Economics Roundtable

January 2014 Payroll Employment

We are getting closer to the previous peak.

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 .


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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- Recent Entries


April 18, 2014, 4:06 pm, 1257678

The internet is filled with talk of the fourth season of HBO’s Game of Thrones. This is welcome news, as Game of Thrones probably offers economists more teachable moments than any show currently on the air (even House of Cards). Fans are probably familiar with its economic themes ...


April 18, 2014, 4:06 pm, 1257677

April 18, 2014, 3:23 pm, 1257674
People drift in and out of all income groups as a result of luck or the life-cycle of a career


April 18, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1257670

Tough age-discrimination laws didn’t do much to help older unemployed men find work during and after the recession, according to a recent analysis from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.  It actually may have hurt them.


April 18, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1257669

The unemployment rate has fallen fast in the Carolinas. But the decline may not be the good omen it seems as the underlying reasons mirror broader trends that are causing some economists concern.

The Labor Department on Friday said South Carolina’s rate plunged 2.5 percentage points over the past year ...


April 18, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1257668

Economy-watchers will have some breathing room in the coming week as the calendar thins out. Reports on the demand for housing and big-ticket items top the list of economic data scheduled for release in the week ending April 25. Here are five items to focus on:

#1: Home Sales May Still ...


April 18, 2014, 2:35 pm, 1257667

Michael Lewis spotlights high-frequency traders with his new book, Flash Boys.  These traders use high-speed computers and fast connections to outrace investors, and other traders, to the market.  They now account for more than half of all U.S. stock trades.  And the flash boys spend billions to save milliseconds (by, ...


April 18, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1257662

Who enriches himself while talking a Keynesian game?  Jeff Deist offers a hypothesis:

http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2
014/04/does-warren-buffett-talk-like.html


April 18, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1257661

April 18, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1257659

British retirees may soon receive a novel kind of financial advice, courtesy of the state: They could be told when they are likely to die.

“People are living a lot longer, so we have to make sure they have up-to-date information,” the pensions minister, Steve Webb, said Thursday ...


April 18, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1257660

“We understand that we doctors should be and are stewards of the larger society as well as of the patient in our examination room,” said Dr. Lowell E. Schnipper, the chairman of a task force on value in cancer care at the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

In practical terms, new ...


April 18, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1257658
(Don Boudreaux)

… are, first, from pages 26-27 of Joel Best’s superb 2001 book, Damned Lies and Statistics:

The lesson should be clear: statistics – even official statistics such as crime rates, unemployment rates, and census counts – are products of social activity.  We sometimes talk about statistics as though they are ...


April 18, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1257654

A citrus disease spread by a tiny insect has devastated Florida's orange crop, which is expected to be the worst in nearly 30 years, and sent juice prices soaring on New York markets.

The culprit? The gnat-sized Asian citrus psyllid, which is infecting citrus trees ...


April 18, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1257653

The chart above is from the Canadian Ice Service and shows the percentage ice coverage of the Great Lakes during the week of April 16 for each year from 1981 to 2014. Almost 40% of the Great Lakes ...


April 18, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1257652

Inspired by this post at Cafe Hayek featuring a video of Milton Friedman discussing “equal pay for equal work” legislation, I found another classic video of Milton Friedman making his case against “equal pay for equal work” laws.


April 18, 2014, 1:23 pm, 1257650
Investigating and understanding price fixing and collusion are an important part ofanalysing behaviour in oligopolistic markets. Not all of these corrupt practices are headline grabbers: most are in such unglamorous areas as ball-bearings and cargo rates, which go on unnoticed for years, quietly bumping up the end cost to ...


April 18, 2014, 1:23 pm, 1257651
Measuring the size of an economy is difficult on so many levels. Of course, there’s always theGDP debate, which asks aboutthe best way to measure economic and social progress. But even measuring GDP is a huge challenge.Nigeria has just experienced a vast 89% increase in GDP having ‘rebased’ ...


April 18, 2014, 1:23 pm, 1257649
At this time of the year many students are wanting to get up to speed with some of the important data for the UK economy so that they can consider including it in some of their exam answers. Here is a one page revision handout on the UK drawing on ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257636

One of the provisions under consideration in the tax extenders discussion is a reinstatement of 50 percent bonus expensing for equipment. This would strengthen investment spending and boost the sluggish recovery. It has done so in the past, most clearly in 2002 and 2003 when it helped to turn ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257633

Breastfeeding in America hit its lowest rates ever in the 1970s, and since then health organizations world-wide have tried to halt unnecessary formula feeding.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, World Health Organization and American Academy of Pediatrics ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257634

An unprecedented period of low productivity growth in the U.K. may partly be explained by the fact that fewer businesses collapsed in the years following the financial crisis than during previous recessions, according to economists at the Bank of England.

The key to the “productivity puzzle” is central to determining how ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257635

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Thursday, April 17

Sign up for the newsletter: http://on.wsj.com/grandcentralsignup.

Highlights

Da Costa’s Take: Bubbles, Bubbles, Toil, and Trouble Yellen Stakes Out a Flexible Policy Path Lockhart: ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257632

The U.S. business sector has been a major laggard when it comes to demand. After a strong 2010, growth in business spending on new plant and equipment has decelerated in each year of this recovery.

Economists think that trend will change in 2014. The latest surveys of regional manufacturers done ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257631

The choice to exclusively breastfeed isn’t an easy one, demonstrated by the fact that only 16% of American women do so for the doctor-recommended six months. As the Journal reported earlier this week, women face a slew of cultural and institutional impediments to breastfeeding, including the $5 billion U.S. ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257628

 

Are American workers finally starting to see some decent wage increases? A report Thursday offers hope, showing incomes picked up at a healthy pace in the first three months of ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257629
Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Did the Bank of England’s asset-purchase program have more pop than previously thought?

A new paper from the Bank of England itself now argues it did.

Past studies, ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257630

The rich got richer, the poor got poorer.

recent article by Labor Department senior economist Aaron Cobet highlights the sharp disparity between the wealthiest and poorest Americans in the aftermath of the 2007-2009 recession.

“While average income has returned to pre-recession levels, income gains have been distributed unevenly,” Mr. Cobet said.

The economist ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257624

The Bank of Japan is hoping that a continued weak yen will put the brakes on Japan Inc.’s shifting of production overseas, a factor that has eaten into export volumes over recent years and stifled the beneficial impact of the weaker currency on export growth.

Even though the central ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257625

Money may not buy love, but it appears to buy years.

Economist Barry Bosworth at the Brookings Institution crunched the numbers and found that the richer you are, the longer you’ll live. And it’s a gap that is widening, particularly among women.


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257627

An economist known for his pioneering work on bias in the news media won the John Bates Clark Medal on Thursday, one of the profession’s most prestigious honors.

Matthew Gentzkow, a professor at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, was awarded the Clark medal by the American Economic Association, ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257623

The day may come soon when cash registers go the way of fax machines.

But cash is still king among large swaths of the population, particularly those deprived of easy access to banks. A case in point: shopping patterns at U.S. discount stores.

Two Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond economists,


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257626
ChinaFotoPress/Zuma PressZUMApress.com

The U.S. Treasury is up in arms about China’s move to devalue the yuan, which the Treasury folks, in a semiannual report, called “unprecedented.” That may ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257619

A few words of caution for Matthew Gentzkow, professor at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and the most recent winner of the John Bates Clark Medal: Young scholars can become less productive after winning prestigious awards.

Mr. Gentzkow on Thursday nabbed the coveted Clark medal as ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257622

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Friday, April 18
Sign up for the newsletter: http://on.wsj.com/grandcentralsignup.

“Central banks in the United States and around the world must end their complacency and respond preemptively to the threat [of deflation] by monitoring inflation rates and undertaking aggressive ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257620

Large manufacturers are more confident about the U.S. economy’s future but less so about the global outlook, according to a survey released Thursday.

The first-quarter PwC Manufacturing Barometer, a survey of 61 U.S.-based multinational manufacturing executives done by professional services firm PwC, found 71% are optimistic about the U.S. economy’s prospects ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257618

Tough age-discrimination laws didn’t do much to help older unemployed men find work during and after the recession, according to a recent analysis from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.  It actually may have hurt them.


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257621

The International Monetary Fund said South Korea’s won currency could be up to 8% undervalued and urged authorities to refrain from intervening in currency markets.

The fund, in a report released April 17 but based on an annual economic assessment last year, said South Korea’s large current-account surplus pointed to an ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257617
Just a quick graph ... heavy truck sales really collapsed during the recession, falling to a low of 181 thousand in April 2009 on a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) from a peak of 555 thousand in February 2006.

Sales doubled from the recession low by April 2012 ...


April 18, 2014, 12:46 pm, 1257615
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April 18, 2014, 12:46 pm, 1257616
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April 18, 2014, 12:46 pm, 1257614
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April 18, 2014, 12:46 pm, 1257613
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April 18, 2014, 12:35 pm, 1257612

While not quite inducing Beatlemania, French economist Thomas Piketty’s visit this week to America has inspired the Washington analog of teenage frenzy. On Tuesday, the inequality expert spoke here in D.C. (top one percent share: 28%) at multiple events. Wednesday he was in New York (Manhattan top share: ...


April 18, 2014, 12:35 pm, 1257611

No one likes paying taxes. But this year, some of the biggest losers are married working women, who are being discouraged from working by high effective marginal tax rates, both at the bottom and the top end of the income scale.

Other losers are working women, or unemployed women who receive ...


April 18, 2014, 12:35 pm, 1257610

This article appeared in National Review on April 18, 2014.

If you have time to read only one book about the causes of the 2008 financial collapse, read this one. You will discover that the banking crises that occur in some countries but not others are part ...


April 18, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1257608

David Gordon writes in today’s Mises Daily: 

Faced with a welter of arguments in conflict, what is the perplexed libertarian to do? Butler Shaffer’s superb monograph offers an easy way to unravel the IP puzzles. He starts from a fundamental principle basic ...


April 18, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1257607

Per Bylund’s column “What Sweden Can Teach Us About ObamaCare” is in today’s WSJ:

President Obama has declared the Affordable Care Act a success—a reform that is “here to stay.” The question remains, however: What should we expect to come ...


April 18, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1257606
(April 18, 2014 12:36 PM, by David Henderson) This is another installment in my posts on my visit to the San Francisco Fed on April 9. My talk was in the afternoon, but I always like to see the talks that precede mine so that I can get... (2 COMMENTS)


April 18, 2014, 11:33 am, 1257602

Do Americans think they pay enough taxes? That’s the question we’re looking to answer on this week’s podcast and we have two of AEI best polling people help us figure it out. Jen Marsico and Karlyn Bowman join us this week to discuss the most recent polling going on in ...


April 18, 2014, 11:33 am, 1257603

New York Times columnist Floyd Norris hates that investment income gets special tax treatment. He just doesn’t see a persuasive reason for it. So Norris counts it a good thing how the 2013 tax hikes on investment income will narrow the gap in tax rates between “the superrich and ...


April 18, 2014, 11:33 am, 1257601

Earth Day is coming up next Tuesday (April 22). According to the Earth Day website, “Education is at the heart of Earth Day” and Earth Day 2014 is the “Year of the Climate Voter.”  Therefore, to observe that annual event, I’ll be ...


April 18, 2014, 11:23 am, 1257600
Some thoughts from Mashiat and Adrianna, AS Economists from Kuwait English School, on their experience at the Dubai Revision Workshops:“There’s no such thing as a free lunch”.This famous quote from economist Milton Friedman played a center role in the 2 day Tutor2U Economics Revision Conference. On the 5th and 6th of April, we, ...


April 18, 2014, 11:23 am, 1257599
Measuring the size of an economy is difficult on so many levels. Of course, there’s always theGDP debate, which asks aboutthe best way to measure economic and social progress. But even measuring GDP is a huge challenge.Nigeria has just experienced a vast 89% increase in GDP having ‘rebased’ ...


April 18, 2014, 11:04 am, 1257572

Large manufacturers are more confident about the U.S. economy’s future but less so about the global outlook, according to a survey released Thursday.

The first-quarter PwC Manufacturing Barometer, a survey of 61 U.S.-based multinational manufacturing executives done by professional services firm PwC, found 71% are optimistic about the U.S. economy’s prospects ...


April 18, 2014, 11:04 am, 1257571

A few words of caution for Matthew Gentzkow, professor at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and the most recent winner of the John Bates Clark Medal: Young scholars can become less productive after winning prestigious awards.

Mr. Gentzkow on Thursday nabbed the coveted Clark medal as ...


April 18, 2014, 11:03 am, 1257570
From the BLS: Regional and State Employment and Unemployment Summary

Regional and state unemployment rates were generally little changed in March. Twenty-one states had unemployment rate decreases, 17 states and the District of Columbia had increases, and 12 states had no change, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported ...


April 18, 2014, 10:46 am, 1257567
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April 18, 2014, 10:46 am, 1257569
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April 18, 2014, 10:46 am, 1257568
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April 18, 2014, 10:38 am, 1257566
The three-month average of the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) is expected to decline slightly to -0.26 in the March update that’s scheduled for release on Monday (April 21), according to The Capital Spectator’s median econometric forecast. In the … Continue reading →


April 18, 2014, 10:35 am, 1257565

Most major businesses were fairly quick to jump on the social media bandwagon, even when it was clear when they didn’t know precisely why they were there. This has been especially true of major consumer brands, almost all ...


April 18, 2014, 10:04 am, 1257564


April 18, 2014, 9:03 am, 1257528

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Friday, April 18
Sign up for the newsletter: http://on.wsj.com/grandcentralsignup.

“Central banks in the United States and around the world must end their complacency and respond preemptively to the threat [of deflation] by monitoring inflation rates and undertaking aggressive ...


April 18, 2014, 9:03 am, 1257527

The International Monetary Fund said South Korea’s won currency could be up to 8% undervalued and urged authorities to refrain from intervening in currency markets.

The fund, in a report released April 17 but based on an annual economic assessment last year, said South Korea’s large current-account surplus pointed to an ...


April 18, 2014, 9:03 am, 1257526
I rarely give academic economist jobs much attention, having chosen a different career path. But one plum job did catch my eye recently. The European University Institute are looking for a Director for their Programme on Global Economics: The Programme on ‘Global Economics’ will focus on the connected fields of ...


April 18, 2014, 8:45 am, 1257525
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April 18, 2014, 8:45 am, 1257523
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April 18, 2014, 8:45 am, 1257524
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April 18, 2014, 8:37 am, 1257522
So much for pessimism. Most of the key economic reports for March are in and the general message looks encouraging… again. You can never say anything definitive about the business cycle in real time, but the data in hand today … Continue reading →


April 18, 2014, 8:04 am, 1257520

That is the new and excellent book by Dan Jurafsky, due out this September, and I found it interesting throughout.  Here is just one bit:

In fact, the more Yelp reviewers mention dessert, the more they like the restaurant.  Reviewers who don’t mention a dessert give the restaurants an ...


April 18, 2014, 7:33 am, 1257518

Almost certainly as much as you'll ever want to know about the "Amen Break".


April 18, 2014, 7:33 am, 1257517

TheMode Gakuen Cocoon Tower in Tokyo is certainly different looking.


April 18, 2014, 7:33 am, 1257516
João Santos and Javier Suarez

This post is the sixth in a series of six Liberty Street Economics posts on liquidity issues.

Prior to the Great Recession, the focus of bank regulation was on bank capital with little consensus about ...


April 18, 2014, 7:33 am, 1257515
The higher cost for borrowers in a Senate bill reforming Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac corresponds to the protection for taxpayers that was missing in the old system, writes an economist.


April 18, 2014, 7:23 am, 1257514
Some thoughts from Adriana, an AS Economist from Kuwait English School, on her experience at the Dubai Revision Workshops:“There’s no such thing as a free lunch”.This famous quote from economist Milton Friedman played a center role in the 2 day Tutor2U Economics Revision Conference. On the 5th and 6th of April, we, students ...


April 18, 2014, 7:03 am, 1257507

Money may not buy love, but it appears to buy years.

Economist Barry Bosworth at the Brookings Institution crunched the numbers and found that the richer you are, the longer you’ll live. And it’s a gap that is widening, particularly among women.


April 18, 2014, 7:03 am, 1257506

The Bank of Japan is hoping that a continued weak yen will put the brakes on Japan Inc.’s shifting of production overseas, a factor that has eaten into export volumes over recent years and stifled the beneficial impact of the weaker currency on export growth.

Even though the central ...


April 18, 2014, 7:03 am, 1257505

The day may come soon when cash registers go the way of fax machines.

But cash is still king among large swaths of the population, particularly those deprived of easy access to banks. A case in point: shopping patterns at U.S. discount stores.

Two Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond economists,


April 18, 2014, 7:03 am, 1257504

April 18, 2014, 6:04 am, 1257503

The University of Angers, France has become an excellent place for doctoral work in Austrian economics, thanks to the leadership of Guido Hülssmann. Several top younger Austrian scholars such as Eduard Braun, Amadeus Gabriel, and Matt McCaffrey ‎– all former Mises ...


April 18, 2014, 5:33 am, 1257498

"All day" is a bit much, but it's certainly worth one listen or two.


April 18, 2014, 5:03 am, 1257478

Maybe not as good as the alternate ending for Gravity, but not bad either....

Have a great weekend!


April 18, 2014, 3:23 am, 1257475

About 4.5 years ago, I wrote a short piece called The Good ETF.  I’ll quote the summary:

Good ETFs are:

Small compared to the pool that they fish inFollow broad themesDo not rely on irreplicable assetsStorable, they do not require a “roll” or some replication strategy.Not affected by unexpected credit events.Liquid in ...


April 18, 2014, 3:03 am, 1257450
ChinaFotoPress/Zuma PressZUMApress.com

The U.S. Treasury is up in arms about China’s move to devalue the yuan, which the Treasury folks, in a semiannual report, called “unprecedented.” That may ...


April 18, 2014, 2:04 am, 1257449

Here is a new study from the New Zealand Productivity Commission, and here is the basic puzzle:

Based on its policy settings, the authors estimate that New Zealand’s GDP per capita should be 20% above the OECD average. But it is actually over 20% below average, making New Zealand ...


April 18, 2014, 1:03 am, 1257422

That’s a new volume out from Oxford University Press, co-edited by Inderjit Kaur and Nirvikar Singh.

The contributors are all prominent scholars in the field of Pacific Rim economics. Several are familiar Econbrowser guest contributors, or highlighted in posts ...


April 18, 2014, 12:34 am, 1257421

Law and rights do not depend on the dictates of the state. With this position, Butler Shaffer puts himself at odds with much that passes in our day for wisdom among professors of law. There is an apparent acceptance of Jeremy Bentham’s dictum ...


April 18, 2014, 12:04 am, 1257418
(April 18, 2014 12:02 AM, by Bryan Caplan) Almost everyone wants to heavily restrict immigration. Foreigners will take our jobs, go on welfare, poison our culture, and vote for socialism. But there's one kind of foreigner almost every country welcomes: tourists. Sure, locals gripe about their cluelessness and... (0 COMMENTS)


April 18, 2014, 12:04 am, 1257417
(Don Boudreaux)

I’m now reading Thomas Piketty’s already-heralded new tome Capital in the Twenty-First Century for a review of it that I’ll write for Barron‘s.  The book’s a whopper: 655 pages including the substantive footnotes.  I’m not yet even half-way through it.

My instinct is to avoid saying anything about the book ...


April 17, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1257404
From Michelle Meyer at Merrill Lynch: Will April showers bring May flowers?

We have all been waiting for the weather to unleash stronger economic activity, particularly for the housing market. However, the housing data so far have been less than encouraging. We think it will be challenging to realize ...


April 17, 2014, 10:05 pm, 1257401
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April 17, 2014, 8:44 pm, 1257372
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April 17, 2014, 8:04 pm, 1257371
(Don Boudreaux)

Want to monitor cronyism in various dimensions?  Here’s a great tool.  (HT my colleague Dan Klein)

Taxes make me feel happy crappy.  (HT Frayda Levy)

My friend and former NYU classmate Sandy Ikeda reflects on cities and spontaneous order.  A slice:

A planner can’t build an entire city ...


April 17, 2014, 8:04 pm, 1257370
(Don Boudreaux)

In this short video from 1978, Milton Friedman explains some of the many problems with government efforts to mandate “equal” pay for “equal” work.


April 17, 2014, 7:33 pm, 1257369


April 17, 2014, 7:33 pm, 1257368
New car sales are up by more than 10 percent in Ireland, Greece, Spain and Portugal, which signals stronger economic growth there, even if sales are still far below 2007 levels.


April 17, 2014, 7:33 pm, 1257367

Today President Obama announced that as of April 15, 8 million people have enrolled in the insurance exchanges set up by Obamacare. But that’s not all.  According to a White House fact sheet:

3 million young adults stayed on their parents plan, 3 million more people had enrolled in Medicaid, ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1257327

 

Are American workers finally starting to see some decent wage increases? A report Thursday offers hope, showing incomes picked up at a healthy pace in the first three months of ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1257326

An economist known for his pioneering work on bias in the news media won the John Bates Clark Medal on Thursday, one of the profession’s most prestigious honors.

Matthew Gentzkow, a professor at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, was awarded the Clark medal by the American Economic Association, ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1257325

Mike Konczal:

Not Just the Long-Term Unemployed: Those Unemployed Zero Weeks Are Struggling to Find Jobs: Leave aside for a moment the difficulty that the long-term unemployed, those who were unlucky and have been looking for a job for more than 52 weeks, have in finding a ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1257324
Container traffic gives us an idea about the volume of goods being exported and imported - and possibly some hints about the trade report forMarch since LA area ports handle about 40% of the nation's container port traffic.

The following graphs are for inbound and outbound traffic at the ...


April 17, 2014, 6:46 pm, 1257323
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April 17, 2014, 6:46 pm, 1257321
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April 17, 2014, 6:46 pm, 1257322
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April 17, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1257319

Everyone reads One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera but actually my favorites are some of the early short fiction and also News of a Kidnapping [Noticio de un Secuestro], plus the unfinished autobiography.

The NYT obituary is here.


April 17, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1257318
(Don Boudreaux)

Sean Malone’s new video discusses occupational-licensing regulations.  In the process, Sean helps to reveal the true nature of government: it’s no true friend of ordinary people.


April 17, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1257317

No, I’m not talking about Piketty hitting the Times bestseller list. And it’s not just wild-eyed lefty Frenchman who are expressing concern about the state of world capital these days. Mitt Romney’s shop was beating this drum loudly more than a year ago.

One of the central takeaways from Piketty’s Capital in ...


April 17, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1257314

The Ban Bossy campaign and its star-studded brigade to empower girls to lead has garnered lots of media attention. But does their leader, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, have all of her facts straight? In the latest video in the AEI series “The ...


April 17, 2014, 5:23 pm, 1257313

At a recent speech in Miami, Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart had this to say:

Wage growth by most measures has been very low. I take this as a signal of labor market weakness, and in turn a signal of a lack of significant upward unit cost ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257251

The question is often asked: Do the rich pay their “fair share” in taxes? It’s never particularly clear what the rich currently pay, nor is it clear what share of taxes is fair for them to pay. A good place to start would be to determine exactly what high-income ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257250

Tax revenue as a percent of GDP is one metric many use to gauge how much corporate income tax revenue the United States is raising. The advantage of this metric is that it controls for the size of the economy and gives people a readily available way to compare ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257246

NEW YORK–Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen said that some of Europe’s economic challenges spring from the still-unfinished work of strengthening its banking sector after the 2008 financial crisis.

Europe has drawn criticism from economists for failing to do more to beef up its banks’ capital cushions against losses and clean ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257247
Reuters

Central banks aren’t known for making bold, long-range predictions on energy market dynamics. That’s for good reason, since commodities such as oil and gas are among the most ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257249

The United Nations‘ World Meteorological Organization said its weather model forecasts show a fairly large potential for the occurrence of a weather phenomenon known as El Niño by mid-year, threatening to hinder production of various food crops around the globe.

An El Niño phenomenon is associated with above-average water temperatures in ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257248

The surge in the number of Americans receiving Social Security disability benefits – up 42% since 2004 – appears to have hit a plateau, but it’s unclear if the program has actually peaked and will ever recede.

The number of Americans receiving benefits hit 10,939,936 in March 2013, and has hovered ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257245

The Federal Reserve’s latest “beige book” report Wednesday said economic conditions improved in most regions of the country and, in some areas, had rebounded from weather-related slowdowns earlier this year. The following are excerpts from a district-by-district summary of economic conditions from mid-February through early April.


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257242
Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas President Richard Fisher reiterated his support Wednesday for the central bank’s effort to wind down its bond-buying stimulus program.

“I’ll continue ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257244

The Federal Reserve’s “beige book” report, out Wednesday, offers a view of economic conditions across the country from anecdotes gathered by the central bank’s 12 districts. The latest report covered mid-February through early April, and most regional banks said economic activity improved since the start of the year ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257240

A roundup of economic news on Asia and emerging markets from around the Web.

North Korea’s Illicit Economy: Sheena Chestnut Greitens examines how illicit activities — often controlled by the North Korean elite — help prop up a dictatorial regime starved for hard currency.

Watershed Moment: The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook records ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257241

Lackluster home-construction in March has left economists divided on how to handicap the industry’s output for the rest of this year, with some predicting the pace will pick up and others saying expectations need to be reined in.


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257243
Janet Yellen, chairwoman of the Federal Reserve, speaks at the Economic Club of New York on Wednesday. Getty Images

Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen and Princeton University ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257236

An unprecedented period of low productivity growth in the U.K. may partly be explained by the fact that fewer businesses collapsed in the years following the financial crisis than during previous recessions, according to economists at the Bank of England.

The key to the “productivity puzzle” is central to determining how ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257237

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Thursday, April 17

Sign up for the newsletter: http://on.wsj.com/grandcentralsignup.

Highlights

Da Costa’s Take: Bubbles, Bubbles, Toil, and Trouble Yellen Stakes Out a Flexible Policy Path Lockhart: ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257239

Slowing growth in China’s massive economy has raised concerns that the rest of Asia would suffer if China continues to lose momentum.

Rapid growth in lending to the mainland would seem ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257235

Breastfeeding in America hit its lowest rates ever in the 1970s, and since then health organizations world-wide have tried to halt unnecessary formula feeding.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, World Health Organization and American Academy of Pediatrics ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257238

Just how worried should the European Central Bank be about the strong euro? Some economists say, not at all.

A strong currency can make an economy’s goods and services more expensive in global markets, damping exports. It could also weaken already low inflation in the euro zone by reducing the cost ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257233

The choice to exclusively breastfeed isn’t an easy one, demonstrated by the fact that only 16% of American women do so for the doctor-recommended six months. As the Journal reported earlier this week, women face a slew of cultural and institutional impediments to breastfeeding, including the $5 billion U.S. ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257230

 

Are American workers finally starting to see some decent wage increases? A report Thursday offers hope, showing incomes picked up at a healthy pace in the first three months of ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257234

The U.S. business sector has been a major laggard when it comes to demand. After a strong 2010, growth in business spending on new plant and equipment has decelerated in each year of this recovery.

Economists think that trend will change in 2014. The latest surveys of regional manufacturers done ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257231
Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Did the Bank of England’s asset-purchase program have more pop than previously thought?

A new paper from the Bank of England itself now argues it did.

Past studies, ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1257232

The rich got richer, the poor got poorer.

recent article by Labor Department senior economist Aaron Cobet highlights the sharp disparity between the wealthiest and poorest Americans in the aftermath of the 2007-2009 recession.

“While average income has returned to pre-recession levels, income gains have been distributed unevenly,” Mr. Cobet said.

The economist ...


April 17, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1257229
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April 17, 2014, 4:36 pm, 1257225
In the coming days I’ll be publishing passages from my new book–Nowcasting The Business Cycle: A Practical Guide For Spotting Business Cycle Peaks Ahead Of The Crowd. Let’s kick off the first of several excerpts with an obvious starting point… … Continue reading →


April 17, 2014, 4:36 pm, 1257224

Egged on by business lobbyists, congressional tax writers seem increasingly interested in allowing firms to rapidly write off the cost of their capital investments. Especially in the House, lawmakers would allow small businesses to expense the full cost of their investments in the year they are acquired, and let larger ...


April 17, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1257220

This is from John B. Chilton:

For those who don’t click through this is what Tyler wrote:

“6. The exchanges will be mostly working by March 2014, but by then the risk pool will be dysfunctional. In the meantime, real net prices will creep up, if only through implicit ...


April 17, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1257221

Kurt Schuler writes:

Nearly two years ago I mentioned the French economist Philippe Nataf and his small but active publishing house, Editions Charles Coquelin. Its namesake Charles Coquelin was a 19th-century French classical liberal who wrote on banking and business cycles, among ...


April 17, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1257219

The citation is here:

Matthew Gentzkow has made fundamental contributions to our understanding of the economic forces driving the creation of media products, the changing nature and role of media in the digital environment, and the effect of media on education and civic engagement.

Matt is at the Booth School ...


April 17, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1257218

“There is no right more basic in our democracy than the right to participate in electing our political leaders.”  That’s how Roberts began the opinion.

So I guess we can now assume that the Court will strike down all those voter-ID laws that so clearly impact that most basic ...


April 17, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1257211
Bloomberg reports Treasuries Fall Most in a Month as Ukraine Talks End in Accord

Treasuries fell, pushing 10-year note yields up the most in a month, as talks on the crisis in Ukraine ended with an accord aimed at de-escalating the conflict, damping haven demand.


April 17, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1257210

… is from Karl Rove writing in today’s WSJ (“The Political Payoff Behind ‘Paycheck Fairness’“):

Mr. Obama is deeply hostile to extractive industries like oil and gas drilling and coal mining. But there’s one extractive industry—personal-injury lawyers separating corporations from their cash—that the president likes, even if every ...


April 17, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1257209

I’ve argued before on CD that saying (or finding empirically) that minimum wage increases have no or very small effects on employment levels is not the same as saying that minimum wage increases have no negative effects on low-skilled and unskilled workers.  Reason? Even if employers maintain ...


April 17, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1257148
Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Did the Bank of England’s asset-purchase program have more pop than previously thought?

A new paper from the Bank of England itself now argues it did.

Past studies, ...


April 17, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1257147
From HotelNewsNow.com: US hotels report strong weekly RevPAR

The U.S. hotel industry posted positive results in the three key performance measurements during the week of 6-12 April 2014, according to data from STR.

In year-over-year measurements, the industry’s revenue per available room jumped 12.8% to $80.09. Occupancy ...


April 17, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1257146
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April 17, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1257145
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April 17, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1257143
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April 17, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1257142

As family, friends, and colleagues mourn the passing of the Leonard Rosen, the fitting tribute by Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen ...


April 17, 2014, 2:34 pm, 1257141

The invasion of Crimea may have cost Russia a lot more than it expected:

MOSCOW — Russia’s economy has been hit hard by the turmoil in neighboring Ukraine, Kremlin officials said Wednesday, as pro-Russia separatists battled to ...


April 17, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1257139

By Tim Price

[The Cobden Centre]

“The European Central Bank has given its strongest signal yet that it is prepared to embrace quantitative easing to prevent the euro zone from sliding into deflation or even a prolonged period of low inflation.”

- ‘Draghi strengthens QE signal’, Financial Times, April 4, 2014.

Yes, ...


April 17, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1257138

In tough times, do happy or sad songs top the charts? Do we prefer music that reflects our fears and hardships, or tunes that allow us to temporarily forget our troubles?

Newly published research suggests the answer varies dramatically by genre. Pop fans reflexively gravitate to music that mirrors ...


April 17, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1257137

In case anyone is interested, I put together a lot of stuff I have been doing with inflation expectations into a soft of manuscript here (warning 19 poorly written pages)

The conclusions

Inflation expectations are not anchored. A simple regression model fits both the median Livingston Survey respondent’s expected CPI inflation ...


April 17, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1257133
In his strongest message yet to Ukraine, the EU, and US, Putin says Russia ready to act in Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned of his readiness to deploy troops in eastern Ukraine if diplomatic efforts fail to resolve the escalating crisis there.

The threat came ...


April 17, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1257132
Alyssa Cambron, Michael Fleming, Deborah Leonard, Grant Long, and Julie Remache

In August 2013, we wrote a series of blog posts on the use of the Federal Reserve’s System Open Market Account (SOMA) portfolio in monetary policy operations. Since the onset of the financial crisis, the ...


April 17, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1257131


April 17, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1257130

2011 Nobel economist Thomas Sargent really economized on words when he gave a graduation speech at UC-Berkeley on May 16, 2007. The entire text of his two-minute speech appears below:

I remember how happy I felt when I graduated from Berkeley many years ago. But I thought the ...


April 17, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257067

The choice to exclusively breastfeed isn’t an easy one, demonstrated by the fact that only 16% of American women do so for the doctor-recommended six months. As the Journal reported earlier this week, women face a slew of cultural and institutional impediments to breastfeeding, including the $5 billion U.S. ...


April 17, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257068

The U.S. business sector has been a major laggard when it comes to demand. After a strong 2010, growth in business spending on new plant and equipment has decelerated in each year of this recovery.

Economists think that trend will change in 2014. The latest surveys of regional manufacturers done ...


April 17, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1257066

The rich got richer, the poor got poorer.

recent article by Labor Department senior economist Aaron Cobet highlights the sharp disparity between the wealthiest and poorest Americans in the aftermath of the 2007-2009 recession.

“While average income has returned to pre-recession levels, income gains have been distributed unevenly,” Mr. Cobet said.

The economist ...


April 17, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1257064
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April 17, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1257060

In light of General Mills policy of claiming that its binding mandatory arbitration requirement (with class action waiver) applies to anyone who purchases its products, including via third-party vendors, I have decided, to post the following legal notice, applicable to all persons, everywhere:     


April 17, 2014, 12:34 pm, 1257059

Guest post by Jonathan H. Adler, a professor at the Case Western Reserve University School of Law and a regular contributor to the Volokh Conspiracy.

It can be a bit lonely working on environmental issues from the "right" side of the political spectrum. Environmental academics and activists ...


April 17, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1257056

Frank Hollenbeck writes in today’s Mises Daily: 

Most economists today, however, have sold themselves to the enemy. They work for government agencies such as the IMF, OECD, World Bank, central banks, or academic institutions where their research is heavily subsidized by government ...


April 17, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1257055

April 17, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1257054
(April 17, 2014 01:28 PM, by David Henderson) Answer: No. But it has become increasingly common for people, even otherwise numerate analysts, to write as if it can. Consider a recent instance. In the Spring 2014 issue of Regulation, Sam Batkins and Mitch Boynton discuss a case in... (3 COMMENTS)


April 17, 2014, 11:33 am, 1257051

The chart above displays another new energy milestone for the Great American Energy Boom: Net petroleum imports have been below 30% for the most recent five months (October 2013 to February 2014, EIA data here) – ...


April 17, 2014, 11:33 am, 1257052

In an excellent essay (“The Many Problems with ‘Equal Pay’”), Richard Esptein argues that “the market, not the President, should determine how much women earn,” here’s an excerpt (emphasis added):

Without exception, more sophisticated studies that seek to control for some of these differences narrow the perceived 77 ...


April 17, 2014, 11:03 am, 1257010

An unprecedented period of low productivity growth in the U.K. may partly be explained by the fact that fewer businesses collapsed in the years following the financial crisis than during previous recessions, according to economists at the Bank of England.

The key to the “productivity puzzle” is central to determining how ...


April 17, 2014, 11:03 am, 1257009

Breastfeeding in America hit its lowest rates ever in the 1970s, and since then health organizations world-wide have tried to halt unnecessary formula feeding.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, World Health Organization and American Society of Pediatrics ...


April 17, 2014, 11:03 am, 1257008
From the Philly Fed:April Manufacturing Survey

Manufacturing activity in the region increased in April, according to firms responding to this month’s Business Outlook Survey. The survey’s broadest indicators for general activity, new orders, shipments, and employment all remained positive and increased from their readings in March. Price pressures ...


April 17, 2014, 10:44 am, 1257007
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April 17, 2014, 10:35 am, 1257006

Sometimes, it's the little words that reveal so much. I was struck by Phil's response to Rashida Manjoo's claim that sexism is worse in the UK than elsewhere. He writes:

I didn't for one moment think that the UK's sexism problem was worse ...


April 17, 2014, 10:04 am, 1257005
(April 17, 2014 09:23 AM, by Scott Sumner) TravisV sent me to the following graph of industrial production: That looks like good news. To see why it is bad new, we need to take a brief digression. The recent recession has been rather unusual. RGDP fell sharply between... (0 COMMENTS)


April 17, 2014, 10:04 am, 1257004
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 37 of F.A. Hayek’s 1960 volume, The Constitution of Liberty:

The argument for liberty is not an argument against organization, which is one of the most powerful means that human reason can employ, but an argument against all exclusive, privileged, monopolistic organization, against the use ...


April 17, 2014, 10:04 am, 1257003

David Zetland at Aguanomics mentions a very local proposition by yours truly as part of a question posed on UN world water day March 22. Purely anecdotal and personal, but I found people willing to chart water use but not to go downstairs and turn off the ...


April 17, 2014, 9:33 am, 1257000

I saw Tim's post and clicked on the Amazon link. I love the listing -- "Used - Like New". Also, Amazon is finally recognizing that a PhD from an SEC school is not a real PhD.


April 17, 2014, 9:33 am, 1257001

In the mail yesterday--get yours today (it will help our publisher recoup our whopping advance):


April 17, 2014, 9:33 am, 1256999

Mark Thoma:

Paul Krugman:

Rising Sun: Joe Romm draws our attention to the third slice of the latest IPCC report on climate change, on the costs of mitigation; the panel finds that these costs aren’t that big — a few percent of GDP even by the end of the ...


April 17, 2014, 9:33 am, 1256998

The Comics Curmudgeon:

New-school Mark Trail: not only does he consort with geese but he also expresses the human emotion of affection for his wife? Bizarre. I mean, at least he’s doing it from a distance of several miles, so he won’t be expected ...


April 17, 2014, 9:03 am, 1256935

Just how worried should the European Central Bank be about the strong euro? Some economists say, not at all.

A strong currency can make an economy’s goods and services more expensive in global markets, damping exports. It could also weaken already low inflation in the euro zone by reducing the cost ...


April 17, 2014, 9:03 am, 1256934

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Thursday, April 17

Sign up for the newsletter: http://on.wsj.com/grandcentralsignup.

Highlights

Da Costa’s Take: Bubbles, Bubbles, Toil, and Trouble Yellen Stakes Out a Flexible Policy Path Lockhart: ...


April 17, 2014, 9:03 am, 1256933
The DOL reports:

In the week ending April 12, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 304,000, an increase of 2,000 from the previous week's revised level. The previous week's level was revised up by 2,000 from 300,000 to 302,000. The 4-week moving average was 312,000, a ...


April 17, 2014, 8:45 am, 1256932
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April 17, 2014, 8:36 am, 1256928
There’s a growing list of economic clues that suggest that the moderate pace of expansion, although battered and bruised in January and February, revived last month. Consider yesterday’s update on industrial output, which increased 0.7% in March—a gain that translates … Continue reading →


April 17, 2014, 8:04 am, 1256925

That is the new paper by Christiano, Eichenbaum, and Trabandt, and it is the most thorough study of the topic I know.  They arrive at this conclusion, the last sentence being of particular interest to me (emphasis added):

We argue that the vast bulk of movements in aggregate real economic activity ...


April 17, 2014, 8:04 am, 1256924

The latest, uh, must-have appears to be positive pregnancy test results.

Women across the country are selling — and buying — them on Craigslist.

One post from Buffalo, New York, sums up the appeal for potential shoppers:

“Wanna get your boyfriend to finally pop the question? Play a trick on Mom, Dad or ...


April 17, 2014, 8:04 am, 1256923
(Don Boudreaux)

So far, the discussion – sparked by Michael Lewis’s Flash Boys – about the privately planned and financed construction of a tunnel in which a fiber cable is run from Chicago to New Jersey misses some important points.  (I reach this assessment, of course, not having read ...


April 17, 2014, 7:33 am, 1256920

Speculative musings, from an inadequate historical background.

We tend to take it for granted that the world looks like this, from a monetary perspective:

The world is divided into currency areas. Each currency area has one alpha bank (the king). All the other banks are beta banks (subjects, who follow ...


April 17, 2014, 7:33 am, 1256919

"The Top 1% of Recording Artist Superstars Capture 77% of All Revenues From Internet-Based Sales; the Remaining 99% Divide the Remaining 23% of Revenues".

Who's up for taxing the hell out of those filthy rich musicians?

:-)


April 17, 2014, 7:33 am, 1256918

The article doesn't really explain the "why," but the data are interesting enough.


April 17, 2014, 7:33 am, 1256917

From a 2007 Berkeley graduation speech. (Link via Utopia--You Are Standing On It.)


April 17, 2014, 7:33 am, 1256916
Tobias Adrian and Nina Boyarchenko

This post is the fifth in a series of six Liberty Street Economics posts on liquidity issues.

One of the most innovative and potentially far-reaching consequences of regulatory reform since the financial crisis has been the ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256881
Nobuyuki Nakahara, a former Bank of Japan policy board member who is an adviser to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, says the bank may need to consider successive rounds of ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256880
Growth in China’s electricity output picked up in March from its January-February pace. Reuters

BEIJING—Official data shows China’s economy in the first quarter grew at its slowest ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256879

It’s that time of year again when speculation mounts over what promising young U.S. economist will run off with the American Economic Association’s John Bates Clark medal.

Set to be announced Thursday, the Clark medal is the field’s second-most prestigious honor after the Nobel Prize in economics. It is given every ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256878

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Wednesday, April 16

Sign up for the newsletter: http://on.wsj.com/grandcentralsignup.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Connecting the Fed’s Dots Yellen Lays Groundwork for Rules on Short-Term Credit Markets ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256873

The United Nations‘ World Meteorological Organization said its weather model forecasts show a fairly large potential for the occurrence of a weather phenomenon known as El Niño by mid-year, threatening to hinder production of various food crops around the globe.

An El Niño phenomenon is associated with above-average water temperatures in ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256872

The surge in the number of Americans receiving Social Security disability benefits – up 42% since 2004 – appears to have hit a plateau, but it’s unclear if the program has actually peaked and will ever recede.

The number of Americans receiving benefits hit 10,939,936 in March 2013, and has hovered ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256871
Reuters

Central banks aren’t known for making bold, long-range predictions on energy market dynamics. That’s for good reason, since commodities such as oil and gas are among the most ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256874

For those wondering why the euro has remained stubbornly strong in the face of repeated verbal intervention from top European Central Bank officials, look no further than the latest current account numbers.

The euro zone’s current-account surplus, a broad measure of its international financial position, stood at 21.9 billion euros ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256875

Larger-than-expected gains in production mean the U.S. industrial sector is operating at its highest rate since 2008.

The Federal Reserve said Wednesday that industrial output increased a larger-than-expected 0.7% in March on top of a 1.2% jump in February. In turn, capacity utilization increased to 79.2% in March, the best reading ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256877

The recession left deep scars on the U.S. economy, and two features of the lackluster recover – sluggish productivity growth and lower labor-force participation – may persist for years to come.

That’s according ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256876
Dennis Lockhart Reuters

The Federal Reserve will likely not begin raising interest rates until the second half of 2015 as it waits for confirmation that its forecasts ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256870

NEW YORK–Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen said that some of Europe’s economic challenges spring from the still-unfinished work of strengthening its banking sector after the 2008 financial crisis.

Europe has drawn criticism from economists for failing to do more to beef up its banks’ capital cushions against losses and clean ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256864

A roundup of economic news on Asia and emerging markets from around the Web.

North Korea’s Illicit Economy: Sheena Chestnut Greitens examines how illicit activities — often controlled by the North Korean elite — help prop up a dictatorial regime starved for hard currency.

Watershed Moment: The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook records ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256863

Slowing growth in China’s massive economy has raised concerns that the rest of Asia would suffer if China continues to lose momentum.

Rapid growth in lending to the mainland would seem ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256862

Just how worried should the European Central Bank be about the strong euro? Some economists say, not at all.

A strong currency can make an economy’s goods and services more expensive in global markets, damping exports. It could also weaken already low inflation in the euro zone by reducing the cost ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256869

The Federal Reserve’s latest “beige book” report Wednesday said economic conditions improved in most regions of the country and, in some areas, had rebounded from weather-related slowdowns earlier this year. The following are excerpts from a district-by-district summary of economic conditions from mid-February through early April.


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256865

Lackluster home-construction in March has left economists divided on how to handicap the industry’s output for the rest of this year, with some predicting the pace will pick up and others saying expectations need to be reined in.


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256868

The Federal Reserve’s “beige book” report, out Wednesday, offers a view of economic conditions across the country from anecdotes gathered by the central bank’s 12 districts. The latest report covered mid-February through early April, and most regional banks said economic activity improved since the start of the year ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256866
Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas President Richard Fisher reiterated his support Wednesday for the central bank’s effort to wind down its bond-buying stimulus program.

“I’ll continue ...


April 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1256867
Janet Yellen, chairwoman of the Federal Reserve, speaks at the Economic Club of New York on Wednesday. Getty Images

Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen and Princeton University ...


April 17, 2014, 6:44 am, 1256861

LAST year Thomas Piketty, an economist at the Paris School of Economics and a renowned expert on global inequality, published a book titled "Capital in the Twenty-first Century"—in French. It was released in English on March 10th. Wereviewedthe book earlier this year, but it is detailed and important enough, ...


April 17, 2014, 5:33 am, 1256857

I'm not really sure, however, the KFC version would be up to par.


April 17, 2014, 5:03 am, 1256822

Slowing growth in China’s massive economy has raised concerns that the rest of Asia would suffer if China continues to lose momentum.

Rapid growth in lending to the mainland would seem ...


April 17, 2014, 5:03 am, 1256821

What happens when the long-term unemployed are suddenly cut off from being able to cash in on the federal government's extended unemployment benefits program?

That's the case for ...


April 17, 2014, 4:44 am, 1256820
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April 17, 2014, 4:04 am, 1256819

For rent and utilities to be considered affordable, they are supposed to take up no more than 30 percent of a household’s income. But that goal is increasingly unattainable for middle-income families as a tightening market pushes up rents ever faster, outrunning modest rises in pay.

The strain ...


April 17, 2014, 3:33 am, 1256816
Another bloodless coup in Ukraine is underway. This time, it's in the Donetsk region.

Should it come to that ending, it would be the third Ukrainian coup in a matter of months (counting the ouster of former president Viktor Yanukovych followed by the coup in Crimea).

Talk of ...


April 17, 2014, 3:23 am, 1256815

The growth of corporations is always constrained by something.  The trick is figuring out what the “something” is.  Tonight, I am here to simplify it for you.

Financial businesses that are regulated

We value these via book value or tangible book value.  Capital levels constrain business growth, so look at the return ...


April 17, 2014, 1:33 am, 1256798
Much progress has been made on overseeing the largest banks, but a good deal more must be done to toughen standards and end government subsidies, an economist writes.


April 17, 2014, 1:03 am, 1256777

April 17, 2014, 1:03 am, 1256776

Robert Reich:

Antitrust in the New Gilded Age, by Robert Reich: We’re in a new gilded age of wealth and power similar to the first gilded age when the nation’s antitrust laws were enacted. Those laws should prevent or bust up concentrations of economic power that not only harm ...


April 17, 2014, 1:03 am, 1256775

Antonio Fatás:

Secular stagnation or secular boom?: The notion that some countries are caught in a long and protracted period of low growth ... has been labeled "secular stagnation". The pessimism that the idea of secular stagnation has created has been reinforced by the notion the potential for emerging ...


April 17, 2014, 12:34 am, 1256774

Economists today have sold themselves to the enemy. They work for government agencies such as the IMF, OECD, the World Bank, central banks, or academic institutions where their research is heavily subsidized by government agencies. To succeed they have to toe the line, ...


April 17, 2014, 12:04 am, 1256773
(April 17, 2014 01:04 AM, by Bryan Caplan) Back in 2008, I noted an obscure TARP provision: SEC. 134. RECOUPMENT.Upon the expiration of the 5-year period beginning upon the date of the enactment of this Act, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, in consultation with... (1 COMMENTS)


April 17, 2014, 12:04 am, 1256772
(Don Boudreaux)

Richard Rahn is rightly appalled by civil asset forfeiture.

George Will righty applauds the truth that Tim Sandefur emphasizes about the U.S. Constitution and America’s founders.  Here’s Will’s conclusion:

Sandefur says progressivism “inverts America’s constitutional foundations” by holding that the Constitution is “about” democracy, which rejects the framers’ ...