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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August 27, 2014, 6:44 am, 1325191
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August 27, 2014, 6:44 am, 1325192
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August 27, 2014, 5:33 am, 1325188

Good question.

A question for the Reverend Jackson: Who has been running the show in Newark, in Chicago, in Detroit, and in Los Angeles for a great long while now? The answer is: People who see the world in much the same way as does the Reverend ...


August 27, 2014, 5:33 am, 1325187
On August 10, Ukraine said No Cease-Fire Until Rebels Surrender.

Things changed.

This just in ... On August 26, Reuters reported Poroshenko Seeks Ceasefire After 'Very Tough' Talks With Putin.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko promised after late-night talks with Russia's Vladimir Putin ...


August 27, 2014, 5:33 am, 1325186



(p. 219) Harald Bauer, Jan Veira, and Florian Weig consider "Moore's Law: Repeal or Renewal?" "Moore's law states that the number of transistors on integrated circuits doubles every two years, and for the past four decades it has set the pace for progress in the semiconductor industry. ...


August 27, 2014, 5:03 am, 1325162
Bloomberg

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, a prominent student of the Great Depression, contends that the 2008 financial crisis was actually worse than its 1930s counterpart.

Mr. Bernanke is quoted making the statement in ...


August 27, 2014, 5:03 am, 1325161
Bummed out by the low quality of official economic data. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

India is scheduled to release its latest quarterly data on economic growth on ...


August 27, 2014, 5:03 am, 1325160

It's a mistake to treat housing prices as if they're a function of time. They're not. But we're going to treat them that way today to illustrate how differently the trend in median new home sale prices has changed since institutional investors ...


August 27, 2014, 5:03 am, 1325159

August 27, 2014, 4:45 am, 1325158
Maya MacGuineas: The larger lift for the economy will have to come from lawmakers since the Fed's efforts alone aren't sufficient..


August 27, 2014, 4:45 am, 1325157
Glen Bolger: Republican and Democratic voters alike blame elected officials in Washington for failing to act to improve the economy.


August 27, 2014, 4:45 am, 1325156
A


August 27, 2014, 4:05 am, 1325155

The town square is lovely, even though they removed the sloth for fear he would electrocute himself.  The population is friendly, the weather is perfect, and there are few sights.  Unlike in much of South America, danger is not a concern.  The small children who hang out in ...


August 27, 2014, 3:23 am, 1325153

Photo Credit: Benh LIEU SONG

Somewhat less than three years ago, I wrote two articles on Behemoth stocks [one, two], which I define as stocks with over $100 Billion of market cap.  Today I want to revisit those stocks, and those that ...


August 27, 2014, 3:23 am, 1325152
Here is an excellent example of how adverse weather conditions can impact on the market price of a staple item in millions of people's supermarket trolleys.


August 27, 2014, 3:23 am, 1325151
Here is some backgroundon Amazon's all-cash purchase of live gaming site Twitch. Read through it and consider some of the likely business synergies from the acquisition.


August 27, 2014, 3:23 am, 1325150
I am delighted to speak at this new event to be held at Bedales School in Hampshire on Thursday 9th October. More details of the event can be found by clicking this link:http://www.bedales.org.uk/home/events/leadin
g-inde...


August 27, 2014, 3:03 am, 1325109
Bummed out by the low quality of official economic data. Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

India is scheduled to release its latest quarterly data on economic growth on ...


August 27, 2014, 2:04 am, 1325108
(August 27, 2014 12:03 AM, by Bryan Caplan) I just learned that the great H.L. Mencken's Prejudices contains an eloquent plea for appeasement. From Mencken's "Martyrs": Normal 0 MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 [I]t seems to me sheer vanity for any man to hold his religious views too firmly, or to submit... (0 COMMENTS)


August 27, 2014, 12:34 am, 1325098

The Fed and it’s friends blamed cold weather for much of the year’s lackluster economic growth. But cold weather does not explain the economic slowdown because cold weather does not stop economic activity, it merely shifts it to other activities and products.


August 27, 2014, 12:04 am, 1325096

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, some 10 million previously uninsured adults gained coverage during the open enrollment period that began on October 1, 2013. Last month, the New England Journal of Medicine reported that the share of Americans who are “going naked” has plummeted from 21 percent ...


August 26, 2014, 11:33 pm, 1325095
Given misinformation and outright lies by all involved, it's important to consider the both sides of the story.

Military Endgame?

Jane's Defense claims Ukrainian Military Moves to Endgame.

Ukrainian troops have continued their offensive aimed at clearing pro-Russian rebels from the Donetsk and Lugansk ...


August 26, 2014, 11:23 pm, 1325094
With all the flurry of football transfer activity happening over the summer months and Manchester United spending a hefty £59.7m for Argentinian winger Angel di Maria, there has been lots of talk about transfer records. With this transfer surpassing the £50m paid by Chelsea for Fernando Torres, the record for ...


August 26, 2014, 10:44 pm, 1325080
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August 26, 2014, 9:33 pm, 1325077
My fellow University of Chicago economists, stop reading Krugman's latest and explain this puzzle to me. A United Flight to Denver was diverted to Chicago because of a fight between two 48 year olds over whether the person sitting in front in Economy Plus has the right to recline her ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325041
ECB’s Mario Draghi chats to Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen at the Jackson Hole Symposium. Reuters

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi made waves at this weekend’s ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325040

Economists overwhelmingly expect the Federal Reserve to hold off raising short-term interest rates until at least 2015. But nearly a third say doing so would mean the central bank waited too long, ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325038
Associated Press

Before heading out to Jackson Hole, Wyo., for the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City’s annual conference, we laid out a few key questions for meeting participants, ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325042

August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325039

The Federal Reserve’s annual Jackson Hole economics symposium, sponsored by the Kansas City Fed, is in the record books. Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen and European Central Bank President Mario Draghi captured the headlines. But lots happened outside of their prepared texts. Here’s a rundown of odds and ends ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325046
Haruhiko Kuroda, governor of the Bank of Japan. Bloomberg

Once again, a growing chorus of private economists and investors are doubting the adequacy of ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325047
The Kansas City Fed’s annual economic symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, has ended. It produced many headlines and lots of research. Here is our rundown on the four most important developments of the proceedings.


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325045
French economist Thomas Piketty. AFP/Getty Images

There’s more criticism over Thomas Piketty’s best-selling “Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” this time from Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson, two ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325044

The Bank of Japan is considering using more upbeat language to describe the state of the economy in its monthly economic assessment, suggesting it doesn’t see the need for immediate action to give faltering growth a shot in the arm.

Despite gross domestic product data released earlier this month showing a ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325043

MONDAY

Israel’s central bank announces a policy decision at 1600 local time (1300 GMT)

TUESDAY

Hungary’s central bank announces a policy decision at 1300 GMT

WEDNESDAY

Turkey’s central bank announces a policy decision

THURSDAY

ECB’s Liikanen speaks in Alpbach at 1430 GMT The Philippines’ central bank releases minutes from its July 31 policy meeting

FRIDAY

Colombia’s central bank announces a ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325037
Getty Images

Could new orders for durable goods be up by 20% or more in July? Some economists think so, all because of one company.

The Commerce Department is slated ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325030
Applicants wait in line at a job fair in Manhattan. Getty Images

More Americans are bouncing back after losing their jobs, and fewer people are accepting a ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325029

One of the most popular and unusual charts in labor market economics is the Beveridge Curve,  which tracks the relationship between job openings and the unemployment rate. The curve shows that, in general, as the unemployment rate rises the number of job openings falls, and vice versa. But a


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325036

The Labor Department has chosen Heidi Shierholz, a well-known advocate for worker-friendly labor policies, as its next chief economist.

Ms. Shierholz is currently an economist at the Economic Policy Institute, a left-leaning Washington think tank, where she has conducted research on wealth inequality and long-term unemployment, among other topics.

She replaces Jennifer ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325031

U.S. home prices aren’t rising as fast as they were a year ago following a slowdown in sales triggered by last year’s jump in mortgage rates.

The latest S&P/Case-Shiller index shows that home prices rose 6.2% in June from a year earlier. The big questions now are whether, when, and at ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325028
Bloomberg

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, a prominent student of the Great Depression, contends that the 2008 financial crisis was actually worse than its 1930s counterpart.

Mr. Bernanke is quoted making the statement in ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325035

A sputtering housing market threatens China’s economic outlook and would probably force the central bank and local governments to intervene if they want to hit the country’s 7.5% economic growth target for this year, according to research from the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.

The latest figures “indicate the ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325032

A persistent price gap between existing homes and newly built homes has given the former an advantage over the latter in recent months. But some economists say that gap will soon will start to narrow.

The latest Commerce Department data show new-home sales in July declined 2.4% ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325034

During Japan’s long, debilitating bout with deflation, basic market mechanisms broke down.

Fixing the machinery requires more than the traditional stimulus policies deployed to pump up growth, says Haruhiko Kuroda.

“A ‘visible hand,’ is ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325033

August 26, 2014, 9:03 pm, 1325027
The Case-Shiller house price indexes for June were released this morning. Zillow has started forecasting Case-Shillera month early - and I like to check the Zillow forecasts since they have been pretty close.

From Zillow: Case-Shiller Slowdown Forecasted to Continue

The Case-Shiller data for June 2014 ...


August 26, 2014, 7:33 pm, 1325025

Following several other recent innovative additions to the services offered by the ride-sharing, taxi-alternative leader Uber (UberPool that allows customers to share a ride and split the cost, Uber for Business that allows employees who use Uber to bill their trips directly to their company and ...


August 26, 2014, 7:03 pm, 1324970

Burger King’s announcement that it will move its headquarters to Canada has put the spotlight on Canada’s tax system. Just what are the tax benefits of doing business in Canada versus the U.S.?

First, Canada has a much lower corporate tax rate: 15 percent at the federal level plus ...


August 26, 2014, 6:44 pm, 1324969
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August 26, 2014, 6:35 pm, 1324968

Corporate inversions have been the topic of the summer for tax wonks (beats jellyfish and beach traffic, I suppose), but the issue is a classic bit of Washington misdirection. Instead of focusing on the real disease—an increasingly dysfunctional corporate income tax—we are obsessing over a symptom—firms such as Burger ...


August 26, 2014, 6:34 pm, 1324967
Teaser:

States ...


August 26, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1324966
(August 26, 2014 04:30 PM, by Scott Sumner) Vaidas Urba sent me an interesting piece from the Financial Times: For macro investors, the end of summer is usually signalled by the Kansas City Fed's annual conference at Jackson Hole. On occasions, former Fed chairman Ben Bernanke used this... (1 COMMENTS)


August 26, 2014, 6:04 pm, 1324965
(Don Boudreaux)

In just over three hours I will meet for the first time my Fall 2014 ECON 103 students.  These are the 288 students – mostly 18-year-old freshmen who have, as of this moment, no earthly idea what economics is – who’ll file into room 80 (an auditorium) of ...


August 26, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1324961
Outright Military Victory by Rebels?

Militarily, if the rebel site maps and discussion are correct, the war may conclude with outright military victory by the rebels.

Whether or not you believe these maps or such talk, please note the mainstream media silence on the civil war ...


August 26, 2014, 5:33 pm, 1324960
The IPCC appears to have served up its same points again in a new set of reports related to the challenge of climate change. Here is the report from Justin Gillis from the NY Times. Here is the IPCC webpage so you can read up on what's new ...


August 26, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1324898

In his recent newsletter, John Mauldin suggests that economic growth is the most important issue for economists. I quote him here at length (emphasis added):

"What to do about economic growth is perhaps the single most important question of our time, as the demographics of the developed ...


August 26, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1324897

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities’ Michael Mazerov has a blog post out today covering the same Upshot blog migration tool we covered recently. Mazerov points out that states with no income tax appear to have done a worse job holding onto migrants than other ...


August 26, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1324896
Bloomberg

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, a prominent student of the Great Depression, contends that the 2008 financial crisis was actually worse than its 1930s counterpart.

Mr. Bernanke is quoted making the statement in ...


August 26, 2014, 5:03 pm, 1324895
• Starting this month, S&P is releasing the Case-Shiller National Index on a monthly basis. This probably means most reporting of a "headline number" will be switched from the Case-Shiller Composite 20 to the National Index.

• On a method to improve the seasonal factors, see Trulia chief ...


August 26, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1324894
Glen Bolger: Republican and Democratic voters alike blame elected officials in Washington for failing to act to improve the economy.


August 26, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1324893
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August 26, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1324892

This week, Russ Roberts chatted with former Stanford professor and Coursera co-founder Daphne Koller about the present and future of online education.

We'd like to hear your thoughts about blended learning and/or online education. Use the prompts below and post your response in the comments, or start your own conversation ...


August 26, 2014, 4:44 pm, 1324891

Mark Fogarty has a nice write-up in National Mortgage News of a book chapter about duties to serve in housing finance that I wrote with Jannecke Ratcliffe for a volume entitled Homeownership Built to Last (Brookings/Joint Center on Housing Studies ...


August 26, 2014, 4:05 pm, 1324887

In the new NBER paper on this topic by Daron Acemoglu, David Autor, David Dorn, Gordon H. Hanson, and Brendan Price, we see the evidence for this proposition piling up:

Even before the Great Recession, U.S. employment growth was unimpressive. Between 2000 and 2007, the economy gave back the ...


August 26, 2014, 4:04 pm, 1324886
(Don Boudreaux)

Here’s an e-mail sent to me by Cafe patron Regan Taylor:

Minimum wage logic: raising the minimum wage to (at least) $10.10/hr will be good for minimum wage workers. It will put more money in their pockets spurring economic growth.

A few years ago, the federal govt bailed out General ...


August 26, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1324880
Developers in China are offering up to $325,000 in incentives to home buyers.

The catch? Incentives come in the form of a credit on Alibaba’s Taobao, an e-commerce platform similar to eBay. More modest discounts, some of them retroactive, are offered by other developers to combat sinking purchase volumes. ...


August 26, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1324879

Last week, at Jackson Hole, ECB President Mario Draghi clearly signaled that he has finally come around to recognizing the threat that deflation would pose to the Eurozone economic recovery. However, before jumping to the conclusion that this recognition removes the risk of yet another and more serious phase in ...


August 26, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1324877

Check out the top pieces we’re reading today on the economy, technology, education, and more.

1.) The latest from The Upshot is a piece by David Leonhardt called “A new reason to question the official unemployment rate.”

2.) Over at Real Clear Policy, Thomas Hopkins and James Broughel note that


August 26, 2014, 3:33 pm, 1324878

My recent Wall Street Journal op-ed noted that, while Social Security’s funding shortfalls are growing, progressives are showing even less seriousness with regard to fixing them. Indeed, the most common position among progressives today is toward increasing Social Security benefits. New York Magazine’s Jon Chait (who I usually ...


August 26, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1324815

One of the most popular and unusual charts in labor market economics is the Beveridge Curve,  which tracks the relationship between job openings and the unemployment rate. The curve shows that, in general, as the unemployment rate rises the number of job openings falls, and vice versa. But a


August 26, 2014, 3:03 pm, 1324814
From Zillow: High Negative Equity Causing Generational Housing Gridlock

According to the second quarter Zillow Negative Equity Report, the national negative equity rate continued to decline in 2014 Q2, falling to 17 percent, down 14.4 percentage points from its peak (31.4 percent) in the first quarter of 2012. ...


August 26, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1324813
Maya MacGuineas: The larger lift for the economy will have to come from lawmakers since the Fed's efforts alone aren't sufficient..


August 26, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1324812
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August 26, 2014, 2:44 pm, 1324811
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August 26, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1324810

Mises Daily Tuesday by Ken Zahringer:

Supporters of government interventions like minimum wages often pretend the economy is far less complex than it really is, and then conjure up a statistic as evidence of success. Careful analysis reveals ...


August 26, 2014, 2:05 pm, 1324809

August 26, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1324805

With the start of the autumn 2014 semester, the university adds a new housing learning community focused on sustainability to its diverse living options for new and returning students. The university offers its students more than a dozen learning communities, which are comprised of groups of students who live together ...


August 26, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1324804

Sometime soon, it seems, President Obama will announce he’s taking executive action on immigration, both legal and illegal. In a new note, Goldman Sachs speculates what those actions might be, exactly. Its informed guesses: (a) excluding dependents from the cap on employment based green cards, (b) recapturing employment-based green ...


August 26, 2014, 1:33 pm, 1324803

One key measure of job market health is the number of people working part-time for economic reasons (PTER) rather than by choice. Back in 2007, according to the Atlanta Fed, 61% of people working PTER the previous year transitioned into full-time work with the rest still working part-time either ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324737

MONDAY

Israel’s central bank announces a policy decision at 1600 local time (1300 GMT)

TUESDAY

Hungary’s central bank announces a policy decision at 1300 GMT

WEDNESDAY

Turkey’s central bank announces a policy decision

THURSDAY

ECB’s Liikanen speaks in Alpbach at 1430 GMT The Philippines’ central bank releases minutes from its July 31 policy meeting

FRIDAY

Colombia’s central bank announces a ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324736

August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324734

Economists overwhelmingly expect the Federal Reserve to hold off raising short-term interest rates until at least 2015. But nearly a third say doing so would mean the central bank waited too long, ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324738

The Bank of Japan is considering using more upbeat language to describe the state of the economy in its monthly economic assessment, suggesting it doesn’t see the need for immediate action to give faltering growth a shot in the arm.

Despite gross domestic product data released earlier this month showing a ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324735
ECB’s Mario Draghi chats to Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen at the Jackson Hole Symposium. Reuters

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi made waves at this weekend’s ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324742

JACKSON HOLE, Wyo.–Japan is gradually escaping a prolonged period of deflation that has impeded economic growth, stifled investment and put downward pressure on wages, Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda said Saturday.

Speaking at the Kansas City Federal Reserve’s Jackson Hole, Wyo., conference, Mr. Kuroda said that, unlike the U.S. and ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324733

The Federal Reserve’s annual Jackson Hole economics symposium, sponsored by the Kansas City Fed, is in the record books. Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen and European Central Bank President Mario Draghi captured the headlines. But lots happened outside of their prepared texts. Here’s a rundown of odds and ends ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324741
The Kansas City Fed’s annual economic symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, has ended. It produced many headlines and lots of research. Here is our rundown on the four most important developments of the proceedings.


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324740
Haruhiko Kuroda, governor of the Bank of Japan. Bloomberg

Once again, a growing chorus of private economists and investors are doubting the adequacy of ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324739
French economist Thomas Piketty. AFP/Getty Images

There’s more criticism over Thomas Piketty’s best-selling “Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” this time from Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson, two ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324726

A persistent price gap between existing homes and newly built homes has given the former an advantage over the latter in recent months. But some economists say that gap will soon will start to narrow.

The latest Commerce Department data show new-home sales in July declined 2.4% ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324723

One of the most popular and unusual charts in labor market economics is the Beveridge Curve,  which tracks the relationship between job openings and the unemployment rate. The curve shows that, in general, as the unemployment rate rises the number of job openings falls, and vice versa. But a


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324725

U.S. home prices aren’t rising as fast as they were a year ago following a slowdown in sales triggered by last year’s jump in mortgage rates.

The latest S&P/Case-Shiller index shows that home prices rose 6.2% in June from a year earlier. The big questions now are whether, when, and at ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324732
Associated Press

Before heading out to Jackson Hole, Wyo., for the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City’s annual conference, we laid out a few key questions for meeting participants, ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324727

August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324724
Applicants wait in line at a job fair in Manhattan. Getty Images

More Americans are bouncing back after losing their jobs, and fewer people are accepting a ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324731
Getty Images

Could new orders for durable goods be up by 20% or more in July? Some economists think so, all because of one company.

The Commerce Department is slated ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324728

During Japan’s long, debilitating bout with deflation, basic market mechanisms broke down.

Fixing the machinery requires more than the traditional stimulus policies deployed to pump up growth, says Haruhiko Kuroda.

“A ‘visible hand,’ is ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324730

The Labor Department has chosen Heidi Shierholz, a well-known advocate for worker-friendly labor policies, as its next chief economist.

Ms. Shierholz is currently an economist at the Economic Policy Institute, a left-leaning Washington think tank, where she has conducted research on wealth inequality and long-term unemployment, among other topics.

She replaces Jennifer ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324729

A sputtering housing market threatens China’s economic outlook and would probably force the central bank and local governments to intervene if they want to hit the country’s 7.5% economic growth target for this year, according to research from the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.

The latest figures “indicate the ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 pm, 1324722
This morning, S&P reported that the Composite 20 index declined 0.2% in June seasonally adjusted. However, it appears the seasonal adjustment has been distorted by the high level of distressed sales in recent years. Trulia's Jed Kolko wrote last month: "Let’s Improve, Not Ignore, Seasonal Adjustment ...


August 26, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1324721
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August 26, 2014, 12:44 pm, 1324720
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August 26, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1324715
(Don Boudreaux)

Here’s a letter to Sen. Sherrod Brown:

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH)
Capitol Hill Washington, DC

Sen. Brown:

You call on consumers to boycott Burger King for taking steps to keep its shareholders’ taxes as low as possible by moving its headquarters to Canada - that is, for responding predictably to incentives ...


August 26, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1324713

Recent census date points to a Widening wealth gap:

The Census Bureau released updated data this week on the net worth of American households, drawn from the Survey of Income and Program Participation. These totals reflect all assets including money in checking accounts, owned homes, rental properties, 401ks, ...


August 26, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1324714

I remember in the late sixties and early seventies in the little suburb town where I lived in Ohio, the police chief had files on ‘potential threats’, including candle light vigil participants such as my parents.  Feelings of fear were common, and some quick to judge:

Mike Konczal takes a ...


August 26, 2014, 12:04 pm, 1324712


August 26, 2014, 11:33 am, 1324708

“On Sunday, a United Airlines flight was forced to divert after two passengers got into an argument over the Knee Defender, a $22 gadget that stops the person in front of the user from reclining,” report Alex Davies and Julie Zeveloff at Business Insider.

By packing people in tight spaces, ...


August 26, 2014, 11:33 am, 1324707

Europe’s $13 trillion economy — nearly a fifth of world GDP — failed to grow in the second-quarter, losing whatever smidge of momentum it had after escaping a double-dip recession. (Germany actually shrank.) Private consumption and investment are still below 2007 levels. French unemployment is at an all-time ...


August 26, 2014, 11:03 am, 1324645

U.S. home prices aren’t rising as fast as they were a year ago following a slowdown in sales triggered by last year’s jump in mortgage rates.

The latest S&P/Case-Shiller index shows that home prices rose 6.2% in June from a year earlier. The big questions now are whether, when, and at ...


August 26, 2014, 11:03 am, 1324644

More Americans are bouncing back after losing their jobs, and fewer people are accepting a pay cut as the price of returning to work.

Some 9.5 million people lost their jobs between January 2011 and December 2013, including 4.3 million who lost jobs they had held for at least three years, ...


August 26, 2014, 11:03 am, 1324642

Justin Fox

Who Pays Corporate Taxes? Possibly You: Who pays corporate income taxes? Just one thing’s for sure: it’s not corporations. ...

For a long time it was thought the owners paid the tax. That belief can be traced largely to a classic 1962 theoretical analysis by economist ...


August 26, 2014, 11:03 am, 1324643

Tim Taylor:

Property Rights and Saving the Rhino: South Africa is the home for 75% of the world's population of black rhinos and 96% of the world's population of white rhinos. There must be some lessons for conservationists behind those statistics. Michael 't Sas-Rolfes tells the story in "Saving ...


August 26, 2014, 11:03 am, 1324641

[Still on the road ... three quick ones before another long day of driving.]

David Leonhardt:

A New Reason to Question the Official Unemployment Rate: ...A new academic paper suggests that the unemployment rate appears to have become less accurate over the last two decades, in part because of ...


August 26, 2014, 11:03 am, 1324640
S&P/Case-Shiller released the monthly Home Price Indices for June ("June" is a 3 month average of April, May and June prices).

This release includes prices for 20 individual cities,and two composite indices (for 10 cities and 20 cities) and the National index.

Note: Case-Shiller reports Not Seasonally ...


August 26, 2014, 10:44 am, 1324637
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August 26, 2014, 10:44 am, 1324639
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August 26, 2014, 10:44 am, 1324638
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August 26, 2014, 10:44 am, 1324635
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August 26, 2014, 10:44 am, 1324633
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August 26, 2014, 10:44 am, 1324634
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August 26, 2014, 10:44 am, 1324636
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August 26, 2014, 10:36 am, 1324632

Simon's post reminds me of Sidney Webb's reaction to Britain leaving the gold standard in 1931: "nobody told us we could do that."

The 1929-31 Labour government tore itself apart because it thought the gold standard was a binding constraint which demanded fiscal ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 am, 1324542

August 26, 2014, 9:03 am, 1324541

A persistent price gap between existing homes and newly built homes has given the former an advantage over the latter in recent months. But some economists say that gap will soon will start to narrow.

The latest Commerce Department data show new-home sales in July declined 2.4% ...


August 26, 2014, 9:03 am, 1324540
According to Black Knight's First Look report for July, the percent of loans delinquent decreased in July compared to June, and declined by 12% year-over-year.

Also the percent of loans in the foreclosure process declined further in July and were down 34% over the last year. Foreclosure inventory ...


August 26, 2014, 8:44 am, 1324539
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August 26, 2014, 8:36 am, 1324538
The S&P 500 briefly traded above 2000 yesterday for the first time. The all-time high inspired some analysts to announce (not necessarily for the first time) that the stock market was in bubble territory. But there’s a reason for the … Continue reading →


August 26, 2014, 8:34 am, 1324537
Teaser:

It ...


August 26, 2014, 8:05 am, 1324535

From David Cay Johnson:

From 2000 to 2012, American workers as a whole had a tough time, as population grew much faster than new jobs and many people gave up looking for work. There was one major exception: jobs paying $100,000 to $400,000 (in 2012 dollars).

This is what I ...


August 26, 2014, 8:04 am, 1324534
(August 26, 2014 07:01 AM, by Alberto Mingardi) I'm currently reading a truly interesting book, which some of EconLog's readers may be already familiar with: "The Intellectuals and the Masses. Pride and Prejudice among the Literary Intelligentsia 1880-1939" by John Carey. Carey argues, in his own words, "that... (0 COMMENTS)


August 26, 2014, 8:04 am, 1324533
(Don Boudreaux)

Kevin Williamson points out … well, let him tell it:

President Barack Obama is spending his vacation golfing on Martha’s Vineyard. Hillary Rodham Clinton is spending her vacation in the habitual Clintonian mode, making a vulgar spectacle of herself in the Hamptons. Joe Biden, not that anybody cares, ...


August 26, 2014, 8:04 am, 1324532
(Don Boudreaux)

… is from Kevin Williamson’s August 24th essay “Vacations and Vocations“:

At a DNC fundraising dinner in 2010, President Obama boasted: “We provided health care to 4 million children.” Of course he did nothing of the sort, but there is an entire cracked political philosophy in the president’s ...


August 26, 2014, 7:33 am, 1324530

Does anybody here remember 1982? When interest rates went very high, and so asset prices went very low. Just the opposite of today.

What were people saying back then?

1. Were they saying: "Central banks are setting high interest rates and making asset prices low, which is bad for the rich, who ...


August 26, 2014, 7:33 am, 1324529

Victor Davis Hanson seems to like William Tecumseh Sherman's strategy a lot, so he also likes what Israel has just done in Gaza.

(It's apparently popular in Kolkata, too.)


August 26, 2014, 7:33 am, 1324527

I tend to agree: when it comes to investing, I'd probably rather bet on Warren Buffett than the general public. His track record is loads better.

Individual investors have been cuttingback on cash in portfolios, the exact reverse of what WarrenBuffett has been doing at Berkshire Hathaway.


August 26, 2014, 7:33 am, 1324528

Fine posts.

"History lesson".

But this California history shows once again that in times of boom, people were too busy to fall into the hole of zero-sum hatreds. Its the old story. Prosperous people or people who take seriously the prospect of prosperity are nicer and more tolerant.

"


August 26, 2014, 7:33 am, 1324526

My advice: never ignore "fundamental laws of finance".

Surely, many are wondering: How could Pay It Forward be so expensive if students would be paying for their own educations, perhaps even more than they do now? The answer is that it costs money to move money through ...


August 26, 2014, 7:33 am, 1324525
SourceTo users of my favorite textbooks: Thank you! Have a great semester.


August 26, 2014, 6:44 am, 1324469

Headquarters play important strategic roles in modern companies, but downsizing of headquarters is often advocated as a cost-cutting measure. This column presents evidence from Japanese firm-level data that headquarters size is positively associated with firms’ overall productivity. Moreover, the benefits of ICT are greater for companies with relatively large headquarters. ...


August 26, 2014, 6:44 am, 1324468
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August 26, 2014, 6:44 am, 1324467
A


August 26, 2014, 5:33 am, 1324465

I'd say it doesn't really answer the question, it just pushes the question one level deeper.

But it's an interesting question: why do pollsters with poor track records keep getting hired?


August 26, 2014, 5:03 am, 1324436

The Tax Foundation has provided a wonderful illustration of the relative cost of living in each of the United States:


August 26, 2014, 5:03 am, 1324435

August 26, 2014, 4:44 am, 1324434
A


August 26, 2014, 4:05 am, 1324433

Mr Gan estimates that China’s existing housing stock is already more than sufficient for every household to own their home but developers are still supplying well over 15m new units a year.

There is more here from Jamil Anderlini in the FT, more than just the usual.


August 26, 2014, 2:05 am, 1324415

An MR reader refers me to this interesting paper (pdf) by Max Gillman, Michal Kejak, and Michal Pakoš, the abstract is here:

Rietz (1988) and Barro (2006) subject consumption and dividends to rare disasters in the growth rate.  We extend their framework and extent consumption and dividends to rare ...


August 26, 2014, 1:33 am, 1324414
Obama Condemns CEOs

President Obama is fed up with corporations no paying their "fair tax".

On August 24, Bloomberg reported Inversion Express Slows to Crawl as Obama Condemns CEOs

On July 24 Obama referred to companies looking to shift their domicile as “corporate deserters” ...


August 26, 2014, 1:23 am, 1324413

Starting again with another letter from a reader, but I will just post his questions in response to this article:

1) How much emphasis do you put on the credit cycle? I guess given your background rather a great deal, although as a fundamentals ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 am, 1324406

During Japan’s long, debilitating bout with deflation, basic market mechanisms broke down.

Fixing the machinery requires more than the traditional stimulus policies deployed to pump up growth, says Haruhiko Kuroda.

“A ‘visible hand,’ is ...


August 26, 2014, 1:03 am, 1324405

Last time, we turned to the Phoenix Institute for some mind-numbing, soul-killing “research”. Today we look to the Pacific Research Institute for some dumbfounding “analysis”.

This particular piece of research was brought to my attention by Patrick R. Sullivan, who is fond of quoting talking points ...


August 26, 2014, 12:44 am, 1324404

Financial crisis litigation has been going on for several years now and has been resulting in lots of piecemeal settlements. As a result, it's easy to miss the big picture.  There's actually been quite a lot of settlements covering a fair amount of money.  (Not all of it ...


August 26, 2014, 12:34 am, 1324403

Supporters of government interventions like minimum wages often pretend the economy is far less complex than it really is, and then conjure up a statistic as evidence of success. Careful analysis reveals another story, however. ...


August 26, 2014, 12:34 am, 1324402
Teaser:

Here ...


August 26, 2014, 12:04 am, 1324400
(August 26, 2014 12:07 AM, by Bryan Caplan) No one needs a political philosophy to tell them how to treat people they personally know. Once human beings forge personal bonds, they understand what to expect from each other. The main point of political philosophy is to tell people... (0 COMMENTS)