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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September 17, 2014, 9:03 am, 1336391
From the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS): Consumer Price Index - August 2014

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) decreased 0.2 percent in August on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months, the all items index ...


September 17, 2014, 8:44 am, 1336390
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September 17, 2014, 8:44 am, 1336389
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September 17, 2014, 8:44 am, 1336388

IN 2012 there were over 168 million child labourers. That's a big decline from a few years ago (see chart), but still a huge number. How best to get it down? Outlawing it is one option. Most countries have had child-labour laws for years; but given that one in ...


September 17, 2014, 8:35 am, 1336387
Volatility is starting to creep back into the markets. It’s not obvious from the 30,000-foot view, but a few corners of the global markets are becoming jittery. Exhibit A: US real estate investment trusts (REITs), which tumbled sharply in recent … Continue reading →


September 17, 2014, 8:35 am, 1336386

No more tax havens abroad? The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development released its plan to limit corporate tax avoidance. All 34 OECD members plus 10 other countries including China and Russia have approved the proposals, though each nation must still implement them. The


September 17, 2014, 8:05 am, 1336384

I remain amazed that we have as much free trade as we do.  Here is from a recent Pew poll:

President Barack Obama and other world leaders are having a tough time selling the benefits of the trade agreements they’re negotiating, in part because much of the public ...


September 17, 2014, 8:04 am, 1336383
(Don Boudreaux)

… are lyrics from the final stanza of the studio recording of Hank Williams, Sr.’s, 1949 song “Mind Your Own Business”:

Mindin’ other people’s business
Seems to be high-tone;
I got all that I can do just to mind my own.
Why don’t you mind your own business?
Mind ...


September 17, 2014, 7:33 am, 1336381

The Nordic diet is the new hotness.

More information here.


September 17, 2014, 7:33 am, 1336380

You gotta love PCs and the Net.


September 17, 2014, 7:33 am, 1336378

It doesn't surprise me that Hollywood would take liberties with a true story. It is discouraging, though, that so many people would confuse the fiction and the reality.

And note the difference between our current president's confusion regarding the movie and the similar situation, say, of Ronald Reagan's thinking ...


September 17, 2014, 7:33 am, 1336379

60? Do I hear 60?

(Call me crazy, but this reminds me of Ptolmaic epicycles.)


September 17, 2014, 7:23 am, 1336377

Photo Credit: B Gilmour

Yesterday I was at a conference for Registered Investment Advisors. There were about 11 of us in the room, and a variety of different parties pitched us on their services. Some of the ...


September 17, 2014, 7:23 am, 1336375
Continuing our theme of sharing engaging activities, here's a fun teaching resource that lasts between 15 and 20 minutes called 'Face It' - a resource that has been extremely popular when we've used it during our teacher CPD events. On the grounds that it may still be too early to ...


September 17, 2014, 7:23 am, 1336374

A selection of graphs and statistics on UK measures of unemployment. Also, looking at factors that explain UK unemployment and why unemployment has fallen in recent years.

Current UK Unemployment rate

Unemployment rate of  ...


September 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1336331

At a conference Friday at Yale University in honor of newly minted Nobel laureate Robert Shiller, economist Karl Case of Wellesley College paid tribute to his long-time research partner with an original poem on the lessons of the real-estate bubble and its aftermath. In the 1980s, after many years ...


September 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1336330
The Swiss National Bank’s headquarters in Bern. Bloomberg News

If the Fed and Scotland were not enough to hold your interest, fear not: Thursday brings a quarterly ...


September 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1336329
A view of a park and the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lumpur on Aug. 13. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Malaysia could be set for another interest rate ...


September 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1336328

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Wednesday, September 17, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Portions of this newsletter were included in our Special Fed Preview edition sent out Tuesday afternoon. This updates that version with additional news from around the world.


September 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1336327
Associated Press

What will the Federal Reserve announce out of its two-day policy meeting? What might Chairwoman Janet Yellen say at her press conference?  Gear up for the ...


September 17, 2014, 7:03 am, 1336326
From the MBA: Mortgage Applications Increase in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

Mortgage applications increased 7.9 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending September 12, 2014. The previous week’s results included an adjustment for the ...


September 17, 2014, 6:44 am, 1336325
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September 17, 2014, 6:44 am, 1336324
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September 17, 2014, 5:03 am, 1336257

Don’t be surprised if the International Monetary Fund overhauls its Ukraine bailout after national elections in late October, including coordinating a restructuring of the country’s debt.

The new parliament would ostensibly be able to enact another round of politically tough economic policies that would help it get a better grip on ...


September 17, 2014, 5:03 am, 1336256
Bloomberg News

The European Central Bank will announce Thursday how much banks borrowed in new four-year ECB loans aimed at boosting private-sector lending.

The program, called Targeted Longer-Term Refinancing Operations, or TLTRO, was part of a June stimulus ...


September 17, 2014, 5:03 am, 1336255

We have a project underway where we're looking at the net change in the number of Americans who work as full time or part time employees over different periods of time. The chart below shows all the data the Bureau of Labor Statistics ...


September 17, 2014, 5:03 am, 1336254

September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336209

The Wall Street Journal’s Jon Hilsenrath and Sudeep Reddy discuss the Federal Reserve’s Sept. 16-17 meeting and how the Fed could adjust its interest-rate guidance.

Watch clips below or the full webcast:

 

Hilsenrath: How the Fed Could Tweak ‘Considerable Time’


Where the Fed Sees the Economy

 

Asset ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336208

Chief executives downgraded their optimism about the U.S. economy, saying they expect to slow both hiring and capital investments in the second half of the year, according to the Business Roundtable’s third-quarter survey released Tuesday.

The survey of 135 CEOs found that just 34% expect add to their company’s ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336210

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Tuesday, September 16, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Da Costa’s Take: The Case for Fed Patience on Rates, Message How Stocks Perform Before ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336213
The national flag of China flutters behind a fence of the headquarters of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) in Beijing, in this July 12, 2013 file photo.


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336207

The U.S. economy expanded 2.2% in 2013. But growth varied greatly across the nation’s 381 metropolitan regions, and some local economies actually contracted, a new Commerce Department report shows.

The Mount Vernon-Anacortes metro area in Washington state grew fastest, with gross domestic product expanding by 10.6% in 2013. (Keep in mind ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336212
Houses on Sydney’s eastern seaboard, May 2010. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Australia’s central bank is worried about surging house prices, but it appears no closer to clamping down ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336211
Foreign direct investment into China took a breather in August, dropping 14% from a year earlier to a more than four-year low. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

China’s monthly ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336204
The Federal Reserve concludes a two-day policy meeting Wednesday with a statement, new economic projections and Chairwoman Janet Yellen’s press conference. Here are five things to watch.


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336201

Periodic surges in demand for a Federal Reserve facility designed to control short-term interest rates appear to come at a loss for European markets.

Fitch Ratings said in a report Tuesday that much of the money that regularly flows into what the Fed calls its overnight reverse repurchase agreement facility appears ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336206

The Federal Reserve may keep the words “considerable time” in its policy statement, but qualify them, the Journal’s chief economics correspondent Jon Hilsenrath said Tuesday in a webcast previewing the central bank’s two-day policy meeting. The Fed’s policy committee has used those words to explain when ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336202

An unorthodox campaign by a handful of cities hardest hit by the housing crash to use the power of eminent domain to write down large mortgage debts has stirred a backlash in Washington.

Republicans passed in June a budget bill that included language to bar federal agencies from refinancing loans that ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336203

Last year, the city of Richmond, Calif., proposed buying 624 mortgages in a bid to help homeowners shed large housing debts by using their powers of eminent domain. The city offered $589,740 to purchase Leisa Johnson’s loan, which was the second-most-valuable mortgage on the city’s list.

Richmond’s plan has ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336205

The pay gap between women and men narrowed last year, albeit slightly, the first time the gap contracted by more than a penny since the recession began in 2007.

Women earned 78.3 cents ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336200
UPS plans to hire up to 95,000 temporary workers to handle the holiday rush, but that reflects a structural shift in American shopping habits — not so much a ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336199

This is a special edition of our newsletter, offering our latest insights into what’s in store as Federal Reserve officials huddle in their two-day policy meeting.

Highlights


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336198

In a webcast Tuesday, I explained why I thought the Federal Reserve would stick with, but qualify, an important phrase in its policy statement Wednesday which assures near-zero interest rates for a “considerable time.” This was simply my best analysis of where I think the Fed is going ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336196
A commuter walks past the People’s Bank Of China. Bloomberg

China’s decision makers yet again resisted pressure to significantly ease monetary policy and instead injected ...


September 17, 2014, 3:03 am, 1336197

President Barack Obama and other world leaders are having a tough time selling the benefits of the trade agreements they’re negotiating, in part because much of the public thinks all the talk ...


September 17, 2014, 2:44 am, 1336195
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September 17, 2014, 2:05 am, 1336192

Many political unions subsist on creative ambiguity.  That is, if the right question were posed, and the citizenry forced to answer it definitely, political order might spin out of control.

Canada, Belgium, and indeed the entire European Union seem to be organized on this basis.  It’s not quite that everyone thinks ...


September 17, 2014, 2:04 am, 1336191
(September 17, 2014 01:00 AM, by David Henderson) Earlier this week, I posted a 1983 memo that I wrote to my boss at the Council of Economic Advisers, Martin Feldstein, about a meeting to discuss relaxing the limits on exports of Alaskan oil. Below is a follow-up memo... (0 COMMENTS)


September 17, 2014, 1:33 am, 1336188
Venture capital risktaking and burn rates on cash are at levels that exceed the technology bubble in 1999. Companies that haven't made a dime, and perhaps never will, have valuations of $10 billion more.

Curiously, it' venture capitalist Bill Gurley who Sounds Alarm on Startup Investing in ...


September 17, 2014, 1:03 am, 1336183
A commuter walks past the People’s Bank Of China. Bloomberg

China’s decision makers yet again resisted pressure to significantly ease monetary policy and instead injected ...


September 17, 2014, 12:34 am, 1336181

There is no one Taylor Rule, but several, depending on how one interprets the government's measurements of the economy. Taylor's rule also fails to address the fundamental problem of coordinating the actions of many diverse individuals in an economy, so it cannot protect ...


September 17, 2014, 12:34 am, 1336182

In this transcript of his Mises Weekends interview with Jeff Deist, Andy Duncan handicaps the upcoming secession vote in Scotland and discusses the state of free-market thinking in the UK.


September 17, 2014, 12:34 am, 1336180
Teaser:

On ...


September 17, 2014, 12:05 am, 1336178

The teachers’ strike in British Columbia, Canada, is over… almost. On Thursday, 40,000 public school teachers in the province will vote on whether to accept the proposed contract. Neither side got everything it wants, and the main headline is that teachers will receive a 7.25% salary raise over 6 ...


September 17, 2014, 12:04 am, 1336177
(September 17, 2014 12:08 AM, by Bryan Caplan) In the past, I've argued that Steve Sailer's citizenism is a moral travesty. Advancing the interests of your in-group should always play second fiddle to respecting the rights of out-groups. But recently, he presented what sounds like a universal argument... (2 COMMENTS)


September 17, 2014, 12:04 am, 1336176
Via an email from Greg LeRoy of Good Jobs First, we learn that the Tesla deal, as enacted by the Nevada Legislature, is even worse than announced. Aside from the widely touted 6500 jobs only being 6000 jobs for which the state is paying for, it turns out that Tesla ...


September 17, 2014, 12:04 am, 1336175
The White American Dream Game One poster’s complaints to progressives: - Is it not greedy on YOUR part to demand a piece of what others have earned? Why can she not learn a more skilled trade? I have also seen Ph.D.’s doing unskilled labor. They chose to study what they ...


September 16, 2014, 11:33 pm, 1336173
Congratulations (of sorts) go to French prime minister Manuel Valls for being able to count sheep properly.

Valls staged a vote of confidence in French parliament even though polls show 62% of voters would like president Francois Hollande to step down now.

In spite of what ...


September 16, 2014, 9:33 pm, 1336162

The Tax Foundation released its 2014 International Tax Competitiveness Index (ITCI) of 34 OECD countries and Canada’s overall rank was 24 out of 34 countries. Despite our recent snagging of Burger King, we are apparently in the bottom third of OECD countries when it comes to tax competitiveness. ...


September 16, 2014, 9:33 pm, 1336161
Rank Top 20 US Metro Area Economies, 2013 2013 GDP (Billions) Comparable Countries 2013 GDP (billions) 1 New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA $1,471,170 Australia $1,505,270 2 Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 826,826 Turkey 827,200 3 Chicago-Naperville-E
lgin, IL-IN-WI 590,248 Sweden 557,000 4 Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX 517,367 Poland 516,120 5 Washington-Arlington
-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV 463,925 Argentina 488,000 6 Dallas-F
ort Worth-Arlington, TX 447,574 Austria 415,000 7 San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 388,272 Thailand 387,000 8 Philadelphia-Camde
n-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD 383,401 Colombia 381,000 9 Boston-Ca
mbridge-Newton, MA-NH 370,769 Venezuela 374,000 10 Atlanta-Sandy
Springs-Roswell, GA 307,233 Malaysia 312,000 11 Seattle-Tacoma-Be
llevue, WA 284,967 Nigeria 286,000 12 Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL 281,076 Chile 277,000 13 Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI 227,793 Iraq 229,000 14 Detroit-Warren-Dea
rborn, MI 224,726 Kazakhstan 220,000 15 Phoenix-Mesa-Sc
ottsdale, AZ 209,523 Peru 206,000 16 San Diego-Carlsbad, CA 197,886 Czech Republic 198,000 17 San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA 196,829 Romania 189,000 18 Denver-Aurora-Lake
wood, CO 178,860 New Zealand 181,000 19 Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, ...


September 16, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1336141
More previews on the FOMC statement and press conference:

From Jon Hilsenrath at the WSJ: How the Federal Reserve Could Tweak ‘Considerable Time’

"Given the economic backdrop, they don’t want to send a signal right now that rate increases are imminent,” Hilsenrath said. “I think what they ...


September 16, 2014, 8:44 pm, 1336139

Entry and trading in over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives markets have received considerable attention. However, many critical questions remain unaddressed. This column describes a formal study of banks’ incentives to enter and trade in OTC derivatives markets. In equilibrium, only large banks enter to become dealers, and middle-sized banks only enter as ...


September 16, 2014, 8:44 pm, 1336140

The EU is about to extend economic partnership agreements signed in 2007 with countries of the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific region. Reflecting on the implementation difficulties associated with previous agreements and the minimal engagements in the upcoming ones, this column argues that these partnerships will fall short. No further integration ...


September 16, 2014, 7:33 pm, 1336136

Over five years since the end of the recession, it would seem reasonable to expect that poverty would have dropped further from the peak hit in 2010. At 14.5% in 2013, the poverty rate has dropped from the peak of 15.1% hit in 2010. That’s progress. But it is still ...


September 16, 2014, 7:33 pm, 1336135

Here’s a cost to taxpayers of the minimum wage that isn’t usually considering by its advocates – the cost of enforcement. For example, in yesterday’s Seattle Times we learn that “Mayor Murray seeks a new office to enforce $15 wage, other laws“:

Now that Seattle has passed a series ...


September 16, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1336094
In my school's latest Wednesday seminar, the epidemiologist and cardiologist Dariush Mozaffarian methodically builds the scientific case for amending our traditional obsession with total fat (as a culprit in obesity) and saturated fat (as a culprit in heart disease).

Then, from about minute 47:30 to 50:30 in the video, ...


September 16, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1336093

One of the worst aspects of the federal tax code is the way it treats saving. Under ordinary circumstances, saving is treated to double taxation at the individual level, reducing after-tax returns to saving and incentivizing immediate consumption over saving.

There are several ways, though, that the tax code relieves ...


September 16, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1336092

President Barack Obama and other world leaders are having a tough time selling the benefits of the trade agreements they’re negotiating, in part because much of the public thinks all the talk ...


September 16, 2014, 6:44 pm, 1336091
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September 16, 2014, 6:44 pm, 1336090
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September 16, 2014, 6:44 pm, 1336089
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September 16, 2014, 6:05 pm, 1336086

Mark Thornton interviewed on PressTV:

“The political tensions between the United States and Russia has increased or speeded up the process of which nations are doing business between countries instead of dollars and doing it with their local currencies,” Mark Thornton, Senior Fellow at Mises Institute, told Press TV on ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1336032

Last year, the city of Richmond, Calif., proposed buying 624 mortgages in a bid to help homeowners shed large housing debts by using their powers of eminent domain. The city offered $589,740 to purchase Leisa Johnson’s loan, which was the second-most-valuable mortgage on the city’s list.

Richmond’s plan has ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1336030

Periodic surges in demand for a Federal Reserve facility designed to control short-term interest rates appear to come at a loss for European markets.

Fitch Ratings said in a report Tuesday that much of the money that regularly flows into what the Fed calls its overnight reverse repurchase agreement facility appears ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1336031

An unorthodox campaign by a handful of cities hardest hit by the housing crash to use the power of eminent domain to write down large mortgage debts has stirred a backlash in Washington.

Republicans passed in June a budget bill that included language to bar federal agencies from refinancing loans that ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1336029
UPS plans to hire up to 95,000 temporary workers to handle the holiday rush, but that reflects a structural shift in American shopping habits — not so much a ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1336027

In a webcast Tuesday, I explained why I thought the Federal Reserve would stick with, but qualify, an important phrase in its policy statement Wednesday which assures near-zero interest rates for a “considerable time.” This was simply my best analysis of where I think the Fed is going ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1336028

This is a special edition of our newsletter, offering our latest insights into what’s in store as Federal Reserve officials huddle in their two-day policy meeting.

Highlights


September 16, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1336026
Economist Tom Lawler sent me the table below of short sales, foreclosures and cash buyers for several selected cities in August.

Comments from CR: Tom Lawler has been sending me this table every month for several years. I think it is very useful for looking at the trendfor ...


September 16, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1336025
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September 16, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1336024
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September 16, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1336023
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September 16, 2014, 4:35 pm, 1336022

Unable to do anything important before its election season recess, Congress is about to knock down a favorite digital straw man—It will extend for a few months the about-to-expire federal ban on state taxation of Internet access.

The federal moratorium, called the Internet Tax Freedom Act, is scheduled to expire on November ...


September 16, 2014, 4:05 pm, 1336020

This I found in a Quora forum on prepaid meals in China:

We’ve actually experimented with prepaid vs postpaid meals in our restaurant. The verdict? Upfront payment increased table turnover by over 80%.

The difference is that customers who haven’t paid can justify their occupation of ...


September 16, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1336015
Second No Confidence Vote in Six Months

In spite of the fact the Socialist party holds a majority of just 1 in the 577-seat lower house, French prime minister Manual Valls hopes to stabilize things with a Second No Confidence Vote in Six Months.

Mr Valls ...


September 16, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1336014

We hear all the time about “rising income inequality” in America (there are about 1 million Google search results for that term), about “the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer,” the “stagnant or disappearing middle class,” all ...


September 16, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1335952

The pay gap between women and men narrowed last year, albeit slightly, the first time the gap contracted by more than a penny since the recession began in 2007.

Women earned 78.3 cents ...


September 16, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1335951
The Federal Reserve concludes a two-day policy meeting Wednesday with a statement, new economic projections and Chairwoman Janet Yellen’s press conference. Here are five things to watch.


September 16, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1335950

That’s a title from a oped by former GW Bush speechwriter and current AEI scholar Marc Thiessen nearly a year ago. We can now evaluate whether in fact the implementation of individual insurance mandate component of the ACA did implode. From “New Data Show Early Progress in Expanding ...


September 16, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1335949
From housing economist Tom Lawler:

Based on August realtor association/board/MLS reports released so far, I estimate that existing home sales as measured by the National Association of Realtors ran at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.12 million, down 0.6% from July’s pace and down 3.9% from last August’s ...


September 16, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1335946

In light of the upcoming Scottish independence referendum, some quotes by Mises are appropriate. Too bad the Scots’ idea of independence is Salmond and the EU, not Wallace and Bruce.

No people and no part of a people shall be held against ...


September 16, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1335945

The phrase “incentives matter” is ubiquitous in economics, from undergraduate teaching to economic policy debates. The mantra is especially popular in the growing literature targeted at the general public, which I’ve criticized before for its undue focus on incentives ...


September 16, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1335944

September 16, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1335943
(Don Boudreaux)

Here’s a letter to the Wall Street Journal:

John Addison Teevan rightly rejects the claim that slavery is a capitalist institution (Letters, Sept. 16).  Slavery began soon after the invention of agriculture and disappeared only with the emergence of modern capitalism.  Moreover, widespread opposition to slavery arose first in ...


September 16, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1335942
A comment on a previous post said that the unemployment rate is under-measuring the true unemployment rate due to people having withdrawn from the labor market. The low labor force participation rate would reflect this view. Is the 6.1% unemployment rate a reliable measure of un- and under-employment? One model ...


September 16, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1335937
In my recent public lectures on climate change adaptation, I have argued that we need a lessdurable building capital stock. Today, Columbia University's student newspaper offers a funny example. Such Ivy League schools as Harvard, Princeton and Columbia have 100 year old and older dorms that do not have ...


September 16, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1335936

Not unexpectedly, my post yesterday, “A conservative way to think about climate change,” generated lots of negative feedback.

Arctic ice. Michael Mann. The pause. Al Gore.

But here’s a mistake many are making: ...


September 16, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1335935

According to its website, homemd is a unique mobile doctor house call service in Los Angeles.  Dr. Renee Magaña brings the age old experience of doctor house calls back into the modern world. You will receive the best of care in the convenience and privacy of your own home ...


September 16, 2014, 1:23 pm, 1335933
The overall rate of infant mortality has been halved in the past two decades.That's the good news. But Unicef' s latest figures estimate every day 17,000 under-fives die - 6.3 million a year - from largely preventable causes. Most of the deaths happen in the first hours or weeks following ...


September 16, 2014, 1:23 pm, 1335934
Here's a pleasant and short Powerpoint presentation on Perfect Competition that you may wish to include as part of any lesson on the subject. The presentation shows how price, supply andaverage and marginal revenue shifts as more firms enter the market and the impact that has on profits.Click here to ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1335872

A new report by Standard & Poors finds that rising income inequality may negatively impact state revenue growth. The report confirms the long-standing consensus of tax economists that high, progressive income taxes contribute to revenue volatility, and also confirms the growing chorus of experts who argue that ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1335871

The U.S. economy expanded 2.2% in 2013. But growth varied greatly across the nation’s 381 metropolitan regions, and some local economies actually contracted, a new Commerce Department report shows.

The Mount Vernon-Anacortes metro area in Washington state grew fastest, with gross domestic product expanding by 10.6% in 2013. (Keep in mind ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1335870

The Federal Reserve may keep the words “considerable time” in its policy statement, but qualify them, the Journal’s chief economics correspondent Jon Hilsenrath said Tuesday in a webcast previewing the central bank’s two-day policy meeting. The Fed’s policy committee has used those words to explain when ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1335869


September 16, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1335868

Peter Temin and David Vines have a new book:

Making the case for Keynes, by Peter Dizikes, MIT News Office: In 1919, when the victors of World War I were concluding their settlement against Germany — in the form of the Treaty of Versailles — one of the leading ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1335867

I have a new column:

Rethinking New Economic Thinking: Efforts such as Rethinking Economics and The Institute for New Economic Thinking are noteworthy attempts to, as INET says, “broaden and accelerate the development of new economic thinking that can lead to solutions for the great challenges of the 21st ...


September 16, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1335866
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September 16, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1335865
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September 16, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1335864

Mises Daily Monday by Gary Galles:

The work of economist Anders Chydenius, which predates Smith’s The Wealth of Nations, provided a radically free-market voice for Scandinavia in the 18th century as Chydenius battled against mercantilists and those who thought government ...


September 16, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1335863

Mises Daily Tuesday by Andrew Syrios:

The NCAA, a quasi-governmental regulatory cartel, prohibits colleges from paying athletes. So colleges employ a variety of schemes to offer unofficial “pay.” Meanwhile, the NCAA ensures there is no functioning job market for athletes at that ...


September 16, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1335862
(September 16, 2014 11:34 AM, by Bryan Caplan) As far as I can tell, spending statistics for education do not count implicit land rent as part of the cost of education. The Digest of Education Statistics' Table 213 for example, states that:Current expenditures include instruction, support services, food... (0 COMMENTS)


September 16, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1335861
(September 16, 2014 11:45 AM, by Art Carden) Stanley Hauerwas, War and the American Difference: Theological Reflections on Violence and National Identity. This wasn't really "recent" as it was several months ago, but Hauerwas spoke at Samford last semester. Hauerwas discusses war--a key sacrament of civic religion--from a... (0 COMMENTS)


September 16, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1335860
The Scottish referendum campaign has engaged people in politics as never before, it is said, and this is a welcome and different kind of politics. It is, of course, welcome that voters in Scotland are engaged and mainly intend to...


September 16, 2014, 11:33 am, 1335859
There is a long article reported herethat California sushi prices could rise because of lasting drought. The causal claim is that drought will reduce the supply of "sushi rice" that is traditionally grown in California. But, at the end of the article there is the following quote highlighting how ...


September 16, 2014, 11:33 am, 1335858

Last week the restaurant chain Olive Garden offered a limited supply (1,000) of pasta passes (the “Never Ending Pasta Pass”) for $100 that entitles diners to unlimited pasta at any Olive Garden restaurant nationwide during an upcoming seven-week period (September 22 ...


September 16, 2014, 11:03 am, 1335796

Chief executives downgraded their optimism about the U.S. economy, saying they expect to slow both hiring and capital investments in the second half of the year, according to the Business Roundtable’s third-quarter survey released Tuesday.

The survey of 135 CEOs found that just 34% expect add to their company’s ...


September 16, 2014, 11:03 am, 1335795
From the BLS:

The Producer Price Index for final demand was unchanged in August, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Final demand prices advanced 0.1 percent in July and 0.4 percent in June. On an unadjusted basis, the index for final demand increased 1.8 ...


September 16, 2014, 11:03 am, 1335794
From the Census Bureau: Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2013

The nation’s official poverty rate in 2013 was 14.5 percent, down from 15.0 percent in 2012. The 45.3 million people living at or below the poverty line in 2013, for the third consecutive year, ...


September 16, 2014, 10:44 am, 1335793
A


September 16, 2014, 10:35 am, 1335792

Martin Wolf says something that I'm in two minds about:

People have to understand, when they're being taught economics, how little we know, how limited our data are, and how unbelievably complex our economic and financial system is.
I think people have to begin with profound humility ...


September 16, 2014, 10:34 am, 1335791
Teaser:

Bipartisanship ...


September 16, 2014, 10:05 am, 1335789

Here is the latest:

David Cameron faces a “bloodbath” at the hands of Tory MPs after all three parties pledged to continue high levels of funding for Scotland if it rejects independence.

The Prime Minister is facing mounting dissent among English backbenchers after promising that Scotland’s special funding ...


September 16, 2014, 10:04 am, 1335788
(September 16, 2014 08:35 AM, by Scott Sumner) This is beginning to sound like a broken record. A reformist right-wing government does lots of good things, trimming the size of the public sector. It promises monetary stability but delivers instability---a contractionary monetary shock. This time it was in... (0 COMMENTS)


September 16, 2014, 10:04 am, 1335787
Via Social Europe Journal, Dani Rodrik points to both a perennial question on economic self-interests and elections: Martin Gilens of Princeton University and Benjamin Page of Northwestern University, have recently produced some stark findings for the United States that have dramatic implications for the functioning of democracy – in the ...


September 16, 2014, 9:33 am, 1335784

[I am trying to explain what I think is a conceptual confusion by the "Open Borders" people. Unfortunately, my brain isn't very clear either.]

Land can't move, of course. But borders can. We can't move land across the borders, but we can move borders across the land.

So if half the people ...


September 16, 2014, 9:33 am, 1335782

The WSJ'sNumbers "guy":

The true cost of electricity is difficult to pin down. That’s because a number of inputs comprise it: the cost of fuel ...


September 16, 2014, 9:33 am, 1335783

Spencer Banzhaf:

In a new RFF discussion paper, “Valuation of Ecosystem Services in the Southern Appalachian Mountains,” RFF colleagues Dallas Burtraw, Alan Krupnick, and Juha Siikamäki and I, along with Susie Chung Criscimagna of Eden Housing, Bernard Cosby of the University of Virginia, and David Evans of EPA, estimate ...


September 16, 2014, 9:33 am, 1335781

There is a lot of economic nostalgia — particularly on the left with its fond memories of the unionized 1950s — for manufacturing. In his 2013 State of the Union address, President Obama asked Congress to finance “manufacturing hubs” as a way of turning “regions left behind by ...


September 16, 2014, 9:33 am, 1335780

A Saginaw, Michigan funeral home now offers drive-thru viewing. Paradise Funeral Chapel has installed a drive-thru window (pictured above) allowing people to drive up to pay their last respects.


September 16, 2014, 9:03 am, 1335718
Houses on Sydney’s eastern seaboard, May 2010. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Australia’s central bank is worried about surging house prices, but it appears no closer to clamping down ...


September 16, 2014, 9:03 am, 1335717
Foreign direct investment into China took a breather in August, dropping 14% from a year earlier to a more than four-year low. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

China’s monthly ...


September 16, 2014, 9:03 am, 1335715

Federal Reserve officials gather Tuesday and Wednesday to discuss whether to adjust their guidance on interest rates.

Join Wall Street Journal economics correspondents Jon Hilsenrath and Sudeep Reddy for a live video chat Tuesday at 11 a.m. ET to discuss the meeting and Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen‘s performance so far this ...


September 16, 2014, 9:03 am, 1335716

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Tuesday, September 16, 2014:

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Highlights

Da Costa’s Take: The Case for Fed Patience on Rates, Message How Stocks Perform Before ...


September 16, 2014, 8:44 am, 1335714
Robert Litan: A recent Brookings study injects some facts into the debate about student debt that should quiet some fears .


September 16, 2014, 8:36 am, 1335713
When the dust clears from tomorrow’s Fed announcement, the crowd’s expecting that the slow but persistent pace of tapering will endure. While we’re waiting for Wednesday’s monetary statement, revised set of economic projections, and press conference, consider that the real … Continue reading →


September 16, 2014, 8:35 am, 1335712

Income inequality may shrink state tax revenues. A new report from Standard & Poor’s tells the tale. Incomes have grown rapidly among the wealthy, but have barely kept pace with inflation for many others. But high income earners both shelter their income from taxes and save ...


September 16, 2014, 8:04 am, 1335710
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 82 of Alain de Botton’s delightful 1993 volume, On Love (original emphasis):

Amorous politics begins its infamous history in the course of the French Revolution, when it was first proposed (with all the choice of a rape) that the state would not just govern but love ...


September 16, 2014, 7:33 am, 1335706

A distiniguished economist, James Hamilton, tries to figure out what's going on with long-term interest rates and equities.


September 16, 2014, 7:33 am, 1335705

Some nice examples of a lesson I tried very hard to teach my students: it's a good idea to check original sources.

Much of what we hear about the plight of American women is false. Some faux facts have been repeated so often they are almost beyond ...


September 16, 2014, 7:33 am, 1335704

I would say I didn't believe it, but these days I'd believe almost anything about the federal government.

This is one of the weirdest workplaces in the U.S. government — both for where it is and for what it does.

Here, inside the caverns of an ...


September 16, 2014, 7:33 am, 1335703

Bullseye. A+.

“Hey Dr. X, I actually have three other assignments due the same day as your assignment, and your class is the least important to me, so can I just not do it, or do it late or something? Thanks in advance!!!”

“hey professor!!! noticed ...


September 16, 2014, 7:03 am, 1335642

One of the flashpoints in the debate over the widening income gap has been answering the question, “So what?” What is the real impact of separating wages for the wealthiest Americans and everyone else?

Standard and Poor’s Ratings Services offered a new answer Monday, arguing that a rising share ...


September 16, 2014, 7:03 am, 1335641
The national flag of China flutters behind a fence of the headquarters of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) in Beijing, in this July 12, 2013 file photo.


September 16, 2014, 7:03 am, 1335640
Houses on Sydney’s eastern seaboard, May 2010. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Australia’s central bank is worried about surging house prices, but it appears no closer to clamping down ...


September 16, 2014, 7:03 am, 1335639
Foreign direct investment into China took a breather in August, dropping 14% from a year earlier to a more than four-year low. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

China’s monthly ...


September 16, 2014, 6:44 am, 1335638

The prevailing view of shadow banking is that it is all about regulatory arbitrage – evading capital requirements and exploiting ‘too big to fail’. This column focuses instead on the tradeoff between economic growth and financial stability. Shadow banking transforms risky, illiquid assets into securities that are – in good ...


September 16, 2014, 6:44 am, 1335637

IT IS astounding how quickly expectations can change. Just 15 years ago the emerging world looked a hopeless case, economically speaking. Indeed, it wasn't the "emerging world" at all, but "less-developed countries". Once again, the growth momentum that had built in a coterie of promising looking economies had flamed out ...


September 16, 2014, 5:33 am, 1335633

There's a joke about conservatives that runs along the line of "A conservative is someone who's desperately afraid that someone, somewhere is having fun."

But now in the very, very liberal UK Guardian we have this: "Brunch is a waste of time, money and drunken pleasure that you don't ...


September 16, 2014, 5:33 am, 1335632



(p. A13) . . . , a lack of "demand" is no longer the problem.


. . .


Where, instead, are the problems? John Taylor, Stanford's Nick Bloom and Chicago Booth's Steve Davis see the uncertainty induced by seat-of-the-pants policy at fault. Who wants ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 am, 1335581

Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen‘s calendars, obtained by The Wall Street Journal under an open records request, provide a glimpse into how the most powerful economic policy maker in the world spends her time. You can read the original documents — annotated by Journal reporters ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 am, 1335580

TUESDAY

Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda speaks in Osaka at 0535 GMT. Australia’s central bank releases minutes of its September policy meeting at 11:30 a.m. local time Bank of Russia releases a monetary policy report Fed begins a two-day policy meeting in Washington. Join our live, video Spreecast discussion with Jon Hilsenrath and ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 am, 1335578

When a country’s economy grows too slowly, the standard short-term remedies are to increase government spending, cut taxes or reduce interest rates. When none of those options is available, governments often resort ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 am, 1335579

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Monday, September 15, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Dollar Doomsayers Have Gotten the Fed All Wrong Fed Sizes Up Alternate Rate ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 am, 1335577

One of the flashpoints in the debate over the widening income gap has been answering the question, “So what?” What is the real impact of separating wages for the wealthiest Americans and everyone else?

Standard and Poor’s Ratings Services offered a new answer Monday, arguing that a rising share ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 am, 1335576
The national flag of China flutters behind a fence of the headquarters of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) in Beijing, in this July 12, 2013 file photo.


September 16, 2014, 5:03 am, 1335575

Australia’s central bank is worried about surging house prices, but it appears no closer to clamping down further on mortgage lending, unlike its counterparts in countries such as New Zealand, Canada and the U.K.

On Tuesday, the Reserve Bank of Australia ramped up its warnings about house prices, saying they could ...


September 16, 2014, 5:03 am, 1335574

September 16, 2014, 4:05 am, 1335573

That is a new paper (pdf) by John Cawley, here is the abstract:

This guide, updated for the 2014-15 job market season, describes the academic market for new Ph.D. economists and offers advice on conducting an academic job search. It reports findings from published papers, describes practical details, and ...


September 16, 2014, 3:03 am, 1335520
The national flag of China flutters behind a fence of the headquarters of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) in Beijing, in this July 12, 2013 file photo.


September 16, 2014, 2:44 am, 1335519
A


September 16, 2014, 2:44 am, 1335518
A


September 16, 2014, 2:05 am, 1335516

Too little, too late on the excess burdens of taxation: Cecil Bohanon, John Horowitz, and James McClure show that public finance textbooks do a very poor job of illuminating the excess burdens of taxation and incorporating such burdens into the analysis of the costs of government ...


September 16, 2014, 2:04 am, 1335515
(September 16, 2014 02:19 AM, by David Henderson) I'm a big fan of Vanguard. All of my IRA-type assets are in Vanguard funds. And when I mistakenly claimed in a Wall Street Journal that John (Jack) Bogle, who started Vanguard, had learned from work by Eugene Fama, Bogle... (0 COMMENTS)


September 16, 2014, 1:03 am, 1335491

Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen‘s calendars, obtained by The Wall Street Journal under an open records request, provide a glimpse into how the most powerful economic policy maker in the world spends her time. You can read the original documents — annotated by Journal reporters ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 am, 1335489

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Monday, September 15, 2014:

Sign up for the newsletter.

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Dollar Doomsayers Have Gotten the Fed All Wrong Fed Sizes Up Alternate Rate ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 am, 1335490

TUESDAY

Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda speaks in Osaka at 0535 GMT. Australia’s central bank releases minutes of its September policy meeting at 11:30 a.m. local time Bank of Russia releases a monetary policy report Fed begins a two-day policy meeting in Washington. Join our live, video Spreecast discussion with Jon Hilsenrath and ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 am, 1335488

When a country’s economy grows too slowly, the standard short-term remedies are to increase government spending, cut taxes or reduce interest rates. When none of those options is available, governments often resort ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 am, 1335487

One of the flashpoints in the debate over the widening income gap has been answering the question, “So what?” What is the real impact of separating wages for the wealthiest Americans and everyone else?

Standard and Poor’s Ratings Services offered a new answer Monday, arguing that a rising share ...


September 16, 2014, 1:03 am, 1335486

Bruce Bartlett brought my attention to this article, which Mark Thoma mused was “The Stupidest Article Ever Written”. From The Inflation Debt Scam, by Paul Craig Roberts, Dave Kranzler and John Williams:

To understand how risky the rise of debt is, nominal debt must be compared to real ...


September 16, 2014, 12:44 am, 1335485
The White House said tougher financial-sector rules were making the country safer -- a message delivered on the six-year anniversary of the collapse of Lehman Brothers.


September 16, 2014, 12:44 am, 1335484
Salim Furth: An examination of Thomas Piketty’s principal claims and the critical responses.


September 16, 2014, 12:34 am, 1335483

The NCAA, a quasi-governmental regulatory cartel, prohibits colleges from paying athletes. So colleges employ a variety of schemes to offer unofficial “pay.” Meanwhile, the NCAA ensures there is no functioning job market for athletes at that level, and no competition to which students ...


September 16, 2014, 12:34 am, 1335482
Teaser:

On ...