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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October 21, 2014, 10:04 pm, 1355170
(October 22, 2014 12:07 AM, by Bryan Caplan) Criminals are poorly educated. About 68% of state inmates dropped out of high school. Many researchers study whether this effect is causal. As usual, though, I'm more interested in whether the causal effect stems from signaling. Education could reduce crime... (1 COMMENTS)


October 21, 2014, 9:33 pm, 1355168

October 21, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1355138
Here is a forecast for 2015 from the MBA: MBA Sees Originations Increasing Seven Percent in 2015

The Mortgage Bankers Association announced today that it expects to see $1.19 trillion in mortgage originations during 2015, a seven percent increase from 2014. While MBA anticipates purchase originations will increase ...


October 21, 2014, 8:44 pm, 1355137

Many central banks embrace forward guidance by announcing expected interest rate paths. But how likely it is that actual rates will be close to expected ones? This column argues that quantifying such uncertainty poses great difficulties. Precise probability statements in a world of uncertainty (not just risk) can be misleading. ...


October 21, 2014, 8:44 pm, 1355136
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October 21, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1355073
From DataQuick: Golden State Foreclosure Starts Continue to Decline

Lending institutions initiated formal foreclosure proceedings last quarter on the lowest number of California homes in more than eight years, the result of a recovering real estate market and the dwindling pool of toxic home loans made in 2006 and ...


October 21, 2014, 6:44 pm, 1355072
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October 21, 2014, 6:44 pm, 1355071
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October 21, 2014, 6:05 pm, 1355069

I’ve been critical of the Obama administration in the past, so it’s nice to find something positive to say. This article says that President Obama’s new acting head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, Vanita Gupta “supports decriminalizing cocaine, heroin, LSD, methamphetamine, ecstasy and all dangerous drugs, ...


October 21, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1355068
By way of the show Boom-Bust, we have an interview with Jim Bruce on the future of Fed Policy. (interview starts at 14:40) He does not see the Fed rate lifting off next year. He does not see easy Fed policy avoiding an economic downturn. He says Fed has been ...


October 21, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1355065

The chart above shows a most amazing economic phenomenon: Since December 2007 when the Great Recession started, Texas civilian employment has increased by 12% and by more than 1.32 million jobs, from just over 11 million jobs in December 2007 to 12.32 million in September of this year (see blue ...


October 21, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1355003

Many market participants believe there’s a point in a dramatic market selloff when the Federal Reserve will step in and do something to staunch the bleeding.

Call it the Fed “put.” While both men denied it, former Fed chairmen Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke were both thought by many to be ...


October 21, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1355002
The European Central Bank hopes this year’s tests will appear more credible than those conducted in 2010 and 2011. AP

It’s not the credit rating firm’s “baseline” ...


October 21, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1355001
Container traffic gives us an idea about the volume of goods being exported and imported - and possibly some hints about the trade report for September since LA area ports handle about 40% of the nation's container port traffic.

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


October 21, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1355000
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October 21, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1354999
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October 21, 2014, 4:34 pm, 1354998

A new regulation will require all persons arriving in the U.S. from the nations western Africa dealing with the Ebola crisis, either directly or indirectly, to come through one of five airports:

WASHINGTON — Anyone flying to the United States from Ebola-affected countries in West Africa must enter the ...


October 21, 2014, 4:05 pm, 1354996

B.B. writes:

In “National Income and the Price Level,” Martin Bailey discussed the issues of the liquidity trap and secular stagnation.

He observed that at a zero real interest rate, it would be profitable to level the Rocky Mountains and fill in the Gulf of Mexico. The land created would ...


October 21, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354991

In the 1960s, my mother's monthly family allowance cheque paid for a week's groceries.

In 2011, the median Canadian two-parent family had an income of just over $90,000. At that level of net income, a family with two children receives Canada Child Tax Benefit worth $87 per ...


October 21, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354992




The ideal tax system reflects a compromise between two conflicting goals: equity ...


October 21, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354990
Here's an interesting video from the recent James Grant Conference. The title of this year's conference is Investing Opportunistically, Separating the Beta from the Alpha.

The first five minutes are introductions and attendee notes you may wish to skip over. The opening speech was by Marc Seidner, CFA ...


October 21, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354989

…. is from the introduction of Radley Balko’s book Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America’s Police Forces:

How did we evolve from a country whose founding statesmen were adamant about the dangers of armed, standing government forces — a country that enshrined the Fourth Amendment in ...


October 21, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1354926
From the BLS: Regional and State Employment and Unemployment Summary

Regional and state unemployment rates were generally little changed in September. Thirty-one states had unemployment rate decreases from August, 8 states had increases, and 11 states and the District of Columbia had no change, the U.S. Bureau of ...


October 21, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1354925
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October 21, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1354924
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October 21, 2014, 2:34 pm, 1354923

Jean Tirole is an influential, respected, and by all accounts gracious man who won this year’s Nobel Prize in economics. Bertha is a 7,000-ton tunnel boring machine that’s been stuck under Seattle for nine months—but is still tweeting—as state officials and a private contractor battle over ...


October 21, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1354920

Last week in The American Spectator, Emily Zanotti noted that the Obama administration refuses to intervene and shut down flights between West Africa and the US: “Yesterday, the White House reiterated that a ban on flights originating in outbreak countries is ...


October 21, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1354919
(Don Boudreaux)

Here’s a letter to the New York Times:

Paul Krugman’s allegation that Amazon has harmful monopsony power misses many a mark, not least of which is Mr. Krugman’s mistaken account of John. D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil as a monopoly that “had too much power” (“Amazon’s Monopsony Is Not O.K.,” Oct. ...


October 21, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1354918
John Cochrane is developing a model for the Fisher Effect to explain that raising the nominal central bank rate could lead to higher inflation, not lower inflation as many say. Nick Rowe complements the model with a simpler “model”. And Steve Williamson has been an ever-present force for the Fisher ...


October 21, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1354912

Fed Chair Janet Yellen is worried about inequality. As she said in a speech last week:

The extent of and continuing increase in inequality in the United States greatly concern me. I think it is appropriate to ask whether this trend is compatible with values rooted ...


October 21, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1354910

From a New York Times editorial on October 18 “A Rate Cap for All Consumers“:

Poor and working-class people across the country are being driven into poverty and default by deceptively packaged, usuriously priced loans. The obvious solution is a national standard for consumer lending. Both the House and ...


October 21, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1354911

There are over three million teachers in America. Debates rage over how to prepare them, recruit them, retain them, compensate them, and remove them should they not work out.

Much hullaballoo is made over the academic characteristics of teachers. There has been back and forth for years over where ...


October 21, 2014, 1:23 pm, 1354909

There’s growing pressure on Germany to spend more to support Europe – and for good reason. But it’s proving to be a hard sell to the country’s leaders.

Germany’s budget is balanced and the government insists that its current policy stance is the best it can do – for itself, the ...


October 21, 2014, 1:23 pm, 1354908
If you have a short break coming up -and you're new to economics - now would be a great time to collect together some resources about the extraordinary recent shift in the oil market. ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1354846

Federal Reserve officials have said the latest round of soft eurozone economic data is not enough to worry them about the U.S. outlook – or revise their fairly optimistic forecasts in the months ahead.

“It’s not really a surprise that growth in Europe has been underperforming for some time,” Boston Fed ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1354847
The Flatirons rock formations in Boulder, Colorado. The Centennial State became the latest to record a jobless rate below 5%. Sarah Portlock/The Wall Street Journal

The unemployment ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1354845

Last week’s financial market volatility could cost the U.S. around 8,000 jobs, according to a rough estimate published Tuesday by Renaissance Macro Research.

Neil Dutta, the firm’s head of economics, calculated the figure ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1354843

Richard Easterlin:

Why our happiness and satisfaction should replace GDP in policymaking, The Conversation: Since 1990, GDP per person in China has doubled and then redoubled. With average incomes multiplying fourfold in little more than two decades, one might expect many of the Chinese people to be ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1354844

Just in case you haven't had your fill of articles reviewing Thomas Piketty's Capital in the Twenty-First Century:

The problem of riches, by Paul Segal: Capital in the Twenty-First Century is a very important book that is not really about capital, and is not really about the twenty-first century. It ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1354842

This is related to yesterday's post "State 'Income Migration' Claims Are Deeply Flawed":

At the intersection of real estate and urban economics: Albert Saiz uses big data to understand real estate dynamics. As a professor in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning and director of MIT’s Center ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1354841
A few comments ...

• Once again housing economist Tom Lawler's forecast of 5.14 million SAAR was closer than the consensus (5.05 million) to the NAR reported sales (5.17 million). It is getting harder for Lawler to beat the "consensus" because it appears several analysts are waiting ...


October 21, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1354840
Maya MacGuineas: Both Paul Krugman and the White House have long argued--correctly--that short-term deficits were not the problem.


October 21, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1354839
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October 21, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1354838
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October 21, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1354836
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October 21, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1354837
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October 21, 2014, 12:34 pm, 1354835
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October 21, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1354831

Swiss National Bank governors sound a lot like Fed and ECB central bankers when it comes to the upcoming Swiss referendum on gold. It might deprive them of needed “flexibility.”  And you might be surprised by how much the SNB has increased the country’s money supply since 2008, despite ...


October 21, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1354830

October 21, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1354829
(October 21, 2014 12:38 PM, by David Henderson) In February 2012, I posted a proposal that the federal government allow contraceptives to be sold over the counter. I wrote: Nevertheless, there is a way that the federal government now cuts access to contraceptives in a way that substantially... (0 COMMENTS)


October 21, 2014, 11:33 am, 1354828

Shape up or break up. That’s the message Federal Reserve Bank of New York President William Dudley gave to Wall Street yesterday. Too much risk taking and law breaking means government will have to take action without some big changes by the megabanks. From the Wall Street Journal:

His comments, ...


October 21, 2014, 11:33 am, 1354827

The chart above shows the history of market quotes for the Iowa Electronic Markets contract “2014 Senate Control Market” back to January 2013. Between January and June 2013, the odds for the Democrats to lose control of the Senate ...


October 21, 2014, 11:03 am, 1354765

Today, the Tax Foundation is honoring six individuals with the second annual award for Outstanding Achievement in State Tax Reform. As the award’s name suggests, the honorees were selected due to their extraordinary efforts to advance the cause of simpler, smarter tax policy in the previous year.

Working for better tax ...


October 21, 2014, 11:03 am, 1354764

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Tuesday, October 21, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Fed Brings a Culture War to Wall Street Fed to Banks: Shape Up ...


October 21, 2014, 11:03 am, 1354763
New York University has faced criticism for its high student-debt loads.

Soft entry-level housing demand has fanned fears that rising student loan burdens may be crimping home purchases.

But new ...


October 21, 2014, 11:03 am, 1354762
Florida Gov. Rick Scott, in Vero Beach, Fla., this month, has put jobs front and center. Getty Images

The campaign offices of Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and ...


October 21, 2014, 11:03 am, 1354761

test test


October 21, 2014, 11:03 am, 1354760
The NAR reports: Existing-Home Sales Rebound in September

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, increased 2.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.17 million in September from 5.05 million in August. Sales are now at their highest pace ...


October 21, 2014, 10:44 am, 1354759
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October 21, 2014, 10:44 am, 1354757
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October 21, 2014, 10:44 am, 1354758
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October 21, 2014, 10:34 am, 1354756

Jeremy Duns accuses Owen Jones of some factual errors. Insofar as he's right, this actually strengthen the substance of Owen's big contention - that the Establishment is a self-regarding clique.

Owen's errors are not decisive ones; the claims he has got wrong are not load-bearing ...


October 21, 2014, 10:34 am, 1354755
Teaser:

The ...


October 21, 2014, 10:34 am, 1354754
Teaser:

Americans ...


October 21, 2014, 10:05 am, 1354751

From Inside Higher Ed:

The University of Michigan’s regional accreditor has signed off on a new competency-based degree that does not rely on the credit-hour standard, the university said last week. The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools gave a green light to the proposed ...


October 21, 2014, 9:33 am, 1354744

The headline on Reuters at Mon Oct 20, 2014 6:05pm EDT read “U.S. regulator targeting lower down payments on mortgages.” At first, we thought perhaps the headline was from 2004, not 2014. After the financial crisis of 2007-2009, it seemed inconceivable that U.S. authorities would again put some of the ...


October 21, 2014, 9:03 am, 1354682

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Tuesday, October 21, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Fed Brings a Culture War to Wall Street Fed to Banks: Shape Up ...


October 21, 2014, 8:44 am, 1354681
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October 21, 2014, 8:44 am, 1354680
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October 21, 2014, 8:44 am, 1354679

AMID the sell-off in global equities over the past month, one market has made for an unlikely safe haven. While American, European and Japanese stock indices have fallen by roughly 5-9% since late September, Chinese stocks have been flat. For a market that often


October 21, 2014, 8:34 am, 1354678
It’s still touch and go with risk warnings according to stock market volatility, but the threat pulled back from extreme levels yesterday. The VIX (a measure of the implied volatility of S&P 500), for instance, dipped below 20 for the … Continue reading →


October 21, 2014, 8:05 am, 1354677

Kevin Vallier, a philosopher, considers on Facebook the optimal journal submission strategy:

I was implicitly assuming the best strategy was to start with the best journals, receive rejections, and then work my way down, lest my piece get accepted by a sub-par journal first. But now I’m thinking it ...


October 21, 2014, 8:04 am, 1354676
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from pages 43-44 of my colleague Walter Williams’s splendid 1999 collection, More Liberty Means Less Government; specifically, it’s from Walter’s April 1995 essay “Free Markets and Blacks”:

Setting minimum wages is one of the most effective tools in the arsenal of racists everywhere.  South Africa’s racist Mine ...


October 21, 2014, 7:33 am, 1354673

Jonah Goldberg, right smack on the money:

Of course, Obama’s ideology is larger than him — which is one reason I dislike so many rightwing explanations of Obama’s motives as stemming from his post-colonial, Alinskyite, African-Indonesian-Muslim life story. All of that stuff might be true. Indeed, some ...


October 21, 2014, 7:33 am, 1354674

We've needed something like this for a long time. I hope they keep it updated.

Highest ranked: Selzer & Company, Field Poll, Ciruli Associates.

Lowest ranked: Research 2000, TCJ Research, Strategic Vision, Zogby, Pharos Research.


October 21, 2014, 7:33 am, 1354671

A useful illustration of why there is never a "no brainer" trade.


October 21, 2014, 7:33 am, 1354670

Tell me again about how great the FDA is.

Two years after 9/11, Congress created Project Bioshield to speed up the commercialization of vaccines, drugs and diagnostics. A key part of the plan: Get the FDA to evaluate innovations quickly by using the same scientific advances that ...


October 21, 2014, 7:33 am, 1354672

Forget ISIS and Ebola, this is really, really bad: modern technology has made it much more difficult to be a music snob.

My record collection is no longer a lifestyle, a biography, a status. The identities that I and a generation of fellow aesthetes spent our lives ...


October 21, 2014, 7:23 am, 1354669
A seasonal quiz challenge for your economics students fresh out of thetutor2u Learning Lab.


October 21, 2014, 7:23 am, 1354668

The ECB inflation target is 2% – ‘it aims to maintain inflation rates below, but close to, 2% over the medium term. ‘

However, some economists argue that in the current situation, the ECB should have a higher inflation target of 3-4%.

The ...


October 21, 2014, 6:44 am, 1354607
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October 21, 2014, 6:44 am, 1354606
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October 21, 2014, 6:44 am, 1354604
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October 21, 2014, 6:44 am, 1354605
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October 21, 2014, 6:44 am, 1354603

AS UNPLEASANT as global economic conditions look just now we can at least be thankful that things aren't anywhere near as bad as they were in 2009, to say nothing of 1931. Neither are those sorts of nasty scenarios a risk. Right?

There are lots of reasons to think the world ...


October 21, 2014, 6:34 am, 1354602
● China’s growth slowest since global crisis, annual target at risk | Reuters China grew at its slowest pace since the global financial crisis in the September quarter and risks missing its official target for the first time in 15 … Continue reading →


October 21, 2014, 5:33 am, 1354597



(p. R3) College degrees and internships don't produce the same quality of worker as intensive, on-the-job apprenticeships, says Brad Neese, director of Apprenticeship Carolina, a program of the South Carolina Technical College System. Employers are seeing "a real lack of applicability in terms of skill level" from ...


October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354593
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October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354594
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October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354596
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October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354595
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October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354592
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October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354588
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October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354587
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October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354590
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October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354589
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October 21, 2014, 5:23 am, 1354586

Readers Question: How does inflation targeting operate when there is a deflation? and what are the problems associated with this?

It’s a good question to ask at the moment, especially with regard to the ECB and Eurozone.

Firstly, the EU inflation target is – below but close to 2%. If inflation falls ...


October 21, 2014, 5:03 am, 1354525

Who were the major holders of debt issued by the U.S. federal government as of the end of its 2014 fiscal year?

The preliminary answer of who owns the $17.860 trillion in debt issued by the U.S. federal government as of 30 September 2014 is presented ...


October 21, 2014, 5:03 am, 1354524

October 21, 2014, 4:44 am, 1354523
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October 21, 2014, 4:04 am, 1354522


October 21, 2014, 3:03 am, 1354496
Reuters

China’s support policies seemed to have pulled economic growth out of a slump in August. The country’s economic data rebounded in September and the economic growth rate for ...


October 21, 2014, 2:05 am, 1354494

Their new paper is here, ungated here (pdf), here is the key passage:

We have shown that in the model with capital, the presence of productive assets carrying a positive marginal product does not eliminate the possibility of a secular stagnation. The key assumption is that capital ...


October 21, 2014, 1:33 am, 1354493

I am going to give what I think is the intuition behind John Cochrane's paper (pdf), that is the subject of his recent post. (Or maybe what I'm doing is reverse-engineering his model's results.) The key result of his paper is the "Neo-Fisherian" finding that an ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354465

MONDAY

BOE’s Cunliffe speaks in London at 1110 GMT ECB’s Constâncio speaks on banking regulation in London at 1150 GMT Fed’s Powell speaks in a St. Louis Fed webinar on community banking at 10 a.m. EDT

TUESDAY

Australia’s central bank releases minutes of its October policy meeting at 11:30 a.m. local time

WEDNESDAY

ECB’s Noyer gives welcoming ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354461
Aécio Neves of the Brazilian Social Democracy Party has pledged to use more austere economic policies to tame Brazil’s sticky inflation and jump-start growth. Getty Images

Elections ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354460

Federal Reserve Gov. Jerome Powell didn’t address monetary policy or the economy in introductory remarks he made to a Webinar on community banking on Friday.

He repeated the central bank’s position that it is aware community banks could be unduly hurt by new financial regulations, and is taking care to make ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354462

Jon Faust, director of the Center for Financial Economics at Johns Hopkins University, asks how we’ll be able to tell when the time has arrived for the Fed to tighten monetary policy.

Earlier this year, the commentators in the U.S. who had been warning of imminent inflation ever since ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354459

The nonprofit sector largely dodged massive job losses and weak wage growth experienced across most of the U.S. during the recession and first years of the economic recovery, new Labor Department data shows.

The nonprofit field, which is a cross-section of employment mainly in industries such as health care, social assistance, ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354463
Jon Cunliffe, deputy governor for financial stability at the Bank of England, said bankers’ pay may reflect an expectation that banks will become more profitable over the coming ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354464

October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354454
Candy prices should leave Halloween fright to the neighborhood kids this year. Getty Images (2012)

Halloween is known for frightening ghosts, goblins and witches. But this year, ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354453
Stalls at an outdoor market in Donetsk this month. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

The world’s banks tightened the purse strings on Ukraine in the middle of its conflict ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354452
Reuters

China’s support policies seemed to have pulled economic growth out of a slump in August. The country’s economic data rebounded in September and the economic growth rate for ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354455
Lawrence Mishel Getty Images (2008)

Gaps in educational achievement and shifts in technology, often cited as key reasons for widening income and wealth inequality, do very little ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354456

Federal Reserve Gov. Daniel Tarullo reprimanded Wall Street executives for not doing enough to control the behavior of employees and suggested regulators and prosecutors could impose further constraints on the financial industry if it doesn’t do a better job of policing itself.

Mr. Tarullo, in remarks prepared for a conference ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354457
Is it working yet? Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

The European Central Bank launched its private sector asset purchase program on Monday.

But will it work?

Everyone knew it was ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354458
The good news is that the outlook for global trade this year is a bit better than last year. But the bad news, according to the World Trade Organization, is that the economic malaise in Europe will drag on the exchange of goods around the world, in turn hurting the ...


October 21, 2014, 1:03 am, 1354451

Those are the topics covered in the West Coast Workshop on International Finance and Open Economy Macroeconomics, held October 17, 2014, and co-organized by Helen Popper (University of Santa Clara) and Michael Hutchison (UC Santa Cruz). The agenda is here (co-sponsored by USC, UCSC, Federal Reserve ...


October 21, 2014, 12:44 am, 1354449
Money is a new feature in the Michigan sixth congressional district, where Democratic challengers are going on the offensive against incumbent Republican Fred Upton.


October 21, 2014, 12:44 am, 1354450
The depressive donkey in A.A. Milne’s "Winnie the Pooh" stories pretty much matches the mood of Americans lately, according to the new Wall Street Journal/NBC poll released last week.


October 21, 2014, 12:44 am, 1354448
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October 21, 2014, 12:34 am, 1354447

David Gordon and Jeff Deist discuss Rothbard’s life from an insider’s perspective, his relationship with Mises and the areas where they disagreed, and more.


October 21, 2014, 12:34 am, 1354446

The Fed has created a new measure of employment that it says it will use to guide monetary policy. Unfortunately, simply knowing employment trends tells us little about whether or not real wealth is being created in the economy. ...


October 21, 2014, 12:34 am, 1354445
Teaser:

Federal ...


October 21, 2014, 12:04 am, 1354442
(October 21, 2014 12:07 AM, by Bryan Caplan) I'm pleased by the high quality of comments on my Ebola bet, as well as the unusually high number of people willing to put their money where their mouth is. First, the takers:Troy Barry:I'll take the bet (first form), not... (0 COMMENTS)


October 20, 2014, 11:33 pm, 1354441

The federal government has announced that, once the budget is in balance, its first priority will be "to provide tax relief to hard-working Canadian families."

In 2013, the federal deficit had shrunk to $13 billion. This year it may disappear entirely.

But it does not follow that the federal government ...


October 20, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1354428
From Dina ElBoghdady at the WaPo: How a top housing regulator plans to make it easier to get a mortgage. Excerpts:

It’s unclear if Watt's downpayment plan will do much to ease access to credit. The average downpayment remains lower today than it was in more normal, pre-housing ...


October 20, 2014, 10:44 pm, 1354427
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October 20, 2014, 10:04 pm, 1354425
(Don Boudreaux)

Daniel Akst reviews in the Wall Street Journal Russ’s new book, How Adam Smith Can Change Your Life.  A slice:

Smith wrote in the stately and verbose style of his day, which has helped to sequester his genius from the mass of modern readers. The economist Russ Roberts, in ...


October 20, 2014, 8:44 pm, 1354402

To work towards resolving Europe’s ongoing debt crisis this column looks to the past. From the recent emerging market debt crisis (1980s-2000s) and the interwar episode of the 1920s-1930s we learn that debt write-downs and defaults are able to be postponed but not prevented. Punishment for default is temporary, sometimes ...


October 20, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1354356

In the wake of the mass shooting incidents that grabbed headlines in 2012, especially the movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado and the elementary school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, many states reacted by passing laws to restrict gun ownership ...


October 20, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1354355
Teaser:

The ...


October 20, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1354351
(October 20, 2014 04:51 PM, by Art Carden) The world is a pretty complex and mesmerizing place, and people (and firms) do a lot of things that are, at first glance, hard to understand. Consider airlines. I've heard on numerous occasions complaints about how major carriers board their... (0 COMMENTS)


October 20, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1354345
In yet another potential market topping sign, M&A Deals Fail At Highest Rate Since 2008

The value of deals that fail to complete has reached its highest level since 2008, in the latest sign that the best year for mergers and acquisitions since the financial crisis will also ...


October 20, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1354344

Assuming that only 12% of campus sexual assaults at OSU are reported.

Assuming that 1 in 5 women at OSU are assaulted over 4 years.

In May, I wrote a CD ...


October 20, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1354283
Stalls at an outdoor market in Donetsk this month. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

The world’s banks tightened the purse strings on Ukraine in the middle of its conflict ...


October 20, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1354282

The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development released without fanfare (well, there is no press release I see on the DWD media website as of 3pm CDT today) the last figures to be available before the election. They indicate September private nonfarm employment 108.6 thousands below the trend consistent with ...


October 20, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1354281
CR Note: Existing Home Sales for September will be released tomorrow by the National Association of Realtors (NAR). The consensus is for sales of 5.09 million on seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) basis. Sales in August were at a 5.05 million SAAR. Economist Tom Lawler estimates the ...


October 20, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1354280
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October 20, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1354279

LAST week, the Nobel prize in economics was awarded to Jean Tirole (see this week's Free exchange column) for his work examining the difficulties in regulating firms with substantial market power. Mr Tirole's research is as relevant as ever, thanks to growing concern over the weight tech titans are ...


October 20, 2014, 4:05 pm, 1354275

October 20, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354270

|Peter Boettke|

Coming to a PBS station near you -- Water Williams: Suffer No Fools.

It is one of the great honors of my life to have been hired at GMU when Walter Williams was the Department Chairman. Walter signs his articles and books, WalterE. ...


October 20, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354269
Here is a link to my piece on inequality that was published today on the Guardian Economics Blog

What Thomas Piketty has shown us, is that since 1980, it is only the rich and the very rich who have benefited from growth, writes Roger Farmer


October 20, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354268
On October 6, I noted German Factory Orders Slump 5.7%, Most Since January 2009.

The previous month was up 4.9%, so I averaged the two months noting "The average result is a decline of 0.4% per month, for the last two months. That process also means ...


October 20, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354267

Back in 2010, there was an issue ad showing a “Chinese professor” in the year 2030 lecturing his students about America’s collapse. “Why do great nations fail?” he asked. “The ancient Greeks, the Rome Empire, the British Empire, the United States of America — they all make the same mistakes, ...


October 20, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354265

The apparent decline in US startups is bad news for two reasons. First, it means fewer potential Googles and Apples and Twitters and other high-impact businesses. Second, it also means fewer small businesses that — while they may not make their owners millions or billions — ...


October 20, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1354266

I have written a lot about the secular decline in US entrepreneurship. As economist Ian Hathaway noted in a podcast with me:

If you look at the number of freshly launched firms in a given year and you take that as a share of all firms, that rate declined ...


October 20, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1354203
The World Trade Organization (WTO) today ruled in favor of Canada and Mexico, saying that U.S. country-of-origin labeling (COOL) rules violate our commitments in previous trade agreements.

The COOL rules in dispute required new labels on fresh beef, pork, and lamb, but not on processed foods such as ...


October 20, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1354202
Lawrence Mishel Getty Images (2008)

Gaps in educational achievement and shifts in technology, often cited as key reasons for widening income and wealth inequality, do very little ...


October 20, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1354201
Candy prices should leave Halloween fright to the neighborhood kids this year. Getty Images (2012)

Halloween is known for frightening ghosts, goblins and witches. But this year, ...


October 20, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1354200

Differences in income taxe ratess across states have little impact on migration:

State “Income Migration” Claims Are Deeply Flawed, by Michael Mazerov, CBPP: Some proponents of state income tax cuts are making highly inaccurate claims about the impact of interstate migration patterns on states with relatively high income taxes ...


October 20, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1354199
From FHFA Director Melvin Watt: Prepared Remarks of Melvin L. Watt, Director, FHFA, At the Mortgage Bankers Association Annual Convention

On lower downpayments:

To increase access for creditworthy but lower-wealth borrowers, FHFA is also working with the Enterprises to develop sensible and responsible guidelines for mortgages with ...


October 20, 2014, 2:45 pm, 1354198
The depressive donkey in A.A. Milne’s "Winnie the Pooh" stories pretty much matches the mood of Americans lately, according to the new Wall Street Journal/NBC poll released last week.


October 20, 2014, 2:45 pm, 1354197
Money is a new feature in the Michigan sixth congressional district, where Democratic challengers are going on the offensive against incumbent Republican Fred Upton.


October 20, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1354196
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October 20, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1354195
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October 20, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1354194
THIS week our correspondents discuss deflation, the TV business and the politics of wages


October 20, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1354192

October 20, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1354191

Maybe that welfare cost is not very high at all.   After all, if Amazon does not carry a book you can sign up at the Barnes & Noble website and that takes a few minutes at most.

There is a tension in most criticisms of Amazon.  On one hand, the ...


October 20, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1354187

*"I have no idea what Bono and the Edge think is funny."


October 20, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1354186

Over the last six months, retail gas prices in the US have fallen by 62 cents, from $3.71 per gallon in late April to $3.09 per gallon currently, according to GasBuddy.com (see blue line in chart above). That’s almost ...