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.


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


July 26, 2016, 1:34 pm, 1657331

Proponents of helicopter money have been getting a lot of press lately, but I don't really get what all the excitement is about. I live in Canada, and no nation is closer to implementing helicopter ...


July 26, 2016, 1:33 pm, 1657330
Mark Thoma's recent piece caused me to briefly think. He writes about why he started blogging. I started blogging to help market my academic work. Think back 25 to 50 years ago when there was no email, tweets or blogs. A few elite economists wrote for Business ...


July 26, 2016, 1:33 pm, 1657329

…. is from Thomas Sowell:

People who expected the election of President Barack Obama to lead to racial healing and a post-racial society failed to take account of the political reality ...


July 26, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1657298

Today is July 26, the date in 1788 when New York became the eleventh state. New York has some pretty high taxes (top individual income tax rate of 8.82 percent, average sales tax rate of 8.49 percent, and the highest state-local tax burden. However, as late as 1946 the state ...


July 26, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1657295

Noah Smith:

Economists Give Up on Milton Friedman's Biggest Idea: One of the core pieces of modern macroeconomic theory, handed down to us by the great Milton Friedman, probably missed the mark. ...

The idea is called the permanent income hypothesis (PIH). ... The PIH says ...


July 26, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1657297

Paul Krugman:

Pax Trumpiana: With everything else going on, it may be hard to stay with the evolving Trump/Putin story. But it’s really crucial. I don’t think Trump is literally an agent of the Kremlin; instead, he’s someone Putin is aiding because he knows Trump is close to, probably ...


July 26, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1657296

Jeff Frankel at Econbrowser:

Trump Jr.’s Pants-on-Fire Allegation of Manipulated Jobs Numbers: When interviewed about the unemployment numbers, which have fallen steadily since 2010, Donald Trump Jr., replied “These are artificial numbers. These are numbers that are massaged to make the existing economy look good, to make this administration ...


July 26, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1657294
The new home sales report for June was strong at 592,000on a seasonally adjusted annual rate basis (SAAR) - the highest since early 2008 - and combined salesfor March, April and May were revised up by 22 thousand SAAR.

Sales were up 25.4% year-over-year (YoY) compared to June 2015. ...


July 26, 2016, 12:44 pm, 1657293
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July 26, 2016, 12:44 pm, 1657292

A common argument made against regulating small dollar credit products like payday loans is that regulation does nothing to address demand for credit, so consumers will simply substitute their consumption from payday loans to other products:  overdraft, title loans, refund anticipation loans, pawn shops, etc. The substitution hypothesis is ...


July 26, 2016, 12:34 pm, 1657291
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssBig GovernmentLegal SystemInterventionismDiscrimination Against Discrimination: Why We Don’t Need Anti-Discrimination Laws


July 26, 2016, 12:05 pm, 1657286

That is my new Bloomberg View column, here are some excerpts:

Enter Richard von Glahn’s “The Economic History of China: From Antiquity to the Nineteenth Century,” a book likely to go down as one of the year’s best. Over the last 15 years, the economics profession ...


July 26, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1657285
(July 26, 2016 10:55 AM, by Scott Sumner) Tyler Cowen linked to a Wonkblog post that suggested pot legalization has not had the negative effects that drug warriors predicted: National surveys have shown that teen marijuana use rates are falling across the country. But there haven't been many... (4 COMMENTS)


July 26, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1657283

A few weeks ago, the people of the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union. The long-term impact of the vote to the UK is unclear. But it is likely that, despite their enthusiasm to leave the EU, the vote will leave the UK’s most needy worse off than ...


July 26, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1657284

The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) decision to expand its preclearance program, which checks travelers’ documents and fingerprints before they board a flight to the United States, is a critical step to prevent a terrorist attack and secure our ports of entry.


July 26, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1657282

New British Prime Minister Theresa May and her Conservative Party cabinet will soon begin the difficult task of managing Brexit. The immediate financial market panic is behind us, and now that the dust has settled, policymakers in the United States and around the world should look ahead to the long-term ...


July 26, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1657281

Means-tested benefits in well-meaning welfare policies are negatively impacting the institution of marriage these days. Because parents with young children are eligible for more benefits if they have one income instead of two, it makes more financial sense for couples to cohabit rather than marry. This has created a “marriage ...


July 26, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1657280

The opening session of the Democratic National Convention Monday afternoon wasn’t a full-fledged rebellion against Hillary Clinton’s campaign managers. But it was a more vigorous assertion of dissent than anything at the Republican National Convention.

The opening prayer was met by boos, and the second presiding officer, Ohio Rep. Marcia Fudge, ...


July 26, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1657278

When I teach, I’m often asked to recommend books or movies for those on the go who want quality and nuanced information but don’t have time to do a college seminar every time a question arises. Books are easy: Almost anything by Bernard Lewis, for example, but especially “The ...


July 26, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1657279

The monthly jobs report produced by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows the number of new jobs created (or lost) in the economy. While the headline jobs numbers receive a lot of attention, less remarked upon is the division of these jobs into full-time or part-time work. For instance, ...


July 26, 2016, 11:33 am, 1657277
I have a book review in Science. Here is an ungated version.


July 26, 2016, 11:33 am, 1657276

July 26, 2016, 11:03 am, 1657243

If you enjoy our weekly tax maps, you’ll love our Monthly Map Club! Sign up below to receive a new map on state tax rates, collections, burdens and more in the mail every month.

Some of our most popular ...


July 26, 2016, 11:03 am, 1657242

Donald Trump sees a “big parallel” between the U.K. vote to exit the European Union and his own supporters’ desire to put America first and “take their borders back.” Many other political observers have drawn a line between Brexit and the antitrade and anti-immigrant sentiments now roiling the U.S. election.

The U.K.’s ...


July 26, 2016, 11:03 am, 1657241

I have a new column:

Economists, Blogs, and Donald Trump: The reason I have this column can be credited to, or blamed on, George Bush.

During the presidential campaigns before the 2004 election, I was very unhappy with the coverage of Bush’s economic proposals in the press. The reporting on ...


July 26, 2016, 11:03 am, 1657240
S&P/Case-Shiller released the monthly Home Price Indices for May ("May" is a 3 month average of March, April and May prices).

This release includes prices for 20 individual cities, two composite indices (for 10 cities and 20 cities) and the monthly National index.

Note: Case-Shiller reports Not ...


July 26, 2016, 11:03 am, 1657239
The Census Bureau reports New Home Sales in June were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 592 thousand.

The previous three months were revised up by a total of 22 thousand (SAAR).

"Sales of new single-family houses in June 2016 were at a seasonally adjusted ...


July 26, 2016, 10:44 am, 1657238
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July 26, 2016, 10:44 am, 1657237
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July 26, 2016, 10:44 am, 1657235
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July 26, 2016, 10:44 am, 1657236
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July 26, 2016, 10:35 am, 1657234

By James Kwak

In an article about political correctness in contemporary politics, Amanda Hess of the Times writes:

“Politically correct” was born as a lefty in-joke, an insidery nod to the smugness of holier-than-thou liberals. As Gloria Steinem put it: “ ‘Politically correct’ was invented by people in social-justice movements to make fun of ...


July 26, 2016, 10:34 am, 1657233
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July 26, 2016, 10:04 am, 1657231

Key Points 

The emergence in recent years of a range of promising, nontraditional higher education programs—including competency-based education programs and workforce-oriented “boot camps”—has led to a growing interest in ways to facilitate innovation in higher education.This interest has led to numerous proposals to provide taxpayer support for innovative offerings. Given the ...


July 26, 2016, 10:04 am, 1657232

Visiting Fellow Ramesh Ponnuru discusses the Republican National Convention on CBS’s “Face the Nation”.


July 26, 2016, 10:04 am, 1657230

What can Star Wars teach us about social science and public policy? Cass Sunstein explains how the saga offers important lessons about republics and the separation of powers.

Critics of both Obama and Bush argue that they abused the executive powers of the presidency. Cass Sunstein ...


July 26, 2016, 10:04 am, 1657229

This blog series analyzes the most important Iran news events of the past week and provides an outlook of the regime’s strategic calculus.

Grinding, complex sectarian wars remain unresolved in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere. Restrictions on Iran’s purchase of conventional weapons will be lifted by 2023 under the JCPOA. A new ...


July 26, 2016, 10:04 am, 1657228

Venezuela watchers were puzzled by the absence of President Nicolás Maduro on Sunday from one of nation’s most solemn celebrations, commemorating the birth of revolutionary leader Simon Bolivar as well as key victories that sealed the country’s independence from Spain.


July 26, 2016, 10:04 am, 1657227
Visiting Fellow Tim Carney discusses the opening of the Democratic National Convention on MSNBC's "With All Due Respect".


July 26, 2016, 9:03 am, 1657193

How the U.S. measures the unemployment rate has often been a political hot button, especially during presidential election years.

That debate was revived this weekend by Donald Trump Jr., the son of the Republican presidential candidate, who said in an interview on CNN that the jobs numbers “are artificial numbers. These ...


July 26, 2016, 9:03 am, 1657192

Over the past decade, only a small slice of working-age Americans have landed in jobs offering a mix of good pay and healthy wage gains.

That’s the conclusion of a new study by job-search site Indeed, one that underscores a broad sense of economic discontent among many Americans. Indeed’s researchers ...


July 26, 2016, 9:03 am, 1657191
From Black Knight: Black Knight Financial Services’ First Look at June Mortgage Data: Foreclosure Starts Up for Second Consecutive Month; Prepays Rise on Historically Low Rates

• Despite June’s increase, first-time foreclosure starts in Q2 2016 were at their lowest level in over 16 years

• Prepayment speeds ...


July 26, 2016, 8:35 am, 1657190

US economic growth is on track to post an encouraging rebound in this Friday’s “advance” GDP report for the second quarter. By most estimates, the Bureau of Economic Analysis is expected to report that output will rise by 2%-plus in Q2, well above the subdued 1.1% rise in Q1 ...


July 26, 2016, 8:35 am, 1657189

Here’s an intelligent idea from Richard Wilkinson:

If we can't have a Lab leader who can inspire and do the nitty gritty of Parliamentary politics, let's split the job in two, not the party.

David Owen has suggested how to do this. He writes:


July 26, 2016, 8:05 am, 1657187

Land use regulations raise prices, reduce mobility and increase income inequality in the United States. In many parts of the developing world, however, the situation is worse, much worse.

In an excellent piece Shanu Athiparambath writes:

Land is not scarce in Delhi, as I learned in one of those ...


July 26, 2016, 8:04 am, 1657186
(July 26, 2016 06:50 AM, by David Henderson) Just Say No "These Are The Mind Tricks Restaurants Use To Make You Spend More Money." So reads the title of a recent article warning people about the various psychological tricks restaurants use to cause you to spend more. There's... (0 COMMENTS)


July 26, 2016, 8:04 am, 1657185
(Don Boudreaux)

Warren Smith sent to me a link to a short essay by Noah Smith entitled “A Wealth Tax Looks ...


July 26, 2016, 8:04 am, 1657184
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 241 of David Boaz’s superb 2015 book, The Libertarian Mind:

When you lay out a ...


July 26, 2016, 8:04 am, 1657183
by Mike Kimel Police Killings, Gender and Race Police killings of unarmed Black men have garnered a lot of attention lately.  Black men are killed by police in numbers disproportionate to their share of the population.  I want to put some numbers on that issue later in the post, and ...


July 26, 2016, 7:34 am, 1657180

I predict that the scandals will decrease sharply if this finding is confirmed.


July 26, 2016, 7:34 am, 1657179

If you haven't seen this yet, I think it's worth a few minutes of your time.


July 26, 2016, 7:34 am, 1657178

Big split between Republicans and Democrats.


July 26, 2016, 7:34 am, 1657177

Because all of Canada is going toimplement a national carbon price:

Canada will implement a national policy to charge polluters for emitting carbon dioxide by the end of the year, a top government official said.

Catherine McKenna, Canada’s environment minister,toldBloomberg TV Canada that the goal of the policy is ...


July 26, 2016, 5:34 am, 1657147

"Democrats boast of running a 'surplus.' What they don't say is they only run a surplus by excluding costs for the state's out-of-control public-pension programs. If a company did this, it wouldbe accused of fraud. In California, this gets you re-elected."


July 26, 2016, 5:34 am, 1657146

David P. Goldman makes a point that I haven't seen made elsewhere.

The terrorists, in short, are winning the intelligence war, because they have shaped the environment in which intelligence is gathered and traded. But that is how intelligence wars always proceed: spies switch sides and tell their ...


July 26, 2016, 5:23 am, 1657145

A look at how the housing market, and changes in house prices affects the rest of the economy. In summary:

Rising house prices, generally encourage consumer spending and lead to higher economic growth. A sharp drop in house prices adversely affects consumer confidence, construction and leads to lower economic growth.

Real house prices ...


July 26, 2016, 5:03 am, 1657118

Each month, Gordon Green and John Coder of the private sector income and demographics analysis firm Sentier Research report on the level of median household income that they estimate from monthly Current Population Survey data published by the U.S. Census Bureau. ...


July 26, 2016, 5:03 am, 1657117

July 26, 2016, 5:03 am, 1657116

Today, we present a guest post 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.

When interviewed about the unemployment numbers, which have fallen steadily since 2010, Donald Trump Jr., replied “These are ...


July 26, 2016, 4:05 am, 1657112

Man faces prison for scheme inspired by Seinfeld plot where he ‘brought 10,000 cans from out of state to take advantage of Michigan’s higher deposit rates’

That is the headline, here is the story via the excellent Mark Thorson.  For the under-informed amongst us:

In Michigan you can get ...


July 26, 2016, 2:05 am, 1657093

I see a number of proposals for inducing less well informed voters to make better choices:

1. Educating them better.

2. Boosting the rate of sustainable economic growth, which tends to persuade people to support better policies.

3. “Buying” voters with one-off transfers, in the hope they will show more support for ...


July 26, 2016, 12:34 am, 1657074
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssWhy a "Dollar" Should Only Be a Name for a Unit of Gold Business CyclesMonetary Theory


July 26, 2016, 12:04 am, 1657069
(July 26, 2016 12:01 AM, by Bryan Caplan) Early this month, Ross Douthat derided the false consciousness of self-styled "cosmopolitans":Genuine cosmopolitanism is a rare thing. It requires comfort with real difference, with forms of life that are truly exotic relative to one's own. It takes its cue from... (0 COMMENTS)


July 26, 2016, 12:04 am, 1657068
Bernie’s speech was perfect.  Also perfect: Bill Clinton’s reaction.  He loved it. Things will be alright, folks.


July 26, 2016, 12:04 am, 1657067

Executive Summary

Today, more than four in ten families in America receive some kind of means-tested government assistance, from Medicaid to food stamps. The expanding reach of the welfare state means that a substantial share of lower-middle-class couples with children receive such aid—and many of these couples receive more generous support ...


July 26, 2016, 12:04 am, 1657066

Years of flat budgets amid an increasing operational tempo has thrown Marine aviation into a readiness crisis, forcing pilots to scrounge museum aircraft for parts simply to keep their aircraft flightworthy. Nevertheless, Marine aviators must prepare for high-intensity warfare against increasingly sophisticated foreign adversaries.

Can the Marine Corps triage aircraft readiness ...


July 25, 2016, 11:03 pm, 1657054
Tuesday:
• At 9:00 AM ET, S&P/Case-Shiller House Price Index for May. Although this is the May report, it is really a 3 month average of March, April and May prices. The consensus is for a 5.6% year-over-year increase in the Comp 20 index for May. The


July 25, 2016, 10:05 pm, 1657053

Chinese scientists are on the verge of being first in the world to inject people with cells modified using the CRISPR–Cas9 gene-editing technique.

A team led by Lu You, an oncologist at Sichuan University’s West China Hospital in Chengdu, plans to start testing such cells in people with lung cancer ...


July 25, 2016, 10:04 pm, 1657052
(Don Boudreaux)

Each and every day at least 15 unsolicited e-mails arrive in my e-mailbox from persons, politicians, or organizations peddling outlandish ...


July 25, 2016, 8:05 pm, 1657023

China’s “augmented fiscal deficit” (i.e. off-budget items included) has climbed to nearly 15% of GDP

That is from Goldman Sachs, via Simon Rabinowitz.

The post China estimate of ...


July 25, 2016, 7:33 pm, 1657020
I've joined an ambitious institution. It is clear to me that USC aspires to be "Stanford South". I respect that goal. As the new academic year starts in 4 weeks, USC Economics welcomes five new faculty (including myself). Here are some details.


July 25, 2016, 7:33 pm, 1657021
Jacob Mincer was a great labor economist at Columbia University. We were colleagues together in the 1990s. He didn't think I was funny but he was very kind to me and to Dora. Here is a Mincer Regression that I doubt he ever ran. I take Federal Employee data ...


July 25, 2016, 7:03 pm, 1657003

A reader asserts:

“[UK] Yield curve has been on a slide since 2010. Nothing to do with Brexit.

Check out global yield curve, looks similar to UK in that it has been on the slide for years as well.

It’s true yield curves have been flattening (as noted in this ...


July 25, 2016, 6:44 pm, 1657002
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July 25, 2016, 6:34 pm, 1657001

From afar, it seems like the wheels of European policy may be moving towards some kind of near-term fix for either Italy’s banks—or, more likely, for the specific problems of Monte dei Paschi di Sienna.

The risk here is obvious. The intersection of Italian politics and European rules ...


July 25, 2016, 6:05 pm, 1656996

July 25, 2016, 6:04 pm, 1656995
(Don Boudreaux)

Today on the radio I heard an ad for a DC-area supermarket chain that boasts that it now has on sale ...


July 25, 2016, 6:04 pm, 1656994
Paul Waldman has a lengthy post today at the Washington Post’s Plum Line blog titled “Despite what you’ve heard, Democrats aren’t in disarray. Their party is under attack from the outside.”   He argues that the Democratic Party itself isn’t that divided, and that the divisions really are between Democrats and ...


July 25, 2016, 6:04 pm, 1656993

A recent CBS News poll, taken on the heels of the Republican National Convention and the weekend before the Democratic one, shows the contest even once again. The pollsters also asked about the vice presidential picks and found that although both Mike Pence and Tim Kaine are not well-known at this ...


July 25, 2016, 6:04 pm, 1656992

We know from almost all polls these days that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have high negatives. But what about Ted Cruz, whose dramatic non-endorsement of Trump at the Republican National Convention, got so much attention? A new CBS News poll of registered voters shows that 15 percent have a favorable ...


July 25, 2016, 5:03 pm, 1656960

Chances are, if you were to pull out your latest pay stub, you would see two important lines among the list of taxes taken out of your wages: FICA and MEDFICA. If you were to do the math, these two lines, standing for Federal Insurance Contributions Act and Medicare ...


July 25, 2016, 5:03 pm, 1656959

Chris Dillow:

Brexit: a blow to the low-paid?: The CBI reported today that manufacturers’ business confidence has fallen at its fastest rate since early 2009, causing falls in investment and hiring plans. This corroborates surveys by Deloitte, Markit (pdf), the Institute of


July 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1656955
(July 25, 2016 04:14 PM, by David Henderson) In a Facebook comment on my recent post on Peter Thiel and Donald Trump's foreign policy views, my friend Stephen M. Jones wrote (I quote with his permission): Tyler Cowen had an important post linking this article about Trump and... (1 COMMENTS)


July 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1656954

In a new report, Steve Holt offers a number of practical suggestions for how the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) can improve its administration of social benefits. He uses the earned income tax credit (EITC) to illustrate the advantages of the IRS’s role as social benefit administrator, but also describes ...


July 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1656953

Editor’s note: This article was originally published as part of a New York Times’ Room for Debate symposium where participants were asked the question, “Is Trump’s foreign policy really so out of line?”. To read the full discussion, click here

As with any set of tropes, there is a grain ...


July 25, 2016, 4:04 pm, 1656952

Visiting Fellow Ramesh Ponnuru discusses the latest political headlines on CBS’s “Face the Nation”.


July 25, 2016, 3:03 pm, 1656918

Today is July 25, Puerto Rico Constitution Day. A territory of the United States, Puerto Rico has been in the news lately due to its debt crisis: the government owes $72 billion it doesn’t have, and onerous and unstable tax policy has helped cause a demographic ...


July 25, 2016, 3:03 pm, 1656917

It’s the economy, stupid, and perhaps even more than you thought.

Economists have understated growth’s importance in eroding public debt burdens over time, a new analysis from the Peterson Institute for International Economics suggests.

Interest payments on outstanding government debt and budget deficits push governments’ debt-to-GDP ratios up, while economic growth drags them ...


July 25, 2016, 3:03 pm, 1656916
Economist Tom Lawler sent me the table below of short sales, foreclosures and all cash sales for selected cities in June.

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

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

TheAll ...


July 25, 2016, 2:44 pm, 1656915
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July 25, 2016, 2:04 pm, 1656914

Key Points

Data from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration indicate that Americans are concerned about, and recognize important differences between, online security and privacy.Press coverage has almost uniformly framed discussion of these data in terms of privacy concerns, to the exclusion of security concerns.Conflating these issues presents an easy, but ...


July 25, 2016, 2:04 pm, 1656912

The NMRI for Agency purchase loans stood at 12.7% in June, up 0.2 percentage point from a year earlier and 1.0 percentage point from June 2014. The Agency purchase NMRI has increased year-over-year in every month since January 2014.


July 25, 2016, 2:04 pm, 1656913

There’s a group of rare diseases in which babies are born missing one of 11 different enzymes our bodies use to break down fatty sugars in our blood.

Absent these enzymes, fat molecules accumulate in critical organs like the heart and liver, often claiming the lives of those afflicted while they ...


July 25, 2016, 1:23 pm, 1656907
Published in the May/June issue of the Financial Analysts Journal (vol. 72, no. 3). I'm not sure it it's gated, so you can find a working paper (from 2013!) version here.
Abstract:

Robert Shiller’s cyclically adjusted price–earnings ratio, or CAPE ratio, has served as ...


July 25, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1656875

The United States places a relatively high burden on long-term capital gains income (gains on assets held for more than one year). The top federal tax rate is 20 percent. In addition, taxpayers with AGI over $200,000 ($250,000 married filing jointly) are subject to the 3.8 percent Net ...


July 25, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1656874

Marilyne Tolle at the Bank of England's Bank Underground blog:

Central bank digital currency: the end of monetary policy as we knowit?: Central banks (CBs) have long issued paper currency. The development of Bitcoin and other private digital currencies has provided them with the technological means to ...


July 25, 2016, 1:03 pm, 1656873
The FOMC will meet on Tuesday and Wednesday, and no change to policy is expected.

There will no economic projections released at this meeting, and there is no scheduled press conference by Fed Chair Janet Yellen (in the unlikely event there is a change to policy, Yellen will probably ...


July 25, 2016, 12:44 pm, 1656872
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July 25, 2016, 12:44 pm, 1656871
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July 25, 2016, 12:44 pm, 1656870
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July 25, 2016, 12:44 pm, 1656869
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July 25, 2016, 12:34 pm, 1656868
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssMedia and CulturePolitical TheoryPrivate PropertyAre Advertising "Bribes" Unethical?


July 25, 2016, 12:34 pm, 1656867
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssDid Debt Exist Before Money? It Doesn't MatterMonetary Theory


July 25, 2016, 12:34 pm, 1656866
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July 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1656862

July 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1656861
This is genuinely amazing (h/t @jbarro) http://observer.com/2016/07/wikileaks-dismantling-
of-dnc-is-clear-attack-by-putin-on-clinton/ New York Observer is a weekly newspaper… . Since July 2006, the paper has been owned and published by the American real‑estate figure Jared Kushner. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_York_Observerqqq
I quote without comment It’s no secret that the DNC was recently subject to a major hack, ...


July 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1656860
Yesterday, I wrote about the connection between inflation and corporate profits. (link) I posted this graph. The graph shows how inflation drops net corporate profits rise. Net corporate profit rate = Corporate profits/GDP – nominal interest rate The trend line (bright red curving downward) implies an exponential decay of inflation. ...


July 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1656859

“Making America one again.” That was the stated theme of the last night of the Republican National Convention. In the welter of analysis of Donald Trump’s acceptance speech, few have commented on it but it’s worth taking it seriously.

Liberal commentators have dwelled repeatedly on Trump’s “dark” and “dystopian” view of ...


July 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1656858

Key Points

There are burgeoning opportunities for graduates of community colleges across the country, particularly in the southeastern US where both unemployment and job growth are high.Mapping locations of community colleges on top of the socioeconomic contexts of the region demonstrates that community colleges are not always located in the areas ...


July 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1656857

Politically there isn’t much reason for Donald Trump to revise his trade views. Some of what he said at the Republican convention makes sense. But there are also glaring mistakes, mistakes which translate to harmful trade policy in a Trump administration.

Trump started his discussion of trade by claiming America ...


July 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1656855

Washington’s post-World War II Asia strategy and policy long have been bipartisan endeavors.

Despite the bemoaning of partisan rancor in Washington there is in fact a new emergent bipartisan consensus, just one that internationalists in both parties will not like. The most ascendant and dynamic forces within both parties want to ...


July 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1656856

AEI Resident Fellow Michael Barone and “Q&A” host Jay Nordlinger discuss Barone’s extensive knowledge of American politics.


July 25, 2016, 12:04 pm, 1656854

Key Points

The IRS primarily serves as our nation’s tax collector, but it is also one of our nation’s largest conduits for delivering social benefits, most prominently the earned income tax credit (EITC).The EITC is a hybrid of tax and social policy; it is neither just a refund of all taxes ...


July 25, 2016, 11:03 am, 1656822
From the Dallas Fed: Texas Manufacturing Activity Stabilizes

Texas factory activity held steady in July, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, came in near zero after two months of negative readings, suggesting output stopped ...


July 25, 2016, 10:44 am, 1656821
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July 25, 2016, 10:35 am, 1656820

The CBI reported today that manufacturers’ business confidence has fallen at its fastest rate since early 2009, causing falls in investment and hiring plans. This corroborates surveys by Deloitte, Markit (pdf), the Institute of Directors and, to a lesser extent the Bank of


July 25, 2016, 10:04 am, 1656818

I remember spending a fair portion of the 2000s, during the presidency of George W. Bush, fighting the casual anti-Americanism that existed in Europe at the time. I used to explain to my friends on the old continent that Republicans were not the dumb party. Their commitment to a hawkish ...


July 25, 2016, 10:04 am, 1656819


July 25, 2016, 10:04 am, 1656816


July 25, 2016, 10:04 am, 1656817

“We’ve reached a national milestone,” proclaimed Hillary Clinton on the evening of June 7, after her primary victories that day together with commitments from superdelegates gave her a majority of delegates to the Democratic National Convention.

It was, as she said, “the first time in our nation’s history that a woman ...


July 25, 2016, 9:33 am, 1656812

Michael Greenstone:

We are on course to set another record for the hottest year, the third year in a row, and 2016 may well have the most billion dollar weather disasters. Adaptation to a changing climate looks both necessary and inevitable.


July 25, 2016, 9:33 am, 1656811

Professor Larry Ball, our friend and colleague, has written a fascinating monograph reexamining the September 14, 2008 failure of Lehman Brothers. Following an exhaustive study of documents from a variety of sources, Professor Ball concludes that the Fed could have rescued Lehman. The firm had sufficient collateral to ...


July 25, 2016, 9:23 am, 1656810


My latest Macro Musings podcast is with David Andolfatto. David is a vice president of the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank and a professor of economics at Simon Fraser University. He has published widely in the area of monetary economics and ...


July 25, 2016, 9:03 am, 1656778
Note: I follow several house price indexes (Case-Shiller, CoreLogic, Black Knight, Zillow, FHFA, FNC and more). Note: Black Knight uses the current month closings only (not a three month average like Case-Shiller or a weighted average like CoreLogic), excludes short sales and REOs, and is not seasonally adjusted.

From ...


July 25, 2016, 8:35 am, 1656777

Summertime sizzle was on full display last week for US real estate investment trusts (REITs). These securities delivered the strongest gains for the five trading days through July 22, based on set of ETF proxies for the major asset classes. US REITs also continue to hold the top spot ...


July 25, 2016, 8:04 am, 1656775
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 13 the 2015 English edition (translated from Chinese by Matthew Dale) of Weiying Zhang’s excellent 2010 ...


July 25, 2016, 7:34 am, 1656772

I think the author is probably too optimistic on health care and education--government interference will have to besubstantially decreased--but he may well be correct on the others.


July 25, 2016, 7:34 am, 1656773

This is a very sad story.

The situation was further exacerbated by the Romney operation’s apparent inability to comprehend that ORCA was not a smartphone application like Angry Birds but rather a website designed to be viewed on a smartphone. This created a massive confusion among volunteers who ...


July 25, 2016, 7:34 am, 1656771

Fine, concise discussion until the conclusion: "We need a well-funded Social Security program for everyone who needs it (and not those who don’t need it because they are wealthy)."News flash: Social Security is run by the same types of folks, facing the same lousy incentives, as the ones badly ...


July 25, 2016, 7:34 am, 1656770

Amazing story and one to bear in mind as we get older.


July 25, 2016, 7:34 am, 1656769

Nobody I've read puts it better than Jonah Goldberg.

I hate discovering that so many people are disappointed in me for not playing my part in a racket. Every day, if not every hour, I am told that my true motives are in reality desires, goals, and ambitions ...


July 25, 2016, 7:03 am, 1656738

Whether a worker has access to paid sick leave varies widely by income, a new Labor Department report found.

Among the top 25% of income earners in the private sector—those earning $28.60 an hour or more—84% had access to paid sick leave, the Labor Department said. Among the bottom quarter ...


July 25, 2016, 6:44 am, 1656737

How important is grit relative to talent? Can grit be taught? Angela Duckworth of the University of Pennsylvania and author of Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance talks with with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the nature of ...


July 25, 2016, 5:34 am, 1656734

What's the "right" thing? Take a guess. Go ahead, guess.

The unresponsiveness of housing supply to demand and price changes is blamed in part on restrictive zoning laws.

Economists measure this responsiveness as elasticity; in markets with higher elasticity, homebuilding responds to higher demand and prices at ...


July 25, 2016, 5:23 am, 1656733

Cherry picking of data means we look for particular data and statistics that help to illustrate our point of view. It can also mean we present data in a certain way which is more favourable to creating the impression we want. Even the same statistic can be presented in different ...


July 25, 2016, 5:03 am, 1656708

The S&P 500 in the third week of July 2016 ran a bit to the hot side for what our future-based model forecast, but still well within the typical volatility that we would expect. In the chart below, we find that investors are largely continuing ...


July 25, 2016, 5:03 am, 1656707

The phrase "trumped up" comes to mind:

Delusions of Chaos, by Paul Krugman, NY Times: Last year there were 352 murders in New York City. This was a bit higher than the number in 2014, but far below the 2245 murders ... in 1990, the city’s worst year. In ...


July 25, 2016, 5:03 am, 1656706

Political Calculations makes some more ([1], [2]) elementary errors with chained quantities, to arrive at incorrect — and misleading — measures of real GDP excluding government consumption and investment.

First, here is the figure that Political Calculations displays:


July 25, 2016, 3:03 am, 1656686

July 25, 2016, 2:05 am, 1656685

That is my next book, now finished, due out February 2017 from St. Martin’s Press.  You can pre-order it from Amazon or Barnes&Noble.  Recommended!

Very little of the content of this book has appeared on Marginal Revolution.  It contains my thoughts on the death ...


July 25, 2016, 2:04 am, 1656684
In Doctor Strangelove, General Ripper explains to Captain Mandrake why Clemenceau’s dictum on war is now obsolete: He said war was too important to be left to the generals. When he said that, 50 years ago, he might have been right. But today, war is too important to be left ...


July 25, 2016, 12:34 am, 1656672
Tags A A Home | Feed | Blog.rssOur Monetary System Favors the Rich and Hurts the PoorBusiness CyclesMonetary Theory


July 25, 2016, 12:04 am, 1656667
(July 25, 2016 12:09 AM, by Bryan Caplan) Immigrants use less welfare the natives, holding income constant. Immigrants are far less likely to be in jail than natives, holding high school graduation constant.* On the surface, these seem like striking results. But I've heard a couple of smart... (1 COMMENTS)


July 25, 2016, 12:04 am, 1656666
(Don Boudreaux)

I linked earlier today to this 1978 video of Milton Friedman speaking on trade.  But ...


July 25, 2016, 12:04 am, 1656665
Of course the big news is that Russian hackers (probably linked to the Russian government) hacked Democratic National Committee servers and leaked embarassing e-mails (and deliberately leaked social security numbers) via Wikileaks. This supports the hypothesis that Putin is trying to get Trump elected. It sounds like a fringe tinfoil ...