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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July 31, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1309065
Tommy Trenchard/REUTERS

Total Dead

729

This outbreak is believed to be the worst yet.

Number of Infected

1,323

The virus can kill victims within days and has a fatality rate of up to 90%.

Countries Where Cases Reported

4

Deaths attributed to Ebola have ...


July 31, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1309063
The Bank of England published a paper Thursday which concluded that there is indeed some evidence of insurers behaving pro-cyclically. The evidence on pension funds was less clear cut. Associated ...


July 31, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1309064

Every month since the fall of 2012, the Brookings Institution has published a forecast for the path of the unemployment rate over the next six months. These forecasts are a familiar past-time for economists, but Brookings has a bold claim: their model “can outperform the Fed and professional ...


July 31, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1309062
Friday at 8:30 AM ET, the BLS will release the employment report for July. The consensus, according to Bloomberg, is for an increase of 233,000 non-farm payroll jobs in July (range of estimates between 200,000 and 280,000), and for the unemployment rate to be unchanged at 6.1%.

Note: ...


July 31, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1309061

If some or all of Argentina's Exchange Bond holders accelerate their bonds after last night's default, the amount Argentina owes NML et al. under the terms of Judge Griesa's injunction could plummet.

Here is the relevant language:

Such "Ratable Payment" that ...


July 31, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1309056

Steve Hanke points out that the anti-austerity faction in the EU led by Italy,  France, and Spain is hypocritical when it claims  that “there is nothing left to cut” in their budgets.  Senior civil servants in Italy get paid over 12 times the national average salary.  In France the ...


July 31, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1309055

1. Further evidence for political insider trading, this time for hedge funds.

2. You call it “3-D printing optimism,” I call it “order transmission and cheap delivery pessimism.”  Amazon enters the game.

3. Google search and stock prices, further results.

4. Indian monkey costume markets ...


July 31, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1309054

On a day that news comes out about wage growth perking up, the stock markets fall. (link to Dean Baker’s post) At the moment, the Dow is down 1.18% and the Nasdaq is down 1.81% for the day. The Dow has fallen ...


July 31, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1309050
James Orr

An Update on the Competitiveness of PuertoRico’s Economy, released today, offers six steps that the Island’s government should consider taking to restore its fiscal health. PuertoRico faces interrelated economic and fiscal challenges. The report characterizes economic activity in PuertoRico as flat ...


July 31, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1309049

“Then it’s war! Then it’s war! Gather the forces! Harness the horses! It’s war!” – Groucho Marx as Rufus T. Firefly in “Duck Soup.”

A breathlessly headlined Federalist piece, “Conservatives Need To Have It Out Over The Federal Reserve,” ...


July 31, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1309048

The AP is reported a few weeks ago that “Seattle taxi drivers hit charm class to improve customer service in response to competition” based on this report from Komo News:

Call it a charm school for cabbies. The region’s long-established taxi companies are sending some of their ...


July 31, 2014, 1:23 pm, 1309047
Tata Group, perhaps best known in the UK for its ownership of Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) and Corus, has set out ambitious plans to invest $35bn in capital spending over the next three years as part of its vision for the next 10 years.


July 31, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1308984

This fall, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear Maryland v. Wynne, which asks whether Maryland must provide a credit against local income taxes for income taxes paid to another state. The taxpayers in the case, Mr. and Mrs. Wynne, own 2.4 percent of a company doing business in 39 states. As ...


July 31, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1308983

Tomorrow is the deadline to apply for a fall 2014 internship at the Tax Foundation!

While there are a number of Washington, D.C.-based public policy groups today that cover a broad range of policy issues, only the Tax Foundation provides a principled voice on the impact of tax and ...


July 31, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1308982

The first half of 2014 saw the U.S. economy’s strongest stretch of hiring since early 2006. The jobless rate fell to 6.1% in June from 7.5% a year earlier, its fastest one-year decline since October 1984, and nonfarm employers added a seasonally adjusted 288,000 jobs.


July 31, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1308981

Dean Baker:

Curb Your Enthusiasm: One Percent GDP Growth Is Nothing to Get Excited Over: The Washington Post went a bit overboard with its lead article reporting on the second quarter GDP data. ...

Actually the 4.0 growth figure reported for the second quarter implies the economy is ...


July 31, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1308980

Simon Wren-Lewis

What are academics good for?: A survey of US academic economists, which found that 36 thought the Obama fiscal stimulus reduced unemployment and only one thought otherwise, led to this cri de coeur from Paul Krugman. What is the point in having academic research ...


July 31, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1308979

Today, we’re fortunate to have Alex Nikolsko-Rzhevskyy, Assistant Professor of Economics at Lehigh University, David Papell and Ruxandra Prodan, respectively Professor and Clinical Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Houston, as Guest Contributors

In a contentious hearing before the House Financial Services ...


July 31, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1308978
From the National Restaurant Association: Restaurant Performance Index Declined in June Amid Softer Customer Traffic

Due in large part to softer customer traffic levels, the National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Performance Index (RPI) registered a moderate decline in June. The RPI – a monthly composite index that tracks the health ...


July 31, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1308977
A


July 31, 2014, 12:36 pm, 1308976
Tomorrow’s update on US personal consumption spending for June is expected to report a gain of 0.3% vs. the previous month, based on The Capital Spectator’s median econometric point forecast. That’s slightly higher than the reported 0.2% rise for May. … Continue reading →


July 31, 2014, 12:36 pm, 1308975
The ISM Manufacturing Index is expected to increase to 55.4 in tomorrow’s update for July—a marginal gain vs. the previous month, based on The Capital Spectator’s median econometric point forecast. The Capital Spectator’s median projection is moderately below the range … Continue reading →


July 31, 2014, 12:34 pm, 1308974
A


July 31, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1308970

Mises Daily Thursday by Peter St. Onge:

Sun-Tzu believed that societies are in deep trouble when wars and other government efforts exhaust the wealth of those who pay the bills. But the lack of revolutions, even in highly-taxed societies points to the ...


July 31, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1308969


Archived from the live broadcast, this Mises University lecture was presented at the Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama, on 25 July 2014.


July 31, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1308968


Archived from the live broadcast, this Mises University lecture was presented at the Mises Institute in Auburn, Alabama, on 25 July 2014.


July 31, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1308967

Some great contributors. This might even be worth the high price:

Including contributions from David Howden, Guido Hulsmann, Thomas DiLorenzo, Thomas Woods, Robert Murphy, Shawn Ritenour, Jeffrey Herbener, Mark Thornton, William Barnett, Peter Klein, Lucas Engelhardt, and Douglas French.

The book was edited by David ...


July 31, 2014, 11:33 am, 1308966

|Peter Boettke|

Solomon Stein, who just returned from a program at Stanford University dealing with archival research in intellectual history, dug up this link to the NBC radio program during WWII -- Words at War -- the 80th episode running 30:18 is a presentation of the ideas ...


July 31, 2014, 11:33 am, 1308965

Tough new statewide regulations restricting outdoor water use took effect Tuesday, the same day millions of gallons of water gushed from a ruptured water main near the UCLA campus.

Under the emergency conservation restrictions, which were approved July 15 and were prompted by the statewide drought, hosing down driveways and sidewalks ...


July 31, 2014, 11:33 am, 1308964
While I'm well aware that I'm an "urban environmentalist", yesterday I engaged in some Robert Redford style environmentalism. First, I took a kayak out for an hour and paddled around the best I could off of Carpinteria Beach. Now I have a sunburn and blisters but at the time ...


July 31, 2014, 11:33 am, 1308962

Yesterday, nine members of the Senate Banking Committee, led by Senators Mike Crapo (R-ID), Richard Shelby (R-AL) and Pat Toomey (R-PA), sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, in his capacity as chair of the Financial Stability Oversight Council. In the letter, they “strongly urge the FSOC to suspend ...


July 31, 2014, 11:33 am, 1308963

On July 31, AEI released “Poverty in America–and what to do about it“–you can read the whole thing here. This is a compilation of AEI scholars’ work on why fighting for the poor is a moral imperative, and which policy proposals could enable the labor market, ...


July 31, 2014, 11:33 am, 1308960

…. is from Steven Landsburg (via Don Boudreaux at Cafe Hayek):

Former economist Paul Krugman has actually managed to get these words past an editor at the New York Times:

There is, however, one big difference between corporate persons and the likes of ...


July 31, 2014, 11:33 am, 1308961

Now that Uber operates in 42 countries and 158 cities, the new corporate service it just introduced makes perfect sense: Uber for Business. It’s also an example of a service that traditional taxi cartels are incapable of offering because they lack a national and global network ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308894

Wednesday’s surprisingly strong report on second-quarter economic growth should keep the Federal Reserve on track to finish its bond-buying program in October, while intensifying the debate about when to start raising short-term interest rates without resolving it.

The new figures provide the Fed relief that the economy has weathered a disappointing ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308893

The jobless rate declined in all but one large U.S. metropolitan area in June, with Chicago and Las Vegas leading the way.

Unemployment in the Chicago metro area fell to 7.1% in June, ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308891

A combination of health care and social assistance now rank as the dominant industry in most American states, surpassing manufacturing and—for a spell—retail trade as the top industries in decades past, according to a new government report.

The Labor Department this week released an animated map showing how the top ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308895

The U.S. economy rebounded strongly in the second quarter this year, advancing at a 4.0% seasonally adjusted annual rate and raising hopes for sustained growth going forward. Consumer spending and inventory buildup led the gains, and offset a drag from higher imports. Economists called the report “encouraging,” but ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308892

The Federal Reserve releases a statement at the conclusion of each of its policy-setting meetings, outlining the central bank’s economic outlook and the actions it plans to take. Much of the statement remains the same from meeting to meeting. Fed watchers closely parse changes between statements to see how the ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308898

The U.S. economy expanded at a stronger pace in the second half of 2013 than previously measured, growing at the fastest rate since 2003, according to revised data released by the Commerce Department on ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308899

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Wednesday, July 30, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Investors Whistle Past Middle East and Ukraine Turmoil Forward Guidance: What to Watch ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308890
Bloomberg News

Many Federal Reserve watchers expected Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher, a frequent critic of current Fed policy, to dissent against the central bank’s forward guidance at ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308897
Economic output rebounded during the second quarter, advancing at a 4% rate. Here are five quick takeaways from the report on gross domestic product.


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308896

The U.S. economy rebounded strongly in the second quarter and a big contribution to that growth was renewed strength from the government, especially at the state and local level. Government spending climbed by 1.6% at an annual rate, its strongest three months since the third quarter of 2012.

State and local ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308880

The first half of 2014 saw the U.S. economy’s strongest stretch of hiring since early 2006. The jobless rate fell to 6.1% in June from 7.5% a year earlier, its fastest one-year decline since October 1984, and nonfarm employers added a seasonally adjusted 288,000 jobs.


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308883
Large container cranes at a port in Tokyo. Japan’s exports fell about 1% in the second quarter from the previous three months, according to BOJ data.


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308882

The long-running debate about the causes of America’s high rate of long-term unemployment is far from settled. A new working paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research wades into the discussion and its findings fall squarely on the side of those who see the labor market’s woes as ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308881

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Thursday, July 31, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Slow Progress Emerges on the Labor Utilization Front Growth Rebound Stokes Fed Debate


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308884
The Tokyo Tower standing illuminated at dusk amid commercial and residential buildings is seen from the Toyosu area of Tokyo. Bloomberg News

Japan’s corporate sector and the ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308885
A man walks past the Bank of Korea headquarters in Seoul. Bloomberg News

As expectations build that the Bank of Korea will lower its policy rate ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308888

A sharp rebound in economic output this spring has revived hopes the nation’s five-year-old recovery could be poised to move into a higher gear.

Gross domestic product rose at a seasonally ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308889

The Federal Reserve said Wednesday it would scale back its monthly bond purchases to $25 billion and offered a modestly more upbeat assessment of the inflation, jobs and the economy. Economists largely said the announcement came in as expected, but that subtle changes indicate Fed officials see general ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308887
Container ships at Taiwan’s northern Taipei Port, 2012. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Taiwan’s better-than-expected growth in the second quarter shows that the export-dependent economy is gaining momentum, but ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308886
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Reuters

It’s hard to get Republicans and Democrats to team up on anything these days in Washington. Japanese Prime ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308879

At MoneyWatch:

Behind the Fed's promise about short-term rates, by Mark Thoma: Can promises about the future have an effect today? That's the theory behind the Federal Reserve's statement following Wednesday's monetary policy meeting.

The Fed said it "currently anticipates that, even after employment and inflation are near ...


July 31, 2014, 11:03 am, 1308878
From the Chicago ISM: Chicago Business Barometer Down 10.0 points to 52.6 in July

The Chicago Business Barometer dropped 10.0 points to 52.6 in July, significantly down from May’s seven month high of 65.5, led by a collapse in Production and the ordering components, all of which have ...


July 31, 2014, 10:45 am, 1308877
A


July 31, 2014, 10:35 am, 1308876

Am I a Tory, or is Jesse Norman a socialist? I'm prompted to ask because the other day he reminded me of his superb lecture (pdf) on Burke and Oakeshott.

What I mean is that, as Jesse says, both men, in their different ways, supported ...


July 31, 2014, 10:34 am, 1308875

To our south, the nation of Argentinahas just defaulted on billions of dollars in loansthanks largely to a dispute with at U.S. hedge fund:

The hedge fund firm of billionaire Paul E. ...


July 31, 2014, 10:34 am, 1308874
Teaser:

Prime ...


July 31, 2014, 10:04 am, 1308870
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from Milton Friedman’s first Newsweek column – “Minimum-Wage Rates” – which appeared on September 26, 1966:

I am convinced that the minimum-wage law is the most anti-Negro law on our statute books – in its effect not its intent.

(The first part of Friedman’s quotation is unquestionably true.  The ...


July 31, 2014, 10:04 am, 1308869

This is a temporary post that was not deleted. Please delete this manually. (c56a6282-4e7d-4cdf-8f85-f8cb37ac85f7 – 3bfe001a-32de-4114-a6b4-4005b770f6d7)


July 31, 2014, 9:33 am, 1308867

From the conclusions of a new paper in the Journal of Economic Perspectives*:

If the objective of graduate training in top-ranked departments is to produce successful research economists, then these graduate programs are largely failing. Only a small percentage of economics PhDs manage to produce a creditable number of publications ...


July 31, 2014, 9:03 am, 1308805

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Thursday, July 31, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Slow Progress Emerges on the Labor Utilization Front Growth Rebound Stokes Fed Debate


July 31, 2014, 9:03 am, 1308804

On 28 December 2013, approximately 74,000 Illinoisans who had been unemployed for more than 26 weeks but less than 73 weeks lost their unemployment insurance benefits when the federal government's emergency extended unemployment benefits program expired. Paying an average benefit of $320 per ...


July 31, 2014, 9:03 am, 1308803
The DOL reports:

In the week ending July 26, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 302,000, an increase of 23,000 from the previous week's revised level. The previous week's level was revised down by 5,000 from 284,000 to 279,000. The 4-week moving average was 297,250, ...


July 31, 2014, 8:45 am, 1308802
A


July 31, 2014, 8:45 am, 1308801
A


July 31, 2014, 8:45 am, 1308800
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July 31, 2014, 8:36 am, 1308799
Private nonfarm payrolls in the US are projected to increase 232,000 (seasonally adjusted) in tomorrow’s July update from the Labor Department, according to The Capital Spectator’s median econometric point forecast. The expected monthly rise is well below the previously reported … Continue reading →


July 31, 2014, 8:36 am, 1308798

The Senate won’t “Bring Home Jobs…” at least not through the bill that would have denied tax deductions for costs of moving corporations out of the country. The Bring Home Jobs Act needed 60 votes to pass but received only 54.

The House GOP may vote to ...


July 31, 2014, 8:05 am, 1308796

Nearly 30% of children in India (ages 6-14) attend private schools and in some states and many urban regions a majority of the students attend private schools. Compared to the government schools, private schools perform modestly better on measures of learning (Muraldiharan and Sundararaman 2013, Tabarrok 2011) and much better ...


July 31, 2014, 8:04 am, 1308795

This posts refers to an article written by Gary Burtless, Unemployment and the “Skills Mismatch” Story: Overblown and Unpersuasive.

Mr. Burtless says that businesses are complaining about a skills shortage in an environment of lots of job openings. What kind of model might describe this situation? I have one… (link ...


July 31, 2014, 7:33 am, 1308792

July 31, 2014, 7:33 am, 1308791

Jonathan S. Tobin, Commentary:

But that isn’t what’s at stake in this debate. Nobody is saying that the kids shouldn’t be cared for. But the notion, pushed by the United Nations and a growing volume ofliberal commentators, is that we must treat these illegals as refugees ...


July 31, 2014, 7:33 am, 1308789

Fifteen minutes seems a little short, but the idea is certainly worth experimenting with. (Unless it's just a marketing gimmick.)


July 31, 2014, 7:33 am, 1308790

It wasn't that long ago that we heard Anheuser-Busch and huge seller concentration would be the absolute death of American beer.

Surprise!


July 31, 2014, 7:03 am, 1308747
Large container cranes at a port in Tokyo. Japan’s exports fell about 1% in the second quarter from the previous three months, according to BOJ data.


July 31, 2014, 7:03 am, 1308746

The long-running debate about the causes of America’s high rate of long-term unemployment is far from settled. A new working paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research wades into the discussion and its findings fall squarely on the side of those who see the labor market’s woes as ...


July 31, 2014, 5:03 am, 1308696
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Reuters

It’s hard to get Republicans and Democrats to team up on anything these days in Washington. Japanese Prime ...


July 31, 2014, 5:03 am, 1308697
Container ships at Taiwan’s northern Taipei Port, 2012. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Taiwan’s better-than-expected growth in the second quarter shows that the export-dependent economy is gaining momentum, but ...


July 31, 2014, 5:03 am, 1308694
The Tokyo Tower standing illuminated at dusk amid commercial and residential buildings is seen from the Toyosu area of Tokyo. Bloomberg News

Japan’s corporate sector and the ...


July 31, 2014, 5:03 am, 1308695
A man walks past the Bank of Korea headquarters in Seoul. Bloomberg News

As expectations build that the Bank of Korea will lower its policy rate ...


July 31, 2014, 5:03 am, 1308693

July 31, 2014, 4:05 am, 1308691

State corporate law requires that “natural persons” provide director services. This Article puts this obligation to scrutiny, and concludes that there are significant gains that could be realized by permitting firms (be they partnerships, corporations, or other business entities) to provide board services. We call these firms “board service providers” ...


July 31, 2014, 3:23 am, 1308689

We have known for many years that Social Security’s Disability Trust Fund was in far worse  shape than the Retirement Trust Fund, which is also not in good shape.  The rolls for Social Security Disability have risen dramatically since 2009, with many applying for disability amid a time where jobs are ...


July 31, 2014, 3:03 am, 1308653
Container ships at Taiwan’s northern Taipei Port, 2012. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Taiwan’s better-than-expected growth in the second quarter shows that the export-dependent economy is gaining momentum, but ...


July 31, 2014, 3:03 am, 1308652
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Reuters

It’s hard to get Republicans and Democrats to team up on anything these days in Washington. Japanese Prime ...


July 31, 2014, 3:03 am, 1308651
A man walks past the Bank of Korea headquarters in Seoul. Bloomberg News

As expectations build that the Bank of Korea will lower its policy rate ...


July 31, 2014, 2:05 am, 1308649

Eduardo Porter interviewed me in addition to his column, here is one excerpt:

What about other consequences of inequality? There is evidence that it hurts mobility, sapping young men’s incentives to succeed. Some have suggested it corrupts our political system and could fuel social unrest. ...


July 31, 2014, 1:33 am, 1308648

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) released new state crude oil production data yesterday for the month of May, and one of the highlights of that monthly report is that oil output in America’s No. 1 oil-producing state – Texas – ...


July 31, 2014, 1:33 am, 1308647

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) released new state crude oil production data yesterday for the month of May, and one of the highlights of that monthly report is that oil output in America’s No. 1 oil-producing state – Texas – ...


July 31, 2014, 1:03 am, 1308596
Container ships at Taiwan’s northern Taipei Port, 2012. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Taiwan’s better-than-expected growth in the second quarter shows that the export-dependent economy is gaining momentum, but ...


July 31, 2014, 12:44 am, 1308595
A


July 31, 2014, 12:44 am, 1308594
A


July 31, 2014, 12:34 am, 1308593

Sun-Tzu believed that societies are in deep trouble when wars and other government efforts exhaust the wealth of those who pay the bills. But the lack of revolutions, even in highly-taxed societies points to the possibility that many are willing to tolerate rather ...


July 31, 2014, 12:05 am, 1308590

As the conflict rages, displacing hundreds of thousands, U.N. and Palestinian officials say some families have made a macabre calculation: to split up, with each group seeking refuge in different parts of Gaza. If one part of the family gets killed, others will live on to help the survivors and ...


July 30, 2014, 11:33 pm, 1308589
It's rather amazing how people blame "free markets" for things that are 180 degrees removed from "free markets".

For example, and in response to Political Greenwashing: US Exports Coal Pollution to Europe; What About China? reader Over Exposed writes "Excellent example of a complete and utter failure ...


July 30, 2014, 11:23 pm, 1308588
Now that the revised 2013 GDP numbers are out it is worth revisiting the debate surrounding the 'Great Experiment' of 2013. It started with Mike Konczal firing this opening salvo at Market Monetarists in early 2013:

In late 2011, the economist David Beckworth and the ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308523

Cities in the southeastern U.S. have the biggest share of consumers with unpaid debt, a new report says.

The Urban Institute, a Washington-based think tank, published a detailed report on Tuesday on the level of delinquent debt around the country. (See related post on the WSJ Numbers blog).

The ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308521
Indian workers sift through coal at the Adani thermal power plant in Mundra, in the eastern Indian state of Gujarat. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Japanese companies appear to ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308524
Economists early Wednesday will get their first peek at how the U.S. economy fared in the second quarter, an important gauge of where the country is heading after the abrupt downturn earlier this year.


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308527

As expected, the pace of U.S. home price gains has slowed this year. Prices rose 9.3% from a year earlier in May in 20 cities tracked by the Standard & ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308520
Calves waiting to be fed on a dairy farm near Cambridge in New Zealand’s Waikato region. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

New Zealand’s milk-powered economy might be slowing down, ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308526

Germany’s global image is better than ever. Industry is booming, unemployment is at a record low since reunification and, to boot, the country just took home its fourth World Cup title.


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308525

The Federal Reserve‘s meeting Tuesday and Wednesday is more about the future than the present.

Policy makers will be debating the appropriate time to begin raising interest rates, as well as the best ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308522

The head of the International Monetary Fund on Tuesday questioned whether Greece still needs debt relief, saying that a review of the country’s economy in the coming weeks would determine if Athens’ debt stock is sustainable without help from creditors.


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308513

The jobless rate declined in all but one large U.S. metropolitan area in June, with Chicago and Las Vegas leading the way.

Unemployment in the Chicago metro area fell to 7.1% in June, ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308512

The Federal Reserve releases a statement at the conclusion of each of its policy-setting meetings, outlining the central bank’s economic outlook and the actions it plans to take. Much of the statement remains the same from meeting to meeting. Fed watchers closely parse changes between statements to see how the ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308519

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Wednesday, July 30, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Investors Whistle Past Middle East and Ukraine Turmoil Forward Guidance: What to Watch ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308514

Wednesday’s surprisingly strong report on second-quarter economic growth should keep the Federal Reserve on track to finish its bond-buying program in October, while intensifying the debate about when to start raising short-term interest rates without resolving it.

The new figures provide the Fed relief that the economy has weathered a disappointing ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308515

The U.S. economy rebounded strongly in the second quarter this year, advancing at a 4.0% seasonally adjusted annual rate and raising hopes for sustained growth going forward. Consumer spending and inventory buildup led the gains, and offset a drag from higher imports. Economists called the report “encouraging,” but ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308518

The U.S. economy expanded at a stronger pace in the second half of 2013 than previously measured, growing at the fastest rate since 2003, according to revised data released by the Commerce Department on ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308517
Economic output rebounded during the second quarter, advancing at a 4% rate. Here are five quick takeaways from the report on gross domestic product.


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308516

The U.S. economy rebounded strongly in the second quarter and a big contribution to that growth was renewed strength from the government, especially at the state and local level. Government spending climbed by 1.6% at an annual rate, its strongest three months since the third quarter of 2012.

State and local ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308511

A combination of health care and social assistance now rank as the dominant industry in most American states, surpassing manufacturing and—for a spell—retail trade as the top industries in decades past, according to a new government report.

The Labor Department this week released an animated map showing how the top ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308510
Bloomberg News

Many Federal Reserve watchers expected Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher, a frequent critic of current Fed policy, to dissent against the central bank’s forward guidance at ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308509

The Federal Reserve said Wednesday it would scale back its monthly bond purchases to $25 billion and offered a modestly more upbeat assessment of the inflation, jobs and the economy. Economists largely said the announcement came in as expected, but that subtle changes indicate Fed officials see general ...


July 30, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1308508

A sharp rebound in economic output this spring has revived hopes the nation’s five-year-old recovery could be poised to move into a higher gear.

Gross domestic product rose at a seasonally ...


July 30, 2014, 10:04 pm, 1308505
(Don Boudreaux)

Congratulations are due to Zac Gochenour, who successfully defended his excellent dissertation on Monday afternoon in Carow Hall on George Mason University’s Fairfax campus.  Dr. Gochenour (who will soon start his career as an assistant professor at Western Carolina University) began his academic study of economics as ...


July 30, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1308442
From Tim Duy on the FOMC Statement at Economist's View

At the conclusion of this week's FOMC meeting, policymakers released yet another statement that only a FedWatcher could love. It is definitely an exercise in reading between the lines. The Fed cut another $10 billion from ...


July 30, 2014, 8:45 pm, 1308440
Salim Furth: With Wednesday's revised GDP numbers, we can look back at the uneven, disappointing progress of a recovery that to many Americans still feels like a recession.


July 30, 2014, 8:45 pm, 1308441
President Barack Obama mocked House Republicans’ plan to file suit against him, saying the action wasn’t a productive thing to do.


July 30, 2014, 8:45 pm, 1308439
Money spent lobbying the government is a good indication of the biggest issues at stake in politics--and who's trying to influence their outcomes.


July 30, 2014, 8:45 pm, 1308438
The oft-repeated axiom in U.S. politics that “It’s the economy, stupid,” hasn’t held up very well in recent elections, particularly midterms.


July 30, 2014, 8:44 pm, 1308437
Today’s report from the Bureau of Economic Analysis shows the US economy to be much stronger than previously thought. The advance estimate for the second quarter of 2014 showed real GDP expanding at an annual rate of 4 percent. The new data revised the dip ...


July 30, 2014, 8:44 pm, 1308436

This week, Russ Roberts spoke with Y Combinator president Sam Altman about tech, innovation, Y Combinator's impact, and more.

Share your thoughts on this week's episode, exploring the prompts below. Or pose your own question(s) for conversation. Either way, we love to hear from you.

Check Your ...


July 30, 2014, 8:04 pm, 1308434
(Don Boudreaux)

Politicians and pundits - at least those who are most credulous regarding claims about government’s powers to alter reality – are unscientifically using skimpy data to argue that raising the minimum wage promotes, or at least doesn’t prevent, employment growth.  The always-excellent Kevin Erdmann responds.  (


July 30, 2014, 7:33 pm, 1308432
The NY Times has published a fun "Room for Debate" focused on climate change fiction and the role of such work in shaping public opinion. To say something new here, let's think about this topic through the lens of the modern field experiment literature. I will embrace the


July 30, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1308371

The Federal Reserve said Wednesday it would scale back its monthly bond purchases to $25 billion and offered a modestly more upbeat assessment of the inflation, jobs and the economy. Economists largely said the announcement came in as expected, but that subtle changes indicate Fed officials see general ...


July 30, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1308370

A sharp rebound in economic output this spring has revived hopes the nation’s five-year-old recovery could be poised to move into a higher gear.

Gross domestic product rose at a seasonally ...


July 30, 2014, 6:45 pm, 1308369
A


July 30, 2014, 6:45 pm, 1308368
A


July 30, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1308367
Teaser:

Job ...


July 30, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1308366
Teaser:

Contrary ...


July 30, 2014, 6:05 pm, 1308363

Regarding Nicolás Cachanosky’s insightful article this morning on Argentina’s coming default, I would just add that it can’t come soon enough.  Although one can only imagine what kinds of behind-the-scenes pressure Argentine President Cristina President Kirchner and central bank head ...


July 30, 2014, 6:05 pm, 1308362

…it un-ironically wonders aloud who’s been suppressing volatility and compressing yields. “Who could it be who’s been doing that?” Grant asks.

Grant notes there are some investment opportunities in Russia and then says “One form of investment that is almost as thoroughly hated as Russia ...


July 30, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1308361
(July 30, 2014 04:15 PM, by Art Carden) As I tweeted yesterday, a quick review of the battle over ride-sharing regulation in cities around the world convinces me we're building a bridge to the eighteenth century. Mercantilism is alive and well, and cities (like Birmingham) are missing a... (5 COMMENTS)


July 30, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1308360

July 30, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1308358

Okay, yeah, I’m at again.  Sorry about the off-topic intrusion, but ….

Anyone in the Houston area who might be interested?


July 30, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1308359

Just yesterday I posted about how weak real wages in Japan spells trouble for Abenomics. (link) Today we see by way of Stanley White and Leika Kihara at Reuters that output in Japan might be showing recession.

“Output is clearly weakening, enough to make you even ...


July 30, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1308357

Retraction Watch:

The author of a paper on how often economists commit misconduct that we covered last month writes about it for a London School of Economics’ blog.

This is a much better summary thanmy post from July 8.


July 30, 2014, 5:23 pm, 1308356

From time to time, I call attention to solid coverage of the Federal Reserve in the popular press, for example this post, which links to an interesting William Greider profile of Ben Bernanke. Nicholas Lemann


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308289

Wednesday’s surprisingly strong report on second-quarter economic growth should keep the Federal Reserve on track to finish its bond-buying program in October, while intensifying the debate about when to start raising short-term interest rates without resolving it.

The new figures provide the Fed relief that the economy has weathered a disappointing ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308290

The U.S. economy rebounded strongly in the second quarter this year, advancing at a 4.0% seasonally adjusted annual rate and raising hopes for sustained growth going forward. Consumer spending and inventory buildup led the gains, and offset a drag from higher imports. Economists called the report “encouraging,” but ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308291

The U.S. economy rebounded strongly in the second quarter and a big contribution to that growth was renewed strength from the government, especially at the state and local level. Government spending climbed by 1.6% at an annual rate, its strongest three months since the third quarter of 2012.

State and local ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308292
Economic output rebounded during the second quarter, advancing at a 4% rate. Here are five quick takeaways from the report on gross domestic product.


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308293

The U.S. economy expanded at a stronger pace in the second half of 2013 than previously measured, growing at the fastest rate since 2003, according to revised data released by the Commerce Department on ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308294

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Wednesday, July 30, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Investors Whistle Past Middle East and Ukraine Turmoil Forward Guidance: What to Watch ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308287

The Federal Reserve releases a statement at the conclusion of each of its policy-setting meetings, outlining the central bank’s economic outlook and the actions it plans to take. Much of the statement remains the same from meeting to meeting. Fed watchers closely parse changes between statements to see how the ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308283

A sharp rebound in economic output this spring has revived hopes the nation’s five-year-old recovery could be poised to move into a higher gear.

Gross domestic product rose at a seasonally ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308288

The jobless rate declined in all but one large U.S. metropolitan area in June, with Chicago and Las Vegas leading the way.

Unemployment in the Chicago metro area fell to 7.1% in June, ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308284

The Federal Reserve said Wednesday it would scale back its monthly bond purchases to $25 billion and offered a modestly more upbeat assessment of the inflation, jobs and the economy. Economists largely said the announcement came in as expected, but that subtle changes indicate Fed officials see general ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308286

A combination of health care and social assistance now rank as the dominant industry in most American states, surpassing manufacturing and—for a spell—retail trade as the top industries in decades past, according to a new government report.

The Labor Department this week released an animated map showing how the top ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308285
Bloomberg News

Many Federal Reserve watchers expected Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher, a frequent critic of current Fed policy, to dissent against the central bank’s forward guidance at ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308282

Tim Duy:

FOMC Statement, by Tim Duy: At the conclusion of this week's FOMC meeting, policymakers released yet another statement that only a FedWatcher could love. It is definitely an exercise in reading between the lines. The Fed cut another $10 billion from the asset purchase ...


July 30, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1308281
Private investment rebounded in Q2. Residential investment increased at a 7.5% annual rate in Q2, equipment investment increased at a 7.0% annual rate, and investment in non-residential structures increased at a 5.3% annual rate.

The following graph shows the contribution to GDP from residential investment, equipment and software, ...


July 30, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1308280
Money spent lobbying the government is a good indication of the biggest issues at stake in politics--and who's trying to influence their outcomes.


July 30, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1308279
The oft-repeated axiom in U.S. politics that “It’s the economy, stupid,” hasn’t held up very well in recent elections, particularly midterms.


July 30, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1308278
A


July 30, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1308277

The phrase "it depends" was invented 130 year ago by a small group of drunk lawyers from London and New York for the sole purpose of annoying first-year law students, nonlawyers, and people from civil law jurisdictions. Like all things annoying, "it depends" is enjoying a surge in popularity as tensions spike in ...


July 30, 2014, 4:36 pm, 1308276

I like the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). It encourages work and allows millions of low-wage workers and their kids to escape a life of poverty. Democrats support it as a critical part of the safety net. Republicans back it because it rewards work and family. Just last week, ...


July 30, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1308275

Janet Yellen said today that there is still considerable slack in the economy in terms of labor and capital. So there is less pressure to tighten monetary policy earlier.

Just for the record, from my own research there is little spare capacity left… Here is my graph… Warning! The potential GDP ...


July 30, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1308271
While president Obama brags about clean energy advances in the US (mostly hot air and subsidies to uneconomic businesses), the US quietly exports pollution to Europe. Coal is a particular good example.

Please consider US Exports Help Germany Increase Coal, Pollution

LUENEN, Germany - One of ...


July 30, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1308270

Jim Pethokoukis and Arthur Brooks in their defense of an economic safety net do not go far enough in their explicit and implicit criticisms of the view of the Ayn Rand Institute and others that a safety net is coercive in terms of its ...


July 30, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1308269

In a breathless Federalist piece,”Conservatives Need To Have It Out Over The Federal Reserve,” Willis Krumholz offers a data-salad recap of the wrong-headed, Austrian-based (sigh …), Paulite-tinged (double sigh …) criticisms of Federal Reserve policy that is currently popular on ...


July 30, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1308267

An interesting anecdote from economic historican Carl Benedikt Frey that really syncs with what MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee wrote in “The Second Machine Age.” Two key ways for workers to deal with automation is through education and entrepreneurship:

Labor markets may once again ...


July 30, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1308268

“Surprise!” say the sell-side, upbeat economy touts. Second quarter GDP growth came in at a 4% pace, well above the expected 3% pace.

But that’s as good as the news gets.

It’s best to average two choppy quarters, especially when the first quarter was said to have been depressed – now to ...


July 30, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1308266

In a new research note, First Trust economists Bob Stein and Brian Wesbury engage in a bit of economic mythbusting. In the June jobs report, according to the Household Survey, part-time jobs increased by 799,000 out of total job gains of 407,000. That means full-time jobs fell. And ...


July 30, 2014, 3:23 pm, 1308265
June 2014July 2014CommentsInformation received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in April indicates that growth in economic activity has rebounded in recent months.Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in June indicates that growth in economic activity rebounded in the second quarter.This is another overestimate by the ...


July 30, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1308202

The Federal Reserve releases a statement at the conclusion of each of its policy-setting meetings, outlining the central bank’s economic outlook and the actions it plans to take. Much of the statement remains the same from meeting to meeting. Fed watchers closely parse changes between statements to see how the ...


July 30, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1308203

The jobless rate declined in all but one large U.S. metropolitan area in June, with Chicago and Las Vegas leading the way.

Unemployment in the Chicago metro area fell to 7.1% in June, ...


July 30, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1308201

A combination of health care and social assistance now rank as the dominant industry in most American states, surpassing manufacturing and—for a spell—retail trade as the top industries in decades past, according to a new government report.

The Labor Department this week released an animated map showing how the top ...


July 30, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1308200
Bloomberg News

Many Federal Reserve watchers expected Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher, who recently wrote an opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal criticizing current Fed policy, to ...


July 30, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1308199
Another $10 billion reduction in asset purchases. Two key statement changes: "a range of labor market indicators suggests that there remains significant underutilization of labor resources" and "Inflation has moved somewhat closer to the Committee's longer-run objective".

FOMC Statement:

Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee ...


July 30, 2014, 2:45 pm, 1308198
President Barack Obama mocked House Republicans’ plan to file suit against him, saying the action wasn’t a productive thing to do.


July 30, 2014, 2:45 pm, 1308197
Salim Furth: With Wednesday's revised GDP numbers, we can look back at the uneven, disappointing progress of a recovery that to many Americans still feels like a recession.


July 30, 2014, 2:45 pm, 1308196
A


July 30, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1308194

The July issue of The Free Market is now available online, with a new essay on money from Joe Salerno and an interview with Randy Holcombe about his new economics textbook.

Salerno explores some misconceptions about money and the new “gold standard” proposed ...


July 30, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1308193

July 30, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1308192

The rest of the WaPo story, by Lydia DePillis, is here.  Here is one excerpt:

The market for consumer-facing economists is certainly getting crowded. Big Internet companies have had chief economists for years now; Google’s Hal Varian is an oft-quoted exponent of his employer’s capabilities and


July 30, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1308191
(Don Boudreaux)

I’m a huge fan of Kevin Williamson’s writings on economics and property rights.  (HT James Dunn)  A slice from a piece from earlier this month:

The desire to be left alone is a powerful one, and an American one. It is not, contrary to the rhetoric proffered by ...


July 30, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1308190

Years of >5% Growth:

Pre-Reagan? 15

Post-Reagan? 5

Post-80s-recession-recovery? 2

Cross-posted at Asymptosis
.


July 30, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1308189

One economic variable that I track is the percentage of capital income used for consumption. It is not an exact number but an estimate in order to see trends over time. With the new revisions to GDP out today, I will update this variable.

I have previously said that consumption by ...


July 30, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1308182

The Taxicab, Limousine & Paratransit Association along with concerned members of the transportation industry, is so concerned about your safety their cartel profits that they’ve launched a new campaign called “Who’s Driving You?” It’s basically a public relations effort  smear campaign to discredit their ride-sharing competitors. Check this ...


July 30, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1308183

Throughout President Obama’s first term, White House economists kept predicting strong economic growth was just around the corner. Soon, very soon, real GDP would grow at 4% a year or more, quarter after quarter.

Never happened. Although the economy grew by 4.0% during the second quarter of this year ...


July 30, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1308181

1. At the website oDesk.com, you can hire a freelancer for help with a variety of services including web development, writing and translation, software development, sales and marketing, administrative support, etc.

2. At the website Care.com, you can hire a babysitter, pet sitter, house sitter, or caregiver ...


July 30, 2014, 1:23 pm, 1308180
This video report from BBC Global Business looks at the success of a very small scale bakery located in an isolated mountain our region of Spain.