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.


EconModel

The Economics Roundtable is sponsored by EconModel.

The Classic Economic Models cover micro, macro, and financial markets.


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- Recent Entries


December 20, 2014, 8:34 am, 1392564
Last week I recapped some of the more interesting titles that appeared in The Capital Spectator’s Book Bits column that runs on Saturday mornings. Here’s Part II of the year-end review of economic and finance books from 2014 that deserve a second look… ● Risk Savvy: How to Make Good ...


December 20, 2014, 8:04 am, 1392560
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 120 of the third edition (2015) of my colleague Tyler Cowen’s and Alex Tabarrok’s microeconomics textbook, Modern Principles: Microeconomics:

How is order produced from freedom of choice?  That is a scientific mystery, and prices are the biggest clue to the solution.  Prices do much more ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392535
Economist Thomas Piketty in Berlin in November. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Thomas Piketty’s “Capital in the 21st Century” was a 2014 must-read for anyone interested in economics. But ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392536
G-8 leaders at Camp David in May 2012 European Pressphoto Agency

For a meeting of the Group of Eight nations in 2012, President Barack Obama ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392538
German Chancellor and chairwoman of the Christian Democrats, CDU, Angela Merkel, thanks delegates after her speech at the party convention in Cologne, Germany, on Dec. 9. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392534
Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis President Narayana Kocherlakota. Reuters

One of the Federal Reserve officials who cast a dissenting vote at this week’s policy meeting said Friday ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392537

December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392533
Bloomberg

Regulators and lenders say that agreements struck this year should make it easier for more Americans to get mortgages in 2015. But one major problem that could hold ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392532
Washington, D.C., saw its jobless rate drop to 7.4% in November from 7.8% last year, though it still has one of the nation’s highest rates. Getty ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392530
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco President John Williams in October. Reuters

Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco President John Williams said in a radio interview Friday ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392529
U.S. homes will be worth $27.5 trillion at the end of 2014, an increase of 6.1%, or $1.7 trillion, according to the real estate website Zillow.


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392531
Personal incomes in North Dakota slowed in the third quarter, with declines in farming offsetting gains in the category that includes gas and oil drilling. Agence ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392528

Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond President Jeffrey Lacker said Friday he isn’t ready to say when the U.S. central bank should raise rates.

Mr. Lacker was speaking in Charlotte, N.C., as part of a panel discussion followed by questions from reporters. The official will gain a vote on the monetary-policy setting ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392526

Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia leader Charles Plosser said in a statement Friday the U.S. central bank is failing to make its monetary policy stance truly dependent on how the economy performs.

Mr. Plosser’s comments came from a statement that explained why he cast a dissenting vote against the Fed monetary ...


December 20, 2014, 7:03 am, 1392527
The reports are front-loaded in the coming week to allow for financial markets and the U.S. government to close for Christmas. Before Santa comes down the chimney, reports on home sales, sentiment and other data will be released. Will they bring holiday cheer to economy-watchers?


December 20, 2014, 3:03 am, 1392500

December 20, 2014, 2:05 am, 1392497

1. Jim Al-Khalili and Johnjoe McFadden, Life on the Edge: The Coming of Age of Quantum Biology.  How quantum effects can matter for biological phenomena.  No, it doesn’t mean Roger Penrose was right (and this book usefully tells you why not), but still this is a stimulating book ...


December 20, 2014, 12:44 am, 1392478
On the Capital Journal Roundtable, Washington Bureau Chief Jerry Seib discusses the politics of the U.S. shift on Cuba, Jeb Bush's near-candidacy for 2016 and signs of an improving economy with the WSJ's Colleen McCain Nelson, Beth Reinhard and Sudeep Reddy.


December 20, 2014, 12:44 am, 1392477

The recent dramatic fall in oil prices has renewed the interest in the importance of shocks in the oil price volatility. This column presents results from new research on the role of shocks and speculation on oil prices. The authors find that when speculation is short in duration, it has ...


December 20, 2014, 12:44 am, 1392476

Argentina is the only country in the world that was 'developed’ in 1900 and ‘developing’ in 2000. Various explanations highlight the roles of trade openness, political institutions, financial integration, financial development, and macroeconomic instability. No study has so far attempted a quantitative assessment of the relative importance of each of ...


December 19, 2014, 11:33 pm, 1392473
On December 17, ZeroHedge asked Will Putin's Next Step Be To Sell Gold?

On December 18, ZeroHedge answered his own question wrongly with Russia Has Begun Selling Its Gold, According To SocGen.

I did not believe that when I saw it yesterday, and I ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392453
Atlantic County, N.J., recorded the largest decline in employment through the first half of the year, largely due to job cuts at casinos. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Employment ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392454
Delta Air Lines Inc. told investors last week that it expects pretax income to jump 11% next year. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Are you hoping falling oil prices ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392456

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Thursday, December 18, 2014:

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


Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Yellen Playbook Puts Slack Over Oil Price Declines Fed Sets Stage for Rate ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392455
Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen, asked Wednesday what “patient” meant, said the Fed would not begin hiking rates for “a couple” of meetings. Pressed further, she confirmed “a couple” means two.


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392452
Texas has seen strong growth in recent years, outpacing the U.S. recovery in part thanks to a boom in domestic oil production. Now a drop in oil prices risks ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392451
BMW said it has responded to the falling margins on car sales by reducing exports to Russia since the summer and “reallocating vehicles to more attractive markets.”


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392448
G-8 leaders at Camp David in May 2012 European Pressphoto Agency

For a meeting of the Group of Eight nations in 2012, President Barack Obama ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392447
Economist Thomas Piketty in Berlin in November. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Thomas Piketty’s “Capital in the 21st Century” was a 2014 must-read for anyone interested in economics. But ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392449

December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392450
German Chancellor and chairwoman of the Christian Democrats, CDU, Angela Merkel, thanks delegates after her speech at the party convention in Cologne, Germany, on Dec. 9. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392443
Personal incomes in North Dakota slowed in the third quarter, with declines in farming offsetting gains in the category that includes gas and oil drilling. Agence ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392444
Washington, D.C., saw its jobless rate drop to 7.4% in November from 7.8% last year, though it still has one of the nation’s highest rates. Getty ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392446
Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis President Narayana Kocherlakota. Reuters

One of the Federal Reserve officials who cast a dissenting vote at this week’s policy meeting said Friday ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392442
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco President John Williams in October. Reuters

Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco President John Williams said in a radio interview Friday ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392445
Bloomberg

Regulators and lenders say that agreements struck this year should make it easier for more Americans to get mortgages in 2015. But one major problem that could hold ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392438

Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia leader Charles Plosser said in a statement Friday the U.S. central bank is failing to make its monetary policy stance truly dependent on how the economy performs.

Mr. Plosser’s comments came from a statement that explained why he cast a dissenting vote against the Fed monetary ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392441
U.S. homes will be worth $27.5 trillion at the end of 2014, an increase of 6.1%, or $1.7 trillion, according to the real estate website Zillow.


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392439
The reports are front-loaded in the coming week to allow for financial markets and the U.S. government to close for Christmas. Before Santa comes down the chimney, reports on home sales, sentiment and other data will be released. Will they bring holiday cheer to economy-watchers?


December 19, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1392440

Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond President Jeffrey Lacker said Friday he isn’t ready to say when the U.S. central bank should raise rates.

Mr. Lacker was speaking in Charlotte, N.C., as part of a panel discussion followed by questions from reporters. The official will gain a vote on the monetary-policy setting ...


December 19, 2014, 10:04 pm, 1392435
(Don Boudreaux)

At the same time that I was writing this blog post earlier today, one of the quack healers mentioned in that post held a press conference, it would seem, for the purpose of supplying evidence in support of the point of that post.  Here’s a slice from


December 19, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1392387
Here is an indicator that I follow on trucking, from the ATA: ATA Truck Tonnage Index Surged 3.5% in November

American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index jumped 3.5% in November, following an increase of 0.5% during the previous month. In November, the index equaled ...


December 19, 2014, 6:44 pm, 1392386
A


December 19, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1392385

December 19, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1392382

The only thing missing from America’s manufacturing renaissance is, you know, actual factory workers. A strong upturn in output since the Great Recession, in the number of employees not so much. Here is MIT’s Andrew McAfee (who also supplied the above ...


December 19, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1392381

Hollywood and the American public alike are in uproar over the recent cancellation of Sony Pictures Entertainment’s movie, “The Interview,” which depicts the assassination of North Korea’s dictator, Kim Jong Un. US officials have confirmed that North Korean hackers are behind the attack that leaked sensitive and embarrassing Sony correspondence. ...


December 19, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1392380

The Washington Post’s multipart series – led by Jim Tankersley and his team — on America’s struggling middle class is a must-read for policymakers. While I will have more to say on this next week, I did want to highlight the ...


December 19, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1392379

People refer to the Cuba sanctions as an anachronism.  After all, we trade and work with many dictatorships. For example, what’s the difference between Cuba and Communist China?

Cuba is in our neighborhood—in a region whose governments have committed themselves to representative democracy and respect for human rights.  Yes, we should ...


December 19, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1392378
Abolition of rent controls in Spain this month have prompted some landlords to increase fees by tens of thousands of euros. The Guardian claims Spanish rent changes ‘could close 20,000 small businesses’.

Is this a good thing? Ponder that question for a moment, but also consider a few ...


December 19, 2014, 5:24 pm, 1392377

We at the Atlanta Fed have been arguing for some time that the unusually large number and share of workers employed part-time but wanting full-time work (counted in the Current Population Survey as part-time for economic reasons, or PTER) partly reflects slack in the labor market that is ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1392315

Japan looks likely to cut its corporate tax rate by 2 to 3 points in 2015, according to Bloomberg:

Japan’s corporate income tax may be cut by more than 2 percentage points next year and reduced to less than 30 percent within five, Economy Minister Akira ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1392314
The reports are front-loaded in the coming week to allow for financial markets and the U.S. government to close for Christmas. Before Santa comes down the chimney, reports on home sales, sentiment and other data will be released. Will they bring holiday cheer to economy-watchers?


December 19, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1392313

Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia leader Charles Plosser said in a statement Friday the U.S. central bank is failing to make its monetary policy stance truly dependent on how the economy performs.

Mr. Plosser’s comments came from a statement that explained why he cast a dissenting vote against the Fed monetary ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1392312

Is the financial industry is winning the war over regulation?:

Volcker lambasts Wall Street lobbying, FT: Paul Volcker, the former Federal Reserve chairman, has lambasted the "eternal lobbying" of Wall Street after regulators granted the industry more time to comply with a rule designed to prevent them from owning ...


December 19, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1392311
A


December 19, 2014, 4:34 pm, 1392310
A recent post by Matt Levine starts out with the following observation:

A good general principle in thinking about derivatives is that real effects tend to ripple out from economic interests. This is not always true, and not always intuitive: If you and I bet ...


December 19, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1392309
(Don Boudreaux)

Here’s a letter to the Washington Post:

So Dr. Mehmet Oz isn’t really a wizard: he and other media medics often peddle, not sound advice, but entertaining quackery (“Half of Dr. Oz’s medical advice is baseless or wrong, study says,” Dec. 19).  No surprise.  People are gullible, especially when ...


December 19, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1392308


December 19, 2014, 3:23 pm, 1392304
New changes in the egg market in California are a great resource for teaching a number of economic concepts, particularly supply and demand in action. A number of scenarios are possible as different rules in different states impact on egg producers decisions on how to produce their eggs and where ...


December 19, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1392242
U.S. homes will be worth $27.5 trillion at the end of 2014, an increase of 6.1%, or $1.7 trillion, according to the real estate website Zillow.


December 19, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1392241

NEW YORK—Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond President Jeffrey Lacker said Friday he isn’t ready to say when the U.S. central bank should raise rates.

Mr. Lacker was speaking in Charlotte, N.C., as part of a panel discussion followed by questions from reporters. The official will gain a vote on the monetary-policy ...


December 19, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1392240

Joshua Gans:

Digitized Products: How about just giving up?: In a very interesting talk, music producer, Steve Albini, reviewed the impact of the internet on the music industry’s woes. ...

From my part, I believe the very concept of exclusive intellectual property with respect to recorded music ...


December 19, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1392239
With lower gasoline prices, vehicle miles driven might reach a new peak in 2015.

The Department of Transportation (DOT) reported:

Travel on all roads and streets changed by 2.6% (6.6 billion vehicle miles) for October 2014 as compared with October 2013.

Travel for the month is estimated ...


December 19, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1392238
CR Note: The consensus is that on Monday, the NAR will report 5.20 million existing home sales for November, on a seasonally adjusted annual rate basis (SAAR). Housing economist Tom Lawler isn't always correct, but usually he is much closer than the consensus - so I expect a consensus ...


December 19, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1392237
A


December 19, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1392234
A


December 19, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1392236
A


December 19, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1392235
A


December 19, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1392231
(December 19, 2014 02:49 PM, by David Henderson) "What Michael did was the exception, not the rule," Luzinski said. "He didn't have to do this. The law allows you to skate by and pay your creditors 10 or 20 cents on the dollar, but he thought this was... (0 COMMENTS)


December 19, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1392226

Based on revealed preference (no cheap talk treatment necessary) as submitted to the WNCW and No Depression top polls:

Lydia Loveless - Somewhere Else Hard Working Americans - Hard Working Americans Drive-by Truckers -English Oceans Old 97s - Most Messed Up Lucinda Williams - Down Where the Spirit Meets the Bone Rosanne ...


December 19, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1392225

CALL FOR PAPERS: Thresholds, Tipping Points and Random Eventsin Dynamic Economic Systems

The Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy (http://bakercenter.utk.edu/) and the Department of Economics (http://econ.bus.utk.edu/) at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, will host a workshop on Thresholds, Tipping Points, and Random Events in ...


December 19, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1392181
Personal incomes in North Dakota slowed in the third quarter, with declines in farming offsetting gains in the category that includes gas and oil drilling. Agence ...


December 19, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1392182
Washington, D.C., saw its jobless rate drop to 7.4% in November from 7.8% last year, though it still has one of the nation’s highest rates. Getty ...


December 19, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1392180
FILE–Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco President John Williams in October. Reuters

NEW YORK–Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco President John Williams affirmed Friday that he believes ...


December 19, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1392179
From the Kansas City Fed: Tenth District Manufacturing Activity Expanded at a Moderate Pace

The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City released the December Manufacturing Survey today. According to Chad Wilkerson, vice president and economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, the survey revealed that Tenth ...


December 19, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1392178
On the Capital Journal Roundtable, Washington Bureau Chief Jerry Seib discusses the politics of the U.S. shift on Cuba, Jeb Bush's near-candidacy for 2016 and signs of an improving economy with the WSJ's Colleen McCain Nelson, Beth Reinhard and Sudeep Reddy.


December 19, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1392177
A


December 19, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1392175
A


December 19, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1392176
A


December 19, 2014, 12:34 pm, 1392174
The three-month average of the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI) is expected to rebound to a +0.12 reading in the November update that’s scheduled for Monday (Dec. 22), based on The Capital Spectator’s median point forecast for several econometric estimates. The projection is moderately above the -0.01 reading for ...


December 19, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1392172

In Ferguson and the Modern Debtor’s Prison I noted that Ferguson raises an unusually high rate of revenues from fines.

You don’t get $321 in fines and fees and 3 warrants per household from an about-average crime rate. You get numbers like this from bullshit arrests for jaywalking and ...


December 19, 2014, 12:05 pm, 1392171

December 19, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1392170
In a recent post, I noted that actual non-residential fixed capital investment doesn’t show the pattern one would expect based on optimizing models at all. Ugh that sentence was convoluted and so is the post it describes. In fact, the puzzling pattern is really very simple. Non residential fixed capital ...


December 19, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1392169

Al Houthi militants seized the strategic al Hudaydah port on Yemen’s coast on December 17. The move gives the al Houthis, a Zaydi Shi’a movement that has received Iranian financial and materiel support, direct access to shipping and smuggling routes in the Red Sea. ...


December 19, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1392168

North Korea’s state-run news agency claims that suggestions Pyongyang was behind the cyber-attack on Sony Pictures are “wild rumor.” But, according to the New York Times and other media sources, US intelligence officials have concluded otherwise. The attack, ...


December 19, 2014, 11:33 am, 1392165

Marc Faber is a very knowledgeable guy, but thumbing through a copy of his most recent Gloom, Boom, & Doom Report, I stumbled on a pretty big error. Here ...


December 19, 2014, 11:33 am, 1392164
Michael Gedal, Stephanie Rosoff, and Joelle Scally

The New York Fed has released a new product—the Household Debt and Credit Report for the Second District—which tracks consumer credit conditions in the tri-state area. Our readers are already familiar with our Quarterly Report on ...


December 19, 2014, 11:23 am, 1392163
There is a vast discrepancy between how we see the world when giving gifts and when receiving them


December 19, 2014, 11:03 am, 1392102
Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis President Narayana Kocherlakota. Reuters

One of the Federal Reserve officials who cast a dissenting vote at this week’s policy meeting said Friday ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 am, 1392101
Bloomberg

Regulators and lenders say that agreements struck this year should make it easier for more Americans to get mortgages in 2015. But one major problem that could hold ...


December 19, 2014, 11:03 am, 1392100
From the BLS: Regional and State Employment and Unemployment Summary

Regional and state unemployment rates were little changed in November. Forty-one states and the District of Columbia had unemployment rate decreases from October, three states had increases, and six states had no change, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics ...


December 19, 2014, 10:44 am, 1392099
A


December 19, 2014, 10:44 am, 1392098
A


December 19, 2014, 10:34 am, 1392097
Teaser:

As ...


December 19, 2014, 10:04 am, 1392094
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from pages 214-215 of David Landes’s often brilliant but uneven 1998 volume, The Wealth and Poverty of Nations:

At the same time, the British were making major gains in land and water transport.  New turnpike roads and canals, intended primarily to serve industry and mining, opened the way to ...


December 19, 2014, 10:04 am, 1392093

In its January 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance (DSG), the Obama Administration stated that the United States “will of necessity rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific region.”1

Yet one month later, the administration released its 2013 defense budget request, including $487 billion in cuts mandated under the 2011 Budget Control Act (BCA), which provided a framework for ...


December 19, 2014, 9:33 am, 1392090

With one exception, Tony Yates strikes me as being a very sensible and very good money/macro economist. But at the mention of "helicopter money", he seems to turn into an Old Testament prophet, or maybe Private Frazer from Dad's Army, saying "We're doomed, I tell ye!" ...


December 19, 2014, 9:33 am, 1392089

Now that Sony has set a precedent of pulling movies after the parent company is hacked, I worry that the Empire will be using the Force on Disney now that the Force is awakening.

Yes, I'm a dork.


December 19, 2014, 9:33 am, 1392088

Here is a summary of the fields of the PhD job market candidates at the 'top' econ programs this year.

Since most environmental economists are really public economists trained ...


December 19, 2014, 9:03 am, 1392041

December 19, 2014, 9:03 am, 1392042
German Chancellor and chairwoman of the Christian Democrats, CDU, Angela Merkel, thanks delegates after her speech at the party convention in Cologne, Germany, on Dec. 9. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)


December 19, 2014, 9:03 am, 1392039

Thomas Piketty’s “Capital in the 21st Century” was a 2014 must-read for anyone interested in economics. But while his claim that income and wealth inequality has risen over recent decades to highs last seen before the start of the First World War  was widely accepted, his policy prescriptions were not.

One ...


December 19, 2014, 9:03 am, 1392040
G-8 leaders at Camp David in May 2012 European Pressphoto Agency

For a meeting of the Group of Eight nations in 2012, President Barack Obama ...


December 19, 2014, 9:03 am, 1392038

Suppose, for a moment, that you could look up and see the Moon from anywhere in the Northern Hemisphere on every night of 2015.

Thanks to images collected by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and the talented staff at NASA's Scientific Visualizations Studio, ...


December 19, 2014, 8:44 am, 1392037
Falling oil prices and Russia's deepening economic turmoil are proving to be two of the biggest developments for the global economy this year, reshaping the Obama administration’s international economic policy.


December 19, 2014, 8:44 am, 1392036
A


December 19, 2014, 8:34 am, 1392035
It’s all about real estate investment trusts (REITs) these days when it comes to bullish performance among the major asset classes via our standard list of ETF proxies for the key slices of global markets. US REITs, to be precise, are enjoying a melt-up moment. But don’t confuse the stellar ...


December 19, 2014, 8:04 am, 1392032
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from pages 214-215 of David Landes’s often brilliant but uneven 1998 volume, The Wealth and Poverty of Nations:

At the same time, the British were making major gains in land and water transport.  New turnpike roads and canals, intended primarily to serve industry and mining, opened the way to ...


December 19, 2014, 7:33 am, 1392028
Megan Cohen



From 1793 until 1861, when the U. S. Treasury Department was given exclusive rights to produce legal ...


December 19, 2014, 7:23 am, 1392027

The three main sectors of the economy are:

Primary sector – extraction of raw materials – mining, fishing and agriculture. Secondary / manufacturing sector – concerned with producing finished goods, e.g. factories ...


December 19, 2014, 7:03 am, 1391988
BMW said it has responded to the falling margins on car sales by reducing exports to Russia since the summer and “reallocating vehicles to more attractive markets.”


December 19, 2014, 6:44 am, 1391987

I've been remiss in cross-posting my Dealb%k columns. Both of the most recent ones have commented on the ABI's chapter 11 reform proposal. You can find them here.


December 19, 2014, 6:35 am, 1391986
● Jobless claims still signal strong U.S. hiring | MarketWatch ● US service sector output growth hits 10-month low in Dec | Markit ● U.S. Leading Economic Index Rises 0.6% In November | RTT ● Philly Fed survey shows factory activity slowed in December | Reuters ● German consumer morale ...


December 19, 2014, 6:05 am, 1391985

Cell biologist Andrew Hessel of Autodesk is designing viruses in software to attack a specific individual’s cancer and then using DNA Printers to create the viruses as a drug. Here from an interview with New Scientist (gated).

It’s really about making a specific medicine tailored to one person–”N-of-1″ medicine–rather than try to ...


December 19, 2014, 5:33 am, 1391982

This is (supposed to be) a simple "teaching" post. There should be nothing new here. Just a newish way of presenting old stuff. The more interest-elastic the demand for money, the more important ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391944

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 ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391948
Much of America’s wealth gains are due to the stock market, which has jumped nearly 200% since its lowest point in 2009.  Bloomberg News

The typical affluent ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391947

November saw the steepest drop in consumer prices in almost six years, and that decline may have further to go as the collapse of oil continues to pull down prices.

The Consumer Price Index, released this morning, fell a seasonally adjusted 0.3% between October and November. But at the end ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391946
Federal Reserve Board Chairwoman Janet Yellen speaks during a news conference on Wednesday Getty Images

The Federal Reserve wrapped up its final policy meeting of the year Wednesday ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391945

Here is the full text of the Federal Reserve’s policy statement, released Wednesday:

Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in October suggests that economic activity is expanding at a moderate pace. Labor market conditions improved further, with solid job gains and a lower unemployment rate. On ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391939

The Federal Reserve’s decision Wednesday to tiptoe slowly toward interest-rate increases generated a significant and rare level of insurrection among its membership.

Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher was ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391938
Lower gas prices are “certainly good for families, for households,” Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen said. Bloomberg News

Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen isn’t too worried about plunging ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391940

Federal Reserve officials said Wednesday they would be “patient” as they considered when to start raising interest rates next year. But the central bank’s policy statement retained some of its earlier language, mitigating the effect of the shift in wording. Here’s how economists reacted to the ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391937
As the White House charts a new course for relations with Cuba, here are five things to know about Cuba’s economy.


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391943
Reuters

Federal Reserve officials continue to see a start to rates rises next year but a slightly slower pace of increases, in an outlook that predicts weaker ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391942
U.S. Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen said Wednesday the U.S. central bank is unlikely to raise short-term interest ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391941

Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen said she has “great confidence” in Federal Reserve Bank of New York President William Dudley, responding to questions about scrutiny the regional Fed bank is facing for its ties to large financial institutions and its performance in supervising them.

Mr. Dudley has “done a fine job ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391930
Texas has seen strong growth in recent years, outpacing the U.S. recovery in part thanks to a boom in domestic oil production. Now a drop in oil prices risks ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391936
In both the U.K and U.S., policy makers expect tightening labor markets to result in a pickup in wages that will translate into higher consumer prices.


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391931
Atlantic County, N.J., recorded the largest decline in employment through the first half of the year, largely due to job cuts at casinos. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Employment ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391933
Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen, asked Wednesday what “patient” meant, said the Fed would not begin hiking rates for “a couple” of meetings. Pressed further, she confirmed “a couple” means two.


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391932
Delta Air Lines Inc. told investors last week that it expects pretax income to jump 11% next year. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Are you hoping falling oil prices ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391935
AFP

What are they?

Central banks typically set multiple interest rates, including on the loans they extend to banks and the rate they pay on excess reserves parked at the central bank. When they install a negative deposit rate, ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391934

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Thursday, December 18, 2014:

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


Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Yellen Playbook Puts Slack Over Oil Price Declines Fed Sets Stage for Rate ...


December 19, 2014, 5:03 am, 1391929
BMW said it has responded to the falling margins on car sales by reducing exports to Russia since the summer and “reallocating vehicles to more attractive markets.”


December 19, 2014, 4:05 am, 1391928

In particular, about 57% of the papers accepted by the first committee were rejected by the second one and vice versa. In other words, most papers at NIPS would be rejected if one reran the conference review process (with a 95% confidence interval of 40-75%)

Here is another framing:

If the committees ...


December 19, 2014, 3:03 am, 1391883

December 19, 2014, 3:03 am, 1391882

The Russian economy is in trouble:

Putin’s Bubble Bursts, by Paul Krugman, Commentary, NY Times: If you’re the type who finds macho posturing impressive, Vladimir Putin is your kind of guy. Sure enough, many American conservatives seem to have an embarrassing crush on the swaggering strongman. “That is what ...


December 19, 2014, 2:05 am, 1391881

I now regularly find that when I buy something from a cashier — especially small ticket items — that I have the option of tipping the salesperson.  There will be a cup for tips, or the space to write a tip into the credit card transaction.  If I buy a ...


December 19, 2014, 1:33 am, 1391880

Pictured above are some color TVs from the 627-page 1964 Sears Christmas Catalog, available here at the WishbookWeb website along with many other Christmas catalogs from 1933 to 1988. The original prices are listed ($750 for the Sears color TV console and $800 for the more expensive one), and those ...


December 19, 2014, 12:04 am, 1391852

Pictured above are some color TVs from the 627-page 1964 Sears Christmas Catalog, available here at the WishbookWeb website along with many other Christmas catalogs from 1933 to 1988. The original prices are listed ($750 for the Sears color TV console and $800 ...