Economics Roundtable

January 2014 Payroll Employment

We are getting closer to the previous peak.

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.


RSS Feed

- Recent Entries


April 24, 2014, 11:33 am, 1260395

AEI resident scholar Paul Kupiec’s new Wall Street Journal op-ed, “Guess Who Makes More Than Bankers: Their Regulators,” he explains that when it comes to compensation, public servant bank regulators fare favorably relative to their historically-detested  counterparts in private banking:

It is true that the very top bank executives ...


April 24, 2014, 11:33 am, 1260394

1. Chart of the Day: The chart above compares annual per-capita personal income in North and South Dakota from 1929 to 2013 and helps to quantify the effect of the shale oil boom on North Dakota’s economy. After closing ...


April 24, 2014, 11:23 am, 1260393
Tutor2u is delighted to provide details of the 2014 essay prize for students organised by the Marshall Economics Society at Cambridge University.


April 24, 2014, 11:03 am, 1260332

Lamenting the fact that Walgreens is considering moving its headquarters to Europe, Dan Smith (“Close Corporate Tax Loopholes” April 20, 2014) makes the claim that corporate profits earned and kept overseas are “not being taxed.”

Mr. Smith demonstrates his lack of understanding of how U.S. corporations are ...


April 24, 2014, 11:03 am, 1260331

(Click on the map to enlarge it. All maps and other graphics may be published and reposted with credit to the Tax Foundation. )

This map presents top individual income tax rates in each state for 2014. Income taxes are ...


April 24, 2014, 10:45 am, 1260330
A


April 24, 2014, 10:35 am, 1260329

The debate about inequality comprises, to a large extent, two camps. In one there are those like Martin Wolf who believe inequality is a problem which can be solved. In the other are those who doubt that inequality is a problem - either because ...


April 24, 2014, 10:04 am, 1260327
(April 24, 2014 09:22 AM, by Scott Sumner) Consumption is the bedrock upon which essentially all of economics is built. We assume that all economic activity is aimed at creating consumption (defined broadly to include the value of leisure time, and non-market factors such as clean air.) Of... (2 COMMENTS)


April 24, 2014, 9:23 am, 1260324
Since moving to Singapore from London last year, I’ve been intrigued by some of the similarities and differences between the two cities but one thing that has stood out is that Singapore’s citizens on the whole, are very obedient. Its low crime rate is well known but one thing that really struck me was ...


April 24, 2014, 9:03 am, 1260262

Australia’s government needs to be careful not to cut spending too deeply in next month’s budget for fiscal 2014-15, as the economy still faces major challenges, a member of the central bank’s policy board told The Wall Street Journal.


April 24, 2014, 9:03 am, 1260261

The transition of Swedish Central Bank Deputy Governor Per Jansson from interest rate hawk to dove continues.

Minutes from the April policy meeting show he was whisker away from joining colleagues Karolina Ekholm and Martin Floden in calling for a rate cut to get Sweden’s low inflation rate moving higher.

The main ...


April 24, 2014, 9:03 am, 1260260

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Thursday, April 24, 2014

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

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Time to Start Worrying about the U.S. Productivity Slowdown ECB Would Consider Asset ...


April 24, 2014, 9:03 am, 1260259

U.K. university students pushing for an overhaul of the way economics is taught have found a powerful ally: the Bank of England’s Andy Haldane.

Mr. Haldane, the BOE’s financial stability guru and soon-to-be chief economist, has written a foreword to a 60-page report produced by the University of Manchester’s Post-Crash ...


April 24, 2014, 9:03 am, 1260258
The DOL reports:

In the week ending April 19, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 329,000, an increase of 24,000 from the previous week's revised level. The previous week's level was revised up by 1,000 from 304,000 to 305,000. The 4-week moving average was 316,750, an ...


April 24, 2014, 8:44 am, 1260257
A


April 24, 2014, 8:35 am, 1260256
The latest batch of housing numbers offer a mixed view at best for this key sector. The March data for new housing starts and residential building permits are above their recent lows, but the gains are sluggish compared to the … Continue reading →


April 24, 2014, 8:04 am, 1260253

In previous work, I have argued that asymmetric incentives make the FDA too risk averse with the result being excessive drug lag and drug loss. The FDA, however, is not a monolithic agency, it is divided into divisions which overseas different types of drugs. The divisions have different ...


April 24, 2014, 8:04 am, 1260254

Target Logistics, a Boston-based builder and operator of dormitory-style housing, recently landed a nearly $30 million contract to provide lodging for hundreds of oil-field workers in North Dakota over the next three years.

The deal is the latest example of rising demand for professionally managed “man camps,” sprawling barracks that house ...


April 24, 2014, 8:04 am, 1260252
(Don Boudreaux)

Liberalism Unrelinquished.

Here’s one of the best essays you’ll read about the current hand-wringing over income inequality.  It’s by Kevin Williamson.  (HT Ross Kaminsky)  A slice:

Capitalism must be denounced afresh for each generation, and this generation’s fashionable anticapitalist is Thomas Piketty of France’s School for the Advanced ...


April 24, 2014, 8:04 am, 1260251
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from pages 218-219 of Steve Landsburg’s 2009 book, The Big Questions:

But the underlying fallacy – the failure to notice that things must add up – is, in my experience, the single greatest source of economic error.  Politicians routinely promise to make medical care or housing or ...


April 24, 2014, 7:33 am, 1260248

James Lileks pens a delightful dissection of one type of Liberal claptrap. Featuring beauties such as these:

The network of outrage is complex, each string vibrating on its own frequency. . . .

To sum it all up: The state must be allowed to consume what ...


April 24, 2014, 7:33 am, 1260247

If you had trouble accessing this site over the last week, I apologize. My blog software and hosting company, Typepad.com--usually excellent; I strongly recommend it--has suffered a very nasty distributed-denial-of-service attack. I hope the worst is over now.


April 24, 2014, 7:33 am, 1260246

A whole lot of wisdom about leadership and management in just a bit over six minutes. (And there's Bill Russell's laugh, one of the happiest sounds on the planet.)


April 24, 2014, 7:23 am, 1260245
We know that some students appreciate the opportunity for some extra and/or different revision support as they prepare for key summer exams.As a trial, we've set up a series of revision classes for AS & A2 Economics on the tutor2u section of our sister company Zondle.We'll add a series of ...


April 24, 2014, 7:23 am, 1260244
I have adapted one ofJon Clark'ssuperb interactive Economics PowerPoint activities to add some data on Gini Coefficients!Download the PPT file from here and try it with your students!


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260179

The euro zone has seen its fair share of “angst of the week” moments over the past couple of years (to borrow a phrase used by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi).

Ultra-low inflation, or “lowflation,” as the International Monetary Fund has dubbed it, may be the latest.

The annual rate of ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260178

Economists have been disappointed by a string of weaker-than-expected home-sales reports. Sales of existing homes dropped in March, including in parts of the country that weren’t hit by cold weather this winter. Sales of new homes, reported Wednesday, were down 13.3% from a year earlier to their lowest ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260177

An analysis from economists at Goldman Sachs shows how the degree to which mortgage lending standards ease over the next few years could make for a big difference in home sales volumes.

New home sales in March posted a surprising plunge from February, dropping 14.5%, and leaving ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260182

Mervyn King, former governor of the Bank of England and now Lord King of Lothbury, has received another honor to add to his lengthening list of gongs since swapping central banking for academia. He has been named a Knight Companion of the Noble Order of the Garter.

The Order of the ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260183

Bank of England officials are struggling to make sense of a big rise in self-employment in the U.K., a development that may affect when officials choose to lift interest rates.

At its April 9 meeting, Monetary Policy Committee officials agreed that the U.K.’s economic recovery appears to be gaining momentum, and ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260181

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Wednesday, April 23, 2014

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

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Housing Recovery, We Hardly Knew You Fed Looks Likely to Stick to ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260180
Bloomberg

Math and science are the peas and carrots of the jobs market: great for a career future, but resolutely unpopular with the young.

Even amid a relatively weak jobs ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260174
Pedestrians walk past the Bank of Japan headquarters in Tokyo. Bloomberg News

Japanese banks are becoming more insulated against losses that could emerge from a sudden rise ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260170

The transition of Swedish Central Bank Deputy Governor Per Jansson from interest rate hawk to dove continues.

Minutes from the April policy meeting show he was whisker away from joining colleagues Karolina Ekholm and Martin Floden in calling for a rate cut to get Sweden’s low inflation rate moving higher.

The main ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260176

Almost three out of five Americans are worried about having enough gold for their golden years.

A poll released by Gallup Tuesday shows 59% of respondents were very or moderately worried about having enough money for retirement. That has been the top financial concern since the turn of the century. The ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260171

Australia’s government needs to be careful not to cut spending too deeply in next month’s budget for fiscal 2014-15, as the economy still faces major challenges, a member of the central bank’s policy board told The Wall Street Journal.


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260172

The strong New Zealand dollar may be the thing that ends up putting the brakes on the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s tightening cycle.

The dairy industry is helping New ...


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260175

A shortage of Treasury securities is driving very strong demand for a tool the Federal Reserve is testing in hopes that it may one day give the central bank better control over short-term interest rates.


April 24, 2014, 7:03 am, 1260173

A roundup of economic news on Asia and emerging markets from around the Web.

Human Capital and Income Inequality: Literacy efforts in developing countries have helped halve  the inequality in education  distribution from 1950 to 2010 – yet income inequality has hardly changed. Amparo Castelló-Climent and Rafael Doménech explain why.

China’s Currency Conundrum: Fully ...


April 24, 2014, 6:34 am, 1260169
A


April 24, 2014, 5:33 am, 1260166

Why Madonna--#9--thought she could embarrass or show up Dave is beyond me.

Bonus: why Letterman's show was"a turning point in American cultural history". Overblown but interesting.


April 24, 2014, 5:23 am, 1260165
In recent months the external value of the pound has been rising quite strongly. Indeed it has outperformed a cluster of other countries even though we have seen a rise in the UK's current account deficit on the balance of payments.Stephanie Flanders, chief market strategist at JPMorgan Asset Management, talks ...


April 24, 2014, 5:23 am, 1260164
An exciting teaching opportunity at a leading sixth form college here. All the details below on how to join our good friends at Franklin College.


April 24, 2014, 5:03 am, 1260139

The strong New Zealand dollar may be the thing that ends up putting the brakes on the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s tightening cycle.

The dairy industry is helping New ...


April 24, 2014, 5:03 am, 1260138

On Tax Day 2014, the U.S. federal government owed its lenders over $17.577 trillion. Our chart below reveals who are the biggest creditors to the Uncle Sam:


April 24, 2014, 4:04 am, 1260137

By Michael Reddell, the paper is here (pdf):

Despite the huge, decades-long, and continuing deterioration in New Zealand’s relative productivity, the real exchange rate has not, on average, fallen. The persistently (and perhaps increasingly) “overvalued” exchange rate – itself a symptom of imbalances across the ...


April 24, 2014, 4:04 am, 1260136

How low can you go? No… this is not a post about Limbo. It is a post about low interest rates, low inflation, and economic growth.

The question is… Can low inflation stay low as the economy heats up around full employment?

Let’s look at Europe. ...


April 24, 2014, 3:03 am, 1260098

Barry Ritholtz:

U.S. on Highway to Flunking Out, by Barry Ritholtz: Roads are crumbling, bridges are collapsing, and what was once considered one of the greatest achievements of any government anywhere has fallen into embarrassing disrepair. I am of course discussing our nation’s infrastructure. ... How did this ...


April 24, 2014, 3:03 am, 1260099

April 24, 2014, 3:03 am, 1260097

"The French economist Thomas Piketty discussed his new book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century at the Graduate Center. In this landmark work, Piketty argues that the main driver of inequality—the tendency of returns on capital to exceed the rate of economic growth—threatens to ...


April 24, 2014, 1:23 am, 1260096

When I was writing at RealMoney.com, I would often do little posts in the Columnists Conversation, and title them “Notes and Comments,” or something like that.  I don’t normally do that here, but I would like to tie up some loose ends.

1) I received the following e-mail six weeks ago, ...


April 24, 2014, 1:23 am, 1260094

Minsky and the Subprime Mortgage Crisis: The Financial Instability Hypothesis in the Era of Financialization
Eugenio Caverzasi
“The aim of this paper is to develop a structural explanation of the subprime mortgage crisis, grounded on the combination of two apparently incompatible financial theories: the financial instability hypothesis by Hyman ...


April 24, 2014, 1:23 am, 1260095

Since its most recent low of $1.20, reached in the heat of the summer of 2012, the euro has appreciated by 15 percent against the US dollar and by more than 10 percent in inflation-adjusted terms against a broad basket of currencies representative of the euro area’s main ...


April 24, 2014, 1:23 am, 1260093

Chicago Fed President Charles Evans spoke at last week’s Minsky conference, and news reports have focused on his comments regarding the expectation that the Federal Reserve will wait at least six months after the end of QE before beginning to raise interest rates (Evans: “It could be six, it ...


April 24, 2014, 1:23 am, 1260092

In a new policy brief, Jan Kregel looks at a lesser-known, early period of Minsky’s work on financial reform. In the ’60s, Minsky was a consultant to a number of government agencies, including the Federal Reserve, on issues related to financial regulation. In this context, he came up with ...


April 24, 2014, 1:23 am, 1260091

The funny-shaped surface in the Wolfram “CDF” below (software download link) depicts excess demand for goods. The flat one represents the zero line where supply and demand are equal. On each axis is a variable that affects ...


April 24, 2014, 1:23 am, 1260090

(Here is a presentation I gave at the University of Denver at the annual J. Fagg Foster honors ceremony. Most of you will not know of Foster, but you should. While he did not publish much, he was the professor of a number of prominent institutionalists who attended DU in ...


April 24, 2014, 12:34 am, 1260045

Recent research has shown that the United States government functions to benefit wealthy interests while ignoring the average citizen. James Madison and the Federalists thought that forcing the independent states into a larger union would prevent this. They were wrong.


April 24, 2014, 12:34 am, 1260044

This week, April 23-30, is “High Road Restaurant Week” in New York City. If you are unfamiliar with it, it is probably because most people cannot afford to regularly eat $20 hamburgers at the expensive restaurants designated as “high road.”

The Restaurant Opportunities Centeris organizing the event. This worker ...


April 24, 2014, 12:04 am, 1260041

Monday, April 21, was 2014 Tax Freedom Day®, according to the Tax Foundation. The Tax Foundation is not exactly known for unbiased research, and its promotion of Tax Freedom Day® is no exception.

The Foundation claims that Tax Freedom Day® is “a vivid, calendar-based illustration of the cost of ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1259982
Pedestrians walk past the Bank of Japan headquarters in Tokyo. Bloomberg News

Japanese banks are becoming more insulated against losses that could emerge from a sudden rise ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 pm, 1259981

A roundup of economic news on Asia and emerging markets from around the Web.

Human Capital and Income Inequality: Literacy efforts in developing countries have helped halve  the inequality in education  distribution from 1950 to 2010 – yet income inequality has hardly changed. Amparo Castelló-Climent and Rafael Doménech explain why.

China’s Currency Conundrum: Fully ...


April 23, 2014, 10:44 pm, 1259980
A


April 23, 2014, 10:44 pm, 1259979

Why doesn’t payday lending violate the FTC’s Credit Practices Rule (16 C.F.R. 444.2)?  That’s what I’m trying to figure out.  

The Credit Practices Rule prohibits taking or receiving directly or indirectly an assignment of wages in most circumstances.  (None of the exceptions appear applicable to the payday lending ...


April 23, 2014, 10:04 pm, 1259978

From the 2014 AERC:

At the Authors’ Forum this year, Mark Thornton discussed the origins and scope of The Bastiat Reader a new collection of Bastiat’s writings to become widely available later this year.

Full audio here. 

See also The Bastiat Collection.


April 23, 2014, 10:04 pm, 1259977
(April 24, 2014 12:17 AM, by Bryan Caplan) At last night's debate, I finally got to talk to the Center for Immigration Studies' Mark Krikorian. Some thoughts:1. Mark has good manners and radiates little anger. Immigration opponents would be more influential if they emulated him. 2. Fortunately, such... (0 COMMENTS)


April 23, 2014, 10:04 pm, 1259976
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from George Will’s latest column:

[P]rogressivism is … a top-down, continent-wide tissue of taxes, mandates and other coercions.

Yep – and one that, by it’s very nature, crushes true diversity.

(I do, though, disagree with Will that F.D.R. was a “grown-up.”  Burt Folsom’s 2008 study, New Deal or ...


April 23, 2014, 9:33 pm, 1259975
With central bankers globally suppressing interest rates, the such for yield elsewhere is on. One of the places investors have turned is speculative junk bond offerings.

Please consider French Company Does Biggest Junk Bond Sale Ever.

Numericable (NUM), which provides cable and internet service in France ...


April 23, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1259950

From the House of Debt:

Inequality in Well-Being, by Atif Mian and Amir Sufi: As we mentioned in our post yesterday, economists care much more about inequality in well-being rather than inequality in income or wealth. Data on well-being are more difficult to gather, but we discussed ...


April 23, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1259949

After explaining why he believes Ukraine is an oligarchy, Berkeley's Yuriy Gorodnichenko says:

...One may draw parallels between the U.S and Ukraine but frankly, relative to Ukraine, the U.S. seems far from an oligarchy. However, certain recent developments do make me somewhat concerned. For example, income inequality has been ...


April 23, 2014, 8:04 pm, 1259947

I wrote some 4 days ago about the Thoma/Williamson debate. I thought Stephen Williamson w0n the debate with his views on the Fisher effect, which basically state that keeping the Fed rate low into the long run will create low inflation. The ...


April 23, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1259885
Nick Timiraos at the WSJ has some excerpts from a research note by Goldman Sachs economists: Why Credit Is Key for the Housing Recovery

The Goldman economists say they expect new home sales to reach 800,000 units by 2017, up from 430,000 last year, based on traditional drivers ...


April 23, 2014, 6:44 pm, 1259884
A


April 23, 2014, 6:44 pm, 1259883

Some thoughts on GM, successor liability, 363 sales, and due process – over at Dealb%k.


April 23, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1259880

In the last few years, there has been a big emphasis in entrepreneurship on “lean” startups. Being lean basically means avoiding unnecessary costs early in the development of a new venture, thus minimizing waste and reducing the negative effects of uncertainty. For example, a common lean strategy involves ...


April 23, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1259879
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from page 80 of Eamonn Butler’s 2013 monograph, Foundations of a Free Society:

Enterprise is creative: people striving to produce better goods and services hit on new products, processes and technologies that improve the lives of everyone.  By stifling that enterprise and creativity, egalitarianism closes off the ...


April 23, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1259876


April 23, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1259875

The American middle-class certainly has reason to be bummed. The worst downturn since the Great Depression has been followed by an unusually weak recovery. Unemployment remains high. Median wages are still below their prerecession peak. And if all of that weren’t bad enough, the New York Times’ new Upshot site offers this ...


April 23, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1259874

In a Sunday’s NY Times article “From Rags to Riches to Rags,” Professor Mark Rank of Washington University highlights a number of studies finding a significant amount of income mobility in the US. The empirical evidence showing that ...


April 23, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1259812

The previous post on state employment trends sparked some debate regarding the generality of the negative correlation between the ALEC-Laffer “Economic Outlook” ranking and economic growth, as measured by the Philadelphia Fed’s coincident index. One reader argued four observations were not sufficient to make a conclusion, and I ...


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259810
A


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259811
A


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259807
A


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259809
A


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259808
A


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259806
A


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259805
A


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259803
A


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259802
A


April 23, 2014, 4:45 pm, 1259804
A


April 23, 2014, 4:34 pm, 1259801

This article originally appeared in City Journal

It’s not every day that an academic work, written by a French economist and published by a university press, is celebrated as a “watershed book,” but this is what commentators are saying about Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century—at least, liberal ...


April 23, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1259796

SPECIAL LIMITED TIME OFFER: Enroll in “Basics of Economics: Government Intervention” (formerly titled “How Government Wrecks the Economy”), which is the third and final course in Robert Murphy’s Basics of Economics series, before the first lecture (April 24, 5:30 pm Eastern) and also receive free enrollment in the archived versions of the preceding ...


April 23, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1259795

That is a Sardinian restaurant in San Francisco, and it was my pick from the San Francsico dining bleg from last week.  I recommend it highly, focus on the appetizers and the pastas (uni!), as the meat dishes are less interesting.

Much of the table talk was ...


April 23, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1259794
(April 23, 2014 05:58 PM, by David Henderson) The writer of Schindler's List would understand. The Economist writes: But on March 29th Cuba's parliament approved a new foreign-investment law that for the first time allows Cubans living abroad to invest in some enterprises (provided, according to Rodrigo Malmierca,... (0 COMMENTS)


April 23, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1259793

If you were a passenger in a car speeding toward a cliff, you would scream at the lunatic driver to steer away or slow down. The car is our economy. The cliff is inequality. Inequality is a disaster for society.

Who is driving the car? ...


April 23, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1259787
The Census Bureau report New Residential Sales Report shows sales of new single-family houses in March 2014 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 384,000.

Sales are 14.5 percent below the revised February rate of 449,000Sales are 13.3 percent below the March 2013 estimate of ...


April 23, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1259786

1. The ice coverage of the Great Lakes this week is 32.8%, which is 39X the 0.84% median ice coverage at this time of year, based on updated data from the Canadian Ice Service (who knew there was ...


April 23, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1259724

A shortage of Treasury securities is driving very strong demand for a tool the Federal Reserve is testing in hopes that it may one day give the central bank better control over short-term interest rates.


April 23, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1259723
From housing economist Tom Lawler:

Meritage Homes, the ninth largest US home builder, reported that net home orders in the quarter ended March 31, 2014 totaled 1,525, down 1.4% from the comparable quarter of 2013. Orders were down despite a 16% YOY increase in the company’s average community ...


April 23, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1259720

From Jeff Deist:

An important but overlooked story is Walmart’s recent announcement that it will offer cheap store-to-store money transfers.  Given the ubiquity of Walmart stores (which are large and strategically located), this development represents a real threat to the existing wire-transfer industry.

But what if Walmart reduced or eliminated the transfer fee, ...


April 23, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1259718

It is worth recalling that Congress during the first Clinton administration passed legislation limiting cash compensation for CEO’s of public companies to $1 million. The result was that compensation swung to stock options. This in turn encouraged CEO’s to borrow in order to buy in company stock, which helped stoke ...


April 23, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1259719

Further to Hunter’s remarks: Piketty understands “capital” as a homogeneous, liquid pool of funds, not a heterogeneous stock of capital assets. This is not merely a terminological issue, as those familiar with the debates on capital theory from the 1930s and 1940s are well aware. Piketty’s approach focuses on ...


April 23, 2014, 2:04 pm, 1259717
(April 23, 2014 02:46 PM, by David Henderson) According to Solow, if Piketty gets his way, real wages will stagnate. My copy of Thomas Piketty's Capital in the Twenty-First Century finally arrived and now I face a tradeoff between reading it and reading many reviews of it. I'm... (1 COMMENTS)


April 23, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1259712
Students at the University of Manchester in England are unhappy with the way they are being taught and they are not alone. In a widely publicized, and highly articulatereport, the Post-Crash Economics Society, a group of Manchester Univesity students, is highly critical of "business as usual" in the economics ...


April 23, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1259711
Erik Paul Johnson in Resource and Energy Economics:

Renewable portfolio standards (RPSs) have become a popular tool for state governments to promote renewable electricity generation and to decrease carbon dioxide emissions within a state or region. Renewable portfolio standards are a policy tool likely to persist for many decades due to ...


April 23, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1259650

Inequality is a hot topic these days. Everyone seems to want to write about it. The launch of TheUpshot, the new project from the New York Times, included a story on the wealth of the middle class, the Times Sunday Review had a column on inequality ...


April 23, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1259648
Bloomberg

Math and science are the peas and carrots of the jobs market: great for a career future, but resolutely unpopular with the young.

Even amid a relatively weak jobs ...


April 23, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1259647

The euro zone has seen its fair share of “angst of the week” moments over the past couple of years (to borrow a phrase used by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi).

Ultra-low inflation, or “lowflation,” as the International Monetary Fund has dubbed it, may be the latest.

The annual rate of ...


April 23, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1259649

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Wednesday, April 23, 2014

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

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Housing Recovery, We Hardly Knew You Fed Looks Likely to Stick to ...


April 23, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1259646

Economists have been disappointed by a string of weaker-than-expected home-sales reports. Sales of existing homes dropped in March, including in parts of the country that weren’t hit by cold weather this winter. Sales of new homes, reported Wednesday, were down 13.3% from a year earlier to their lowest ...


April 23, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1259644

Almost three out of five Americans are worried about having enough gold for their golden years.

A poll released by Gallup Tuesday shows 59% of respondents were very or moderately worried about having enough money for retirement. That has been the top financial concern since the turn of the century. The ...


April 23, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1259645

An analysis from economists at Goldman Sachs shows how the degree to which mortgage lending standards ease over the next few years could make for a big difference in home sales volumes.

New home sales in March posted a surprising plunge from February, dropping 14.5%, and leaving ...


April 23, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1259643
Note: This index is a leading indicator primarily for new Commercial Real Estate (CRE) investment.

From AIA: Architecture Billings Index Mired in Slowdown

Following a modest two-month recovery in the level of demand for design services, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) again turned negative last month. As ...


April 23, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1259642

TODAY’S batch of business surveys paint a reassuring picture of the euro-zone recovery. Though better than nothing this was pretty sluggish last year, starting with growth of just 0.3% in the second quarter, which slipped to 0.1% in the third and 0.2% in the fourth; annualised, these rates were 1.3%, ...


April 23, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1259641

On Monday, lawyers for NML and Argentina (with a cameo by lawyers for the US Department of Justice) were before the Supreme Court arguing about the scope of a US court's power to order discovery in aid of execution. (Here's the transcript; ...


April 23, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1259635

This 42 year economist from French academe has written a hot new book: Capital in the Twenty-First Century. The US edition has been published by Harvard University Press and, remarkably, is leading the best seller list, the first time that a Harvard book has done so. A recent review describes ...


April 23, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1259636

Julain Adorney writes in today’s Mises Daily:

CEO turnover has reached its highest peak since 2009, which indicates two things. First, CEOs who do not fully grasp the rapid technological change their companies are living through are being let go. Being a CEO ...


April 23, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1259634

April 23, 2014, 11:33 am, 1259631

. . . of being one of several people having "ulterior motives" and promulgating "stealth anti-Keynesian propaganda" by Paul Krugman. (My post from last week is here.)

I consider the accusation a badge of honor.

(And allow me to delete "stealth" and substitute "explicit". As usual on the ...


April 23, 2014, 11:33 am, 1259630
Greenlight Capital hedge fund manager Einhorn Shorting Tech as ‘Cool Kid’ Stocks Show Bubble.

Greenlight Capital Inc., the $10.3 billion hedge-fund firm run by David Einhorn, said it was betting against a group of technology stocks as evidence grows of a bubble.

“There is a clear ...


April 23, 2014, 11:33 am, 1259629

In a recent debate hosted by the GWU chapter of the Benjamin Rush Institute, AEI’s James Capretta and Scott Gottlieb argued the ACA can’t be fixed and needs to be replaced. Sara Rosenbaum and Dr. Seth Trueger took the opposing view. The full event ...


April 23, 2014, 11:33 am, 1259625

In a landmark decision yesterday in favor of advancing equal treatment for all and moving towards a colorblind society, the Supreme Court voted 6-2 to support Michigan voters’ decision in 2006 to end the discriminatory practices of affirmative action discrimination and racial preferences profiling for admissions to the state’s public ...


April 23, 2014, 11:33 am, 1259628

Once again Robert Laszewski offers a much-needed reality check on the state of the Affordable Care Act. Read the whole thing, but here are few highlights:

1.) About half of the enrollments are coming from people who were previously insured and half are not.

2.) About 15% to 20% of ...


April 23, 2014, 11:33 am, 1259627

It takes a long time to recover from a bubble.

The Nasdaq Composite Index is up over 1,000 points over the last year and a half, closing on April 22 at 4,161. After 14 years, this is still 18% below the top of 5,048 in March, 2000, although you might feel ...


April 23, 2014, 11:33 am, 1259626

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) released new data yesterday on international energy production for the months of November and December 2013. For the 14th straight month starting in November 2012, total petroleum production (including crude oil and other ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259559

Housing demand is cracking under the weight of affordability. The National Association of Realtors reported Tuesday that sales of existing homes fell a small 0.2% in March to an annual rate of 4.59 million. It was the seventh drop in the last eight months, pushing sales 7.5% below ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259558

That America is becoming rapidly more racially diverse comes as no surprise. Less explored is how the increasing racial divide between the young and old will raise tough questions for policy makers.

One in two babies born last year was a minority child, according to Kenneth Johnson, a demographer at the ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259560

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Tuesday, April 22, 2014

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

Highlights

Hannon’s Take: Central Bank Nirvana, Interrupted China Details Cut in Rural Banks’ Reserve Requirements Yuan ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259561

Firmer economic data and solid corporate earnings from the United States are raising hopes that Asia will soon see a long-awaited bounce in exports to the West. The question is how strong ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259562

The steady increase in the proportion of Americans earning degrees after high school graduation continued in 2012 for the fifth straight year, according to a new report.

The jump to 39.4% is an increase of 0.7 percentage point over 2011, according to the annual Lumina Foundation report “A Stronger Nation.” ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259563

A roundup of economic news on Asia and emerging markets from around the Web.

The Developing World’s Growing Divide: Across the developing world, a bewildering fissure is opening between economies’ leading and lagging sectors, Dani Rodrik says.

Managing the Exchange Rate: Choosing the right exchange-rate regime is a perennial issue ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259557

The Obama administration has championed two programs that limit payments on student loans and ultimately forgive large chunks of debt. But with the use of these programs skyrocketing, the White House and others now want to limit how much student debt is forgiven.


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259551

A roundup of economic news on Asia from around the Web.

Fight or flight in Myanmar? Over the last year Myanmar  has received more than US$3.6 billion in foreign direct investment, an increase of nearly 300 percent. But enormous barriers to future investment remain, and if reforms aren’t enacted ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259556
Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said Tuesday the U.S.  central bank’s actions during the financial crisis could have been more effectively communicated to the ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259553

The Supreme Court’s affirmative-action ruling Tuesday said that states may end racial preferences at public universities. What are the numbers behind race and college enrollment?

Data from the National Center for Education Statistics suggest that there has been a convergence among races going to college in recent years. But ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259552

Global trade is quickly becoming less about container ships and oil pipelines and more about the exchange of goods and services that have a high degree of knowledge or intellectual content baked in, and often digital component to boot, according to a new report.

“Knowledge-intensive” flows, ranging from royalties payments to ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259555

Fewer high school graduates are enrolling in college following the recession, according to a Labor Department report Tuesday.

Nearly 3 million people between ages 16 and 24 graduated from high school between January ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259554

The Federal Reserve should focus on evidence of wage gains rather than falling unemployment as a sign the economy is improving enough to start raising interest rates, two former Bank of England officials say.

Falling U.S. labor force participation reflects a weak economic recovery rather than more intractable structural factors such ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259549
Australia’s economy is slowly recovering from the end of a decade-long boom in mining investment. Bloomberg

A benign reading on first-quarter inflation gives Australia’s central bank more ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259550
Stronger growth in China would boost economies across Asia. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

An initial peek at April manufacturing data Wednesday suggests China’s economy is beginning ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259548

Bank of England officials are struggling to make sense of a big rise in self-employment in the U.K., a development that may affect when officials choose to lift interest rates.

At its April 9 meeting, Monetary Policy Committee officials agreed that the U.K.’s economic recovery appears to be gaining momentum, and ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259545
Bloomberg

Math and science are the peas and carrots of the jobs market: great for a career future, but resolutely unpopular with the young.

Even amid a relatively weak jobs ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259547

Mervyn King, former governor of the Bank of England and now Lord King of Lothbury, has received another honor to add to his lengthening list of gongs since swapping central banking for academia. He has been named a Knight Companion of the Noble Order of the Garter.

The Order of the ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259544

The euro zone has seen its fair share of “angst of the week” moments over the past couple of years (to borrow a phrase used by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi).

Ultra-low inflation, or “lowflation,” as the International Monetary Fund has dubbed it, may be the latest.

The annual rate of ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259546

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Wednesday, April 23, 2014

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

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Housing Recovery, We Hardly Knew You Fed Looks Likely to Stick to ...


April 23, 2014, 11:03 am, 1259543
The Census Bureau reports New Home Sales in March were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of384 thousand.

February sales were revised up from 440 thousand to449 thousand, and January sales were revised up from 455 thousand to470 thousand.

The first graph shows New ...


April 23, 2014, 10:35 am, 1259542

Some (female) tweeters have expressed exasperation at the amount of coverage given to David Moyes' sacking. I'm not sure they're right. Football is about more than 22 men chasing a ball. It also lets in light upon what is normally ...


April 23, 2014, 10:04 am, 1259538

Mark Skousen, through his Economic Logic and The Structure of Production, has been leading the fight for years for a measurement of economic activity that more closely aligns with a capital structure based macroeconomics. GDP is truly a Keynesian–based view of the economy; a data set that often ...


April 23, 2014, 10:04 am, 1259537

April 23, 2014, 10:04 am, 1259536
(April 23, 2014 09:07 AM, by Bryan Caplan) Normal 0 MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 Last night's immigration debate with Mark Krikorian and Alex Nowrasteh was... interesting. Reflections forthcoming. For now, here's my opening statement. Normal 0 MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 America Should Open its Borders Under current U.S. law, it is illegal for... (0 COMMENTS)


April 23, 2014, 9:33 am, 1259532

Retirement is weird, when you think about it. We consume small amounts of leisure for most of our lives, then suddenly stop working completely and consume a big bunch of leisure for the rest of our lives. We smooth our consumption of all other goods, but we don't smooth our ...


April 23, 2014, 9:33 am, 1259531

April 23, 2014, 9:33 am, 1259530

From the comments:

I was wondering if there is a table of contents available somewhere.

Here is a PDF that contains all of the front and back matter (except for the introduction) of the Encyclopedia of Environmental and Resource Economics: Download Contents ...


April 23, 2014, 9:03 am, 1259468

A roundup of economic news on Asia from around the Web.

Fight or flight in Myanmar? Over the last year Myanmar  has received more than US$3.6 billion in foreign direct investment, an increase of nearly 300 percent. But enormous barriers to future investment remain, and if reforms aren’t enacted ...


April 23, 2014, 9:03 am, 1259466
Australia’s economy is slowly recovering from the end of a decade-long boom in mining investment. Bloomberg

A benign reading on first-quarter inflation gives Australia’s central bank more ...


April 23, 2014, 9:03 am, 1259467
Stronger growth in China would boost economies across Asia. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

An initial peek at April manufacturing data Wednesday suggests China’s economy is beginning ...


April 23, 2014, 9:03 am, 1259465

Bank of England officials are struggling to make sense of a big rise in self-employment in the U.K., a development that may affect when officials choose to lift interest rates.

At its April 9 meeting, Monetary Policy Committee officials agreed that the U.K.’s economic recovery appears to be gaining momentum, and ...


April 23, 2014, 9:03 am, 1259464

Mervyn King, former governor of the Bank of England and now Lord King of Lothbury, has received another honor to add to his lengthening list of gongs since swapping central banking for academia. He has been named a Knight Companion of the Noble Order of the Garter.

The Order of the ...


April 23, 2014, 9:03 am, 1259463

The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Wednesday, April 23, 2014

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

Highlights

Hilsenrath’s Take: Housing Recovery, We Hardly Knew You Fed Looks Likely to Stick to ...


April 23, 2014, 9:03 am, 1259462
Bloomberg

Math and science are the peas and carrots of the jobs market: great for a career future, but resolutely unpopular with the young.

Even amid a relatively weak jobs ...


April 23, 2014, 8:34 am, 1259461

A new Manhattan Institute Project FDA report tries to move beyond the “too fast” or “too slow” debate over the FDA’s performance. The report’s authors, Joseph DiMasi and Christopher-Paul Milne of the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development and Alex ...


April 23, 2014, 8:04 am, 1259459
(April 23, 2014 07:13 AM, by Alberto Mingardi) I was reading recently John Vincent's "The Formation of the British Liberal Party 1857-68", a classic on the subject and a most interesting book. I was struck by the following passage: Very striking rewards, then, did not act at all... (0 COMMENTS)


April 23, 2014, 7:33 am, 1259457

Conservative economists believe that markets usually work really well, but Richard Fernandez makes a good case for there being some imperfections in the market for "common sense".


April 23, 2014, 7:33 am, 1259455

Live in concert from Town Hall in New York City, Lake Street Drive.

Gorgeous. Guaranteed to make you smile or your money back.

(Here's Rachel covering Aretha.)

(And for Raleigh-area readers, they're coming to Booth Ampitheatre in Cary June 13.)


April 23, 2014, 7:33 am, 1259456

The Onion, of course.

Of course, I couldn’t simply stand by and let that happen, so I intervened and ordered a forceful takeover of the strategically important peninsula of Crimea—a territory with historical ties to Russia that our nation had long desired. It’s certainly no easy task ...


April 23, 2014, 7:33 am, 1259454
The Chronicle has a lot to say about Thomas Piketty and modern economics. Piketty has done a great job assembling new data sources to document long run trends in inequality. As I understand it, his explanation hinges on how the returns to capital and the rate of economic ...


April 23, 2014, 7:03 am, 1259406

Bank of England officials are struggling to make sense of a big rise in self-employment in the U.K., a development that may affect when officials choose to lift interest rates.

At its April 9 meeting, Monetary Policy Committee officials agreed that the U.K.’s economic recovery appears to be gaining momentum, and ...


April 23, 2014, 7:03 am, 1259407
Australia’s economy is slowly recovering from the end of a decade-long boom in mining investment. Bloomberg

A benign reading on first-quarter inflation gives Australia’s central bank more ...


April 23, 2014, 7:03 am, 1259405

Mervyn King, former governor of the Bank of England and now Lord King of Lothbury, has received another honor to add to his lengthening list of gongs since swapping central banking for academia. He has been named a Knight Companion of the Noble Order of the Garter.

The Order of the ...


April 23, 2014, 7:03 am, 1259404
From the MBA: Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

Mortgage applications decreased 3.3 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending April 18, 2014. ...

The Refinance Index decreased 4 percent from ...


April 23, 2014, 6:44 am, 1259403

REMEMBER this chart?

A few weeks ago we examined research assessing the benefits of European Union membership. For most entrants joining the EU gave real output per person a big boost relative to what might have been expected. But not for ...


April 23, 2014, 6:36 am, 1259402
It’s widely recognized that the manufacturing sector is highly sensitive to the business cycle. Employment trends in this corner tend to react earlier to macro distress compared with payrolls generally. As a result, monitoring this slice of the labor market … Continue reading →


April 23, 2014, 6:34 am, 1259401

The discussion thread on yesterday’s posting “Supreme Court Upholds Michigan Referendum Banning Affirmative Action In Higher Education” is uncharacteristically ugly, with more slinging of insults than thoughtful ...


April 23, 2014, 6:04 am, 1259400

By the Very Revd John Drury.  I mentioned the book favorably in passing once before, but I don’t think I drove home how much I liked and learned from it.  For me it is a clear choice for best book of the year so far.

Here is ...