20160524194701.jpg" J="//
rade0_J_20160524194701.jpg" M="//
rade0_M_20160524194701.jpg" caption="Faster data on trade and inventories should make early GDP readings more reliable." credit="SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images" placement="Inline" suppressEnlarge="false" ]

The U.S. government is expanding its effort to minimize surprises when estimating the nation’s economic growth.

About a month after each quarter ends, the Commerce Department puts out an initial estimate for ...

May 25, 2016, 11:03 am, 1639697
From the FHFA: U.S. House Prices Rise 1.3 Percent in First Quarter; 19 Consecutive Quarterly Increases

U.S. house prices rose 1.3 percent in the first quarter of 2016 according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) House Price Index (HPI). This is the nineteenth consecutive quarterly price increase ...

May 25, 2016, 10:44 am, 1639696

The brief is not up on the SG's webpage yet, but they are recommending granting the petition and reversing the Third Circuit.  Hat tip to Professor Lipson or Attorneys Goldblatt et al.?  I think this now places granting odds at "moderately decent."

(Those less in the weeds: CVSG ...

May 25, 2016, 10:35 am, 1639695

Survey data published by Markit Economics this week anticipates a weak US economic profile for May. Today’s flash estimate of the Services PMI for this month dipped modestly to 51.2, or just slightly above the neutral 50 mark that separates growth from contraction. The news follows Monday’s preliminary ...

May 25, 2016, 10:04 am, 1639688
(Don Boudreaux)

My initial thought was to include Thomas Sowell’s latest column in one of my “Some Links” posts.  But this ...

May 25, 2016, 10:04 am, 1639687

Last week, the independent US International Trade Commission issued its long-awaited economic analysis of the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement. Congress has mandated such reports for all US trade agreements. As in the past, the USITC’s assumptions and conclusions are based on solid, standard models for evaluating the economic ...

May 25, 2016, 9:34 am, 1639681

Video of my talk at the Minneapolis Fed's "Ending Too Big to Fail" symposium. A link to the video (youtube) in case you don't see the above embedded version. The event webpage, with links to the other talks and the agenda. ...

May 25, 2016, 9:03 am, 1639650

The Obama administration’s push to secure debt relief for Puerto Rico to boost the island’s sagging economy is clashing with its effort to push for higher U.S. wage floors.

Legislation moving through Congress to tackle Puerto Rico’s debt crisis would exempt the island from new overtime-pay rules unveiled by the Obama administration. ...

May 25, 2016, 8:44 am, 1639649

May 25, 2016, 8:35 am, 1639648

The US stock market rebounded sharply yesterday, dispensing the biggest daily gain in two months. But the latest surge doesn’t change much for the trailing 10-year return, which remains well below its median for the rolling decade-long changes posted over the last 50 years. That may or may not be ...

May 25, 2016, 8:04 am, 1639644
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 26 of my colleague Peter Leeson’s and GMU Econ alum Zachary Gochenour’s excellent article “The Economic ...

May 25, 2016, 7:34 am, 1639641

Let's do a back-of-the-envelope calculation. Assume a 5% currency/Nominal GDP ratio. Assume the government/central bank wants to use helicopter money to permanently raise the level of NGDP by 5% above what it would otherwise be. So the stock of currency will be permanently higher by 0.25% of NGDP. And assume ...

May 25, 2016, 7:34 am, 1639640

"What caused Haiti’s cholera epidemic? The CDC museum knows but won’t say."

Guess. Go ahead, guess.

May 25, 2016, 7:34 am, 1639638

I kinda thought this was what title searches were for. So does the Charlotte homebuyer.

May 25, 2016, 7:34 am, 1639639

Revealed: more lies from guess who. (Story is by Gretchen Morgenson in the New York Times.)

When Washington took over the beleaguered mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac during the collapse of the housing market and the financial crisis of 2008, it was ...

May 25, 2016, 7:33 am, 1639637
Marco Del Negro, Marc Giannoni, and Micah Smith

Credit conditions tightened considerably in the second half of 2015 and U.S. growth slowed. We estimate the extent to which tighter credit conditions last year were responsible for the slowdown using the FRBNY DSGE model. We find ...

May 25, 2016, 7:03 am, 1639612
From the MBA: Purchase Applications Increase and Refis Hold Steady in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

Mortgage applications increased 2.3 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending May 20, 2016.
The Refinance Index increased ...

May 25, 2016, 6:35 am, 1639611

● US New-Home Sales Jump to Highest Level in Over 8 Years | NY Times
● Richmond Fed: Manufacturing activity slowed in May | Richmond Fed
● Americans’ confidence in the US economy remains steady in mid-May | Gallup
● ECB’s Villeroy: Brexit Risks High for UK ...

May 25, 2016, 5:34 am, 1639607

"There’s guy pretty, and there’s girl pretty. Jennifer Aniston is the latter."

May 25, 2016, 5:23 am, 1639606

Laissez faire economics is defined as a situation with minimal government intervention. Under laissez-faire, governments and regulators ‘leave alone’ private firms to allow them to make decisions about production and output.

In particular, laissez-faire involves zero / minimal government intervention on issues such as regulation, taxes and tariffs.

Origin of Laissez faire

Laissez-faire ...

May 25, 2016, 5:03 am, 1639588

Not long ago, we came across a data source that provided over 150 years worth of nominal price data for wheat crops grown in the U.S., which we recently visualized.

But more than that, it also provided some very remarkable data on ...

May 25, 2016, 4:05 am, 1639587

Plug those numbers into the formula, and the prediction is that the Democratic share of the two-party presidential vote in 2016 will be 44.99%.

That is from Timothy Taylor, here is an earlier piece by Jeff Sommer.

The post Sentences to ponder appeared first on

May 25, 2016, 4:04 am, 1639586
(May 25, 2016 04:00 AM, by Emily Skarbek) Attention undergraduates and undergraduate educators - one week remains to submit papers for the 5th annual Carl Menger Essay Contest! The purpose of the contest is to recognize and encourage undergraduate scholarship in the Austrian tradition and the broadly catallactic... (0 COMMENTS)

May 25, 2016, 3:03 am, 1639559

May 25, 2016, 3:03 am, 1639558

In case you missed this in yesterday's links (the full interview is much longer):

Interview with Matthew Gentzkow, by Douglas Clement. Editor, The Region: Before Matthew Gentzkow entered the field, the economics of media was largely uncharted territory. Today, media economics is flourishing thanks largely to him and his ...

May 25, 2016, 3:03 am, 1639557

Tim Duy:

Should The Fed Tolerate 5% Unemployment?. by Tim Duy: In recent posts I highlighted the stagnant unemployment rate. I believe the Fed is on thin ice by raising rates when unemployment is moving sideways, especially when there exists evidence of substantial underemployment (see also this ...

May 25, 2016, 2:44 am, 1639556

May 25, 2016, 2:05 am, 1639552

Donald Trump may get the nuclear suitcase, a cranky “park bench” socialist took Hillary Clinton to the wire, many countries are becoming less free, and the neo-Nazi party came very close to assuming power in Austria.  I could list more such events.

Haven’t you, like I, wondered what is up?  ...

May 25, 2016, 12:44 am, 1639542

May 25, 2016, 12:34 am, 1639541
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssHealthInterventionismMonopoly and CompetitionThe Early History of Regulated Health Care

May 25, 2016, 12:04 am, 1639540
Aristotle did. As Philip Kreager reminded me: Historians of economics have for some time treated his [Aristotle's] writings as formative, even though relevant passages in the Politics and Ethics amount to only a few pages. Wait. There’s more: In the Politics, however, population is a recurring topic, extensively discussed and ...