Economics

  • Most Topular Stories

  • The Yellen Subsidy: Fed Chair Pumps for Keeping Financiers Fat Over Filling Potholes

    naked capitalism
    Yves Smith
    26 Jul 2015 | 10:57 pm
    Yellen tries conning journalists and the Great Unwashed Public in her defense of preserving the current level of Fed dividends to banks.
  • Greece Negotiations Already Starting to Look Wobbly

    naked capitalism
    Yves Smith
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:52 am
    Silly me! I thought that given that the Greek government had prostrated itself and had complied with the creditor demand to pass legislation double-plus quickly or else, that the worst of the hurdles to getting the third bailout passed had been surmounted. I should know better than that.
  • The Donald and the Delusional

    Paul Krugman
    By Paul Krugman
    27 Jul 2015 | 11:03 am
    Why centrists didn't see it coming.
  • Attorney Market for Discharging Student Loans

    Credit Slips
    Dalié Jiménez
    20 Jul 2015 | 8:07 am
    On Friday, Tara Siegel Bernard reported in the New York Times that some bankruptcy judges think that the onerous Brunner standard for discharging student loans should change. Commenting on the article, reader "alma" writes: As someone who recently filed for bankruptcy and has more than $100,000 in student loan debt, I can tell you why I did not try to get relief from student loans: I did not know it was an option. My lawyer simply told me that it was not possible to have student loans discharged. This article is the first I have even heard there was any method to do so ....
  • Contingency Plans

    Paul Krugman
    By Paul Krugman
    27 Jul 2015 | 11:23 am
    We're shocked, shocked that the Greek government was thinking ahead.
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    Real Time Economics

  • Is the ‘Gig Economy’ a Thing? Ask Women

    Anna Louie Sussman
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:05 pm
    Women are more likely to hold part-time jobs: 24 percent of working women had part-time jobs in 2013, compared with 13 percent of men, according to theLabor Department. Bonnie Altwerger sits for a job interview with Jessica Cortes as she looks for part-time work in 2013 in Sunrise, Fla. JOE RAEDLE/GETTY IMAGES Whether or not the “gig economy” is set to steamroll the workplace as we know it remains to be determined. As Josh Zumbrun and I report today, economists seem to agree that the phenomenon of people working multiple “gigs” to stay afloat has not materialized in the data…
  • Inflation Data Suggest More ECB Support

    Todd Buell
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:42 am
    European Union flags wave in front of the headquarters of the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, Germany. Associated Press A recent ECB publication suggests that underlying inflation might not have reached a steady turnaround point. The publication’s conclusions, if accurate, could open the door for more ECB support to the eurozone economy, or at least put off any debate about tapering. The paper published Monday, a box in the central bank’s forthcoming economic bulletin, looks at the indication of underlying inflation known as HICPX, or inflation excluding food and energy. It stood at…
  • Grand Central: What if the Output Gap is Global?

    WSJ Staff
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:05 am
    The Wall Street Journal’s Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Monday, July 27, 2015: Ask WSJ Central Banks: Dear readers, we are launching a new feature in response to your many questions. Please email your queries about the Fed, other central banks or broader economic topics to this address and we will select a few to answer publicly on a regular basis. Help us get started by sending them here: askcentralbanking@wsj.com Highlights Hannon’s Take: What if the Output Gap is Global? Fed Officials May Offer More Clarity on Rates Fed Economic Forecasts Released Early Fed Staffers…
  • Fed Staffers Slightly Pessimistic About Economy’s Course

    David Harrison
    24 Jul 2015 | 11:10 am
    Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen testifies at a Senate hearing on July 16. Ron Sachs/Zuma Press Federal Reserve staffers in June were somewhat more pessimistic than central bank officials about the economic outlook, according to the staff’s projections ahead of the Fed’s June policy meeting. The staff forecasts were inadvertently posted online last month, the Fed said Friday. They serve as background information for policy makers as they decide how to set interest rates. For that reason, they tend to be closely guarded and are usually released with a five-year delay. In June, the staffers saw…
  • 5 Things to Watch on the Economic Calendar

    Jeffrey Sparshott
    24 Jul 2015 | 9:45 am
    The Federal Reserve’s policy meeting will highlight the week, though economists don’t expect any move on interest rates. We also get a first peek at second-quarter gross domestic product and employment costs, key data points as Fed officials weigh their first rate increase since 2006.
 
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    naked capitalism

  • 2:00PM Water Cooler 7/27/15

    Lambert Strether
    27 Jul 2015 | 11:00 am
    Today's Water Cooler: TPP and Malaysia, all Trump, all the time, Chinese markets, Medicare Part D, class warfare, pursuit of happiness
  • Links 7/27/15

    Lambert Strether
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:55 am
  • Greece Negotiations Already Starting to Look Wobbly

    Yves Smith
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:52 am
    Silly me! I thought that given that the Greek government had prostrated itself and had complied with the creditor demand to pass legislation double-plus quickly or else, that the worst of the hurdles to getting the third bailout passed had been surmounted. I should know better than that.
  • Debt Miracle: Why the Country that Borrowed the Most Industrialised First

    Lambert Strether
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:55 am
    Is debt really that bad? This column looks at the towering debts, rapid tax hikes, and constant state of war that led to Britain’s Industrial Revolution, showing that the devil is in the detail when assessing sovereign debt. When we consider the dangers of debt in today’s world, we should keep an eye on its potential benefits as well.
  • The Yellen Subsidy: Fed Chair Pumps for Keeping Financiers Fat Over Filling Potholes

    Yves Smith
    26 Jul 2015 | 10:57 pm
    Yellen tries conning journalists and the Great Unwashed Public in her defense of preserving the current level of Fed dividends to banks.
 
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    Alpha.Sources

  • The Market who "Cried Top"

    CV
    25 Jul 2015 | 4:00 pm
    "This shows how liars are rewarded: even if they tell the truth, no one believes them" Most of my readers will be familiar with the story about the boy "crying wolf." A young sheep herder repeatedly tricks people in the village into believing a wolf is attacking the flock, and on the day his claim is true, no one believes him, no one comes to his aid, and his sheep are eaten. In the original story, the boy ultimately falls victim to his own devious behavior. But even armed with good intentions picking tops—or bottoms—too hastily in financial markets can lead investors and analysts…
  • Peace for our time in Greece?

    CV
    5 Jul 2015 | 5:32 am
      Greece is on everyone's mind at the mind. In this podcast, I try to add counterweight to the growing criticism against the EU/ECB which has, predictably, risen in tandem with the desperation in Athens. I argue that a major part of the responsibility lies with the Greek government, and that the discussion on whether the Euro is fundamentally flawed is uninteresting, and essentially boring. The opening reference to Chamberlain is different from, but still inspired by, Polemic's reference here.  Articles quoted/used: Paul Krugman, June 2015 - The awesome gratuitousness of the Greek…
  • Did A Butterfly Flap Its Wings In Corporate Bond Markets Last Week?

    CV
    20 Jun 2015 | 4:00 pm
    In this podcast I continue to discussion from last week on corporate bond market bubbles and liquidity, what the risks are, and how worried we should be. I take my point of departure in the decision, last week, by Aberdeen Asset Management to set up a $500M credit line, as a precaution, to fund redemptions from its bond funds. I also give a brief overview, in numbers, of the increase non-financial corporate bonds outstanding since 2007*.  Articles quoted/used: The FT Jun 15th 2015, David Oakley - Aberdeen takes safety measures against risk of bonds sell-off The FT Jun 18th 2015,…
  • Stretching monetary policy divergence to an extreme?

    CV
    14 Jun 2015 | 3:42 am
    In this podcast I discuss the durability of monetary policy divergence between the Fed and, increasingly, the rest of the world. How far can this story be stretched, what narrative will win in the tug-of-war between hawks and doves. Unfortunately, I think it could turn out to be former. Finally, I discuss the case of the evaporating liquidity in bond markets, and why it matters. 
  • To Default or not to Default

    CV
    5 Apr 2015 | 6:02 am
    With apologies to Shakespeare.  {Dawn, Yannis Varoufakis is roaming the Akropolis}  To default or not to default, that is the question. Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer The slings and arrows of outrageous demands Or to take arms against a legion of creditors And, by opposing, end them? To stay, to oppose— No more—and by opposing to say we end The heartache and the thousand cuts That the euro and debt is heir to—’tis a consummation Devoutly to be wished! To stay, to oppose. To oppose, perchance to extend—ay, there’s the rub, For in…
 
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    re: The Auditors

  • SEC News at MarketWatch

    Francine
    19 Jul 2015 | 3:45 pm
    Last week was a busy one.  The Dodd-Frank anniversary party season began and everyone wants to either celebrate or take an opportunity to bash it.  On July 21 Dodd-Frank will be five years old. If I hadn’t been through the same thing with Sarbanes-Oxley now twice, I’d be more excited.  But the partisan rancor on this law is even worse.  At least with Sarbanes-Oxley it was either regulatory or anti-regulatory rhetoric and there was no real party split amongst those who didn’t and still don’t know what internal controls over financial reporting are. From the Harvard…
  • Speaking Engagements/Conferences

    Francine
    12 Jul 2015 | 5:40 am
    I’m on the road visiting universities, attending select conferences and forums and speaking to groups of all kinds. If you would like me to visit your university and your accounting/audit program, please write soon to lock in fall and winter dates. Contact me at fmckenna@mckennapartners.com to schedule a presentation at your university, conference, firm or for a private briefing. Coming Up: July 15, 2015, Speaking with Broc Romanek, editor of the CorporateCounsel.net, to the Shareholder Services Association Annual Meeting on “Leveraging Social Media.” Mayflower Hotel,…
  • Looking Into SEC’s Equity Markets Structure Committee at MarketWatch

    Francine
    5 Jul 2015 | 8:58 am
    One of the really great things about my new role at MarketWatch is that I can do long as well as short, fast news as well as the kind that takes some time to digest, and everyone has to do something in-depth once and a while.  My first assignment, shortly after I arrived mid-May, was to look into the activities of the SEC’s new Equity Market Structure Advisory Committee. (Grow and change, stretch and bend…) My piece, spanning several online pages, is now out. It focuses on the Committee members and their priorities, as well as another initiative running in the background–the…
  • re: The Auditors is now at MarketWatch

    Francine
    31 May 2015 | 2:31 pm
    May 18, 2015 was my first day on the job as a reporter for MarketWatch in Washington, DC, the sister online publication to the Wall Street Journal and Barrons that focuses on retail investors. Yes, I have taken a full-time journalism job and I have moved. I found out about the job via Twitter. (Twitter has been berry berry good to me!) Steve Goldstein, the DC Bureau Chief of MarketWatch, and I have been following each other there for a while and have had some back and forth on the issues. He knows my work. I saw his tweet for the job— it was a perfect fit—and asked him if I could apply. …
  • Peter Thiel’s Pursuit Of Technological Progress; It’s Not About Democracy and It’s Definitely Not About Capitalism – Part 3

    Francine
    13 May 2015 | 4:32 am
    As a journalist, a reporter, I sometimes have to read things I would not otherwise. My luxury as a freelance journalist has been to write what I want, for whom I wish, when I want, and charge what the market will bear. But even I, in the interest of good reporting, have to sometimes go to a source document I know I will disagree with, know I will regret having to pay money for only to put on a shelf or in an archive afterward never to look at again except perhaps to seethe. Ben Horowitz, of venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, wrote a book, The Hard Thing About Hard Things and it’s…
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    The American Prospect

  • Why Donald Trump Matters

    Paul Waldman
    26 Jul 2015 | 5:35 pm
    (Photo: AP/Charlie Neibergall) In Oskaloosa, Iowa, on Saturday, Trump said to his supporters, "I'm very good with contracts. Don't you want that?" The political press is struggling over how exactly to report on Donald Trump. On one hand, we absolutely love covering him—Trump's intoxicating combination of boorishness, ignorance, tactlessness, and overconfidence, all wrapped up in a gold-plated package, is utterly irresistible as copy. On the other hand, we feel a little guilty about it, as though we know it's bad for us and bad for the public. Which is what produces the endless assurances…
  • Valuing Medicaid

    Harold Pollack, Bill Gardner & Timothy Jost
    26 Jul 2015 | 3:24 pm
    AP Photo/Christian K. Lee In this Monday, July 13, 2015 photo Earl Charles Williams Sr., 59, sits next to some of the medication he must take for his diabetes in his Chicago home. Williams was uninsured for about a year before a county-run clinic helped him sign up for care under the Affordable Care Act. July 30 marks the 50th anniversary of Medicare and Medicaid, the two essential pillars of public health insurance in America. Medicare, for all of its shortcomings and enormous costs, has become politically unassailable—as dear to Tea Party Republicans as it is to single-payer Democrats.
  • Cultures of Impunity

    Paul Starr
    24 Jul 2015 | 12:59 pm
    NY Daily News via Getty Images Eric Garner died while being arrested by police in Staten Island on July 17, 2014.  This article appears in the Summer 2015 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here. It is sometimes hard for us to recognize problems in our own society that we can readily identify abroad. International human rights and anti-corruption reformers talk about “cultures of impunity” in Third World countries where murder, the looting of economic resources, and other crimes by the powerful regularly go unpunished. The police, high government officials, and their…
  • Federal Contract Workers Are Demanding a Big Raise. But Will They Get It?

    Justin Miller
    24 Jul 2015 | 11:02 am
    Good Jobs Nation Just outside the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, hundreds of workers wearing blue shirts that said "Strike!" rallied for more pay. Leaders led chants in English and Spanish, from "Hey, hey, ho, ho, $10.10 is way too low," to "Que queremos? Quince y un unin These workers were striking for a day against companies contracted by the federal government to ring up powerful politicians’ lunch orders in the Senate, clean offices in the Pentagon, and cook food at the Smithsonian museums. As the Fight for $15 has gained traction across the United States, workers—supported by a coalition…
  • A Decent Living for Home Caregivers—And Their Clients

    Heather Rogers
    22 Jul 2015 | 3:47 pm
    This article appears in the Summer 2015 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here. Laddie Read, a 69-year-old with cerebral palsy, can’t get up without help. When he awoke one morning last April expecting to find his home-care aide and instead saw a complete stranger at the foot of his bed, Read was terrified. “I had no idea who was there,” he recalls. “If you were bedridden and somebody just walked into your house,” he says, “how would you feel?” Read requires help to move from room to room, get into his wheelchair, use the bathroom, dress, and bathe. He…
 
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    Brad DeLong's Grasping Reality

  • Links and Tweets

    J. Bradford DeLong
    2 Aug 2015 | 11:44 pm
    Links: Must-Read: Nick Bunker: Compensation Inequality and Productivity Growth Matthew Yglesias: Robots Aren't Taking Your Jobs--and That's the Problem Dean Baker: Why the Fed’s policy on interest rates is key to fighting poverty Noreen Malone andAmanda Demme: 35 Bill Cosby Accusers Tell Their Stories Links: Must-Read: Sutirtha Bagchia and Jan Svejnarb: Does wealth inequality matter for growth? The effect of billionaire wealth, income distribution, and poverty Must-Read: Nick Rowe: "Suppose the Bank of Canada targets 2% inflation... Must-Read: Brink Lindsey: Low-Hanging Fruit…
  • 27 Jul 2015 | 3:13 pm

    J. Bradford DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:13 pm
    Noted for Your Evening Procrastination for July 27, 2015## Must- and Should-Reads: Must-Read: Paul Krugman: The Essential Obstfeld Christine Lagarde: Press Release: Appoints Maurice Obstfeld as Economic Counsellor and Director of the IMF’s Research Department Maurice Obstfeld: Models of currency crises with self-fulfilling features Maurice Obstfeld and Kenneth Rogoff: Exchange Rate Dynamics Redux Must-Read: Ezra Klein: "It will be normal... Must-Read: Henry Farrell: A Brief Theory of Very Serious People Paul Blustein: Laid Low: The IMF, the eurozone, and the First Rescue of Greece…
  • 27 Jul 2015 | 3:03 pm

    J. Bradford DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:03 pm
    Must-Read: The "but compensation growth has been faster than wage growth since 1975!" literature has always seemed to me to a bit of a game of Three-Card-Monte in the inequality debate: I see every reason to think that the increases in benefits that are the wedge between compensation and income growth went overwhelmingly to those near the top of the income distribution... Nick Bunker: Compensation Inequality and Productivity Growth: "Growth in total compensation for lower-paid workers was slower... ...than wage growth in that same spot on the wage spectrum. The exact opposite…
  • 27 Jul 2015 | 12:16 pm

    J. Bradford DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:16 pm
    Must-Read: Let me register a complaint: http://vox.com seems to me to be getting a little #Slatepitchy these days--and that is a problem. Bait-and-switch between what the headline and the teaser promise and what the article delivers is already the reason I do not click on links to Slate... The right teaser would be: "Don't worry that robots are taking your jobs--they are not (at least, not yet). Do worry that robots are not amplifying your productivity." Matthew Yglesias: Robots Aren't Taking Your Jobs--and That's the Problem: "The good news is that these…
  • 27 Jul 2015 | 12:07 pm

    J. Bradford DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:07 pm
    Must-Read: The very sharp Brink Lindsey continues to try to find common bipartisan technocratic policy ground... Brink Lindsey: Low-Hanging Fruit Guarded by Dragons: Reforming Regressive Regulation to Boost U.S. Economic Growth: "The U.S. economy is slowing down... ...Labor participation is falling, the pace of human capital accumulation is slackening, the rate of investment is in long-term decline, and growth in total factor productivity has been low for three of the four past decades.... Progressives, conservatives, and libertarians have a strong common interest in reversing this…
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    Calculated Risk

  • Vehicle Sales Forecasts for July: Over 17 Million Annual Rate Again, Best July in a Decade

    Bill McBride
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:51 pm
    The automakers will report July vehicle sales on Monday, August 3rd. Sales in June were at 17.1 million on a seasonally adjusted annual rate basis (SAAR), and it appears sales in July will be over 17 million SAAR again. Note:  There were 26 selling days in July, the same as in July 2014.  Here are a few forecasts:From J.D. Power: New-Vehicle Retail Sales SAAR in July to Hit 14 Million, Highest Level for the Month in a DecadeThe forecast for new-vehicle retail sales in July 2015 is 1,260,200 units, a 2.5 percent increase compared with July 2014 and the highest retail sales volume for…
  • ATA Trucking Index decreased 0.5% in June

    Bill McBride
    27 Jul 2015 | 10:55 am
    Here is an indicator that I follow on trucking, from the ATA: ATA Truck Tonnage Index Fell 0.5% in JuneAmerican Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index decreased 0.5% in June, following a revised gain of 0.8% during May. In June, the index equaled 131.1 (2000=100). The all-time high of 135.8 was reached in January 2015.Compared with June 2014, the SA index increased 1.8%, which was above the 1.5% gain in May. Year-to-date through June, compared with the same period last year, tonnage was up 3.4%. ...With flat factory output and falling retail sales,…
  • Dallas Fed: "Texas Manufacturing Slump Moderates"

    Bill McBride
    27 Jul 2015 | 7:57 am
    From the Dallas Fed: Texas Manufacturing Slump Moderates, Outlooks Improve Texas factory activity declined slightly in July, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, remained negative but rose for a second month in a row to -1.9, suggesting further moderation in the decline in manufacturing output....Perceptions of broader business conditions were mixed. The general business activity index remained negative, but it rose for a second month in a row and reached -4.6 in July.
  • Black Knight: House Price Index up 1.1% in May, 5.1% year-over-year

    Bill McBride
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:14 am
    Note: I follow several house price indexes (Case-Shiller, CoreLogic, Black Knight, Zillow, FHFA, FNC and more). Note: Black Knight uses the current month closings only (not a three month average like Case-Shiller or a weighted average like CoreLogic), excludes short sales and REOs, and is not seasonally adjusted.From Black Knight: U.S. Home Prices Up 1.1 percent for the Month; Up 5.1 Percent Year-Over-YearToday, the Data and Analytics division of Black Knight Financial Services, Inc. (NYSE: BKFS) released its latest Home Price Index (HPI​) report, based on May 2015 residential real estate…
  • Sunday Night Futures

    Bill McBride
    26 Jul 2015 | 4:49 pm
    From Ben Leubsdorf and Jon Hilsenrath at the WSJ: Fed Officials May Offer More Clarity on RatesFederal Reserve officials are likely to emerge from their policy meeting Wednesday with short-term interest rates still pinned near zero, though they could send fresh hints that they’re getting closer to raising rates. ...This leaves the Fed with a slight signaling challenge at the meeting this week. How aggressively should officials tip their hands about the timing of a rate increase later this year? Fed officials don’t want to take financial markets by surprise by raising the benchmark…
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    Crooked Timber

  • One of our Twitter accounts is missing

    Henry
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:04 pm
    A public service request – someone, presumably a Crooked Timber reader, put up a Crooked Timber Twitter account a few years ago, to automatically tweet new posts that we put up. Which was very nice of them – but it appears to have stopped working sometime back in 2013. If the person who put this together reads this and would be kind enough to let us know the password so that we can put it all back together, we’d be grateful (we presume that he or she has abandoned this little project himself or herself). If anyone knows who did this, and could contact them, we’d be…
  • Sunday photoblogging: Hekla, Iceland

    Chris Bertram
    26 Jul 2015 | 12:46 am
  • On the New York Intellectuals

    Corey Robin
    25 Jul 2015 | 6:08 pm
    I first read Irving Howe in college, in Andrew Ross’ seminar on intellectuals. We read Howe’s ”The New York Intellectuals.” I don’t remember what I thought of it. What I remember is that Howe was an object of great attraction for someone like me, the epitome of the independent left intellectual. At some point in graduate school, I grew less enamored of the New York Intellectuals as a whole: in part because of their compromises or collaboration with McCarthyism, in part because the ideal of the independent left intellectual lost its allure for…
  • “Utilitarianism, with the potentially left-wing bits stripped out”

    Henry
    24 Jul 2015 | 8:34 am
    There’s been a lot of back and forth about economic reasoning and the EU. This article by Kevin O’Rourke, takes a different perspective, one that is well worth reading, exploring the consequences of economists’ handwaving over utility for the technocratic politics that we face today. I’ve seen other efforts to make this kind of case, but they haven’t been nearly as clear or accessible.
  • Beyond Galilee

    John Quiggin
    24 Jul 2015 | 3:46 am
    If there’s to be any chance of stabilizing the global climate, a large proportion of existing reserves of coal will need to be left in the ground. The Galilee Basin in Queensland, estimated to contain 27 billion tonnes of coal, enough to raise atmospheric concentrations of CO2 by several parts per million on its own, is arguably the biggest test case in the world right now. Fortunately, the latest news is good. The critical project is the Carmichael Mine proposed by Indian conglomerate Adani . To get the coal out Adani proposed a new rail line and a port expansion at Abbot Point. A…
 
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    Econbrowser

  • Measuring unemployment

    James_Hamilton
    25 Jul 2015 | 7:46 am
    New claims for unemployment insurance this week came in at the lowest level in over 40 years. How much slack can there be left in the labor market? Initial claims for unemployment insurance, weekly, 1967-01-07 to 2015-07-18. Source: FRED. The most common measure of unemployment (known as U3) counts the number of people who are not currently working and are actively looking for a job. You’re put in that category by the BLS if you report taking active measures over the last month to find work. In June U3 amounted to 5.3% of the labor force, where the labor force is defined as the sum of…
  • Guest Contribution: “Time to Re-estimate the U.S. Output Gap: Have the Scars from the Crisis Healed?”

    Menzie Chinn
    23 Jul 2015 | 10:10 pm
    Today we are fortunate to present a guest contribution written by Ali Alichi, senior economist at the International Monetary Fund. The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the IMF, its management, nor its Executive Board. Models with deterministic trends, such as the HP filter or the “hybrid” approach of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) produce unreliable estimates for the potential output. For example, excess capacity built in the run-up to the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) should be treated as cyclical, but…
  • A Brief Note on Yuan Exchange Rate Pass-through to US Imports from China

    Menzie Chinn
    23 Jul 2015 | 9:00 pm
    In today’s WSJ, Justin Lahart notes “China Wind Chills U.S. Earnings”, and presents an interesting graph of import prices, which inspired me to look more closely at the issue. In Figure 1, I reproduce the graph, with a slightly longer time span, augmented with the Chinese producer price index. Figure 1: Year-on-year percent change (in decimal form), in prices of Chinese goods imports into the US (blue), and in Chinese producer price index (red). Source: BLS, tradingeconomics.com, and author’s calculations. My first observation is that it’s kind of surprising that…
  • Guest Contribution: ‘Only Tsipras Can “Go to China”’

    Menzie Chinn
    22 Jul 2015 | 10:53 pm
    Today we are fortunate to have a guest contribution written by Jeffrey Frankel, Harpel Professor of Capital Formation and Growth at Harvard University, and former Member of the Council of Economic Advisers, 1997-99. An earlier version was published in Project Syndicate. Alexis Tsipras, the Greek prime minister, has the chance to play a role for his country analogous to the roles played by Korean President Kim Dae Jung in 1997 and Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in 2002. Both of those presidential candidates had been long-time men of the left, with strong ties to labor, and were…
  • Messages from the June State Employment Release

    Menzie Chinn
    21 Jul 2015 | 11:51 am
    According to today’s release, employment and hours downturns in Wisconsin and Kansas continue. The Wisconsin economic downturn continues along several other dimensions (with the labor force now declining). Figures 1-4 show private nonfarm payroll employment and aggregate hours for California, Kansas, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Figure 1: California private nonfarm payroll employment (blue) and aggregate hours (red), seasonally adjusted, in logs, 2011M01=0. NBER recession dates shaded gray. A value of 0.10 means that measure has risen 10% in log terms since 2011M01. Aggregate hours…
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    EconLog: Library of Economics and Liberty

  • Race and progressivism

    Scott Sumner
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:18 pm
    (July 27, 2015 04:18 PM, by Scott Sumner) Pat Buchanan used to complain about imports from Asian and Hispanic economies, but was strangely silent about our large trade deficits with mostly white northern Europe. Donald Trump makes similar complaints. Now Kevin Williamson says that Bernie Sanders likes to... (16 COMMENTS)
  • Finishing an Econ Ph.D.: The Basic Facts

    Bryan Caplan
    27 Jul 2015 | 9:40 am
    (July 27, 2015 09:40 AM, by Bryan Caplan) If aspiring econ Ph.D.s are going to read one article about their prospects for academic success, Stock, Siegfried, and Finegan's "Completion Rates and Time-to-Degree in Economics PhD Programs" (American Economic Review, 2011) is probably the single best piece to read. ... (1 COMMENTS)
  • Krugman on Greece

    David Henderson
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:58 am
    (July 27, 2015 01:58 AM, by David Henderson) Athens, we have a problem. I missed seeing Paul Krugman on Fareed Zakaria's show on CNN on July 19. The transcript is worth looking at, not because it's that informative about Greece but because it's informative about how--and how carefully--Krugman... (6 COMMENTS)
  • Good for Jared Bernstein

    David Henderson
    26 Jul 2015 | 3:55 pm
    (July 26, 2015 03:55 PM, by David Henderson) Those who know me well know how much I like civility in debate. And, beyond civility, I like even more when people on one side of an issue will grant a point made by someone on another side of an... (15 COMMENTS)
  • What You Mean "We", Scott Alexander?

    David Henderson
    25 Jul 2015 | 7:18 pm
    (July 25, 2015 07:18 PM, by David Henderson) My co-blogger Bryan Caplan, as well as many other bloggers and friends, have recommended Scott Alexander's (that's not his real name) blog, slatestarcodex. I have had it on my feed for a number of months now and, like them, find... (23 COMMENTS)
 
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    Economist's View

  • Paul Krugman: Zombies Against Medicare

    Mark Thoma
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:42 am
    Despite what you might hear from conservatives, Medicare is "eminently sustainable": Zombies Against Medicare, by Paul Krugman, Commentary, NY Times: Medicare turns 50 this week, and it has been a very good half-century. Before the program went into effect, Ronald Reagan warned that it would destroy American freedom; it didn’t, as far as anyone can tell. What it did do was provide a huge improvement in financial security for seniors and their families, and in many cases it has literally been a lifesaver as well. But the right has never abandoned its dream of killing the program.
  • 'Poor Little Rich Kids? The Determinants of the Intergenerational Transmission of Wealth'

    Mark Thoma
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:33 am
    Genes are not as important as people think: Poor Little Rich Kids? The Determinants of the Intergenerational Transmission of Wealth, by Sandra E. Black, Paul J. Devereux, Petter Lundborg, and Kaveh Majlesi, NBER Working Paper No. 21409 Issued in July 2015: Wealth is highly correlated between parents and their children; however, little is known about the extent to which these relationships are genetic or determined by environmental factors. We use administrative data on the net wealth of a large sample of Swedish adoptees merged with similar information for their biological and adoptive…
  • 'Debt Miracle: Why the Country that Borrowed the Most Industrialized First'

    Mark Thoma
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:24 am
    "When we consider the dangers of debt in today’s world, we should keep an eye on its potential benefits as well.": Debt miracle: Why the country that borrowed the most industrialized first, by Jaume Ventura and Hans-Joachim Voth, Vox EU: Towering debts, rapidly rising taxes, constant and expensive wars, a debt burden surpassing 200% of GDP. What are the chances that a country with such characteristics would grow rapidly? Almost anyone would probably say ‘none’. And yet, these are exactly the conditions under which the Industrial Revolution took place in Britain. Britain’s…
  • Links for 07-27-15

    Mark Thoma
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:06 am
    “Lowflation” forever in the US? - Gavyn Davies “An Altogether Different Angle” - Economic Principals Policy consequences of public income volatility - Vox EU Building a more inclusive society - Miles Corak Africa is more ready to make than it is to consume - FT.com Maybe profs should haggle over textbook prices? - Nick Rowe Tattoos, Incompetence, and the Heritage Foundation - Paul Krugman The Disappearing Entitlements Crisis - Paul Krugman Is chemistry supervenient upon physics? - Understanding Society Thorstein Veblen in Brooklyn (Trivial) - Paul Krugman What Liberals Get Right About…
  • 'The F Story about the Great Inflation'

    Mark Thoma
    26 Jul 2015 | 9:48 am
    Simon Wren-Lewis: The F story about the Great Inflation: Here F could stand for folk. The story that is often told by economists to their students goes as follows. After Phillips discovered his curve, which relates inflation to unemployment, Samuelson and Solow in 1960 suggested this implied a trade-off that policymakers could use. They could permanently have a bit less unemployment at the cost of a bit more inflation. Policymakers took up that option, but then could not understand why inflation didn’t just go up a bit, but kept on going up and up. Along came Milton Friedman to the rescue,…
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    EconTalk

  • Eric Hanushek on the Education, Skills, and the Millennium Development Goals

    Russell Roberts
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:30 am
    How important are basic skills for economic success and growth? Eric Hanushek of Stanford University's Hoover Institution talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the importance of basic education in math and literacy and their relationship to economic growth. Hanushek argues that excellence in educating people in basic skills leads to economic growth, especially in poorer countries where years of education may be a poor proxy for learning. He argues that the U.N.'s Millennium Development Goals should emphasize outputs rather than inputs--performance on skill-based exams rather than years…
  • Wences Casares on Bitcoin and Xapo

    Russell Roberts
    20 Jul 2015 | 3:30 am
    Wences Casares, bitcoin evangelist and founder and CEO of Xapo, talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about how bitcoin works, the genius of bitcoin's creator, and how Xapo is structured to create security for bitcoin banking. Play Time: 1:00:51 How do I listen to a podcast? Download Size:27.9 MB Right-click or Option-click, and select "Save Link/Target As MP3. Readings and Links related to this podcast episode Related Readings HIDE READINGS About this week's guest: Wences Casares on Twitter Wences Casares. Wikipedia. About ideas and people mentioned in this podcast episode: Books: Digital…
  • Continuing Education... Ohanian, Kling, and Cochrane on the Future of Freedom, Prosperity, and Democracy

    Amy Willis
    14 Jul 2015 | 12:14 pm
    If the Magna Carta sowed the seeds of freedom and prosperity 800 years ago, what should we look forward to in the next 800 years? This week's episode, recorded before a live audience at the Hoover Institution, asks three EconTalk favorites to offer their thoughts. And now it's time to share yours. Are you more of an optimist or pessimist about the future of freedom? Help us continue the conversation. 1. After listening to the opening statements of each guest, which guest do you find most compelling? Explain. 2. The speakers were critical of the role of regulation or the size of government in…
  • Lee Ohanian, Arnold Kling, and John Cochrane on the Future of Freedom, Democracy, and Prosperity

    Russell Roberts
    13 Jul 2015 | 3:30 am
    Lee Ohanian, Arnold Kling, and John Cochrane talk with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about the future of freedom, democracy, and prosperity. Recorded in front of a live audience at Stanford University's Hoover Institution as part of a conference on Magna Carta, the three guests give their perspective on the future of the American economy and the interaction between politics and economics. Each guest makes a brief presentation at the start followed by a moderated conversation. Play Time: 56:57 How do I listen to a podcast? Download Size:26.1 MB Right-click or Option-click, and select "Save…
  • Continuing Education... Alvin Roth on Matching Markets

    Amy Willis
    8 Jul 2015 | 10:01 am
    Can economists save lives? It seems Nobel laureate Alvin Roth can...In this week's episode, Roth talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about matching markets and social support for markets. The conversation ranges over indirect kidney donations, (public) school choice, financial market trading, and more. As always, we'd like to take this chance to enrich the experience of this week's conversation. Use the prompts below to respond in the comments, and use them to spark you own conversations offline. We love to hear from you! 1. What were your top takeaways from this week's episode? 2. Roth…
 
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    Environmental Economics

  • Climate change conspiracy worthy of a Grisham novel

    Tim Haab
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:00 am
    A Cambridge Professor has made the astonishing claim that three scientists investigating the melting of Arctic ice may have been assassinated within the space of a few months. Professor Peter Wadhams said he feared being labelled a “looney” over his suspicion that the deaths of the scientists were more than just an ‘extraordinary’ coincidence. But he insisted the trio could have been murdered and hinted that the oil industry or else sinister government forces might be implicated. The three scientists he identified - Seymour Laxon and Katherine Giles, both climate change scientists at…
  • Daily Demand and Supply: Is backyard BBQ a negative externality?

    Tim Haab
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:41 am
    I'm definitely using this one in class when I talk about negative externalities and Coase (Warning: a little NSFW language):  Here is the Pinellas County, Florida explanation of the nuisance odor law: Commercial barbecue cookers are not exempt from causing a nuisance odor. If a sufficient number of complaints, representing different households, are reported and an Inspector witnesses the problem, they can issue a Warning Letter. N' then they get a stern talkin' to. From a Coasian perspective the answer seems pretty straight forward.  The County has established the property…
  • What is it about the Red Sox that drives up the demand for beer?

    John Whitehead
    24 Jul 2015 | 9:00 am
    Source: Deadspin
  • Daily demand and supply: bee-pocalypse and higher prices for fruits and nuts

    John Whitehead
    24 Jul 2015 | 5:27 am
    This is good news but if we're not living through the great tribulation then I don't know what to say:  You've heard the news about honeybees. "Beepocalypse," they've called it. Beemageddon. America's honeybees are dying, putting honey production and $15 billion worth of pollinated food crops in jeopardy. ... The trouble all began in 2006 or so, when beekeepers first began noticing mysterious die-offs. It was soon christened "colony collapse disorder," and has been responsible for the loss of 20 to 40 percent of managed honeybee colonies each…
  • Daily demand and supply: CA gasoline prices

    John Whitehead
    24 Jul 2015 | 5:10 am
    From the email: Sky-High California Gas Prices Have a Green Additiveby: Allysia FinleyJul 18, 2015Click here to view the full article on WSJ.com TOPICS: Environmental Regulation SUMMARY: The national average is $2.76 a gallon, while Golden State drivers pay $3.88. Eco-virtue is expensive. CLASSROOM APPLICATION: Students can evaluate whether California's environmental regulation of gasoline and electricity and also gasoline taxes are driving up the state's gasoline prices. They can also discuss whether these regulations and taxes promote economic efficiency (by addressing the…
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    footnoted*

  • Will Hertz’ former CEO wind up having to clawback?

    Michelle Leder
    17 Jul 2015 | 11:59 am
    You’ve probably already seen the news about Hertz Global Holdings finally filing its much delayed earnings. Yesterday, after the markets closed, the company filed its delayed 10-K for 2014, which included restated results for 2012 and 2013 and its first quarter 10-Q for 2015, bringing the company up-to-date in its filings. The news sent the stock, which had dropped over 30% since the beginning of the year, up about 12% on the news. The company’s CEO, John Tague, said yesterday that “Today’s filings are an important step forward, and our attention is now on realizing Hertz’s…
  • A very good thing for Martha Stewart!

    Michelle Leder
    24 Jun 2015 | 12:02 pm
    By now, you’ve undoubtedly read about Sequential Brands’ offer to buy Martha Stewart Omnimedia. Rumors that a deal was in the works sent Martha Stewart stock up above $7 a share last week for the first time 2010. But when the $353 million deal was announced on Monday at $6.15 a share, the stock began falling and the lawsuits and investigations started picking up (see here and here, for example). But Martha Stewart Omnimedia’s largest shareholder — that would be Martha Stewart, who according to this NY Post article stands to make $167 million on the deal based on her…
  • A very expensive year for Hertz

    Michelle Leder
    1 Jun 2015 | 8:33 am
    How much is a year of, presumably, hard work worth? At Hertz Global Holdings, the answer is north of $8 million. Last week, Hertz filed this 8-K disclosing severance details for Hertz Equipment Rental Corp. (HERC) CEO Brian MacDonald. As both this press release and the filing noted, MacDonald stepped down on May 20. Unlike similar announcements and 8-Ks, the “personal reasons” or “more time with the family” language wasn’t trotted out. Ditto for the language about “no disagreements” that is standard fare in most 8Ks announcing a sudden departure.
  • Herbalife v. Ackman: Who’s manipulating whom?

    Michelle Leder
    6 May 2015 | 9:00 am
    It’s been nearly 2 1/2 years since Pershing Square’s Bill Ackman made a 300-page presentation outlining his short position in Herbalife. Since then, countless pixels (not to mention video footage and actual ink) has been devoted to the seemingly never-ending battle, complete with dueling websites (see this company site and this anti-Herbalife site). Here at footnoted, we haven’t really spent too much time on the back-and-forth volleying. Still, a disclosure in the 10-Q that Herbalife filed yesterday afternoon — the same day it reported better-than-expected results that…
  • Warning signals in Yelp’s 10-K

    Michelle Leder
    1 May 2015 | 10:12 am
    Back on March 2, we published a report on Yelp that looked at some of the tough new language that we found in their 10-K. Given Yelp’s earnings release on Wednesday and the sharp decline in the stock price yesterday, we wanted to make the report available to all of our footnoted readers. You can read the report here for free. Just a reminder that there are no accidents in SEC filings. Everything is there for a reason.
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    Free exchange

  • Why bull calves and bear cubs are responsible for China's crazy share prices

    S.R. & Q.Q. | SHANGHAI
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:59 am
    THE “national team” was supposed to save China’s stockmarket. Investors were coming round to the view that the government had succeeded in stabilising share prices after the central bank had pumped billions of yuan into the market in recent weeks. Stocks were slowly clawing back territory lost in their sharp tumble of the previous month. But on Monday the Shanghai Composite, the country's main index, fell 8.5%, its biggest one-day fall since early 2007 (see chart).As with any sudden sell-off, the reasons given by analysts were varied and more akin to guesses than solid…
  • The limits of nudging

    S.K. | LONDON
    25 Jul 2015 | 6:09 am
    THE behavioural revolution is in full swing, it seems. On Thursday the Behavioural Insights Team (BIT), based in London and previously known as the 'Nudge Unit', published a summary of its findings over the past two years. Five years after it started, the buzz surrounding the unit has not faded. So far the BIT has trialled over 100 policy tweaks around the world, and boasts an impressive array of results. But for all the excitement, there is still a long way to go.  The report reveals that, embarassingly slowly, governments around the world are cottoning on to two…
  • Money talks: Minimum-wage mania

    Economist.com
    21 Jul 2015 | 10:17 am
    GOVERNMENTS are enthusiastically raising the minimum wage of workers. But how high can they go without being harmful?
  • Why do people do it to themselves?

    C.W. | LONDON
    21 Jul 2015 | 12:51 am
    IT IS well known that in America, "extreme" working hours (slogging for more than fifty a week) have been getting more widespread in recent decades. In a famous paper from 2005, Peter Kuhn and Fernando Lozano showed that the share of employed, 25-to-64-year-old men who usually work 50 or more hours per week on their main job rose from 14.7% in 1980 to 18.5% in 2001. But much less is known about people in Europe. New research from Anna Burger, of the Central European University, presents some interesting findings.The first chart in her paper clearly shows that, especially for the…
  • Maurice Obstfeld becomes the new Blanchard

    THE ECONOMICS TEAM | LONDON
    20 Jul 2015 | 9:09 am
    NEWS has just come through that Maurice Obstfeld will be the International Monetary Fund's new chief economist, succeeding Olivier Blanchard who is retiring. According to those in the know, Mr Obstfeld was chosen from an exceptionally strong field of candidates, which is a tribute to the role Mr Blanchard has played. Mr Obstfeld ("Maury" to his friends) has both academic experience (he is a professor at the University of California, Berkeley) and policy chops (he is on Barack Obama's Council of Economic Advisers, where apparently he has done a lot of good work). To most…
 
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    Greg Mankiw's Blog

  • The Mess in Europe

    Greg Mankiw
    17 Jul 2015 | 11:13 am
    Click here to read my column in Sunday's NY Times.
  • :)

    Greg Mankiw
    8 Jul 2015 | 1:06 pm
    Click on graphic to enlarge
  • Free at Last

    Greg Mankiw
    8 Jul 2015 | 6:11 am
    I am delighted to report that I am no longer chairman of the Harvard economics department.  My three-year sentence term having been completed, I am happy to turn things over to David Laibson. Condolences Congratulations, David.
  • Milton Friedman on the Euro

    Greg Mankiw
    6 Jul 2015 | 3:26 am
    With the problems in Greece now leading the news, this old article by the great Milton Friedman is worth (re)reading.  (Martin Feldstein made similar arguments at the time in this article.)
  • Best of Enemies

    Greg Mankiw
    3 Jul 2015 | 2:59 am
    I recently had the pleasure of seeing several films at the Nantucket Film Festival.  My favorite was Best of Enemies, a documentary about the TV debates between William Buckley and Gore Vidal during the 1968 presidential nominating conventions.  It is being released later this month.  Here is the trailer: 
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    Hedge fund

  • Warren Buffett fund

    Hedge Fund
    11 Jul 2015 | 4:08 pm
    Warren Buffett has always focused on absolute return investing and leverage, arbitrage, derivatives, event-driven, distressed, opportunistic and global macro strategies have driven ALL his returns since inception. Some people claim that Berkshire Hathaway isn't even a hedge fund! I'm glad such fools exist so that Warren, me and many others can make money out of them. If BRKA isn't a hedge fund then there are no hedge funds.Warren Buffett prefers book value to assess performance but only partnerships are valued at NAV. Warren manages listed hedge fund BRKA so shareholder sentiment…
  • Best fund ever

    Hedge Fund
    8 Jul 2015 | 11:08 am
    Best investor? I define "best" by highest risk adjusted performance over many decades. AUM and fame are usually negatively correlated with future returns but that doesn't stop so many fund selectors repeating dumb mistakes. Index funds deliver staggering losses and high volatility every few years but amateurs love them.It's better to select jockeys, not horses, as I wish to avoid steep market losses that can last many years. For that reason skill and risk management ability are the ONLY things I consider in allocating investment capital. Asset classes get none. How about you?Skill persists…
  • 2 and 20

    Hedge Fund
    29 Jun 2015 | 3:06 am
    2 and 20? A friend just ate at a top restaurant. Some say she was ripped off. Nearby was a more famous eatery crowded with satisfied clients. Food there cost a few dollars compared to hundreds where she ate. I asked about her irrational decision avoiding "cheap" food but she said while aware of "lower" fees, differences in SKILL, EXPERIENCE and VALUE were clear between 3 star Michelin chefs and McDonalds burger flippers.Index funds and fast food firms price "cheap" due to the ingredients, work and talent that goes into them. I can't stomach the contents of either. Top funds and…
  • Low risk or low fee

    Hedge Fund
    28 Jun 2015 | 6:00 am
    Passive funds are just low frequency momentum trading strategies. Terrible risk-adjusted returns but brilliantly sold as "low" fee but with very high real costs. Using market capitalization as a sole factor ranking selection methodology renders such products too risky for anyone. No skill, no analysis, no knowledge about any securities in the fund? Clear breach of prudent man and ERISA laws to "go passive".Wall Street darling Jack Bogle says the dangerous funds he sells are cheap. Low fee is not low cost. Passive funds are outrageously expensive considering the severity of losses…
  • Hedge fund billionaire

    Hedge Fund
    27 Jun 2015 | 12:00 am
    Nothing new about hedge fund managers "pocketing" billions. Deservedly. George Soros and Warren Buffett got that in their "paychecks" in several years in the 1990s for making clients tens of billions. Jesse Livermore "took home" $100 million in 1929 which is far more than a billion in today's money. The highest annual "compensation" received by a hedge fund manager was Munehisa Honma who "trousered" over $10 billion many times.Unskilled momentum trader Jack Bogle likes "cheap" index funds. I don't know why as they are risky and expensive considering the heavy losses, limited "work" involved…
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    Jeff Matthews Is Not Making This Up

  • Fact-Checking William D. Cohan; Or, Paul Is Not Dead

    Jeff Matthews
    19 Jul 2015 | 5:02 pm
     TV personality, author and commentator William D. Cohan is grumpy about a lot of things. There’s the Duke lacrosse scandal, for one, about which he’s just publish a “shocking, thought-provoking new book”—according to the description on his own web page. And for another there’s Wall Street, from whence he came, and about which he’s written plenty of grumpy, conspiracy-minded books. Hence it’s no surprise to find Cohan invited to speak at the Sun Valley Writer’s Conference, whose attendees tend to be wealthy, Wall Street-leery arts supporters from…
  • Sgt. Pepper! Joe Cocker! Jimmy Page! Oh, and Warren and Charlie...

    Jeff Matthews
    2 May 2015 | 3:50 pm
                      The best part of this year’s Berkshire meeting—except seeing Charlie Munger in good form, which we’ll get to in a bit—was the movie.            Not the movie itself, but the end of the movie, when the sing-along tribute to Berkshire’s managers, which always used to be set to the tune of “My Favorite Things,” turned out to use “Sgt. Pepper” instead.            That’s some good taste there. …
  • Messi Announces Retirement, Reporter Asks About Half-Time Score

    Jeff Matthews
    27 Mar 2015 | 4:33 am
     Tom Prescott announced his retirement last night.   You may not have heard of him, but as CEO of Align Technologies (the inventors of Invisalign “invisible braces”) Prescott helped turn a $70 million revenue company with 35% gross margins, negative operating margins and a $127 million market value into a near-$800 million revenue company with near-80% gross margins and 25% operating margins. Oh, yeah, and a $4.5 billion market value, last we checked. More than that, Tom Prescott helped Invisalign develop from a niche product not much liked by the orthodontists…
  • Charlie Named Name

    Jeff Matthews
    28 Feb 2015 | 10:04 am
    Ned Isakoff: “You got me blacklisted from Hop Sing’s?”Delivery Man:  “She named name!”—Seinfeld, “The Race”  Like Elaine Benes in that Seinfeld episode, Charlie Munger named name. Two names, in fact: Greg Abel and Ajit Jain. Unlike Elaine Benes’s name-naming, however, the two named by Munger have nothing to do with Communist agitation and the destruction of capitalism as we know it—far from it.   Rather, they have everything to do with Capitalist orthodoxy in its purest, most meritocratic form: who might succeed Warren Buffett as CEO of…
  • From Cleaning Harbors to Feeding Roughnecks: “Next Year in Jerusalem!”

    Jeff Matthews
    11 Jan 2015 | 8:42 am
     The Canadian tar sands have been very good to Clean Harbors, a perennial Wall Street favorite that evolved from a disaster cleanup business (for which the company’s web pages still carry a plug at the bottom: “For 24-Hour Emergency Response, call 800.OIL.TANK”) into a diversified industrial service company through 35-plus acquisitions costing about $2 billion over 25 years. The tar sands business came with the 2009 acquisition of Eveready, and so swiftly did CLH expand deeper into so-called unconventional energy (everything from feeding and housing roughnecks in lodges to…
 
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    Mish's Global Economic Trend Analysis

  • Stench from Chicago so Bad, Fitch Finally Smells It

    27 Jul 2015 | 3:32 pm
    At long last, the stench from Chicago is so strong that Fitch can finally smell it. Fitch just now downgraded Chicago Board of Education General Obligation bonds to junk status.Fitch and the S&P were holdouts because there's money to be made by purposely pretending a manure factory is a rose garden.MarketWatch reports Fitch Downgrades Chicago Board of Ed (IL) ULTGOs to 'BB+'.Fitch Ratings has downgraded the Chicago Board of Education, IL's (the board) approximately $6.1 billion of unlimited tax general obligation (ULTGO) bonds to 'BB+' from 'BBB-'. The rating has been placed on Negative…
  • Final Second Quarter "GDPNow" Forecast 2.4% vs. Bloomberg Consensus 2.9%

    27 Jul 2015 | 1:44 pm
    The Atlanta Fed second quarter GDPNow final estimate came in at 2.4%. The second quarter GDP official "advance" estimate from the BEA is due out Thursday, July 30 along with the annual revision of the National Income and Product Accounts (NIPA).The Bloomberg Consensus Estimate for second quarter GDP is 2.9%, a half percentage-point higher than the Atlanta Fed model.I will take the under.First quarter GDP releases by the BEA have been all over the map. The initial reading was +0.2%, revised to -0.7%, then revised again to -0.2%. Whatever number comes out Thursday, expect revisions, possibly in…
  • Witch Hunt is On; Foolish Ideas on Stopping the Shanghai Carnage; US Bubble Will Burst Too

    27 Jul 2015 | 12:08 pm
    Nearly 1,800 stocks, over 60% of issues traded on the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges fell by the daily limit of 10% and were halted according to a Financial Times report.When contacted by the Financial Times, the China Securities Regulatory Commission refused to answer any questions. The amusing comment of the day comes from Zhu Ning, deputy dean at Shanghai Advanced Institute of Finance: “If [the government] does nothing then all its previous efforts will have been wasted but if they continue with the rescue efforts then the hole will get bigger and bigger. We hope the regulators…
  • Chinese Stocks Plunge 8.5%, Biggest Decline Since February 2007

    27 Jul 2015 | 1:23 am
    The crash in Chinese stocks continued today following a respite last week.Shares on the Shanghai index plunged 8.48%, the Biggest One-Day Plunge Since February 2007. The CSI300 index of the largest listed companies in Shanghai and Shenzhen fell 8.6 percent, to 3,818.73, while the Shanghai Composite Index SSEC lost 8.5 percent, to 3,725.56 points.The drops were the biggest since Feb. 27, 2007.It wasn't immediately clear what caused such a sharp tumble in the afternoon session. At midday, the two indexes were down about 2.5 percent."The recent rebound had been swift and strong, so there's need…
  • Record Eurozone Borrowing: Public Debt Rises With Recovery; Greece a Small Sideshow Compared to Italy

    26 Jul 2015 | 4:55 pm
    The eurozone is supposedly in a state of recovery. However, in spite of that recovery, public debt and debt-to-GDP levels are still rising. Austerity is difficult to find in any realistic sense.Please consider Eurozone Borrowing Rises to Record as Recovery Remains Weak. The European Central Bank’s programme of quantitative easing has pushed down interest rates to ultra low levels, encouraging governments to borrow more in the early part of this year, despite turmoil in Greece.Across countries that use the euro, average debt to gross domestic product reached 92.9 per cent in the first…
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    Overcoming Bias

  • Does Decadence Cause Decay?

    Robin Hanson
    23 Jul 2015 | 6:45 am
    Noble gentlemen and ladies in [Japan’s] Heian period (794-1185) were often remarkably promiscuous. … “Heian society was on the whole governed by style rather than by any moral principles, and good looks tended to take the place of virtue.” … It was, as all this suggests, a rather effete culture. The aristocratic ideal of male beauty—highly perfumed, moon-faced, smooth-skinned, extravagantly dressed—was close to the feminine ideal. A distinct air of decadence during the peak of the Heian period also suggests the approaching end of a regime, a world, in Genji’s words, “where…
  • Docs Not So Helpful

    Robin Hanson
    22 Jul 2015 | 6:30 am
    In one of my first blog posts back in 2006 I said people overestimate the social value of joining a helping profession, like doctors: Yes, if you choose to be a doctor, you will spend your time providing services that people perceive to have value, sometimes enormous value. However, you cannot take full credit for this value. (more) Now 80,000 Hours’ Rob Wiblin, who once blogged here, says “If you want to save lives, should you study medicine? Probably not”: Most people skilled enough to make it in a field as challenging as medicine could have a bigger social impact through an…
  • Em Redistribution

    Robin Hanson
    17 Jul 2015 | 6:30 am
    I’m in the last few weeks of finishing my book The Age of Em: Work, Love, and Life When Robots Rule The Earth, about social outcomes in a world dominated by brain emulations. As a teaser, let me share some hopefully non-obvious results about redistribution in the em world. There are many kinds of inequality. Inequality exists between different species, between generations born at different times, and between nations of the world at a time. Within a nation at a time, there is inequality both between families and within families. There is also inequality across the moments of the life…
  • Regulating Government

    Robin Hanson
    12 Jul 2015 | 10:00 am
    Wall Street is apparently profiting from helping local governments use an accounting trick to underfund pensions: Pension bonds … current boom is … being driven … by a new accounting quirk that has largely escaped public notice while morphing into a major marketing tool for Wall Street banks. The quirk stems from a rule change that was meant to force governments to more clearly disclose the health of their pension funds. … If a pension plan is so poorly funded that it is projected to run out of cash, the new rules require it to make less optimistic projections about future returns.
  • Effective Altruism Complaints

    Robin Hanson
    7 Jul 2015 | 12:10 pm
    The Boston Review asked eleven people to respond to an essay by Peter Singer on effective altruism, i.e., on using careful analysis to pick acts that do the most good, even when less emotionally satisfying. For example, one might work at a less satisfying job that earns more, so that one can donate more. Response quotes are at the end of this post. The most common criticisms were these: five people complained that in effective altruism the people helped don’t directly participate in the decision making process, and three people complained that charity efforts targeted directly at people in…
 
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    Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science

  • Ripped from the pages of a George Pelecanos novel

    Andrew
    27 Jul 2015 | 7:45 am
    Did anyone else notice that this DC multiple-murder case seems just like a Pelecanos story? Check out the latest headline, “D.C. Mansion Murder Suspect Is Innocent Because He Hates Pizza, Lawyer Says”: Robin Flicker, a lawyer who has represented suspect Wint in the past but has not been officially hired as his defense attorney, says police are zeroing in on Wint because his DNA was found on pizza at the crime scene. The only problem, Flicker said is that Wint doesn’t like pizza. “He doesn’t eat pizza,” Flicker told ABC News. “If he were hungry, he wouldn’t order…
  • On deck this week

    Andrew
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:00 am
    Mon: Ripped from the pages of a George Pelecanos novel Tues: “We can keep debating this after 11 years, but I’m sure we all have much more pressing things to do (grants? papers? family time? attacking 11-year-old papers by former classmates? guitar practice?)” Wed: What do I say when I don’t have much to say? Thurs: “Women Respond to Nobel Laureate’s ‘Trouble With Girls’” Fri: This sentence by Thomas Mallon would make Barry N. Malzberg spin in his grave, except that he’s still alive so it would just make him spin in his retirement Sat: If you leave your datasets…
  • The 3 Stages of Busy

    Andrew
    26 Jul 2015 | 6:06 am
    Last week I ran into a younger colleague who said he had a conference deadline that week and could we get together next week, maybe? So I contacted him on the weekend and asked if he was free. He responded: This week quickly got booked after last week’s NIPS deadline. So we’re meeting in another week. That’s busy for you: after one week off the grid, he had a week’s worth of pent-up meetings! I thought I was busy, but it’s nothing like that. And this made me formulate my idea of the 3 Stages of Busy. It goes like this: Stage 1 (early career): Not busy, at least…
  • Ira Glass asks. We answer.

    Andrew
    25 Jul 2015 | 6:11 am
    The celebrated radio quiz show star says: There’s this study done by the Pew Research Center and Smithsonian Magazine . . . they called up one thousand and one Americans. I do not understand why it is a thousand and one rather than just a thousand. Maybe a thousand and one just seemed sexier or something. . . . I think I know the answer to this one! The survey may well have aimed for 1000 people, but you can’t know ahead of time exactly how many people will respond. They call people, leave messages, call back, call back again, etc. The exact number of people who end up in the…
  • 45 years ago in the sister blog

    Andrew
    24 Jul 2015 | 6:17 am
    The post 45 years ago in the sister blog appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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    Streetsblog New York City

  • NYC: If Crowded Old Airports Are “Un-New York,” What Are Crowded Old Trains?

    Ben Fried
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:55 pm
    The governor leaps into action. Andrew Cuomo’s big infrastructure announcement with VP Joe Biden today was, if nothing else, a tidy encapsulation of how little the governor cares about the big problems facing New York’s transportation systems. For days the governor’s office had been hyping his appearance with Biden. Was Cuomo finally about to tell New Yorkers how he’s going to modernize the trains and buses that millions of people count on every day? Nope. It was all about a $4 billion plan to modernize LaGuardia Airport, including the AirTrain connection to…
  • NYC: This Week: Safer 111th Street, and It’s Summer Streets Season

    Streetsblog
    27 Jul 2015 | 10:55 am
    Assembly Member Francisco Moya and Queens Community Board 4 are opposed to a road diet that would make Corona’s 111th Street safer for thousands of people. On Wednesday, DOT will present its proposal at a public workshop hosted by Council Member Julissa Ferreras, who supports the project. See more details below, along with the rest of this week’s calendar highlights, including a pair of big car-free streets events scheduled for this weekend. Wednesday: The second of two workshops organized by Council Member Julissa Ferreras for a safer 111th Street in Corona. DOT has proposed a…
  • NYC: The Trouble With Citi Bike Above 59th Is Station Density, Not the Timeline

    Ben Fried
    27 Jul 2015 | 10:20 am
    The timetable for Citi Bike expansion on the UWS isn’t a problem. The real trouble is that after all the planned stations go in, neighborhoods will still have gaps in their bike-share networks (the orange discs). Map: Transportation Alternatives For some reason, the timeline for phasing in the Citi Bike expansion in Manhattan is getting covered as a minor scandal, even though officials are sticking to the schedule they revealed months ago. The real problem with the bike-share expansion plan is the thinned-out station network, which is, unfortunately, getting buried by the faux…
  • NYC: Today’s Headlines

    Ben Fried
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:49 am
    Cuomo Continues Gubernatorial Tradition of Trying to Make the MTA Someone Else’s Problem (NYT) Advocates, Budget Watchdogs Aren’t Impressed With Gov’s Transit Funding Outline (Crain’s 1, 2) Daily News: Cuomo’s Wrong, Move NY Has Changed the Politics of Road Pricing in NYC Northeast Corridor and Trans-Hudson Rail Tunnels Held Together With Duct Tape (NYT, WNYC) Chris Christie Has a Tunnel Under the Hudson He’d Like to Sell You (NYT, WNYC, 2nd Ave Sagas) WSJ: Citi Bike’s Upgrades Are Improving the Experience for Riders More Coverage of Citi Bike…
  • NYC: This Weekend: Kidical Mass Takes Upper Manhattan — and Staten Island

    Brad Aaron
    24 Jul 2015 | 1:23 pm
    Photo: Ben Fried It’s Kidical Mass season, and there are two opportunities this weekend for children and adults to participate in group rides. On Saturday, it’s Kidical Mass Uptown. The ride starts at 10 a.m. at Dorrance Brooks Square — 137th Street between St. Nicholas and Edgecombe Avenues — and will head to High Bridge Park for the opening festival of the car-free High Bridge. More details here. Sunday’s ride begins at 9:30 a.m. on the Manhattan side of the Manhattan Bridge, then to the Staten Island Ferry for a tour of notable spots on the island. There will be…
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    The Big Picture

  • What Are The Reasons to Own Gold Miners?

    Barry Ritholtz
    27 Jul 2015 | 10:00 am
    Bloomberg View Columnist Barry Ritholtz discusses the price of gold. He speaks on “Market Makers.”
  • Gramm’s Unrepentant Cognitive Dissonance

    Barry Ritholtz
    27 Jul 2015 | 7:30 am
        Some people look at subprime lending and see evil. I look at subprime lending and I see the American dream in action. My mother lived it as a result of a finance company making a mortgage loan that a bank would not make. –former U.S. Senator Phil Gramm Many elected or appointed officials have a specific belief system that they may act upon in the implementation of policies. When the policies that flow from those beliefs go terribly wrong, it is natural to want to learn why. As is so often the case, that underlying ideology is usually a good place to begin looking. In the…
  • 10 Monday AM Reads

    Barry Ritholtz
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:30 am
    We are deep into the summer, trading volumes are light, but the news flow is relentless. W have you covered with your morning train reads: • Berkshire Hathaway’s Bright Future: Warren Buffett has positioned Berkshire Hathaway to prosper long after he steps down as CEO. (Barron’s) • How to fix the Euro (Interfluidity) • Gold is doomed (WonkBlog) • Housel: Why rules of thumb beat precision (Fool) • A Dozen Things I’ve Learned from Paul Tudor Jones About Investing and Trading (25iq) Continues here  
  • Apple’s New Product Intro Pattern

    Barry Ritholtz
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:30 am
    Farhad Manjoo of the NYT explains the why the usual pattern seems to be happening with Apple: “Analysts’ estimates vary wildly, with many originally predicting that Apple sold three million to five million watches from April to the end of June. After studying Apple’s opaque earnings report, several analysts revised their estimates down to about 1.5 million to three million watches. Even at the lower end, that’s the opposite of instant death: Luca Maestri, Apple’s chief financial officer, pointedly said the watch sold more in its first nine weeks on the market than either…
  • Monetary Policy Normalization in the United States

    Guest Author
    27 Jul 2015 | 2:00 am
 
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    OUPblog

  • India’s unique identification number: is that a hot number?

    Catherine Foley
    27 Jul 2015 | 2:30 am
    Perhaps you are on your way to an enrollment center to be photographed, your irises to be screened, and your fingerprints to be recorded. Perhaps, you are already cursing the guys in the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) for making you sweat it out in a long line. That’s why I want to tell you what these guys really do. Let me begin with some numbers. The UIDAI claims it will assign a number to half of India’s population by 2015: 600 million Indians to be photographed; 1.2 billion irises to be screened; six billion fingerprints to be collected; and 600 million…
  • How much money does the International Criminal Court need?

    Katherine Soroya
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:30 am
    In the current geopolitical context, the International Criminal Court has managed to stand its ground as a well-accepted international organization. Since its creation in 1998, the ICC has seen four countries refer situations on their own territory and adopted the Rome Statute which solidified the Court’s role in international criminal law. Is the ICC sufficiently funded, how is the money spent, and what does this look like when compared to other international organisations? Download the full-size jpg. Featured image: ‘Prison Gate’ by Christopher A. Dominic. CC BY 2.0 via…
  • Ten myths about the French Revolution

    Amelia Carruthers
    26 Jul 2015 | 3:30 am
    The French Revolution was one of the most momentous events in world history yet, over 220 years since it took place, many myths about it are still firmly entrenched in the popular psyche. Some of the most important and troubling of these myths relate to how a revolution that began with idealistic and humanitarian goals resorted to the “Terror”. It is a problem that is as pertinent for our own world as it was for the people of the late eighteenth century. 1. The French Revolution was made by the poor and hungry. False. Or not initially, though they were certainly involved later.
  • How well do you know Jacques Derrida? [quiz]

    Mohamed Sesay
    26 Jul 2015 | 12:30 am
    This July, the OUP Philosophy team is featuring Jacques Derrida as their  Philosopher of the Month. Derrida was an Algerian-born French philosopher known for his work on deconstruction and postmodern philosophy and literature. A controversial figure, he received criticism from many analytic philosophers. Derrida passed way in 2004, but his works has had a lasting impact on philosophers and literary theorists today. Take our quiz to see how well you know the life and studies of Derrida. You can learn more about Derrida by following #philosopherotm @OUPPhilosophy Feature Image: Building Hotel…
  • Pluto and its underworld minions

    SoniaT
    25 Jul 2015 | 5:30 am
    Early this week, the spacecraft New Horizons began its flyby of Pluto, sending a wealth of information back to Earth about Pluto and its moons. It’s an exciting time for astronomers and those intrigued by the dark dwarf planet. Pluto has special significance not only because it is the only planet in our solar system to have its status as a planet stripped and downgraded to a dwarf planet, but also because along with its largest satellite Charon, it is our solar system’s only binary planet system. In addition to Charon, Pluto has four additional satellites that have intriguing…
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    Cafe Hayek - Article Feed

  • The Real Evidence

    Don Boudreaux
    27 Jul 2015 | 11:36 am
    (Don Boudreaux) TweetAaron the Aaron writes back: Your complaint fails about scholars who find monopsony power not starting their own firms [to take advantage of the profit opportunities that such scholars identify in markets where entry isn’t obstructed]. You admit that scholars have no skills to run businesses, [so] why do you think their not putting their money where their mouths are proves they are insincere? I don’t claim that such scholars are insincere.  I claim, instead, that such scholars are engaged in cheap talk.  In their hearts they almost surely do sincerely…
  • Some Links

    Don Boudreaux
    27 Jul 2015 | 7:31 am
    (Don Boudreaux) TweetJames Pethokoukis summarizes a new paper by Robert Lawrence in which Lawrence offers data showing that worker pay did indeed keep up with worker productivity between 1970 and 2008, although it’s not quite done so since. David Henderson is unimpressed by Paul Krugman’s assessment of the Greek economy and of the Greek government. Ed Glaeser, in the Wall Street Journal, reviews my GMU colleague Ilya Somin’s new book, The Grasping Hand.  (gated)  A slice (link added): Yet in reality, the public power to take private property for almost any purpose…
  • Quotation of the Day…

    Don Boudreaux
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:21 am
    (Don Boudreaux) Tweet… is from page 116 of the 1992 collection of some of William Graham Sumner’s best essays, On Liberty, Society, and Politics (Roger C. Bannister, ed.); specifically, this quotation is from Sumner’s January 1881 Princeton Review essay, “The Argument against Protective Taxes”: Any favor or encouragement which the protective system exerts on one group of its population must be won by an equivalent oppression exerted on some other group….  If the legislation did not simply transfer capital it would have to make capital out of nothing.  Now the transfer is…
  • And the Winner Is….

    Don Boudreaux
    26 Jul 2015 | 4:09 pm
    (Don Boudreaux) TweetIf a space alien stumbled in its travels upon modern-day America and took stock of the typical candidate campaigning for the gaudy office of the president of the executive branch of the national government of the United States of America, that alien – who we can presume is more intelligent than is the typical human being – would surely conclude that the contest that each of the candidates is seeking to win is for the Most Clownish and Intellectually Insulting Buffoon Amongst Us.
  • Dogs That Don’t Bark Are Powerful Evidence that Nothing Unusual Is Present

    Don Boudreaux
    26 Jul 2015 | 6:33 am
    (Don Boudreaux) TweetHere’s a letter to a correspondent who is “sick” of me asking people to put, whenever possible, their money where their mouths are: Mr. Aaron the Aaron Dear Mr. the Aaron: You’re “sick” of me calling on those who assert that monopsony power is real and rampant in reality to put their money where their mouths are by starting their own businesses in order to profit by hiring underpaid workers away from employers who allegedly are today underpaying their workers.  You accuse me of “unrealistically demanding academics do what they don’t specialize…
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    Dollars & Sense Blog

  • Report from Greece, plus more links on Greece

    Chris Sturr
    16 Jul 2015 | 1:56 pm
    (1) When Greece Bailed Out Germany: Via Portside, the image above was the “poster of the week” recently from the Center for the Study of Political Graphics, which organizes traveling exhibitions, including Art Against Empire: Graphic Responses to US Interventions Since World War II: The U.S. inaugurated The Marshall Plan (officially the European Recovery Program, ERP) to rebuild Western Europe and counter the appeal of communism. Named after Secretary of State George Marshall, the plan ran from 1948-1952 and helped rebuild the economies of Western Europe on a capitalist model.
  • A Report from Iran

    Chris Sturr
    16 Jul 2015 | 9:41 am
    Glenn Greenwald and Murtaza Hussain had a great piece in The Intercept, Iranians’ View of the Nuclear Deal: Optimistic, With Significant Caveats, that linked to the tweet above from back in April. The Intercept article talks about Iranian public opinion about the nuclear deal that was just announced, and emphasizes the exclusion of Iranian voices from U.S. media discussions, and how that distorts Americans’ views of Iran (in ways that favor hard-liners’ favored policies here). Key paragraphs from the article: There are some notable exceptions, but the general exclusion of…
  • Latest Greece Links

    Chris Sturr
    13 Jul 2015 | 10:28 am
    Greek referendum 2015: demonstration for voting NO at Syntagma square, Athens Greece. Wikimedia Commons, author Ggia, Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license. Yanis Varoufakis in the Guardian: Germany won’t spare Greek pain – it has an interest in breaking us, unsuprisingly about the best thing out there about the current situation. Thomas Piketty interview in Die Zeit: “Germany Has Never Repaid Its Debts; It Has No Right to Lecture Greece,” a hard-hitting piece–too bad Hollande doesn’t have Greece’s back the way Piketty does.
  • New Issue!

    Chris Sturr
    9 Jul 2015 | 12:58 pm
    Our July/August issue is out!  We have posted two articles:  our cover feature, an interview with Gerald Epstein of UMass-Amherst:  From Boring Banking to Roaring Banking; and John Miller’s “Up Against the Wall Street Journal” column, Trans-Pacific Partnership: Corporate Power Unbound. Here is the issue’s p. 2 editorial note: Are You Pulling My Leg? Hearing some of the justifications offered for dominant economic policies and institutions today, readers of Dollars & Sense may wonder, “Do they really believe this? They must pulling my leg!” Harvard economics…
  • Report from Greece; Links on Greece

    Chris Sturr
    4 Jul 2015 | 7:56 am
    Links to good pieces on tomorrow’s Yes/No referendum in Greece: Yanis Varoufakis (Greece’s finance minister), from his blog, Why we recommend a NO in the referendum — in 6 short bullet points. Joseph Stiglitz, the Guardian, How I would vote in the Greek referendum. Dean Baker, from his blog Beat the Press, Greece and Puerto Rico, about how much better Puerto Rico’s situation is than Greece’s (although it is bad), because of PR’s relationship with the U.S. federal government. Paul Mason, the Guardian, Greece in Chaos: Will Syriza’s last desperate…
 
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    Credit Slips

  • Bankruptcy in Russia, 1740-1800, and the First Non-Merchant Discharge!

    Jason Kilborn
    23 Jul 2015 | 9:51 am
    I discovered something surprising in my summer research on the history of bankruptcy in Russia: It seems that the first modern, court-ordered bankruptcy discharge available to non-merchant debtors appeared not in the US or England, but Russia, in 1800. I suspect the relief offered was largely theoretical, but I found it shocking and intriguing that a discharge appeared in Imperial Russian law that early on. The law will finally come full circle in October 2015, when the new Russian law on personal insolvency becomes effective. It's been a long time coming! As in England, bankruptcy law…
  • Dodd-Frank's Constitutionality

    Adam Levitin
    22 Jul 2015 | 12:35 pm
    I'm testifying tomorrow before Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on The Constitution (yes, that's the official capitalization), about the constitutionality of the Dodd-Frank Act.   Short version: nothing to see here folks. Slightly longer version: really nothing to see here. Even longer version:  the plaintiffs in State National Bank of Big Spring v. Lew have a totally non-Originalist interpretation of the Bankruptcy Clause, namely that "uniform laws" apparently requires equal treatment of all similar creditors, so title II Orderly Liquidation Authority is…
  • Attorney Market for Discharging Student Loans

    Dalié Jiménez
    20 Jul 2015 | 8:07 am
    On Friday, Tara Siegel Bernard reported in the New York Times that some bankruptcy judges think that the onerous Brunner standard for discharging student loans should change. Commenting on the article, reader "alma" writes: As someone who recently filed for bankruptcy and has more than $100,000 in student loan debt, I can tell you why I did not try to get relief from student loans: I did not know it was an option. My lawyer simply told me that it was not possible to have student loans discharged. This article is the first I have even heard there was any method to do so ....
  • In Which We Enter the Fourth Grade

    Bob Lawless
    18 Jul 2015 | 3:13 am
    Today is the ninth anniversary of Credit Slips, which means we are now old enough for the fourth grade. Thanks for reading and for your support. The year we started, 2006, seems so long ago. The W was in the White House, and we were "Mission Accomplished" in Iraq for three whole years at that point. We had just experienced the second sitting vice president to shoot another person while in office. And, it was a year the St. Louis Cardinals would win the World Series (so some things change not so much). CFPB was just a nascent idea that one of our co-bloggers was promoting. I…
  • Faster Payments: Is There a Business Case?

    Adam Levitin
    17 Jul 2015 | 10:39 am
    The Federal Reserve System has embarked on a project of exploring the possibility of faster retail payments in the United States.  A similar move has occurred with the UK Payments Council.  At the same time, the Electronic Payments Network is rolling out a faster version of ACH. Here's what puzzles me:  what on earth is the business case for faster retail payments in the United States?  The U.S. payment system works incredibly well. Yes, it has flaws: the interchange system is unfair and security is atrocious. But those aren't really speed issues.  Real-time authentication is a…
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    The Aleph Blog

  • The School of Money, First Grade

    David Merkel
    25 Jul 2015 | 9:18 pm
    Photo Credit: Pictures of MoneyThis post is an experiment, and not meant to be definitive. If you have any comments to improve it, leave a comment, or email me.  Thanks.The School of MoneyMost books dealing with money tend to be too advanced for average people.  If you’ve read me long enough, you know that I am pretty conservative with my finances.  That conservatism has generally worked well for me, my family, and the church that I help lead.  It’s possible this post could lead to a series of posts; let me know what you think.First Grade — Preparing to WorkIt could be…
  • Stock Valuations: Micro and Macro

    David Merkel
    24 Jul 2015 | 2:15 am
    Photo Credit: winnifredxoxoFrom a friend who is a client:Here are a couple of things I have been pondering.Market capitalization is pretty fictitious. It assumes that all the shares of a company are worth the price at which the last block sold. However, if you tried to sell all of the shares of a large company (hypothetically), the price would drop to almost zero.It seems to me the primary reason the stock market goes up over time is because the money supply increases. To put it another way, if the money supply did not increase the stock market could only increase in value by increasing the %…
  • We Eat Dollar Weighted Returns — VI

    David Merkel
    21 Jul 2015 | 11:51 pm
    Photo Credit: Lynne HandOne of the constants in investing is that average investors show up late to the party or to the crisis.  Unlike many gatherings where it may be cool to be fashionably late, in investing it tends to mean you earn less and lose more, which is definitely not cool.One reason why this happens is that information gets distributed in lumps.  We don’t notice things in real time, partly because we’re not paying attention to the small changes that are happening.  But after enough time passes, a few people notice a trend.  After a while longer, still more people…
  • It’s Difficult to Make Predictions, Especially About the Future

    David Merkel
    18 Jul 2015 | 9:19 pm
    Photo Credit: garlandcannonIt is difficult to make predictions, especially about the future.— Attributed to many peopleSusan Weiner has an interesting piece as her blog on Investment Writing called Are financial predictions too risky for investment commentary writers?  I would say the answer is:Yes, andNo, because you can’t avoid them if you are writing about investingWhy You Should Avoid Making PredictionsMy leading reason for avoiding making predictions is that when you are wrong, and someone loses a lot of money, he gets really annoyed.  I can’t say that I blame them…
  • What is Liquidity? (Part VIII)

    David Merkel
    17 Jul 2015 | 12:45 am
    Photo Credit: Jon GosHere are some simple propositions on liquidity:Liquidity is positively influenced by the quality of an assetLiquidity is positively influenced by the simplicity of an assetLiquidity is negatively influenced by the price momentum of an assetLiquidity is negatively influenced by the level of fear (or overall market price volatility)Liquidity is negatively influenced by the length of an asset’s cash flow streamLiquidity is negatively influenced by concentration of the holders of an assetLiquidity is negatively influenced by the length of the time horizon of the…
 
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    Quoting the Crisis

  • 6 in 10 Americans Will Experience Poverty Jackie Zimmermann,...

    25 Jul 2015 | 6:53 am
    6 in 10 Americans Will Experience Poverty Jackie Zimmermann, time.com It turns out there may be more fluidity between the haves and the have-nots than we previously thought.Over a lifetime, most Americans will experience at least a year of relative poverty, says a new study.Between the ages of 25 and 60, over …
  • Greece Really Should Leave The Euro, The Economics Is Entirely...

    25 Jul 2015 | 6:51 am
    Greece Really Should Leave The Euro, The Economics Is Entirely Clear Here Tim Worstall, forbes.com That Greece should leave the euro is something that is pretty much established as the revealed truth in Anglo-Saxon economic and commentary circles. Sadly it is not so established either in European economic circles nor in any political ones.…
  • Former AIG CEO wins bailout lawsuit, but court awards no...

    15 Jun 2015 | 7:33 pm
    Former AIG CEO wins bailout lawsuit, but court awards no damages By Jim Puzzanghera, latimes.com WASHINGTON — A federal judge ruled that regulators went too far in taking a huge stake in American International Group Inc. as part of its 2008 bailout, but he decided that damages weren’t warranted for the giant insurer’s former chief executive a…
  • Inequality Matters Jared Bernstein and Ben Spielberg,...

    5 Jun 2015 | 11:56 am
    Inequality Matters Jared Bernstein and Ben Spielberg, theatlantic.com Conservative commentators have been arguing that the uneven distribution of wealth and income in America isn’t a problem. They’re wrong.Lately, one argument that’s been making the rounds is that people should worry less about inequality and mor…
  • Paul Krugman: Texas is a failed experiment in “reverse...

    5 Jun 2015 | 11:46 am
    Paul Krugman: Texas is a failed experiment in “reverse Robin-Hood” economic policy Scott Eric Kaufman, salon.com Giving to the rich and brutalizing the poor is not, it turns out, a sound plan for economic growthFollowing the news that former Texas Governor Rick Perry is throwing his hat into the Republican primary, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman…
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    24/7 Wall St.

  • Republic Airways Faces Some Turbulence on Flight Disruptions

    247chrislange
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:29 pm
    Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: RJET) is under the gun of the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The organization has boosted the required flight experience for first officers by a...
  • Can Nymox Sustain This Massive Rally?

    247chrislange
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:15 pm
    Nymox Pharmaceutical Corp. (NASDAQ: NYMX) was one of the best performers on Monday despite a down day in the market. And Nymox is absolutely dominating in 2015 in terms of its performance, as of...
  • The 52-Week Low Club for Monday

    Paul Ausick
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:04 pm
    July 27, 2015: Here are four stocks among the 496 equities making new 52-week lows and trading at heavy volume today. Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (NYSE: FCX) dropped about 6.4% on Monday to post a new...
  • The 4 Stocks That Sank the DJIA on Monday

    Paul Ausick
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:01 pm
    July 27, 2015: Markets opened lower on Monday following a drop of 8.5% at the Shanghai exchange after the IMF raised the issue of the degree of government intervention with the country’s equity...
  • What to Expect from CONSOL Energy Earnings

    Paul Ausick
    27 Jul 2015 | 11:46 am
    Coal and natural gas producer CONSOL Energy Inc. (NYSE: CNX) is scheduled to release second-quarter results before markets open on Tuesday morning. The consensus estimates call for earnings per share...
 
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    The Baseline Scenario

  • More Misinformation about Banking Regulation

    James Kwak
    21 Jul 2015 | 1:22 pm
    By James Kwak “Fed Tells Big Banks to Shrink or Else,” the Wall Street Journal proclaimed in the headline of its lead story today.* If only. What the Federal Reserve actually did is impose new, additional capital requirements for the largest banks. JPMorgan Chase, for example, will have to hold 4.5 percentage points more capital than it would have had to otherwise. This is clearly a good thing, since it means that the banks that could do the most damage to the financial system will be a little bit safer. But it is neither a complete solution, nor is it the draconian constraint that the…
  • Friedrich Hayek Supported a Guaranteed Minimum Income

    James Kwak
    20 Jul 2015 | 12:21 pm
    By James Kwak “We shall again take for granted the availability of a system of public relief which provides a uniform minimum for all instances of proved need, so that no member of the community need be in want of food or shelter.” That’s from The Constitution of Liberty, “definitive edition,” p. 424. Yes, it comes as part of Hayek’s argument against mandatory state unemployment insurance. But it reflects a fundamental understanding that no one should go without food or shelter, and that it is the duty of the government to ensure this minimum level of existence. “The necessity…
  • I Agree with Milton Friedman!

    James Kwak
    15 Jun 2015 | 11:02 am
    By James Kwak In Capitalism and Freedom, Milton Friedman asks what types of inequality are ethically justifiable. In particular (pp. 164–66): “Inequality resulting from differences in personal capacities, or from differences in wealth accumulated by the individual in question, are considered appropriate, or at least not so clearly inappropriate as differences resulting from inherited wealth. “This distinction is untenable. Is there any greater ethical justification for the high returns to the individual who inherits from his parents a peculiar voice for which there is a great demand…
  • What Is the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Really All About?

    Simon Johnson
    4 Jun 2015 | 8:54 am
    By Simon Johnson The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a proposed free trade agreement (FTA) between the United States and 11 other countries.  It is comprised of two main parts: reductions in tariffs (and related non-tariff barriers), of the kind typically seen in trade agreements; and new rules for foreign direct investment and intellectual property rights, which have not previously been prominent in FTAs. The new rules part has become controversial.  The case for introducing an investor-state dispute settlement seems less than compelling – this would favor foreign investors over…
  • Over at Medium: Geo-Engineering Doesn’t Reduce Long-Term Risk

    James Kwak
    1 Jun 2015 | 1:42 pm
    By James Kwak Mark Buchanan — who is actually a physicist, after all — makes a compelling argument against relying on geo-engineering to deal with our climate change problem. For one thing, some of the proposed technologies simply won’t work, because they do nothing about the fact that the poles are warming faster than the rest of the planet. For another, the geo-engineering fairy is being used to lobby against other approaches — conservation and renewable energy sources — that would deal with climate change at its source. Another reason to be skeptical of…
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    Trends... Find them, ride them and get off.

  • Amazon – The Largest Company in the World by 2020

    Howard Lindzon
    24 Jul 2015 | 7:59 am
    The same argument has taken place since Amazon went public…it’s overvalued. During that time, Amazon has continued to climb…not without some shocking bear market close call sickening declines. As of this morning, Amazon is one of the 10 largest companies in the S&P, passing both JP Morgan (saved by the government) and Walmart. AMZN gained $36 billion to crack the 10 largest companies in the SPX. Leaped JPM and WMT. SPY — Ryan Detrick (@RyanDetrick) Jul. 24 at 07:33 AM The ‘cloud’ is their oil field and they tap and manage it best so I know they will…
  • Stocktoberfest 2015 – Investing for Profit and Joy – Powered by Amazon Web Services

    Howard Lindzon
    22 Jul 2015 | 10:10 am
    I am so excited to be live with plans for Stocktoberfest 2015 – October 18-20, 2015. This year we will be upgrading once again to the amazing Del Hotel for the full event. Here is the website with the first run of early bird tickets. I am really proud that the show will not just be led by team Stocktwits and my partners at Social Leverage, but powered by Amazon Web Services. I have been friends with Dave Schappell and Scott Mullins (of AWS) for a while now and after attending the last few shows, they decided to take the lead sponsorship in support of the event. I asked Scott why they…
  • Stocktwits Mobile ‘Real-Time’ Notifications for iOS and Android…NEW

    Howard Lindzon
    15 Jul 2015 | 7:50 am
    The power of the ‘niche’ in people, subjects, expertise and context is one of the best things about Stocktwits. I have always wanted to get alerts when the people I follow on a ticker or market post in real time. I have also wanted to make Stocktwits SO LIGHT that a user could come join, follow one to five key people they feel help most and get everything they need pushed to them. We are confident that people will appreciate the brand, learn the market and eventually engage more. For exmaple, our watchlists on mobile are magically sortable. On Twitter, I publish everything and…
  • ‘El Chapo’ escapes prison and Vows to Give up Drug Business for more lucrative ETF Business

    Howard Lindzon
    14 Jul 2015 | 8:42 am
    We have reached peak ETF. I am not sure what it means, but it’s a disgusting place to be. The robo’s are fighting each other to the death. There is an ETF for each minute of the day. Not one millennial can name 20 American Companies on the Russell 2000. Today, legendary money losing investor Kevin O’Leary has launched an ETF, called …’I could give a shit’. This awesome investor Kevin O’Leary. Love this part: The fate of the Stanton International Equity and the Stanton Diversified Strategies funds, which has not been widely reported, may come as a…
  • The Power of The Tweet …The Movie…

    Howard Lindzon
    10 Jul 2015 | 11:22 am
    I have been working on the script….who should play me? Let’s make this movie happen….. He never obeyed the flight attendants when they said turn off your phone. He kept surfing and returning email. They did not really care. His converse sneakers were off, his seatbelt unbuckled and his fingers pecked away at his smartphone. After take off he had forgotten that his phone was on. An hour later, while descending his phone rang. He looked at Jason next to him and said ‘..that’s wierd, I have never had a phone ring while flying at this altitude.’ He answered. It…
 
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    Economic Principals

  • “An Altogether Different Angle”

    dw
    26 Jul 2015 | 1:30 pm
    It is not often that a book’s reception warrants front-page coverage in The New York Times, but this one did, in October 1946, some eighteen months after Oskar Morgenstern joined with John von Neumann to publish Theory of Games and Economic Behavior. The new approach, explained reporter Will Lissner, “has caused a sensation among professional economists.” A 29-year-old acolyte of the new approach named Leo Hurwicz told Lissner that game theory held out the hope of “revamping and enriching  in realism a good deal of economic theory” – not overnight, but eventually. The authors had…
  • Housekeeping Matters

    dw
    19 Jul 2015 | 9:00 am
    Having begun the laborious search for a new publisher, EP needed to attend to some housekeeping details before continuing its summer serial. The next episode,  “An Altogether Different Angle,” will appear next week. To those following the series closely, apologies for the delay. To those discomfited  by the occasional 9,500 word column, not knowing what to make of the part without the whole, holiday routine! And back to normal in September.  
  • The Rivals

    dw
    12 Jul 2015 | 2:00 pm
    When Keynes died, in April 1946, The Times of London gave him the best farewell since Nelson after Trafalgar: “To find an economist of comparable influence one would have to go back to Adam Smith.” A few years later, Alvin Hansen, of Harvard University, Keynes’ leading disciple in the United States, wrote , “It may be a little too early to claim that, along with Darwin’s Origin of Species and Marx’s Capital, The General Theory is one of the most significant book which have appeared in the last hundred years. … But… it continues to gain in importance.” In fact, the influence…
  • Economists Between Two Worlds

    dw
    5 Jul 2015 | 1:04 pm
    Black Tuesday, October 29, 1929, was “one of those days after which almost everything is different.” That’s how John Kenneth Galbraith described the Great Crash thirty years after the fact – a day of pandemonium on the New York Stock Exchange after a week of declines, the unmistakable end of the great bull market of the 1920s.  When share prices finally settled on their lows for the year, in November, they were half of what they had been in September. Frederick Lewis Allen later wrote, “There was hardly a man or woman in the country whose attitude toward life had not been affected…
  • The Generations of Economics

    dw
    28 Jun 2015 | 3:52 pm
    (This is a re-worked section I cut from the bottom of the introductory episode of this fifteen-part serial, on May 17,  at a time when I was more worried about the length of installments than I am now. See if it helps make sense of what you have already read.  It is also an intermission, as I am traveling.) Economics, at least in its dominant narrative tradition, is a story of human lifetimes. Its most vital concerns in the present day span no more than four or five generations: the lives of our parents and grandparents backwards in time, our own lives in the present, the lives of our…
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    Marginal REVOLUTION

  • The six most important words in the world right now

    Tyler Cowen
    27 Jul 2015 | 2:26 pm
    It depends on the Communist Party. Of course you are free to leave alternative nominations in the comments.
  • Monday assorted links

    Tyler Cowen
    27 Jul 2015 | 10:10 am
    1. How bad were the Black Panthers? 2. Spending a night in the robot-staffed hotel. 3. The Chinese stock market crash is worse than you think. 4. New Yorker profile of Varoufakis.  Interesting throughout, covers Obama too, not just the usual even if this seems like familiar territory by now.  “Adding up is the essence of democracy.”  What an excellent line.  The piece is by Ian Parker, and it deserves one of those David Brooks awards. 5. Brains striving for coherence. 6. Daniel Klein on who is a liberal. 7. “…even in relatively egalitarian Sweden, wealth begets…
  • Doing Good Better

    Alex Tabarrok
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:25 am
    William MacAskill is that rare beast, a hard-headed, soft-hearted proponent of saving the world. His excellent new book, Doing Good Better, is a primer on the effective altruism movement. Doing Good Better opens, just as you would expect, with an uplifting story of a wonderful person with a brilliant idea to save the world. The PlayPump uses a merry-go-round to pump water. Fun transformed into labor and life saving clean water! The energetic driver of the idea quits his job and invests his life in the project. Africa! Children on merry-go-rounds! Innovation! What could be better?
  • China fact of the day

    Tyler Cowen
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:56 am
    Around 97% of existing yuan-denominated bonds hold ratings of double-A to triple-A—the best a company can get. That is from Fiona Law, cited by Christopher Balding, and ultimately Alex Frangos, those are ratings from Chinese sources.  Law reports: With nine Chinese ratings firms to choose among, “bond issuers are encouraged to pick the highest ratings among agencies,” said Guan Jianzhong, chairman of Dagong Global, the country’s third-biggest ratings company in terms of market share. The fact that the bonds are rated double-A-minus or above, they “are not without risks,” he said.
  • How bad a problem is “quarterly capitalism”?

    Tyler Cowen
    26 Jul 2015 | 9:21 pm
    We’re going to be hearing more about this topic I suspect, so let’s start by looking at some of the evidence.  For now I’ll turn the microphone over to Xuemin (Sterling) Yan and Zhe Zhang (pdf): We show that the positive relation between institutional ownership and future stock returns documented in Gompers and Metrick (2001) is driven by short-term institutions. Furthermore, short-term institutions’ trading forecasts future stock returns. This predictability does not reverse in the long run and is stronger for small and growth stocks. Short-term institutions’ trading…
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    Brad DeLong's Grasping Reality

  • Links and Tweets

    J. Bradford DeLong
    2 Aug 2015 | 11:44 pm
    Links: Must-Read: Nick Bunker: Compensation Inequality and Productivity Growth Matthew Yglesias: Robots Aren't Taking Your Jobs--and That's the Problem Dean Baker: Why the Fed’s policy on interest rates is key to fighting poverty Noreen Malone andAmanda Demme: 35 Bill Cosby Accusers Tell Their Stories Links: Must-Read: Sutirtha Bagchia and Jan Svejnarb: Does wealth inequality matter for growth? The effect of billionaire wealth, income distribution, and poverty Must-Read: Nick Rowe: "Suppose the Bank of Canada targets 2% inflation... Must-Read: Brink Lindsey: Low-Hanging Fruit Guarded by…
  • 27 Jul 2015 | 3:13 pm

    J. Bradford DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:13 pm
    Noted for Your Evening Procrastination for July 27, 2015## Must- and Should-Reads: Must-Read: Paul Krugman: The Essential Obstfeld Christine Lagarde: Press Release: Appoints Maurice Obstfeld as Economic Counsellor and Director of the IMF’s Research Department Maurice Obstfeld: Models of currency crises with self-fulfilling features Maurice Obstfeld and Kenneth Rogoff: Exchange Rate Dynamics Redux Must-Read: Ezra Klein: "It will be normal... Must-Read: Henry Farrell: A Brief Theory of Very Serious People Paul Blustein: Laid Low: The IMF, the eurozone, and the First Rescue of Greece…
  • 27 Jul 2015 | 3:03 pm

    J. Bradford DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:03 pm
    Must-Read: The "but compensation growth has been faster than wage growth since 1975!" literature has always seemed to me to a bit of a game of Three-Card-Monte in the inequality debate: I see every reason to think that the increases in benefits that are the wedge between compensation and income growth went overwhelmingly to those near the top of the income distribution... Nick Bunker: Compensation Inequality and Productivity Growth: "Growth in total compensation for lower-paid workers was slower... ...than wage growth in that same spot on the wage spectrum. The exact opposite happens for…
  • 27 Jul 2015 | 12:16 pm

    J. Bradford DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:16 pm
    Must-Read: Let me register a complaint: http://vox.com seems to me to be getting a little #Slatepitchy these days--and that is a problem. Bait-and-switch between what the headline and the teaser promise and what the article delivers is already the reason I do not click on links to Slate... The right teaser would be: "Don't worry that robots are taking your jobs--they are not (at least, not yet). Do worry that robots are not amplifying your productivity." Matthew Yglesias: Robots Aren't Taking Your Jobs--and That's the Problem: "The good news is that these concerns are wrong... ...None of the…
  • 27 Jul 2015 | 12:07 pm

    J. Bradford DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:07 pm
    Must-Read: The very sharp Brink Lindsey continues to try to find common bipartisan technocratic policy ground... Brink Lindsey: Low-Hanging Fruit Guarded by Dragons: Reforming Regressive Regulation to Boost U.S. Economic Growth: "The U.S. economy is slowing down... ...Labor participation is falling, the pace of human capital accumulation is slackening, the rate of investment is in long-term decline, and growth in total factor productivity has been low for three of the four past decades.... Progressives, conservatives, and libertarians have a strong common interest in reversing this growth…
 
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    99% Invisible

  • 173- Awareness

    Roman Mars
    21 Jul 2015 | 8:51 pm
    By the late 1980s, AIDS had been in the United States for almost a decade. AIDS had be the number one killer of young men in New York City, then of young men in the country, then of young men and women in the country. Despite the gravity of the AIDS crisis, in the late 1980s there was little public acknowledgement of AIDS. A group of artists in Manhattan decided to change that. New York artist Patrick O’Connel would spend days visiting friends in the hospital, going to funerals, and coming home to a panicked answering machine message from friends who just learned they were sick.
  • 172- On Location

    Roman Mars
    14 Jul 2015 | 8:01 pm
    So many classic movies have been made in downtown Los Angeles. Though many don’t actually take place in downtown Los Angeles. L.A. has played almost every city in the world, thanks to its diverse landscape and architectural variety, but particular buildings just keep coming back on screen again and again. The Bradbury Building, for instance, is arguably the biggest architectural movie star in all of Los Angeles. Avery Trufelman goes On Location
  • 171- Johnnycab (Automation Paradox, Pt. 2)

    Roman Mars
    30 Jun 2015 | 11:58 pm
    More than 90% of all automobile accidents are all attributable to human error, for some car industry people, a fully-automated car is a kind of holy grail. However, as automation makes our lives easier and safer, it also creates more complex systems, and fewer humans who understand those systems. Which means when problems do arise—people can be left unable to deal with them. Human factors engineers call this “the automation paradox.” Sam Greenspan gets under the hood of our potential future dominated by the “Johnnycab“.
  • 170- Children of the Magenta (Automation Paradox, pt. 1)

    Roman Mars
    23 Jun 2015 | 5:13 pm
    On the evening of May 31, 2009, 216 passengers, three pilots, and nine flight attendants boarded an Airbus 330 in Rio de Janeiro. This flight, Air France 447, was headed across to Paris. Everything proceeded normally for several hours. Then, with no communication to the ground to or air traffic control, Flight 447 suddenly disappeared. Days later, several bodies and some pieces of the plane were found floating in the Atlantic Ocean. But it would be two more years before most of the wreckage was recovered from the ocean’s depths. All 228 people on board had died. The cockpit voice…
  • 169- Freud’s Couch

    Roman Mars
    16 Jun 2015 | 10:55 pm
    Sigmund Freud’s ground-breaking techniques and theories for therapy came to be called “psychoanalysis,” and it was embodied, in practice and popular culture, by a single piece of furniture: the couch. Producer Ann Hepperman explores the role of this canonical object in the theory of the mind that changed the world.
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    Eat the Bankers.com

  • Risk Off

    Sinclair Noe
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:57 pm
    Financial Review by Sinclair Noe DOW – 127 = 17,440 SPX – 12 = 2067 NAS – 48 = 5039 10 YR YLD – .04 = 2.23% OIL – .75 = 47.39 GOLD – 5.00 = 1095.50 SILV – .20 = 14.64   Chinese stocks fell sharply today. The Shanghai Composite fell 8.5% to record its largest one-day drop since June 2007, and the Shenzhen A-shares index lost 7% of its value. Weak manufacturing data revealed that profit at the country’s industrial firms dropped 0.3% in June from a year earlier, but the markets appear to be responding to government attempts to stabilize the country’s…
  • Scott Barnett

    Sinclair Noe
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:51 pm
    Sinclair Noe audio interview with Scott Barnett, author of “Gumption: Taking Bubba Gump from Movie to Restaurant” The post Scott Barnett appeared first on Eat the Bankers.com.
  • Kenneth Kim

    Sinclair Noe
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:47 pm
    Sinclair Noe audio interview with Kenneth Kim, author of “Mutual Funds Exposed : What You Don’t Know May Be Hazardous to Your Wealth” The post Kenneth Kim appeared first on Eat the Bankers.com.
  • Carrie Morgridge

    Sinclair Noe
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:44 pm
    Sinclair Noe audio interview with Carrie Morgridge, author of “Every Gift Matters: How Your Passion Can Change the World”. The post Carrie Morgridge appeared first on Eat the Bankers.com.
  • Glitch/Print

    Sinclair Noe
    24 Jul 2015 | 3:54 pm
    Financial Review by Sinclair Noe DOW – 163 = 17,568 SPX – 22 = 2079 NAS – 57 = 5088 10 YR YLD un 2.27% OIL – .31 = 48.14 GOLD + 9.10 = 1100.50 SILV + .08 = 14.84   Well, this turned out to be an ugly week. The Dow lost 600 points from the high a week ago. The Dow lost 2.8% on the week, dropping below its 200 day moving average. The S&P lost 2.1%; Nasdaq down 2.2%. The Russell 3000 was down 3.1% for the week. Amazon gave back about half of yesterday’s gain. Crude oil hit a 4-month low.   And if you are not quite sure what to make of the markets, that is…
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    iMFdirect - The IMF Blog

  • From Windfall to Windmill: Harnessing Asia’s Dynamism for Latin America

    iMFdirect
    22 Jul 2015 | 7:09 am
    By Andre Meier and Fabiano Rodrigues Bastos (Versions in Español and Português) Latin America’s recent economic fortunes highlight the region’s closer economic ties with Asia. China, in particular, has grown into a crucial source of demand for Latin American commodities over the past two decades, providing significant gains to the region. The flip side is that the ongoing structural slowdown of Chinese investment is weighing considerably on the prices of those commodities, and the countries that export them. But Asia can be much more than just a source of episodic windfall gains (and…
  • The Key to Raising Business Investment: Keep Pushing the Accelerator

    iMFdirect
    20 Jul 2015 | 10:25 am
     By David Lipton  Why have businesses in advanced economies not been investing more in machinery, equipment and plants? Business investment is the largest component of private investment, and its weakness has puzzled many of us. Some believe that the key to more business investment is less uncertainty about fiscal policy, regulation, and structural reforms. Some believe that it is providing better financing, including for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). But analysis says these explanations are limited. The facts suggest a much simpler answer: Business investment has been weak…
  • The Global Impact of Lower Oil Prices

    iMFdirect
    16 Jul 2015 | 7:23 am
    by iMFdirect Remember when oil was the big story? Yeah, us too.  And we’re still thinking through the issues and what they mean for oil importers and exporters, as well as the global economy. This week IMF economists released a new paper, and we interviewed the lead author in this podcast, that delves into the benefits of lower oil prices for consumers and for the global economy.
  • From Taper Tantrum to Bund Bedlam

    iMFdirect
    13 Jul 2015 | 1:36 pm
    By Yingyuan Chen, David Jones and Sanjay Hazarika (Versions in 中文 and deutsch) Global financial markets traditionally take their cue from the United States. Unexpected Fed rate hikes have unsettled global markets in the past. The entire global financial system threw a tantrum when then Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke merely suggested in May 2013 that the end to bond-buying and other policies could soon begin. However for the past year, the gears of global markets seem to have been thrown into reverse — it is German government bonds, known as Bunds, rather than U.S. bonds, known as…
  • Greece: Past Critiques and the Path Forward

    iMFdirect
    9 Jul 2015 | 4:23 pm
    By Olivier Blanchard (Versions in Deutsch, Español, Français, Italiano, ελληνικά, Русский, 中文, 日本語, عربي, and Português) All eyes are on Greece, as the parties involved continue to strive for a lasting deal, spurring vigorous debate and some sharp criticisms, including of the IMF. In this context, I thought some reflections on the main critiques could help clarify some key points of contention as well as shine a light on a possible way forward. The main critiques, as I see them, fall under the following four categories: The 2010 program only served to…
 
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    WordPress.com News

  • New Themes: Libretto, Lovecraft, and Publication

    sarah semark
    23 Jul 2015 | 9:00 am
    Happy Theme Thursday! Today we’re introducing three new free themes to our collection: Libretto, Lovecraft, and Publication. Libretto Featuring big, bold drop caps and oversized images, Libretto is ideal for showcasing longform writing or stunning imagery. Its classic design and typographic details will give your blog a sophisticated, elegant look. Fully responsive, the theme adapts easily to tablets and other mobile devices, ensuring that your content is easy to see. Libretto is a fork of Readly, originally designed by WPShower. Get to know Libretto in the Theme Showcase, or give it a…
  • Four Food Blogs to Follow Now

    Krista
    15 Jul 2015 | 9:00 am
    From sweet to savory, these four fantastic food blogs will satisfy your appetite. If you enjoy eating (and who doesn’t?!), check them out and follow them in your Reader so you won’t miss a dish. The Dinner Party Collective The Dinner Party Collective is a collaborative blog dedicated to “reinvigorating the delicious lost art of dinner parties.” The DPC features seasonal full-course menus, photos, and recipes from apéritifs to dessert (complete with wine pairings, no less!) ideal for dinner groups of six to eight. Blogger Margot leads an international troupe of food and wine lovers…
  • Reader Refresh

    Ben Lowery
    13 Jul 2015 | 10:19 am
    Today, we’re proud to present an improved version of the WordPress.com Reader. We’ve made the Reader faster, with shorter load times and smoother scrolling. We’ve also improved the way we display posts, so you can now see the highlights of each story at a glance. The new interface works just as well on a mobile device as it does on your computer, so it’s simpler and faster for you to catch up on blogs while on the go. Keeping track of recent posts from the blogs and sites you follow is now both easier and more fun. Our new cards — which preview each post’s…
  • Heading to BlogHer ’15? So are we!

    Michelle W.
    13 Jul 2015 | 9:00 am
    Note: we’ve just updated the workshop times slightly — see below for the final schedule. BlogHer ’15, one of the biggest and best annual conferences for bloggers, lands in New York City later this week, from July 16th through the 18th. You’ll find hundreds of passionate bloggers, workshops to hone every aspect of your blogging, incredible keynote speakers like Ava DuVernay and Gwyneth Paltrow — and us! At our Happiness Lounge in the expo hall, you’ll be able to get one-on-one help with your WordPress sites. Staff from across Automattic will also be leading…
  • New Themes: Baskerville and Edda

    Laurel Fulford
    9 Jul 2015 | 10:12 am
    Happy Theme Thursday! Today I’m excited to introduce two new free themes to our collection. Baskerville Baskerville was designed by Anders Norén, and it displays writing, photos, and videos in a dynamic, grid-based layout. It features unique layouts for different post formats, to make different kinds of content pop. Baskerville’s design adapts to any screen size, big or small, so your posts always look their best. Get to know Baskerville on the Theme Showcase, or give it a spin by activating it from Appearance → Themes. Edda Edda, designed by…
 
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    Carl Futia

  • Guesstimates on July 27, 2015

    27 Jul 2015 | 6:12 am
    September S&P E-mini Futures: Today’s range estimate is 2049-70. The ES now appears to be headed for the July 6 low at 2034. Any obvious weakness below 2030 would be very bearish. QQQ:  Support is at 108. Upside target is now 120.TNX (ten year note yield): I think that the market yield is headed up to 3.00%. Euro-US Dollar:  The market has again dropped visibly below 1.10 support. I think it is headed to 0.96 over the coming months. Dollar-Yen: Support is at 116. The bull market has much further to go over the coming months. 140-45 is my longer term target zone while 127-28 is…
  • Guesstimates on July 24, 2015

    24 Jul 2015 | 5:51 am
    September S&P E-mini Futures: Today’s range estimate is 2095-2105. As long as the ES hold support at 2080 I will stick with my view that it is headed for 2250 over the next few months. QQQ:  Upside target is now 120.TNX (ten year note yield): I think that the market yield is headed up to 3.00%. Euro-US Dollar:  The market has again dropped visibly below 1.10 support. I think it is headed to 0.96 over the coming months. Dollar-Yen: Support is at 116. The bull market has much further to go over the coming months. 140-45 is my longer term target zone while 127-28 is near term…
  • Guesstimates on July 23, 2015

    23 Jul 2015 | 5:48 am
    September S&P E-mini Futures: Today’s range estimate is 2100-2111. I think the ES is headed for 2250 over the next few months. QQQ:  Upside target is now 120.TNX (ten year note yield): I think that the market yield is headed up to 3.00%. Euro-US Dollar:  The market has again dropped visibly below 1.10 support. I think it is headed to 0.96 over the coming months. Dollar-Yen: Support is at 116. The bull market has much further to go over the coming months. 140-45 is my longer term target zone while 127-28 is near term resistance. August Crude:  I am beginning to suspect…
  • Guesstimates on July 22, 2015

    22 Jul 2015 | 5:53 am
    September S&P E-mini Futures: Today’s range estimate is 2095-2108. I think the ES is headed for 2250 over the next few months. QQQ:  Upside target is now 120.TNX (ten year note yield): I think that the market yield is headed up to 3.00%. Euro-US Dollar:  The market has again dropped visibly below 1.10 support. I think it is headed to 0.96 over the coming months. Dollar-Yen: Support is at 116. The bull market has much further to go over the coming months. 140-45 is my longer term target zone while 127-28 is near term resistance. August Crude:  I am beginning to suspect…
  • Guesstimates on July 21, 2015

    21 Jul 2015 | 5:58 am
    September S&P E-mini Futures: Today’s range estimate is 2113-2122. I think this upswing will carry the ES much higher. A conservative upside target is 2250 over the next few months. QQQ:  Upside target is now 120.TNX (ten year note yield): I think that the market yield is headed up to 3.00%. Euro-US Dollar:  The market has again dropped visibly below 1.10 support. I think it is headed to 0.96 over the coming months. Dollar-Yen: Support is at 116. The bull market has much further to go over the coming months. 140-45 is my longer term target zone while 127-28 is near term…
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    True Economics

  • 27/7/15: Irish Property Prices: 2Q 2015

    27 Jul 2015 | 1:24 pm
    Latest data from CSO for June 2015 shows significant slowdown in house prices inflation across all segments of the market.Monthly results are summarised in the table belowUsing historical data, quarterly figures are pretty poor:Dublin residential properties index in 2Q 2015 was 15.4% up on same period in 2014, which marks a major slowdown in growth from 21.9% y/y growth recorded in 1Q 2015.Outside Dublin residential property prices rose 10.98% y/y in 2Q 2015, which is faster than 9.39% rise in 1Q 2015.National residential prices were up 13.40% in 2Q 2015 compared to the same period in 2014,…
  • 27/7/15: IMF Euro Area Report: The Darker Skies of Risks

    27 Jul 2015 | 10:07 am
    The IMF today released its Article IV assessment of the Euro area, so as usual, I will be blogging on the issues raised in the latest report throughout the day. The first post looked at debt overhang, while the second post presented IMF views and data on the euro area banking sector woes. The third post covered IMF projections for growth.So let's take a look at the risks to the IMF's 'growth returns to Euro zone' scenario.Per IMF: "Risks are now more balanced than in recent years when vulnerabilities dominated. On the upside, low oil prices, QE, a weaker euro, and rising confidence could…
  • 27/7/15: IMF Euro Area Report: Growth, of European Standards

    27 Jul 2015 | 8:14 am
    The IMF today released its Article IV assessment of the Euro area, so as usual, I will be blogging on the issues raised in the latest report throughout the day. The first post looked at debt overhang while the second post presented IMF views and data on the euro area banking sector woes.Here, let's take a look at headline growth outlook.Based on the IMF view: in the Euro area, "the recovery continues. After weakness through mid-2014, growth picked up late last year and has continued in 2015, driven by domestic demand. Private consumption remained robust, reflecting rising employment and real…
  • 27/7/15: IMF Euro Area Report: The Sick Land of Banking

    27 Jul 2015 | 7:23 am
    The IMF today released its Article IV assessment of the Euro area, so as usual, I will be blogging on the issues raised in the latest report throughout the day. The first post looked at debt overhang.So here, let's take a look at IMF analysis of the Non-Performing Loans on Euro area banks' balance sheets.A handy chart to start with:The above gives pretty good comparatives in terms of the NPLs on banks balance sheets across the euro area. Per IMF: "High NPLs are hindering lending and the recovery. By weakening bank profitability and tying up capital, NPLs constrain banks’ ability to lend and…
  • 27/7/15: IMF Euro Area Report: Debt's a Mean Bitch…

    27 Jul 2015 | 7:16 am
    The IMF today released its Article IV assessment of the Euro area, so as usual, I will be blogging on the issues raised in the latest report throughout the day.The first post looks at debt overhang.Per IMF, low inflation environment in the Euro area is "pushing up real rates, more in countries with higher debt burdens"And here's a handy chart from the Fund:Note: Net debt is the total economy’s financial liabilities minus assets.Broadly-speaking, with annual expected inflation at or below 1%, we have serious pressure on Portugal and Spain, where Government borrowing costs (and by some…
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    Paper Economy - A US Real Estate Bubble Blog

  • Hong Kong Residential Property Prices: HKU-REIS March 2015

    17 Jul 2015 | 7:06 am
    The latest release of the University of Hong Kong's Hong Kong Residential Real Estate Series (HKU-REIS) indicating that, in March, the price of residential properties declined 1.06% since February but still remained 16.57% above the level seen in March 2014. The HKU-REIS is a set of property price indices constructed monthly using a “modified” repeat-sale methodology similar to that of the S&P/Case-Shiller indices yet suited to the Hong Kong property market.
  • New Residential Construction Report: June 2015

    17 Jul 2015 | 6:52 am
    Today’s New Residential Construction Report showed generally improving results with total permit activity rising 7.4% since May while total starts surged 9.8% over the same period.Single family housing permits, the most leading of indicators, increased 0.9% from May to 687K single family units (SAAR), and rose 6.0% above the level seen a year earlier but still remained well below levels seen at the peak in September 2005.Single family housing starts declined 0.9% from May to 685K single family units (SAAR) but still remained 14.7% above the level seen a year earlier.
  • NAHB/Wells Fargo Home Builder Sentiment: July 2015

    16 Jul 2015 | 8:00 am
    Today, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) released their latest Housing Market Index (HMI) showing that overall assessments of housing activity generally went flat in July with the composite HMI index remaining at 60 while the "buyer traffic" index declined to a level of 43 from 44 in the prior month.Overall, conditions for new home construction appear to have remained stable recently but still remain below the peak assessments see prior to the Great Recession.
  • SNAP Food Stamp Participation: April 2015

    16 Jul 2015 | 7:53 am
    As a logical consequence of the prolonged economic downturn, participation in the federal food stamp program is continuing to rise.The latest data released by the Department of Agriculture indicated that in April, 202,930 individual recipients were removed from the food stamps program with the current total declining 1.75% on a year-over-year basis.Individuals receiving food stamp benefits declined to 45.43 million which, as a ratio of the overall civilian non-institutional population now stands at a whopping 18.15% of the population.Households receiving food stamps benefits declined to 22.39…
  • Weekly Unemployment Claims: Initial and Continued July 16 2015

    16 Jul 2015 | 6:58 am
    Today’s jobless claims report showed declines to both initial and insured (continued) unemployment claims as seasonally adjusted initial claims remained below the 300K level. Seasonally adjusted “initial” unemployment claims declined by 15,000 to 281,000 claims while seasonally adjusted “insured” claims declined by 112,000 to 2.215 million resulting in an “insured” unemployment rate of 1.6%.
 
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    The Economic Populist

  • Make a profit for the stockholder. Jobs?

    Chet Ruminski
    26 Jul 2015 | 12:58 pm
    There is absolutely nothing wrong with that agenda. Gratification for performance gets the job done. Jobs can very easily also come from profits. Reward jobs producing investing. Net gain in jobs is very unlikely because there is no reward for creating jobs. There is a reward for profits. Profit through people would create jobs. Laws keep getting changed to make profitting without working easier. Money has to work in order for jobs to be created. The positive side of profits through people is building of value and equity. Share
  • One keystroke away.

    Chet Ruminski
    24 Jul 2015 | 8:44 pm
    Mathematics is objective. Not being satisfied with the answers people have to make mathematics subjective. An unadulterated computer program is objective. Yes or no. Maybe and to what degree of maybe are subjective. Putting a finite answer to maybe is necessary in order for a computer to accept risk as a reality. Every time risk is involved or the answer is no, then the process is violated and risk is accepted to make the deal. Somewhere that violation (mistake) is waiting to happen again just like in the subprime mortgage crash. Share
  • New Home Sales Plunge -6.8% for June

    Robert Oak
    24 Jul 2015 | 11:42 am
    The June 2015 New Residential Single Family Home Sales plunged -6.8%.  Sales dropped from 517,000 to 482,000 for the month.  For the year, new single family home sales are up 18.1% from the year ago 408,000 sales levels.  The annual increase is equal to the ±18.1% margin of error. Share
  • Trump Pulled the Strings of Political Puppets

    Bud Meyers
    24 Jul 2015 | 11:12 am
    Not everything Donald Trump has to say should be swept under the rug; some things deserve to be heard. Many people might think he's a "bad guy", but he does know how politics work. Share
  • Initial Unemployment Claims at Levels Not Seen Since 1973

    Robert Oak
    23 Jul 2015 | 4:02 pm
    The DOL reported people filing for initial unemployment insurance benefits in the week ending on July 18th, 2015 was 255,000, a 26,000 decrease from the previous week of 281,000.  The DOL proclaims this is the largest drop since November 24th, 1973, when initial claims was 233,000.  The DOL also states this is no statistical anomaly.  Graphed below is initial claims. Share
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    Stock Trading To Go

  • Market Recap Jul 27, 2015

    Mark Hanna
    27 Jul 2015 | 2:55 pm
    A plunge in Chinese stocks led to a gap down open in the U.S. indexes at the open and while selling didn't accelerate, no buyers truly moved in either. The S&P 500 fell 0.58% and NASDAQ 0.96%. The drop in China was the largest since 2007. June durable goods data showed an increase of 3.4 percent, beating expectations slightly. The Fed begins a two day meeting Tuesday as policy makers... Read the full article at StockTradingToGo.com
  • Market Recap Jul 24, 2015

    Mark Hanna
    24 Jul 2015 | 3:26 pm
    Things were looking really bullish at the end of last week/early this week as both indexes had popped out of ranges and the NYSE McClellan Oscillator had confirmed the move. But something went amiss and we had a breakdown on the S&P 500 mid week and the NASDAQ today. The oscillator went negative earlier this week and did not bounce back quickly. So it's another week in a very frustrating... Read the full article at StockTradingToGo.com
  • Market Recap Jul 23, 2015

    Mark Hanna
    23 Jul 2015 | 2:58 pm
    A very frustrating year at the index level continues. Each time it looks like we are going to escape a range there is a failure. The S&P 500 fell 0.57% and the NASDAQ 0.49%. Weekly jobless claims came in at 255,000, their lowest level since 1973. While analysts said the low figure may keep a rate hike on the table for this year, they were cautious about reading too much into a figure... Read the full article at StockTradingToGo.com
  • Market Recap Jul 22, 2015

    Mark Hanna
    22 Jul 2015 | 2:36 pm
    All things considered, Wednesday could have been a much worse day considering the big drop in Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT) - both larger components of many indexes. The S&P 500 only fell 0.24% while the NASDAQ fell 0.70%. Existing home sales rose 3.2% from the previous month in June, their highest levels in over eight years. Original post: Market Recap Jul 22, 2015 Read the full article at StockTradingToGo.com
  • Market Recap Jul 21, 2015

    Mark Hanna
    21 Jul 2015 | 4:07 pm
    Indexes were generally in the red as IBM really weighed on the Dow (down 1%). The S&P 500 fell 0.43% and NASDAQ 0.21%. Earnings have returned the forefront as they will the next few weeks, with Apple (AAPL) dominating tonight. You can check out Blain's real time reaction on Ticker.tv to the Apple's earnings - if you have small children turn down the volume. ;) So we just had the... Read the full article at StockTradingToGo.com
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    Peter Gallagher

  • Framing jpeg images for Flickr

    pwg
    10 Jul 2015 | 9:35 pm
    This is an Applescript I wrote a couple of years ago to resize and frame Jpeg images exported from Photoshop (for example) for Flickr. The script relies on the ‘convert’ utility from the ImageMagick (imagemagick.org) library. It puts a [black] frame around the outside of the image, after resizing the image to a maximum of […]
  • Save PDF annotations to a notes file

    pwg
    1 Apr 2015 | 6:42 pm
    If you are a researcher then you probably annotate PDFs of papers and other stuff. If, like me, you work in the Apple/OSX environment you may be using Skim to read and annotate. Skim allows you to save the annotations in their own ‘sidecar’ file format and to copy/paste the text of the annotations. But […]
  • Draft history of ICC: final chapters

    pwg
    5 Feb 2015 | 1:45 pm
    Last year, I completed the manuscript of a centennial history of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). It’s a long work: 400 pages, more or less. It will be only the second history of this remarkable institution. The first was published in 1938. ICC commissioned the history in 2013, but has recently decided to wait […]
  • The Wallenbergs at the ICC

    pwg
    20 Jan 2015 | 3:29 pm
    Peter Wallenberg, the scion of the great Swedish family of bankers and industrialists, died on 19 January aged 88. Among his many achievements was to lead the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) during the most difficult period for business in the late 20th Century. Here is a summary of the story. There’s a little more […]
  • Can multilateralism be revived?

    pwg
    16 Nov 2014 | 3:49 pm
    Shawn Donnan at the FT says that it needs a healthier life-style. Multilateralism is weaker than it has ever been. But, in trade, it has never been as robust as it seemed on the surface. For now, I doubt there is a reasonable prospect it can be revived in its original form. Instead, we should […]
 
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    Political Calculations

  • The S&P 500 and Stock Buybacks

    27 Jul 2015 | 12:30 am
    How different would the value of the S&P 500 be if not for the amount of stock buybacks that have taken place in the U.S. stock market since the end of 2008? We're asking that question today because of the recent suggestion that "Wall Street's new drug is the stock buyback": In the first quarter of 2015, companies in the S&P 500 index returned more money to shareholders than they earned. The last time that happened was in the fourth quarter of 2008, when the entire S&P 500 reported a slight loss for the quarter but still spent $110 billion on dividends and buybacks. “This is not a normal…
  • Reflections on the Early 21st Century

    24 Jul 2015 | 1:01 am
    We always thought that the early 21st century was kind of steampunk cool, what with all the advancements in lasers, artificial intelligence, computer hacking and the automation of stupidity, but perhaps nothing stands out more to us than how a previously unknown cloning technology changed the nature of warfare, opening the door to the world we live in today. (HT: Neat-o-Rama (via Core77)!) After viewing the video above, it seems strange now to think that Andy Samberg and Bill Hader were ever underappreciated as visionary geniuses. It's a shame that the people of the early 21st century only…
  • Visual Correlations Between Rent and Housing Prices

    23 Jul 2015 | 1:14 am
    Via Barry Ritholtz, we were impressed by the following chart from Bloomberg indicating at "when your city became unaffordable", as measured by percentage of the income earned by a typical 22-to-34 year old American worker within a given major U.S. city would have go to pay the typical rent in that city: So we tweaked one of our favorite charts to go along the data shown in the chart above so that it covers the same period of time. Draw your own insights! Data SourcesU.S. Census Bureau. Median and Average Sales Prices of New Homes Sold in the United States. [Excel Spreadsheet]. Accessed 8 July…
  • Working Backwards from Retail to Cost

    22 Jul 2015 | 12:55 am
    How much did it cost the producer of the goods you see for sale at a retailer to actually make those goods? The answer is "it depends," and what the real answer depends upon is how much of a markup has been put on the goods at each step of their journey as they have gone from the producer to the store where you can buy it. Let's start with the producer. Here, the starting point for determining what will be the retail price of the good is their cost to produce it. They will then add a markup to that basic cost, which not only includes their profit margin, but also includes a safety margin…
  • Farming's Share of State Economies

    21 Jul 2015 | 12:59 am
    How important is farming to the economy of each of the United States? Our latest data visualization exercise answers that question by calculating the percentage share of farming with respect to the GDP recorded for each individual state and the U.S. as a whole by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis for 2013, the most recent year for which details for the economic output of each state's agriculture industry is available at this writing! The chart above represents a single snapshot in time, in this case, reflecting the economic output of U.S. farms during the entire 2013 calendar year. As…
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    Calafia Beach Pundit

  • Commodity prices in perspective

    24 Jul 2015 | 3:13 pm
    Consider this post a public service announcement. The objective is to put recent commodity price trends into a long-term, historical perspective. I think that what it shows is that despite significant declines in the past few years, commodity prices are still holding up quite well relative to where they've been in the past.We start the review with "Dr. Copper." Copper prices have been extraordinarily volatile in recent decades. Copper has declined 40% from its early 2011 all-time high, but it is still 290% above its 2001 low.The CRB Raw Industrials index is my favorite commodity index. It…
  • Are lower oil prices really a problem?

    24 Jul 2015 | 11:40 am
    The market is still jittery. Stocks are off their recent highs, and it looks to be mainly due to falling oil prices, because they threaten the profits of the oil industry and they also increase the risk of bond defaults. But the positive side to this is lower expected inflation, and for consumers and businesses, lower energy costs. Bad for some, but probably good for most.The Vix/10-yr ratio has moved up a bit in recent days, and stocks have moved down, as the chart above shows. This inverse correlation is what I call "climbing walls of worry." Stocks fall because the market gets nervous, not…
  • Commercial real estate still booming

    22 Jul 2015 | 11:10 am
    The commercial real estate market is doing very well, with prices of existing properties rising at strong double digit rates and a pickup in Architecture Billings pointing to stronger growth in commercial construction spending over the next year.According to the CoStar Group activity in the commercial real estate market is very strong. Prices are rising at a 12-14% pace. Space absorption was the strongest in the current recovery. Leasing activity is robust. Investment activity is surging. This is a very strong indicator that the U.S. economy is doing just fine, and that growth could be…
  • What's the right price for gold?

    22 Jul 2015 | 10:46 am
    For the past 100 years, gold prices have been all over the map: from a low of $17/oz. in 1931, to a high of $850 in 1980, to a low of $255 in 2001, then up to its recent high of $1900 in 2011, and today down to just under $1100. Gold has lost over 40% of its value in the past four years, and along the way, it has paid zero in the way of interest. As an investment, gold is not for the faint of heart. You can make or lose a fortune, depending on your entry and exit points. So is now a good time to buy gold?To help answer that question, I put together the chart above, which shows the real price…
  • Descending the Great Wall of Worry

    20 Jul 2015 | 12:17 pm
    This is an update to the first chart in my post last week ("A dozen interesting charts") with prices as of noon California time:Gold is now breaking down to multi-year lows, as the prices of 5-yr TIPS trend lower as well (the chart uses the inverse of their real yield as a proxy for their price).One of the other charts in last week's post was "Stocks climb walls of worry." I think the chart above represents one big wall of worry that the world is now descending. Global worries peaked with the PIIGS debt crisis in late 2011. Other contributing factors were concern about the weak dollar,…
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    Supply and Demand (in that order)

  • Update on the employment rate

    2 Jul 2015 | 7:22 am
    through June. Below uses the same methodology I displayed in the past. The self-employed component is volatile ... it would be nice to have some kind of error bands on this series ... but that is still work in progress.
  • Is Obamatrade the same as freer trade?

    18 Jun 2015 | 3:16 am
    The legal question du jour is whether Congress should allow special voting procedures (fast track) for international trade agreement agreements negotiated by the executive branch. This brings forth the age-old debate of the merits of free trade, as if free or freer trade is at stake with fast track.But that is jumping to conclusions without reading the text of the trade agreements.Experts jumped to conclusion, based on chapter titles alone, that the ARRA would help the economy recover, when in fact it prolonged the recession.Experts jumped to the conclusion that Obamacare would create…
  • Piketty's Feast

    16 Jun 2015 | 3:36 pm
    Revealed preference speaks volumes. Admittedly, my hardcover version of Capital in the Twenty-First Century was delivered “for free” by the publisher of this periodical, but the opportunity cost of retaining it was extraordinary last spring when its publisher and distributors remarkably ran out of stock and the market for used copies was surging. I did more than retain it: I also purchased the electronic version so that I could search its contents readily and accurately and fit the 685-pager in a coat pocket.More significantly, I read it, in some places carefully enough to dig into the…
  • Update on self-employment and total employment

    3 Apr 2015 | 9:32 am
    Again the headlines (today: "below expectations") are different from the totals including self-employment. Below uses the same methodology I displayed last month.
  • Burtless: Two Economic Mistakes in One Sentence

    30 Mar 2015 | 8:10 am
    Brookings' Gary Burtless writesIt seems odd that critics of the ACA emphasize the potentially adverse impacts of the law on workers forced to accept part-time jobs but fail to notice that their logic suggests more workers in total must be employed.Dr. Burtless should have read my book, or some of the labor economics literature dealing with part-time work cited therein, to see why he has the economic logic backwards, and in fact nothing here is "odd."My revised edition (to be published by University of Chicago Press), has the clearest explanation:A conventional wisdom [e.g., Burtless quote]…
 
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    Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science

  • Ripped from the pages of a George Pelecanos novel

    Andrew
    27 Jul 2015 | 7:45 am
    Did anyone else notice that this DC multiple-murder case seems just like a Pelecanos story? Check out the latest headline, “D.C. Mansion Murder Suspect Is Innocent Because He Hates Pizza, Lawyer Says”: Robin Flicker, a lawyer who has represented suspect Wint in the past but has not been officially hired as his defense attorney, says police are zeroing in on Wint because his DNA was found on pizza at the crime scene. The only problem, Flicker said is that Wint doesn’t like pizza. “He doesn’t eat pizza,” Flicker told ABC News. “If he were hungry, he wouldn’t order…
  • On deck this week

    Andrew
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:00 am
    Mon: Ripped from the pages of a George Pelecanos novel Tues: “We can keep debating this after 11 years, but I’m sure we all have much more pressing things to do (grants? papers? family time? attacking 11-year-old papers by former classmates? guitar practice?)” Wed: What do I say when I don’t have much to say? Thurs: “Women Respond to Nobel Laureate’s ‘Trouble With Girls’” Fri: This sentence by Thomas Mallon would make Barry N. Malzberg spin in his grave, except that he’s still alive so it would just make him spin in his retirement Sat: If you leave your datasets…
  • The 3 Stages of Busy

    Andrew
    26 Jul 2015 | 6:06 am
    Last week I ran into a younger colleague who said he had a conference deadline that week and could we get together next week, maybe? So I contacted him on the weekend and asked if he was free. He responded: This week quickly got booked after last week’s NIPS deadline. So we’re meeting in another week. That’s busy for you: after one week off the grid, he had a week’s worth of pent-up meetings! I thought I was busy, but it’s nothing like that. And this made me formulate my idea of the 3 Stages of Busy. It goes like this: Stage 1 (early career): Not busy, at least…
  • Ira Glass asks. We answer.

    Andrew
    25 Jul 2015 | 6:11 am
    The celebrated radio quiz show star says: There’s this study done by the Pew Research Center and Smithsonian Magazine . . . they called up one thousand and one Americans. I do not understand why it is a thousand and one rather than just a thousand. Maybe a thousand and one just seemed sexier or something. . . . I think I know the answer to this one! The survey may well have aimed for 1000 people, but you can’t know ahead of time exactly how many people will respond. They call people, leave messages, call back, call back again, etc. The exact number of people who end up in the…
  • 45 years ago in the sister blog

    Andrew
    24 Jul 2015 | 6:17 am
    The post 45 years ago in the sister blog appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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    Beyond Economics

  • Behind the Price of Oil

    Rob Kaulfuss
    7 Jul 2015 | 7:10 pm
    Nominal and Inflation Adjusted (Real) Price of Crude Oil The American Dream of suburbia and the post-WWII global economy were built on cheap oil. Oil is up some from the lows of earlier this year but still only about 60% of the highs that the industry had come to expect. However, the lows of the last year are much higher than during the post-war formative period or even that of the 90s ($10-$30). MacroTrends.net, EIA, BLS A Brief History of Oil Prices When oil was easy The industrial economy of the 20th century is built on cheap and easy oil The birth of OPEC and its actions in the mid to…
  • Still Waiting for the Growth that May Never Come

    Rob Kaulfuss
    31 Aug 2014 | 10:28 am
    The well-off are back to partying and politicians are arguing over the bar tab The U.S. and world economy almost went down the drain in 2008-09, but thanks in part to extraordinary measures by the U.S. Federal Reserve and central bankers around the world, economic collapse was avoided. Although the lights are back on, the rate of economic growth remains below the escape velocity rate needed to move forward. While corporate profits are up and the stock market is at record highs, many on the lower decks are still cleaning up the mess if they are even back on the boat. Perhaps it is time to…
  • The Not So Promised Land of Fracking

    Rob Kaulfuss
    7 Jan 2013 | 5:23 pm
    The movie Promised Land depicts the dilemma faced by rural farms and towns by the fracking boom. While the makers of the film do reveal their biases in terms of the potential environmental and economic exploitation of poor, rural America, they attempt to provide a balance of perspectives that include some surprising twists with the conclusion left up in the air. Although we don’t actually see fracking or the results of it in the film, here is what a fracked landscape looks like. The oil, gas, and financial industries would have us believe that the shale gas and oil boom will…
  • The Future of Economics and Society as We Know It

    Rob Kaulfuss
    8 Aug 2011 | 9:07 am
    Richard Heinberg delivers a clear and powerful message on the urgent need for the world to begin the transition to a sustainable future. He takes a big picture perspective on the interconnectedness of economics, energy, the environment, and society. Don’t Worry There’s Plenty of Oil (NOT) Interview on The Keiser Report 300 Years of Fossil Fuels in 300 Seconds Who Killed Economic Growth The End of Growth (Chapter summaries; excerpts below) We are, and will be, seeing a cavalcade of environmental and economic disasters, not obviously related to one another, that will stymie…
  • The Internet as a Monkey Trap

    Rob Kaulfuss
    13 Jul 2011 | 9:19 am
    Google, Blogs, Facebook, Twitter, email, text messaging, gaming, virtual worlds…what is your banana? What so captures your attention that you can’t let go? I saw a cartoon of a monkey trap (not this one) over 25 years ago in an article entitled Computers as Poison. The idea has stuck with me ever since. Today, I came across this explanation which describes the attention capture phenomenon quite well. SEEKING: How the brain hard-wires us to love Google, Twitter, and texting. And why that’s dangerous. Slate (8/12/09) You can’t stop doing it. Sometimes it feels as if the…
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    TheMoneyIllusion

  • Don’t waste time looking for Ratex alternatives

    ssumner
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:18 pm
    Noah Smith has a new post discussing the current fad of looking for alternatives to the rational expectations model.  The motivation seems to be that we need to explain the collapse of bubble expectations and the rise in the propensity to save (although not actual saving?) during the 2008 recession.  I understand why people want to do this, but it would be a very big mistake. I’ve always thought that it was patently obvious that the Fed caused the Great Recession with a tight money policy that allowed NGDP expectations to collapse in late 2008. But other people apparently don’t…
  • Letter to the NYT, etc.

    ssumner
    23 Jul 2015 | 5:47 pm
    My posting will be relatively infrequent for the next couple of weeks. I just returned from DC, where I finally got a chance to meet John Cochrane.  He’s taken a position at the Hoover Institute.  Although we disagree on sticky wages, we have uncannily similar views on a wide range of other issues, such as immigration, health care reform and financial system reform.  I also got a chance to meet quite a few of the Mercatus scholars, and came away very impressed with the organization. [BTW, the acronym for the new monetary program is POMP (Program on Monetary Policy.)  My enemies are…
  • Government and culture

    ssumner
    19 Jul 2015 | 6:18 am
    Matt Yglesias: My view is that the biggest relevance of Southern Europe to the United States is the current high social prestige enjoyed by the twin ideas that the social responsibility of a corporation is to be profitable and that the primary moral and legal obligation of a corporate manager is to enrich shareholders. These ideas combine to create a toxic moral climate that is undermining the social context in which a successful market economy can flourish. In a healthy society, a business leader might invest time and resources in rent-seeking but he wouldn’t brag about doing so and…
  • Germany doesn’t benefit from a weak euro

    ssumner
    18 Jul 2015 | 11:34 am
    The past week it’s been open season on Germany.  Even I have occasionally bashed them for their views on monetary policy.  In a way this is odd, because in many respects Germany has been (since 1945) almost like a model country.  Other countries should try to be more like Germany.  It’s also odd because Germany’s views are completely typical of the eurozone–so why single out that one country?  Yes, France and Italy are a bit more moderate, but the other 15 are just as upset with Greece as is Germany. Ben Bernanke recently made some comments on Germany and the…
  • The NSA is going to love this

    ssumner
    18 Jul 2015 | 8:56 am
    I’ve been telling people that 1984 is coming, but no one seems to care.  Here’s one more indication: Samsung SmartTV The Samsung SmartTV has a built-in microphone that is equipped with voice recognition technology that allows users to give verbal commands to the TV. In order for Samsung to convert your speech to text, the voice commands are sent over the Internet to a third-party for interpretation. However, since the TV is “always on,” the microphone is recording every word you’re saying at all times. Even in its SmartTV privacy policy, Samsung acknowledges that all spoken…
 
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    Jesse's Café Américain

  • Gold Daily and Silver Weekly Charts - Miner Miner

    27 Jul 2015 | 1:24 pm
      There is a chart of the GDX relative to the Price of Gold.  This is why some will say that the miners are 'weak relative to the price of the metal.'  And they are.  They can get even cheaper, and the underlying metal can also get 'cheaper.' Sentiment is obviously at a negative extreme, and some of the chortling from the opinion vendors is disheartening to those who take that
  • SP 500 and NDX Futures Daily Charts - Rinse-a-Matic

    27 Jul 2015 | 1:16 pm
    Stocks in the US continued to slide, in sympathy with China and a generally poor outlook for the world of real productivity and wealth. And in large part this is the rinse cycle of a wash-rinse stock market operation conducted by insiders that took US equity prices up to unsustainable levels in the first place. It looks like our cynical outlook just after Wall Street squeezed out the Paypal
  • Providence Is the Hidden Hand of God

    27 Jul 2015 | 10:19 am
    "Wonderful providence indeed which is so silent, yet so efficacious, so constant, so unerring. This is what baffles the power of Satan. He cannot discern the Hand of God in what goes on; and though he would fain meet it and encounter it, in his mad and blasphemous rebellion against heaven, he cannot find it. Crafty and penetrating as he is, yet his thousand eyes and his many instruments
  • Shanghai On Track For Record Year With 69 Tonnes Gold Withdrawn In Latest Week

    24 Jul 2015 | 6:29 pm
    "A lie would make no sense unless the truth were felt to be dangerous." Alfred Adler Pet rocks. When The Wall Street Journal finally notices China.
  • Gold Daily and Silver Weekly Charts - Rebound - Option Expiration Next Week

    24 Jul 2015 | 1:07 pm
    “In a room where people unanimously maintain a conspiracy of silence, one word of truth sounds like a pistol shot.” Czesław Miłosz Gold led a stiff rebound off support at 1180 today as it just was not going to go any lower, and the wiseguys grabbed some profits off the table. This was a very obviously short term oversold condition.  Now we will see if gold and silver can put in a
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    Stumbling and Mumbling

  • "Demography is destiny"

    chris
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:58 am
    Talking about the "glass floor" which limits social mobility, Alan Milburn says: It’s a social scandal that all too often demography is still destiny. This is true in a far bigger way than Mr Milburn means. There's a policy which suppresses social mobility and ensures that demography is destiny for millions of people. I refer, of course, to immigration controls. If you support social mobility you must, logically, favour open borders. For example, someone migrating from Zimbabwe, where GDP per head is barely $2000 per year, to a minimum wage job in the UK would see their income…
  • On welfare incentives

    chris
    25 Jul 2015 | 5:35 am
    A loyal reader has chastised my defence of welfare benefits for ignoring incentive effects. This deserves a reply. The issue here is not about Osborne's welfare cuts, simply because these haven't, net, made much difference to incentives. On the one hand, the rise in the "living wage" relative to Universal Credit will increase incentives to work. But on the other hand, this won't affect under-25s (who aren't covered by the wage floor); cuts to in-work tax credits reduce work incentives; and the higher taper rate reduces incentives to work longer. Overall, says the…
  • Yes, Labour must change

    chris
    24 Jul 2015 | 6:02 am
    Tony Blair's speech this week, paradoxically, reminded us of the need for new, radical economic policies. He said: The most important characteristic of this world is: the scope, scale and speed of change. Change defines it. Let's leave aside the obvious snark that one thing that hasn't changed is Blair's talk of change. He was talking about the "breathtaking pace of change" 20 years ago*. As Alan Finlayson wrote (pdf), the rhetoric of modernization has been a key element of Blairism. Instead, my point is that it is because the world has changed that New Labour is no…
  • Corbyn's success, Labour's shame

    chris
    23 Jul 2015 | 6:20 am
    When Graham Dilley went out to bat in the famous 1981 Headingley test match, Ian Botham told him that "we wouldn't survive long just blocking, so we might as well have a swing." This same reasoning, I suspect, explains Labour members support for Jeremy Corbyn. If the choice were between an election victory under, say, Andy Burnham or a defeat under Corbyn, most Labour members - though perhaps not all - would support Burnham. But that's not necessarily the choice. Maybe Labour will lose under any leader. If so, they might as well follow the Botham principle and have a swing.
  • Reality vs the Bubble

    chris
    21 Jul 2015 | 6:09 am
    Last night's vote on the Welfare Bill shows that Labour is divided. The division though, isn't so much between left and right as between reality and the Bubble. The Bill will cost the poorest (pdf) families hundreds of pounds per year, increase homelessness and child poverty (pdf) and create insecurity for many low-paid workers who are at high risk of losing their jobs*. And its motives are based in large part upon myths - that welfare spending is a burden, that there's a pressing need to cut the deficit, and that there are distinct groups of workers and claimants rather than…
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    David Smith's EconomicsUK.com

  • Cuts: the big bad wolf's howl is worse than his bite

    David Smith
    26 Jul 2015 | 2:00 am
    My regular column is available to subscribers on www.thesundaytimes.co.uk This is an excerpt. Sometimes I think that when George Osborne looks in the mirror each morning, he thinks: “Now how can I put the wind up the Labour party...
  • Bank ponders a rate rise as job market changes gear

    David Smith
    19 Jul 2015 | 2:00 am
    My regular column is available to subscribers on www.thesundaytimes.co.uk This is an excerpt. Things are getting rather interesting. In the past few days we have had what looks like a concerted attempt by the Bank of England to prepare...
  • Something Will Turn Up

    David Smith
    18 Jul 2015 | 8:45 am
    My new book, Something Will Turn Up, is about Britain's economy over recent decades, and into the future. This excerpt gives a flavour of where it and I started, in the industrial heartlands of the West Midlands. I was born...
  • Individual ambition serves the common good

    David Smith
    18 Jul 2015 | 8:30 am
    My remarks on being awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Nottingham, at a ceremony on Friday July 17. Vice Chancellor, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, parents, family members, academic staff and fellow graduands. If I’ve missed anybody out,...
  • Something Will Turn Up

    David Smith
    15 Jul 2015 | 8:00 am
    My new book, Something Will Turn Up, is published on Thursday July 16. More about it here soon but, in the meantime, here is the descrption from by publisher, Profile: Overcoming economic decline, inflation and mass unemployment have challenged...
 
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    Top Gun Financial Planning

  • Bad Breadth

    Greg Feirman
    22 Jul 2015 | 9:51 pm
    NOTE: Every week or two I wrote a Client Note for my clients. I post most but not all of the notes to my blog but with a time delay usually between 1 day and 1 week. To receive the Client Notes at the same time as my clients, sign up in the box in the right hand corner of the website. I noticed something strange with the market internals on Friday and Monday.  Even though the S&P squeezed out new highs, breadth was quite poor.  Declining stocks outnumbered advancing stocks 2040 to 1011 on Friday and 2122 to 1030 on Monday on the NYSE. This divergence between the overall averages and the…
  • Some Things To Worry About

    Greg Feirman
    7 May 2015 | 9:43 pm
    NOTE: Every week or two I wrote a Client Note for my clients. I post most but not all of the notes to my blog but with a time delay usually between 1 day and 1 week. To receive the Client Notes at the same time as my clients, sign up in the box in the right hand corner of the website. I find myself quite nervous about the stock market lately for a few reasons. First, the S&P can’t seem to make any progress.  We are essentially flat for the last 5 months. While some stocks such as DIS, SBUX and NKE continue to make new highs, other important leading stocks seem stuck in the mud such…
  • Keeping It Simple In 2015

    Greg Feirman
    5 Jan 2015 | 7:07 pm
    NOTE: Every week or two I wrote a Client Note for my clients. I post most but not all of the notes to my blog but with a time delay usually between 1 day and 1 week. To receive the Client Notes at the same time as my clients, sign up in the box in the right hand corner of the website. As we start off 2015 on a down note a number of concerns are weighing on markets. First is the collapse in oil prices.  This is obviously bad for oil companies.  It is also bad for employment in oil related sectors which have created many solid middle class jobs in recent years.  For example, Hercules…
  • Pressure Point

    Greg Feirman
    13 Oct 2014 | 4:59 pm
    NOTE: Every week or two I wrote a Client Note for my clients. I post most but not all of the notes to my blog but with a time delay usually between 1 day and 1 week. To receive the Client Notes at the same time as my clients, sign up in the box in the right hand corner of the website. Last Thursday and Friday were the worst two days for the markets since February.  The S&P is testing its 200 day moving average (DMA) for the first time in 2 years. Real fear has entered the market for the first time in quite a while.  5 1/2 years into the bull market investors are worried: Is this just a…
  • Riding The Bull

    Greg Feirman
    3 Sep 2014 | 7:47 am
    NOTE: Every week or two I wrote a Client Note for my clients. I post most but not all of the notes to my blog but with a time delay usually between 1 day and 1 week. To receive the Client Notes at the same time as my clients, sign up in the box in the right hand corner of the website. Those of you who have followed me over the years know that I was slow to warm to this bull market.  However, in the last year I have evolved and come to embrace it.  I stopped trying to short it (see “The Loser’s Strategy”, August 4, 2013) and decided to invest more in line with what is…
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    Project Syndicate RSS-Feed

  • Alpha, Beta, and Beyond

    Nouriel Roubini
    27 Jul 2015 | 7:50 am
    Even in normal times, individual and institutional investors alike have a hard time figuring out where to invest and in what. But a new, low-cost approach to investing – neither active nor passive – promises to ease the challenge confronting investors in normal and abnormal times alike.
  • Market Manipulation Goes Global

    Stephen S. Roach
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:50 am
    All eyes are now on China’s attempts to cope with the collapse of a major equity bubble. But the Chinese authorities’ efforts are hardly unique: All the leading economies of the West are doing pretty much the same thing – just dressing it up in different clothes.
  • The IMF’s Euro Crisis

    Ngaire Woods
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:30 am
    Over the last few decades, the IMF has learned six important lessons about how to manage government debt crises. In its response to the crisis in Greece, however, each of these lessons has been ignored.
  • Depression’s Advocates

    J. Bradford DeLong
    24 Jul 2015 | 9:40 am
    When the Greek debt crisis erupted in 2010, it seemed that the obvious lessons of history implied a straightforward path to resolution. Instead, eurozone policymakers insisted on repeating the mistakes of the 1930s, and today they are doubling down on them.
  • What the Greek and Iranian Deals Are Not

    Dominique Moisi
    24 Jul 2015 | 5:50 am
    This month’s agreements on the Greek crisis and Iran’s nuclear program are undoubtedly important achievements. But the comparisons that have accompanied both deals have tended toward hyperbole, impeding rational discussion of their implications for Europe, the Middle East, and the prospects for international diplomacy.
 
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    OilPrice.com Daily News Update

  • Top Factors Undermining Any Oil Price Recovery

    Alexis Arthur
    27 Jul 2015 | 2:44 pm
    Global oil prices have returned to a state of flux. This is hardly news to any who follow the oil markets closely and yet prices continue to drive international headlines. While oil prices are notoriously difficult to predict, it has failed to deter the speculators. There are those warning that the latest dip is a precursor for $40 a barrel, a catastrophe for oil markets in some minds. On the other end of the spectrum are the optimists betting on a return to $100 by 2020. The World Bank has taken a typically middle-of-the-road approach, with forecasts…
  • Pessimism Amongst Oil Traders Reaches 5 Year High

    Nick Cunningham
    27 Jul 2015 | 2:28 pm
    With oil prices hitting their lowest levels since March, a renewed sense of gloom has washed over oil markets, and with it, fears over deeper trouble for U.S. shale companies are spreading. After hitting $43 per barrel in March, oil prices jumped to $60 per barrel by May and then stayed around that level for almost two months, raising confidence that a rebound was underway, albeit at a slow pace. A few companies, including EOG Resources, Pioneer Resources, Occidental Petroleum, and Diamondback Energy, suggested that they were considering stepping…
  • Arbitrage Opportunity For The Individual Energy Investor

    Michael McDonald
    27 Jul 2015 | 2:15 pm
    Hedge funds and other sophisticated investors use a variety of different strategies to earn a profit. Some of these strategies are too complex or costly for most individual investors, but one of the most popular is not. The idea behind a pair trade is to match two highly correlated securities against one another by taking a long position in one and a short position in the other. The result is a portfolio that is market neutral and instead evolves based on changes in the relative value of the two securities. One great pair trade right now is NuStar…
  • Oil Sands: Is Utah The New Alberta?

    Andy Tully
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:58 pm
    Think oil sands and Alberta comes to mind. Don’t tell that to Canadian oilmen in Utah, though, who expect to begin production at the first commercial oil sands mine in the United States by year’s end. On June 24, U.S. Oil Sands Inc., based in Calgary, got approval from the Utah Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Oil, Gas and Mining for changes to the PR Spring project being built about 200 miles southeast of Salt Lake City. The company has agreed to submit a plan by Nov. 1 for monitoring the quality of air and water…
  • Saudi Petrochemical Company Beats Analysts’ Estimates

    Andy Tully
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:48 pm
    Once again we’re seeing how size and planning are helping energy companies weather the yearlong drop in oil prices. The latest example is the petrochemical behemoth Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC), whose profits for the second quarter dropped, but less than expected. SABIC said July 27 in a statement to the Saudi Stock Exchange that its net profit from April through June fell by 4.5 percent to 6.17 billion riyals, or $1.65 billion from 6.46 billion riyals in the same quarter of 2014, primarily due to the drop in oil prices in the past…
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    zentrader.ca

  • Double Top Scenario On Dow Unlikely

    jeff pierce
    23 Jul 2015 | 12:59 pm
    By Poly This is an excerpt from this weekend’s premium update from the The Financial Tap, which is dedicated to helping people learn to grow into successful investors by providing cycle research on multiple markets delivered twice weekly. Now offering monthly & quarterly subscriptions with 30 day refund. Promo code ZEN saves 10%. Cycle Counts Cycle Count Observation Probable Outlook Cycle Clarity Trend Daily Day 11 Range 36-42 Days – 1st or 6th Daily Cycle (depends on IC) Bullish Green Up Investor Week 2 or 40 Range 20-24 Weeks AMBER Up 4Yr Month 73 Range 50-56 Months- 8th…
  • Possible Daily Cycle Low In Gold

    jeff pierce
    16 Jul 2015 | 3:20 pm
    By Poly This is an excerpt from this weekend’s premium update from the The Financial Tap, which is dedicated to helping people learn to grow into successful investors by providing cycle research on multiple markets delivered twice weekly. Now offering monthly & quarterly subscriptions with 30 day refund. Promo code ZEN saves 10%. Cycle Counts Cycle Count Observation Probable Outlook Cycle Clarity Trend Daily Day 29 Range 24-28 Days – 3rd Daily Cycle Bearish Green Failed Investor Week 17 Range 22-26 Weeks Bearish    Green Flat 4Yr Month 24 Range 48-52 Months Bearish Amber…
  • The Ultimate S&P 500 Support Level

    chris
    12 Jul 2015 | 5:00 am
    By Chris Ebert When traders study the stock market, there are many methods for determining price levels that are likely to act as support – levels to which stock prices fall but don’t fall any further. In fact, one of the first things that many folks learn when they begin trading is that there are levels that act in an almost magical way to provide support. Only when something drastic changes the outlook for a stock does the stock price fall below support. The rest of the time, it is quite common for a stock price to bounce higher each time it falls low enough to touch support.
  • We Interrupt Your Regularly Scheduled Doldrums

    chris
    5 Jul 2015 | 5:00 am
    By Chris Ebert In last weekend’s analysis it was noted that: The command from the top from now until at least October is as follows for the Bulls: Do not allow the S&P 500 to fall below 2100 If it does fall into the 2050-2100 range, bring it back above 2100 as quickly as possible If it falls below 2050 get ready for war – a war we might not win That’s a direct order! Today – a look at why that all-important 2100 level is likely to make the summer doldrums different this year. Typically summer is a quiet time for the stock market, not unlike the calm winds that often occupy parts…
  • Societal Traps

    jeff pierce
    2 Jul 2015 | 11:23 pm
    Joe Rogan’s thoughts on how things are and how they should be.
 
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    Economy Watch

  • Should the Bank of Japan Consider the U.S. Fed Method?

    economywatch@iadvantage.com
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:54 pm
    japan_piggy_bank.jpg Home Page News Page The Bank of Japan is engaged in the most aggressive asset purchases, and yet it has largely failed to lift inflation.  National consumer prices for June will report at the end of this week.  The headline rate expects to fall to 0.3% year-over-year from 0.5% in May.  This would be the smallest increase since June 2013.  <p>The Bank of Japan is engaged in the most aggressive asset purchases, and yet it has largely failed to lift inflation.&nbsp; National consumer prices for June will report at the end of this week.&nbsp;…
  • A Preview of the Emerging Markets

    Marc Chandler
    27 Jul 2015 | 2:50 pm
    emerging_markets_5.jpg Home Page News Page EM assets start the week on a softer footing.  The China situation remains unsettled, with stocks on Monday posting their biggest one-day loss in eight years.  More support measures seem likely if the rout continues.  The calm in China equity markets from last week has been shattered, and is having reverberations across EM as MSCI EM breaks down to multi-year lows.  Indeed, the June 2013 low is approaching, and a break below would target the 2011 low. <p>EM assets start the week on a softer footing.&nbsp; The China…
  • Is the Pacific Ocean Big Enough for the U.S. and China?

    East Asia Forum
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:59 am
    stormy_seas.jpg Home Page News Page China is a central concern in the evolving East Asian order, and its aggressive behaviour toward disputed islands in the South and East China Seas is attracting growing concern. China’s uncompromising attitudes reflect growing confidence in its ability to create or re-create a China-centred order in Asia commensurate with its power and interests. <p>China is a central concern in the evolving East Asian order, and its aggressive behaviour toward disputed islands in the South and East China Seas is attracting growing concern. China&rsquo;s…
  • Wrapping up the TPP is not without Risks

    East Asia Forum
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:46 am
    containership.jpg Home Page News Page The largest hurdle for the 12-member Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement — the US president’s ability to get Trade Promotion Authority, or fast track — is now clear. Many people think that the TPP can wrap up in a few months. <p>The largest hurdle for the 12-member Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement &mdash; the US president&rsquo;s ability to get Trade Promotion Authority, or fast track &mdash; is now clear. Many people think that the TPP can wrap up in a few months.</p> The largest hurdle for the…
  • Analysts Warn of Sluggish Recovery Progress for Brazilian Economy

    EW News Desk Team
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:51 am
    According to experts, Brazil may take years to make a substantial economic recovery. Brazil's currency fell to its lowest level in 12 years when compared to the dollar. According to experts, Brazil may take years to make a substantial economic recovery. Brazil's currency fell to its lowest level in 12 years when compared to the dollar. <p>According to experts, Brazil may take years to make a substantial economic recovery. Brazil&#39;s currency fell to its lowest level in 12 years when compared to the dollar.</p> read more
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    Keegan Larson

  • What Does Warren Buffett Read? The 10 Books on His Shelf

    Keegan Larson
    1 Jul 2015 | 9:31 pm
    Warren Buffett is a voracious reader. Over the years, he's read and recommended numerous books. The list below is a distillation of the 10 most common books recommended by Warren Buffett. The post What Does Warren Buffett Read? The 10 Books on His Shelf appeared first on Keegan Larson.
  • What We’ve Learned in 2014: Desktop vs Mobile

    Keegan Larson
    8 Dec 2014 | 9:02 am
    As we leave 2014 behind and enter 2015, it is a good time to review a few analytics trends and see where the analytics are pointing us. I'm fortunate in that I get to see a cross section of websites that our company manages so I can see if a trend on one site can be found on multiple sites. I'll be posting a few of my favorite trends throughout the month as we wind down 2014. The post What We’ve Learned in 2014: Desktop vs Mobile appeared first on Keegan Larson.
  • Track Viewport Size with Universal Google Analytics Events

    Keegan Larson
    21 Nov 2014 | 3:02 pm
    Why on earth would you want to track viewport size? Google Analytics already tracks screen resolution so what more do you need to know? The short answer is: a lot. Viewport size is important because it tracks this true size people are viewing your website – not just the size of their screen. I have a large 27″ iMac monitor (2560px wide) but my browser almost never have my browser full screen (as I write this, it is 1550px). A quick poll of my friends and coworkers shows that they almost never use their browser full width either (except maybe The post Track Viewport Size with…
  • Warren Buffett on Investing Small Sums

    Keegan Larson
    17 Oct 2014 | 3:46 pm
    Warren Buffett makes a statement in here that should excite most small investors. If he were investing the small sums of money most of us have access to, he would be able to do better, on a percentage basis, than he does now. This is for a variety of factors but it goes to show that even though we don’t have access to the billions of dollars Berkshire Hathaway does, we can still follow a certain set of investment principles to achieve good returns. Video transcript below Question: I read about your investment in Korean stocks for your personal portfolio. The post Warren Buffett on…
  • How To Bet On Horse Racing Using Investing Principles

    Keegan Larson
    13 Oct 2014 | 1:39 pm
    Horse racing has been around for a very long time and there are many supposedly “proven” systems you can buy that will “guarantee” you to win big in the long run. While Googling, I even found suggestions that the best way to make money is to have fun! If you like the name of the horse, bet on it. If your lucky number is 4. bet on that horse. While that method may be fun, you run the risk of following some potentially hazardous ways of thinking. There is no correlation to horse number or horse name. Intuition only runs The post How To Bet On Horse Racing Using Investing…
 
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    Central Bank News

  • Israel maintains rate, inflation may take longer to rise

    centralbanknews.info
    27 Jul 2015 | 7:51 am
        Israel's central bank left its benchmark interest rate at 0.10 percent, saying the recent decline in energy prices along with the appreciation of the shekel "are liable to defer the return of the inflation rate to within the target range."    The Bank of Israel (BOI), which cut its rate by 15 basis points in February to counter the negative impact on exports and inflation from a rise in the shekel, also repeated its guidance from last month that it "will examine the need to use various tools to achieve its objectives of price stability," a sign that it may still resort…
  • This week in monetary policy: Israel, Angola, Kyrgyzstan, Brazil, U.S.A., Bulgaria, Moldova, Fiji, Egypt, Ukraine, Mexico, Russia, Colombia and Trinidad & Tobago

    centralbanknews.info
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:00 am
       This week (July 27 through August 1) central banks from 14 countries or jurisdictions are scheduled to decide on monetary policy: Israel, Kyrgyzstan, Brazil, United States, Bulgaria, Moldova, Fiji, Egypt, Ukraine, Mexico, Russia, Colombia and Trinidad & Tobago.    Following table includes the name of the country, its MSCI classification, the direction of the latest decision, the date the new policy decision will be announced, the current policy rate, and the rate one year ago.    The table is updated when the latest decisions are announced…
  • Pakistan maintains policy rate, favorable inflation outlook

    centralbanknews.info
    26 Jul 2015 | 7:08 am
        Pakistan's central bank kept its new policy rate steady at 6.50 percent, as expected, saying the lagged effects of the recent monetary expansion and benign inflation expectations would result in a favorable outlook for inflation.    The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), which cut its policy rate by a total of 300 basis points in its 2015 fiscal year that ended June 30, expects headline inflation to pick up modestly in the second half of the current fiscal year due to the comparison with low rates and firmer crude oil prices.    However, there are also upside…
  • Nigeria maintains rate, sees 2015 growth of 5.5%

    centralbanknews.info
    24 Jul 2015 | 12:04 pm
        Nigeria's central bank maintained its Monetary Policy Rate at 13.0 percent, as expected, citing the need to maintain a tight monetary policy due to high liquidity and a steady rise in inflation against a backdrop of an expected rise in U.S. interest rates that could accentuate capital outflows and thus increase the pressure on the naira's exchange rate.     The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), which last raised its rate by 100 basis points in November 2014, clearly agonized over its policy decision, noting "the absence of easy choices in the circumstances" and the…
  • Global bank lending surges in Q1, China sees fall - BIS

    centralbanknews.info
    24 Jul 2015 | 11:01 am
        Global cross-border lending continued to expand in the first quarter of 2015, propelled by a surge in lending to the euro area, while credit to emerging markets, such as China and Russia, fell for the second consecutive quarter, according to the Bank for International Settlements (BIS).    International lending by major international banks to non-banks and other banks rocketed by an estimated $755 billion from January through March this year from end-December compared with an increase of only $16 billion in the final quarter of 2014    The rise in global…
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    Business Insider

  • Chris Christie has made a habit out of hiring his high school classmates

    Jill Colvin
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:41 pm
    NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has remained especially close to his high school friends. He launched his campaign for president in his old high school gymnasium, checks in by phone and attends reunions. But he's also made a habit of selecting old classmates for plum state positions, judgeships among them. An Associated Press review of his senior class yearbook, state payroll records, agency websites and state press releases found that nearly a half dozen of Christie's former high school classmates have ended up in state positions since he took office. That number…
  • China has finally lifted its 14-year ban on video games

    Tim Chen
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:41 pm
    While Chinese gamers have been able to buy grey market Playstations and Xboxes for years, and official ones since 2014, firms can now finally make and sell their products anywhere in China, after the remaining restrictions of a 14-year console ban were lifted. The move comes as two of the world's most popular gaming consoles, Microsoft's Xbox One and Sony's Playstation 4, have struggled to gain market share in PC and mobile-gaming obsessed China. The sale of consoles was banned in 2000 by the Chinese government amid fears games could have "adverse effects" on Chinese youth. However, this ban…
  • A new app lets anyone with a startup idea instantly chat with investors at VC firm Kleiner Perkins

    Eugene Kim
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:39 pm
    Growing up in India and Singapore, Anjney Midha had big dreams of one day moving to Silicon Valley and joining the region's thriving startup scene. In fact, he was so enamored by the startup culture there that he started sending cold emails to venture capitalists in the Valley, asking questions about term sheets and business plans. But the usual response he got — if he ever got one — was a simple one line message: "Next time you're here, let me know, and we'll get coffee." Eventually, Midha got into Stanford and things got a little better. But he still wasn't able to get…
  • The Boy Scouts of America has ended its nationwide ban on gay adult leaders

    David Crary
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:37 pm
    NEW YORK (AP) — The Boy Scouts of America on Monday ended its blanket ban on gay adult leaders while allowing church-sponsored Scout units to maintain the exclusion for religious reasons. The new policy, aimed at easing a controversy that has embroiled the Boy Scouts for years, takes effect immediately. It was approved by the BSA's National Executive Board on a 45-12 vote during a closed-to-the-media teleconference. "For far too long this issue has divided and distracted us," said the BSA's president, former Defense Secretary Robert Gates. "Now it's time to unite behind our shared…
  • 3 things Apple CEO Tim Cook wants you to know

    Ashraf Eassa
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:30 pm
    On July 21, Apple  reported its financial results for its third quarter. The results were solid, with actual results on both revenue and earnings per share slightly beating estimates. However, despite the good third-quarter results, Apple issued guidance that was, compared with the Street consensus, a bit light. That said, despite a "miss," the company is still delivering incredible amounts of profit and revenue growth, and Apple CEO Tim Cook wasn't shy about calling the quarter "amazing" in a prepared statement. Let's look at what else Cook had to say about this "amazing" quarter on the…
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    Business + Economy – Articles – The Conversation

  • FactCheck: is 50% of all income tax in Australia paid by 10% of the working population?

    Ben Phillips, Principal Research Fellow, National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling (NATSEM) at University of Canberra
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:08 pm
    Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey said half of all income tax in Australia comes from just 10% of workers. AAP Image/Carol Cho50% of all income tax in Australia is paid by 10% of the working population.“ – Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey, interview with Fran Kelly on ABC RN Breakfast, July 27, 2015. According to the 2015-16 Federal Budget, Australians paid around A$176 billion in personal income taxation in the 2014-15 financial year (Table 5 of Budget Paper 1). The Treasurer, Joe Hockey, claims that around 50% of this taxation is paid by the top 10% of the working age population as ranked by…
  • ABC shop closures make business sense: but where will its digital strategy lead?

    Jonathon Hutchinson, Lecturer in Online Media at University of Sydney
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:07 pm
    The announced closure of ABC shops is part of its wider digital strategy. AAP/Paul MillerWhile the ABC’s announcement of a “phased exit” from its portfolio of 50 ABC Shop properties is an unfortunate outcome for the 300 or so employees, it’s an unsurprising strategic business move. While some were blaming the loss of $254 million government funding over the next three years - including more vocal ABC supporters complaining on Twitter about the “killing” of their ABC - the move should be seen as an extension of the ABC’s digital strategy that aligns with the shift in media…
  • Why we shouldn't be trying to make people happy at work all of the time

    Libby Sander, PhD Candidate at Griffith University
    26 Jul 2015 | 6:16 pm
    df fdb f o A quick scan of recent media highlights an entire industry exists around workplace happiness. Being a corporate happiness expert is now a job title. As part of this effort, billions of dollars are spent annually on workplace design. We are inundated with images of workplaces with brightly coloured lounge spaces, nap pods and collaboration zones with coffee grinders and free wholefoods for staff. Mouse pads and walls in meeting areas are plastered with affirmations and reminders of utopian corporate visions. It appears however that the struggle to create meaning and happiness at…
  • FactCheck: could foreign workers be paid less under the China-Australia FTA?

    Stuart Rosewarne, Associate Professor, Department of Political Economy at University of Sydney
    26 Jul 2015 | 5:58 pm
    China's Minister of Commerce Dr Gao Hucheng and Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott signed the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement in mid-July. AAP Image/Mick TsikasFirst off, there is no statement that says that says workers working side by side with an Australian worker shall receive the same conditions and pay. That’s nowhere in the agreement… go through the pages of the agreement and look at the Memorandum of Understanding and it doesn’t say it in black and white; nowhere in the agreement. Michael O'Connor, CFMEU National Secretary, speaking with Fran Kelly on RN…
  • Chasing the 'silver sliver': making sure innovation doesn't slip through our fingers

    Michael Gilding, Executive Dean, Faculty of Business and Law at Swinburne University of Technology
    26 Jul 2015 | 1:19 pm
    Australian manufacturing can provide the "silver sliver" - or the high-value - part of world goods. Image sourced from www.shutterstock.comThere are several widely-agreed upon facts about the current world economy. One is that value is being sourced to an increasing degree from analytic, inventive and creative ideas. Another is that ideas can be used over and over again without deteriorating. (This means I can use an idea without detracting from your ability to use that idea.) A third is that production chains are becoming increasingly global. Components trade - meaning the bits and…
 
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    SurvivalBlog.com

  • Notes for Monday – July 27, 2015

    Hugh James Latimer
    26 Jul 2015 | 11:13 pm
    July 27th is the birthday of Captain Samuel Whittemore (born in 1694, died February 3, 1793). He was an English-born American farmer and soldier. He was eighty years of age when he became the oldest known colonial combatant in the American War of Independence.
  • Scot’s Product Review: CMMG Mutant Mk47 AKM

    Hugh James Latimer
    26 Jul 2015 | 11:13 pm
    If you like the 7.62x39mm Russian cartridge but aren’t a fan of the AK47 or SKS, CMMG may have just the rifle for you. At first glance it looks like an AR, but the second look tells you something is different. They call it the Mutant because, while it uses a lot of the basic AR platform, both the upper and lower receivers are unique as they were re-sized for the cartridge and to use the AK magazine. In other words, it is not a standard AR by any means though some parts will interchange, like the trigger group, safety, and stock. It does, however, operate much like an AR, other than changing…
  • Pat Cascio’s Product Review: Kershaw Knives – Launch 1

    Hugh James Latimer
    26 Jul 2015 | 11:11 pm
    We have Hollywood to thank for portraying automatic knives as being demonized by not only states laws and statutes but fed gov laws, too. I don’t know where the term “switch blade” came from, and it is puzzling when you think about it. The blade doesn’t “switch” when you open it, does it? No, the blade on an automatic folder flings open when you press a button on the handle of the knife. However, for some strange reason, the ill-informed still call automatic opening folding knives “switch blades” for some reason, and they believe, stupidly, that…
  • Recipe of the Week: Luscious Chocolate Sauce, by C.S.

    Hugh James Latimer
    26 Jul 2015 | 11:07 pm
    This recipe yields about 2-2 ½ cups of sauce. Ingredients: 1 14-oz. can Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk 2 squares (2 oz) unsweetened chocolate 1/8 tsp. salt ½ to 1 cup HOT water ½ tsp. vanilla extract Directions: Put condensed milk, chocolate, and salt in the top of a double boiler. Add water to the lower portion and heat water to boiling. Cook contents over rapidly boiling water, stirring often, until thick (about 10 minutes). Remove from heat. Slowly stir in hot water to desired constancy. Stir in vanilla extract; remove from heat and cool to use in recipes or as topping. Note: If…
  • Letter Re: Uncommon Calibers

    Hugh James Latimer
    26 Jul 2015 | 11:07 pm
    Hugh, I can respectfully understand one reason that someone would switch to a non-standard unpopular cartridge; hear me out on this one. I don’t want to start an argument about what is better; I just want to say whatever you have at hand that you can hit a target with might be what’s best for you! Whatever works for you is what you might want to stock up on. It’s always cheaper to have common stuff, but it might not be your best solution. Consider my situation. I found out this year that I have carpel tunnel and my right hand has nerve damage, after years of doing…
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    Trading Heroes

  • Forex Gap Trading – The Tale of the Long Lost Trading Gap

    Hugh Kimura
    24 Jul 2015 | 2:24 am
    If you have always thought that gaps on the chart were too unpredictable to trade, this post might convince you otherwise. I will show you two types of chart gaps and ways that you can potentially trade them. The post Forex Gap Trading – The Tale of the Long Lost Trading Gap appeared first on Trading Heroes.
  • TTL021 – Peter Davies (Jigsaw Trading) on Outperforming His “Financial Advisor”

    Hugh Kimura
    7 Jul 2015 | 1:28 am
    Peter's trading story started like the story of countless people before him. He lost a ton of money by trusting a "financial advisor." But unlike most people, he decided to take matters into his own hands. Find out how he learned to trade, what didn't work for him and who his mentors where. The post TTL021 – Peter Davies (Jigsaw Trading) on Outperforming His “Financial Advisor” appeared first on Trading Heroes.
  • Is Forex Trading a Waste of Time? Only if You Break One Simple Rule

    Hugh Kimura
    30 Jun 2015 | 7:29 am
    If you are just getting started in Forex trading, you might be wondering if it is a waste of time. Oddly enough, if you have been trading for awhile and are not profitable yet, Forex trading may also seem like a waste of time. Whichever category you fall into, this post will point you in the right direction. The post Is Forex Trading a Waste of Time? Only if You Break One Simple Rule appeared first on Trading Heroes.
  • 3 Ways to Diversify Forex Trading

    Hugh Kimura
    16 Jun 2015 | 11:20 am
    It is great to focus all of your energy on Currency Trading. That is how you get results. But that is not the only thing in the world and you may find it helpful to diversify your investments. This post will give you three alternatives that you might want to consider. They won't work for everyone, but they may help you. The post 3 Ways to Diversify Forex Trading appeared first on Trading Heroes.
  • Risk Free Trades – The Risk Free Asset Under Your Nose

    Hugh Kimura
    9 Jun 2015 | 7:43 pm
    Yes, there is no such thing as completely risk free trades. But there are some trades that come pretty close. In fact, I would consider them no-brainers. This is one of those trades. Find out how to setup the trade, why it has the potential to work and the trade-offs that are involved. The best part is that anyone can do it and it is especially easy if you live in the US. The post Risk Free Trades – The Risk Free Asset Under Your Nose appeared first on Trading Heroes.
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    OpenMarkets

  • Weekly Outlook: FOMC Meeting and Turmoil in Commodities

    OpenMarkets
    27 Jul 2015 | 8:55 am
      A big week ahead as the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) reconvenes on Tuesday. The FOMC meeting minutes release on Wednesday may offer some clarity regarding when to expect the inevitable rate move. On the commodities front, gold and copper prices dropped to 5 and 6-year lows respectively, and the Bloomberg Commodity Index hit a 13-year low.  Participants are poised to see how commodity markets react to last week’s difficulties. Economic Calendar Monday: Durable Goods Orders 08:30 AM ET Dallas Fed Mfg Survey 10:30 AM ET Tuesday: FOMC Meeting Begins 8:00 AM ET S&P…
  • Colin Powell Discusses America’s Diplomatic Role

    OpenMarkets
    23 Jul 2015 | 3:00 am
      This video is the first of a four-part interview we conducted with former Secretary of State Colin Powell regarding America’s role in a highly connected and rapidly changing global society.   As oil markets continue to weigh the impact of lifted sanctions on Iran and Washington debates the recent agreement, it’s easy to lose sight of two other important factors that were embedded in negotiations: political capital and economic risk.  We talked to Colin Powell before the Iran deal was reached, but did have the chance to ask him about his philosophy for how and when the U.S.
  • Market Update: The Fall of Gold

    OpenMarkets
    20 Jul 2015 | 2:36 pm
      Today’s markets saw a plunge in the price of gold. Could falling oil and gold prices indicate a larger trend of investment shifting away from commodities and towards equity? Jack talks commodities, earnings and the week ahead.
  • Weekly Outlook: Housing Sales and Greece Bailout

    OpenMarkets
    20 Jul 2015 | 9:50 am
      This week will provide significant insight into the housing market with the release of last month’s existing and new home sales. The aftermath of a new tentative bailout plan for Greece and a closed deal with Iran may influence market activity. Economic Calendar Monday: Treasury Budget 2:00 PM ET Tuesday: Business Inventories 10:00 AM ET   Wednesday: US: FHFA House Price Index 9:00 AM ET US: Existing Home Sales 10:00 AM ET Thursday: US: Chicago Fed National Activity Index 8:30 AM ET US: Leading Indicators 10:00 AM ET   Friday: US: PMI Manufacturing Index Flash  9:45…
  • A Fed Rate Rise Coming in September?

    OpenMarkets
    16 Jul 2015 | 3:02 pm
      Despite futures market indications and urgings by Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) leaders to delay a looming federal funds rate hike, CME Group Chief Economist Blu Putnam anticipates a September increase, pointing to a healthy labor market and stable inflation rate as signs of the economy’s strength. Putnam addresses pertinent concerns regarding hourly wages, labor force participation, and recent financial crises in China and Greece. While many believe such factors warrant a rate rise delay, Putnam expects a compromise between eager and weary FOMC members earlier than most.
 
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    azizonomics

  • Don’t Mention The War

    Aziz
    12 Jul 2015 | 3:14 pm
    It is wrong to suggest that people should be held accountable for the actions of their ancestors. Blaming each other for the deeds of our ancestors is the cause of vast tracts of human suffering and conflict. Tribes and nations have fought each others for centuries — and, in some places, continue to do so — based on the actions of that tribe or nation’s forefathers. This is irrational. We cannot change the actions of our ancestors. That is perhaps one reason why John Cleese’s portrayal of an idiot hotelier beating down his German guests with a spiel of cringe-inducing World…
  • Deflation is Here — And The Government is Poised to Make it Worse

    Aziz
    20 May 2015 | 2:39 am
    Consumer prices may not be deflating as quickly as Labour’s electoral chances did earlier this month, but — even after £300 billion of quantitative easing — price deflation for the first time in more than half a century is finally here. The Bank of England continues to throw everything at keeping prices rising at close to their 2 percent target. Yet it’s not working. And this is not just about cheaper oil. Core inflation has also been dropping like a rock. I argued that “deflation was looming” for Britain last year, and feel a little vindicated that it has come…
  • Confessions of a 21st Century Lionel Robbins

    Aziz
    13 May 2015 | 4:15 am
    Marx said that history does not repeat itself. But sometimes, history does. This may be particularly true in the domain of economics and economic knowledge. Economics is a complex subject. It is the study of a series of abstractions (markets, firms, governments) built upon abstractions (money) built upon abstractions (value), a great metaphysical muddle stacked up to the sky like a wobbly Jenga tower. At a simpler level, economics is the study of human behaviour, or as von Mises put it, human action. Business cycles from the boom to the bust are a great cavalcade of individual human action…
  • Tesla & The New Economics Of The Coming Renewable Energy Boom

    Aziz
    5 May 2015 | 12:38 pm
    I don’t need to tell anyone of the importance of Tesla’s expansion into home battery technology. A home battery lets you store solar energy to use when the sun isn’t shining, which is a really, really major thing in terms of power distribution. As I’ve been pointing out for years, this is the crucial missing link between photovoltaic cells being a rapidly, rapidly cheapening technology with a lot of rollout potential, and photovoltaic cells being the major source for the world’s power. As I predicted in The Week in 2013: The promising trends in technology and…
  • I Don’t Understand the Apple Watch

    Aziz
    24 Apr 2015 | 5:31 am
    In 2006, I was telling anyone who would listen — which, given that I was a nerdy 19-year old, wasn’t many people — to buy Apple stock. Back then Apple seemed to be on the verge of something amazing. I had had an iPod since 2003, and had just bought a Macbook Pro, and was blown away by OS X. The operating system and interface had a crispness and an attention to detail that made Windows PCs seem like a muddled mess. Turns out I was right about Apple. The past decade has seen Apple blow up bigger than I dreamed they might. The iPhone and iPad have been stunning successes that have…
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    What is Economics?

  • The Underground Economy & Modern Trends to Women’s Contribution to the GDP

    eny
    14 Jul 2015 | 11:49 pm
    In our earlier posts, while discussing the problems in GDP as a measuring rod, I clearly did not include the above topic because it really needed to be discuss on its own for it to be appreciated more. It is widely known that most people try to conceal various economic activities in order to evade taxes or because the activities themselves are illegal. Economists refer to this unreported and difficult to measure activities as the underground economy. Since such transactions are difficult for government authorities to trace, they provide the lifeblood of the underground economy. This is why…
  • Future of Wellbeing Measurement

    eny
    14 Jul 2015 | 11:48 pm
    I cannot finish a post about the GDP without gazing into my crystal ball for some glimpse into GDP’s future. Though, GDP was never designed to measure national well-being. Useful measures of progress and well-being must be measures of the degree to which society’s goals (human needs of food, shelter, freedom, participation, trust) are met, rather than measures of the volume of market economic activity, which is only one means to that end. However, some recent advances like the US Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) devising new methodology for measuring or brushing up the GDP is worthy of…
  • Does High Per Capita GDP Really Make Us Better-off? – Recent Events

    eny
    14 Jul 2015 | 11:45 pm
    Without society’s data on social and economic conditions, much of public policy becomes an exercise in shadowboxing. Some authors have said it is probably one of the great inventions of the twentieth century, almost as significant as the automobile. But this seems to be changing, as the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan has chosen to focus on ‘gross national happiness’ instead, complete with 4 pillars, 9 domains and 72 indicators of happiness. Then on, the British coalition government also now monitors national happiness along with the traditional GDP. So could this be a new sign of things to…
  • Does High GDP Ensure Societal Happiness?

    eny
    14 Jul 2015 | 11:41 pm
    If one looks at broad and varied data other than GDP, the picture for most countries is not rosy. For instance, US Census data showed that over the years 2000-8, America’s median household income fell about 4 percent. But over the same period, GDP — the number on which the media and government were focused — was rising. The United States with the world’s largest economy, naturally tops GDP rankings, but it ranks lower by other measures. Association is not causation therefore, growth does not always mean development. This brings us to the happiness debate as happiness research and…
  • Problems of GDP as a Measuring Rod

    eny
    13 Jul 2015 | 3:16 pm
    GDP is not a perfect device for measuring income and current production. Some items that involve current production are excluded because their value is difficult to determine. Also the introduction of new products complicate the use of GDP as a measuring rod. In addition, when production involves harmful side effects that are not fully registered by the market price, GDP will fail to accurately measure the level of output. These limitations are particularly important when GDP is used as an indicator of economic wellbeing, rather than as simply a measure of the rate of market output overtime…
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    eWallstreeter

  • Don’t waste time looking for Ratex alternatives

    27 Jul 2015 | 4:18 pm
    Noah Smith has a new post discussing the current fad of looking for alternatives to the rational expectations model.  The motivation seems to be that we need to explain the collapse of bubble expectations and the rise in the propensity to save (although not actual saving?) during the 2008 recession.  I understand why people want to […]
  • Things are looking up for Japan

    27 Jul 2015 | 4:13 pm
    The lead article in the July 20th Barron’s was “Time to Buy Japan.” We agree that the Japan equity bull market still has legs. It is not too late to participate. Consider first the macroeconomic story. The Japanese economic recovery continues. Growth in the first quarter at an annual rate of 2.4\% was the fastest among the large developed economies, with consumption, investment, and inventory build-up all contributing to the advance. Growth slowed somewhat in the second quarter
  • Should the Bank of Japan Consider the U.S. Fed Method?

    27 Jul 2015 | 3:54 pm
    japan\_piggy\_bank.jpg Home Page News Page The Bank of Japan is engaged in the most aggressive asset purchases, and yet it has largely failed to lift inflation. National consumer prices for June will report at the end of this week. The headline rate expects to fall to 0.3\% year-over-year from 0.5\% in May. This would be the smallest incr
  • Stench from Chicago so Bad, Fitch Finally Smells It

    27 Jul 2015 | 3:32 pm
    At long last, the stench from Chicago is so strong that Fitch can finally smell it. Fitch just now downgraded Chicago Board of Education General Obligation bonds to junk status.Fitch and the S&P were holdouts because there's money to be made by purposely pretending a manure factory is a rose garden.MarketWatch reports Fitch Downgrades Chicago Board of Ed (IL) ULTGOs to 'BB+'.Fitch Ratings has downgraded the Chicago Board of Education, IL's (the board) approximately $6.1 billion of unlimited
  • Healthcare Triage: What is Flibanserin (AKA “Female Viagra”)?

    27 Jul 2015 | 3:02 pm
    “Female Viagra” and regular or “male” Viagra were both originally investigated as treatments for conditions other than sexual dysfunction. Viagra came out of studies on hypertension, and “female Viagra” for depression. But… that’s where most of the similarities end. How so? Let’s discuss. Flibanserin, sometimes called “female Viagra”, is the topic of this week’s Healthcare […]
 
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    The Last Embassy

  • ACA/Obamacare: Accounting For Grants Is Straight Out -or- Where Quality is Job 57

    W.E. Heasley
    21 Jul 2015 | 7:40 pm
    'The federal government and the states have no idea what happened to billions of dollars given to create Obamacare's exchanges, according to a federal watchdog. The Government Accountability Office charged the Obama administration and many state-run healthcare exchanges with not adequately tracking federal funding, according to a report in the libertarian Reason magazine on Monday. The
  • ACA/Obamacare: Phony Applicants Automatically Re-enrolled. No way!?! Way!

    W.E. Heasley
    16 Jul 2015 | 12:13 pm
    “WASHINGTON (AP) — Phony applicants that investigators signed up last year under President Barack Obama's health care law got automatically re-enrolled for 2015. Some were rewarded with even bigger taxpayer subsidies for their insurance premiums, a congressional probe has found. The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office says 11 counterfeit characters that its investigators created
  • Aetna Leaving Washington, D.C.’s ACA Exchange in 2016

    W.E. Heasley
    14 Jul 2015 | 10:55 am
    “A top insurer is dropping from Washington, D.C.’s Obamacare exchange in 2016, leaving customers with fewer options than ever in the nation’s capital. Washington’s own Obamacare exchange, in 2016, The Washington Post reports. Aetna is sending letters to customers notifying them that their plans will be canceled at the end of this year. The company says it has “determined we can no longer
  • Uber for health care?

    W.E. Heasley
    13 Jul 2015 | 4:59 am
  • ACA/Obamacare: Fasten Your Seat Belt Oregon as Here Comes Your 2016 Rate Increase

    W.E. Heasley
    6 Jul 2015 | 9:04 am
    “Some Oregon residents could pay up to 38 percent more for health insurance next year, the latest salvo in an ongoing battle between Obamacare's supporters and opponents over premiums. The state's insurance regulator was one of the first to finalize 2016 premium rates for the individual and small business markets, which Obamacare covers. For the state's individual market, the final rate
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    Monetary Realism

  • Crazy Talk: Raising rates while Inflation is near 70 year lows

    Michael Sankowski
    24 Jul 2015 | 9:59 am
    I do not get it. I do not understand why there is any talk of raising rates at all. Inflation isn’t just low, it’s freakishly low. Inflation is extremely low – there is no other honest way to think about the inflation level. Look at this chart, which goes back nearly 70 years:   This chart goes back to January of 1947. The chart covers 68 1/2 years of U.S. inflation. Where are we relative to the last 70 years? Inflation as measured by CPI has only been lower 4 times. Once quite recently, after the crisis, and the data says we are diving again. Some people say core…
  • Eternal Greek Problems are Good for German Exports

    Michael Sankowski
    21 Jul 2015 | 6:23 am
    Back when I was writing on currency trading for Agora Publishing in 2009-2010, I wrote dozens of articles about the Euro. Something to keep in mind when sorting through the debt problems is these problems are great for the German economy. Germany gets to export with a Euro valued far lower than it would be if there were no debt problems. This allows them to be competitive in the world market when they should not be competitive. The idea is pretty simple. If Greece has an unsustainable debt problem, there is a risk of default. Default means you do not get back as many Euros as you lent to…
  • A series of completely valid rants against the Euro and Germany

    Michael Sankowski
    12 Jul 2015 | 4:26 am
    It’s rant time! Lars Christensen has written a must read rant on how bad the Euro has been for Europe: “Do you think we would have seen the kind of hostilities among European nations as we are seeing now? Do you think we would have seen the rise of political parties like Golden Dawn and Syriza in Greece or Podemos in Spain? Do you think anti-immigrant sentiment and protectionist ideas would have been rising across Europe to the extent it has? Do you think that the European banking sector would have been quasi paralyzed for seven years? And most importantly do you think we would…
  • Negative Interest Rates and the Business Cycle

    Michael Sankowski
    17 Mar 2015 | 6:13 am
    Negative Interest Rates and the Business Cycle The major way interest rates impact the business cycle is through stimulating or suppressing real estate. This is pretty clearly what happens if you look at the data in Ed Leamers paper Housing is the Business Cycle. Mr. Leamer says as much: “For long-run growth, residential investment is pretty inconsequential, but for the wiggles we call recessions and recoveries, residential investment is very very important.“ He shows this chart which is the Cumulative Abnormal Contribution to GDP Growth from Residential Investment” It’s stunning how…
  • China dead serious about the shift to consumer driven demand

    Michael Sankowski
    14 Mar 2015 | 4:35 am
    A few years ago MR pointed out China was shifting to consumer driven demand, and that U.S. manufacturing was close to beating or outright beating China on price in manufacturing. These have now become more widely spread ideas, possibly even the dominant views on two of the trends in China. From Bloomberg: “The campaign to shift China to slower, consumption-driven growth and away from a dependence on exports and investment means the squeeze on U.S. workers from foreign competition will moderate at the same time that Chinese demand increases for U.S. products. The result: more and…
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    FTMDaily.com - Geopolitical Analysis, Economic Insights, and Investing Ideas

  • CHART: This Booming Industry Just Flashed a Major Sell Signal

    Jerry Robinson
    27 Jul 2015 | 9:48 am
    This new downtrend could be very profitable for those who know how to play it... The post CHART: This Booming Industry Just Flashed a Major Sell Signal appeared first on FTMDaily.com - Geopolitical... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Amazon Is Now Bigger Than Walmart

    FTMDaily.com
    24 Jul 2015 | 5:09 pm
    It has finally happened... Amazon has officially overtaken the king of retailers. The post Amazon Is Now Bigger Than Walmart appeared first on FTMDaily.com - Geopolitical Analysis, Economic... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • India, China And Iraq Become Biggest Russian Weapons Importers Amid Western Sanctions

    Jerry Robinson
    23 Jul 2015 | 9:04 am
    A new report reveals that Asia has become the top importer of Russian military equipment. The post India, China And Iraq Become Biggest Russian Weapons Importers Amid Western Sanctions appeared... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • Weekly Market Barometer Charts – Now Online

    Jerry Robinson
    22 Jul 2015 | 2:50 pm
    View our latest Market Barometer trend analysis and commentary on U.S. stocks and precious metals, along with buy/sell signals. The post Weekly Market Barometer Charts – Now Online appeared... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
  • CHART: S&P 500 Index Fails At Key Resistance Level

    Jerry Robinson
    22 Jul 2015 | 1:45 pm
    The S&P 500 index, which is perhaps the most important barometer of U.S. stocks used by global investors, is flashing a cautionary signal. The post CHART: S&P 500 Index Fails At Key... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
 
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    Tao Economics

  • How Much Do you Rely on ATM’s?

    Cor Bader
    14 Jul 2015 | 8:48 am
    Greek pensioners attempt to withdraw their money from one of the country’s national banks Louisa Gouliamaki / AFP – Getty Images “How much do you rely on ATM’s?” that was the question I was asked last week by a work colleague during the Greek crisis.  The answer?  Not at all!  It was a strange to realize how little I rely on getting cash out of the ATM machine.  I use cards for most purchases as it is easier to track my spending.  I do like having a little cash on hand though just in case.   What if credit was suddenly cut off and limits were imposed on how…
  • The Market’s Shit Sandwich

    Cor Bader
    7 Jul 2015 | 9:54 am
    There is no obvious move to make in this market in my opinion. For each asset there are decent arguments for being long and being short. Lets start with the stock market.  The short case is that is stocks have been in a bull market for about 7 years and it needs a break.  On the flip side trader stock market sentiment is bearish wish usually means it will keep climbing a wall of worry.  Today the stock markets are down and it looks like the S&P is rolling over while trading below it’s 50 day moving avg.  Be cautious. Lets move to the bond market.  Bonds are rallying big time…
  • The Burger Renaissance – And the Future Of McDonalds

    Cor Bader
    27 May 2015 | 12:46 pm
    There is a burger renaissance going on, at least here in Seattle there are a multitude of places to get a unique killer burger.  Just to name a few: Blue Moon Burgers Red Mill Burgers Uneeda Burger Dick’s Drive-in Giddy Up Burgers Giddy Up Burgers On top of all those, I guess In and Out is also coming to Seattle.   Seriously, all the places I listed are amazing.  I think my top two favorites are Blue Moon and Giddy UP, and yes I have been to all of them.  Blue Moon replaced Red Mill for me.  Sorry Red Mill! I have never been to a Shake Shack ($SHAK). I am sure they are great.  The…
  • 2 Main Reasons Why People Fail at Starting a Business – Part 2

    Cor Bader
    20 Apr 2015 | 8:31 am
    About a week ago I posted ‘2 Main Reasons Why People Fail at Starting a Business‘ which was based off of a James Altucher podcast. I covered the 1st reason why businesses fail, and stated I would cover the second reason the next day. Well here we are a week later. To be successful in bogging or just about anything, one has to be consistent. Which I clearly am not yet. So finally, to go into greater detail on why businesses fail: *They remove themselves from the day to day operations. When the owner removes themselves from the day to day operations, they cease to know their…
  • 2 Main Reasons Why People Fail at Starting a Business

    Cor Bader
    30 Mar 2015 | 2:18 pm
    I was listening to a James Altuchers podcast today (I’m a fan), where he was interviewing a guy named Steve DiNisio who liquidates companies and will re-sell things like used restaurant equipment on the second hand market that he requires form the liquidation process. Over the years Steve as a liquidator has picked up on a few common reasons why people fail at starting a business. He detected a pattern and it coincides with my observations from watching many episodes of “Bar Rescue” and “Kitchen Nightmares”. You can listen to the entire podcast below: “Ep…
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    BusinessClimate.com Blog

  • Growth Engines: Manufacturing, Energy Still Biggest Job Creators for Smaller Economies

    Emily McMackin
    17 Jul 2015 | 8:35 am
    Information technology may be driving growth in America’s largest cities, but manufacturing and energy are still the biggest economic engines for its smaller ones. Tourism is also contributing to growth in smaller cities that are becoming vacation meccas for their larger urban neighbors, and college towns are flourishing by building up their knowledge-based economies. Rankings of the best small- and medium-sized cities for jobs show several types of smaller cities thriving: industrial winners, energy hot spots, playground towns and college towns. Cities of this size (less than 150,000…
  • Exports By Metros: Going Global Not Just for Big Players

    Bill McMeekin
    15 Jul 2015 | 3:30 am
    Doubtful Woody Guthrie was thinking about overseas markets when he wrote the verse “from the red wood forest to the Gulf Stream waters” but exports by metros are playing a bigger role in regional economies from California to the New York island. A new report from the U.S. International Trade Administration shows exports by metros hit $1.44 trillion in 2014, up 54 percent from just five years earlier. Dominating the list for exports by metros are locations with major deep-water port facilities (Houston, New York-New Jersey, Los Angeles-Long Beach and Seattle-Tacoma) or strategic…
  • The New Creative Capitals: Artists Thriving in Southern, Midwestern Cities

    Emily McMackin
    10 Jul 2015 | 3:30 am
    The creative industry is having a moment in the United States. About one in three Americans are knowledge workers who contribute to the economy by creating new ideas, technologies and content across fields such as science and engineering, architecture and design, education, arts, music and entertainment. With a growing appreciation for this type of creativity in the post-Recession economy, these creative-class workers – as economist Richard Florida describes them – are becomingly highly sought after in large and small cities alike for their ability to drive economic growth through…
  • The M Word: What’s Wrong With Manufacturing Jobs?

    Bill McMeekin
    8 Jul 2015 | 3:30 am
    Manufacturing jobs don’t usually make the short list of sexy work – and increasingly that’s a problem. Just ask the people who need to find the talent to run the increasingly sophisticated technology now commonplace on the factory floor. “Parents don’t think it’s sexy,” says Brent Ellis, director of talent acquisition at Kohler Co., the Wisconsin-based manufacturer of plumbing fixtures. Ellis, who spoke at a seminar at last month’s International Economic Development Council conference in Madison, WI, noted that part of his company’s…
  • In High Gear: Rising Demand in Trucking Fuels Job Growth

    Emily McMackin
    3 Jul 2015 | 3:30 am
    Trucking is on the move. The industry is experiencing fast growth, adding 7,400 jobs in June, 19,000 jobs over the past three months and 43,300 jobs over the past year, according to newly released numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Of the 223,000 jobs added to the economy in June, at least 17,000 were jobs for transportation and warehousing companies – with more than half of that growth coming from the trucking industry. June’s positive job growth brought the U.S. unemployment rate down to a record low at 5.3 percent. Along with trucking and warehousing, retail was also a…
 
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    Latest blog entries

  • Too Big to Win: Does a Large Military Lessen Preparedness?

    11 Jul 2015 | 8:24 pm
    As Donald Rumsfeld famously said to excuse the lack of appropriate armor on soldiers Humvees in Iraq: ...you go to war with the army you have, not the army you might want or wish to have at a later time... During explanations for the United States' multi-hundred billion dollar military budget, you'll hear words like "combat ready" and "preparedness", describing how the United States could be invaded at any time, or (more likely) need to invade someone else at a moment's notice. Unfortunately, during this endless period of preparation for an unknown conflict, tremendous expense and effort is…
  • How the Internet is Ruining Journalism

    11 Jul 2015 | 2:18 pm
    For anyone, almost anywhere on earth, the easiest way to do anything is to do it online. From buying to communicating, reading, researching or entertaining pretty much everything that has ever been conceived of is online, and will be delivered to your eyeballs or your doorstep without you having to even put on underwear. And so, journalists, no more interested in putting on their underwear than the rest of us, appear to have looked to the internet to find the pulse of world culture. Rather than interview face-to-face and reach out into the real world, they have dragged in the cultural…
  • Record Busting Stock Market Still Below 1999 Purchasing Power

    12 Jun 2015 | 6:12 am
    In the search for unvarnished truth, sometimes you have to look to unconventional sources. My personal favorite cutter of financial flim flam is the historical price of a Big Mac in the United States. Two all-beef patties on a sesame seed bun are a much more constant measure of value than the US dollar. Considering the USD has lost 98 percent of its purchasing power in the past 100 years, and the Big Mac is one of the most constant and unchanging products on earth, I'd say we have a winner, certainly between the two. I've analyzed the stock market using cheeseburger prices before, as the…
  • The REAL Top 10 Deadliest Dog Breeds

    10 Jun 2015 | 11:10 am
    Shades of Thomas Paine is about the unbiased search for truth, typically truth regarding the lies spread by the powerful for their own benefit, but occasionally truth regarding dogs or brownies.  Pit bulls have become a flashpoint of debate, with supporters saying pit bulls are as gentle as a beagle and detractors saying any pit bull can and will snap at any time. As the author of SOTP, I wanted to know the truth. Not opinion, but fact. I found a treasure trove of information at dogsbite.org, in an exhaustive study of dog attack fatalities from 1982 to 2014. It separated the dog attack…
  • Cultural Facism: The War on Unpopular Opinion

    7 Jun 2015 | 5:24 am
    In 1915, the mainstream view of black Americans was about as poor as it ever was. The KKK was wildly popular, and millions of publicly respected men joined up. And, around this time, courageous men and women set about to change the culture. Over the next 50 years it became harder and harder to say blatantly racist things in public, and this change came at tremendous cost to the changers. Some were killed. Some were beaten, others were jailed. Likewise, gay rights blossomed in this country somewhat later. Immensely courageous men risked death to be "out".  Lately though, my generation of…
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    Macro Brief

  • Popular Party Kept the Lead in July Poll while Podemos Remained in Third Position

    admin
    5 Jul 2015 | 3:14 am
    July’s Metroscopia poll for El País, published on Sunday, shows that Popular Party (PP) kept the lead (two consecutive month) with 23.0% of support but down from 24.5% in June.   In the meantime, the Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE)’s estimated support reached 22.5%, down from 23.0% in June, but still above Podemos’ score.   As a matter of fact, the left wing party remained in third position with 21.5% estimated votes for the second consecutive time while in the meantime, Ciudadanos’ support rose from 13.5% to 15.0%.   In the coming months, traditional…
  • US Auto Sales Should Decline In June

    admin
    27 Jun 2015 | 1:15 pm
    Automakers will release June vehicle sales next Wednesday (July 1st) and currently, analysts expect sales (Seasonally Adjusted at Annualized Rate) to decline from May (17.71M).   Here are some forecasts from several specialists:   1/ Edmunds: Auto Industry Poised for Best June Sales in a Decade, Forecasts Edmunds.com   Edmunds.com, the premier destination for car shopping, forecasts that 1,484,487 new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S. in June for an estimated Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) of 17.3 million. The projected sales will be a 9.0 percent decrease from…
  • In Greece, it’s not a “bank walk” but really a “bank run”

    admin
    27 Jun 2015 | 3:46 am
    After midnight in Athens, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras called a referendum on July 5 on whether he should accept the latest demands of its creditors. In the meantime, Greek officials announced that banks will remain open on Monday and they don’t plan Capital Controls.   The only problem is that people know the referendum increases the probability of a Grexit in coming weeks as suggested by the latest quotes on Betfair (see below).   #Betfair #Greece #GreeceCrisis #Greek @SpiegelPeter | More than 30% chance of #GREXIT in 2015 ahead of #Greferendum…
  • Investors Should Revise their Liftoff Expectations as FOMC Remains on Track to Raise Rates this Year

    admin
    21 Jun 2015 | 1:41 pm
    On Friday, San Francisco Fed President Williams (dove, FOMC voter) and Cleveland Fed President Mester (moderate, FOMC non-voter) both said they expect the FOMC to begin liftoff at some point later this year.   According to CNBC, San Francisco Federal Reserve President John Williams believes the U.S. central bank should raise rates twice this year if economic data meet expectations. In the meantime, according to WSJ, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland President Loretta Mester said raising rates right now wouldn’t be a problem for the economy as a whole.   These two statements…
  • FOMC Preview – A Summary from Bloomberg

    admin
    17 Jun 2015 | 3:02 am
    Aberdeen (Luke Bartholomew) - Fed will likely use June FOMC mtg to prep for Sept. rate hike and if 2015 and 2016 dots remain unchanged, “then we are full steam ahead for September”   AllianceBernstein (Joseph Carson) - Fed officials would be “well advised to follow their script from the April FOMC statement and begin to lift official rates off the zero bound” - “A policy that waits for economic data to supply the ‘truth’ will always be looking backward — and will always be systemically late”   Barclays (Michael Gapen) - Improving economic data might allow Fed…
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    FT Alphaville

  • RRPs for life?

    Cardiff Garcia
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:00 pm
    The timing of the Fed’s initial rate hike and the subsequent path of future hikes are prominent unknowns on the minds of market participants and commentators. But the question of mechanics — how the Fed will raise rates — also matters. Our colleague Sam Fleming recently interviewed New York Fed president Bill Dudley and asked him about the possibility of the Fed’s maintaining a larger balance sheet indefinitely in conjunction with the use of its reverse repo facility. His answer suggested that the central bank remained undecided:Continue reading: RRPs for life?
  • The bond liquidity ‘cognitive bandwidth deficit’ problem

    Izabella Kaminska
    27 Jul 2015 | 11:49 am
    The laissez faire school of finance has always orientated towards the notion that capital market funding is preferable to bank financing. Why? Because it’s only by taking your business to the open market that a borrower’s situation can be properly scrutinised and evaluated, and a fair price arrived at. But, of course, some capital markets are more developed, sophisticated and disintermediated than others. In the US, for example, funding by way of the capital market is common practice even for small and medium-sized corporations (increasingly for unsecured household borrowers too…
  • I’m Yanis Varoufakis and I approve the release of this secret plan [updated]

    FT Alphaville
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:45 am
    UPDATE: Yanis also approves this statement “on the FinMin’s Plan B Working Group & the parallel payment system” which includes such lines as “Ever since Mr Varoufakis announced the existence of the Working Group, the media have indulged in far-fetched articles that damage the quality of public debate.” ICYMI … With approval from @yanisvaroufakis, the 16 July telephone recording has been published on the @OMFIF website. http://t.co/USsF13Tl8Z— OMFIF (@OMFIF) July 27, 2015 Katie Martin over at Fast did the needful and typed out Yanis’s words so we…
  • On Nigeria’s ongoing inflation, fuel scarcity challenge

    Izabella Kaminska
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:25 am
    The Central Bank of Nigeria MPC voted eight to four to leave the monetary policy rate unchanged at 13.00 per cent following the conclusion of its two-day meeting on July 24, note Barclays’ emerging market team. But, in a further signal that the oil producing country, which transitioned to a new government in March after 16 years of rule by the People’s Democratic Party, may be prepping for a sustained period of low petroleum prices the Central Bank stressed the importance of diversifying the economy away from oil and expanding its base of FX receipts. Continue reading: On…
  • Markets Live: Monday, 27th July, 2015

    Paul Murphy
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:01 am
    Live markets commentary from FT.com Continue reading: Markets Live: Monday, 27th July, 2015
 
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    Marginal REVOLUTION

  • The six most important words in the world right now

    Tyler Cowen
    27 Jul 2015 | 2:26 pm
    It depends on the Communist Party. Of course you are free to leave alternative nominations in the comments.
  • Monday assorted links

    Tyler Cowen
    27 Jul 2015 | 10:10 am
    1. How bad were the Black Panthers? 2. Spending a night in the robot-staffed hotel. 3. The Chinese stock market crash is worse than you think. 4. New Yorker profile of Varoufakis.  Interesting throughout, covers Obama too, not just the usual even if this seems like familiar territory by now.  “Adding up is the essence of democracy.”  What an excellent line.  The piece is by Ian Parker, and it deserves one of those David Brooks awards. 5. Brains striving for coherence. 6. Daniel Klein on who is a liberal. 7. “…even in relatively egalitarian Sweden, wealth begets…
  • Doing Good Better

    Alex Tabarrok
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:25 am
    William MacAskill is that rare beast, a hard-headed, soft-hearted proponent of saving the world. His excellent new book, Doing Good Better, is a primer on the effective altruism movement. Doing Good Better opens, just as you would expect, with an uplifting story of a wonderful person with a brilliant idea to save the world. The PlayPump uses a merry-go-round to pump water. Fun transformed into labor and life saving clean water! The energetic driver of the idea quits his job and invests his life in the project. Africa! Children on merry-go-rounds! Innovation! What could be better?
  • China fact of the day

    Tyler Cowen
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:56 am
    Around 97% of existing yuan-denominated bonds hold ratings of double-A to triple-A—the best a company can get. That is from Fiona Law, cited by Christopher Balding, and ultimately Alex Frangos, those are ratings from Chinese sources.  Law reports: With nine Chinese ratings firms to choose among, “bond issuers are encouraged to pick the highest ratings among agencies,” said Guan Jianzhong, chairman of Dagong Global, the country’s third-biggest ratings company in terms of market share. The fact that the bonds are rated double-A-minus or above, they “are not without risks,” he said.
  • How bad a problem is “quarterly capitalism”?

    Tyler Cowen
    26 Jul 2015 | 9:21 pm
    We’re going to be hearing more about this topic I suspect, so let’s start by looking at some of the evidence.  For now I’ll turn the microphone over to Xuemin (Sterling) Yan and Zhe Zhang (pdf): We show that the positive relation between institutional ownership and future stock returns documented in Gompers and Metrick (2001) is driven by short-term institutions. Furthermore, short-term institutions’ trading forecasts future stock returns. This predictability does not reverse in the long run and is stronger for small and growth stocks. Short-term institutions’ trading…
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    Zero Hedge

  • Chess Vs Checkers - John Kerry Edition

    Tyler Durden
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:45 pm
    Presented with no comment...     Source: Townhall.com
  • Beware, The Disappearing Retirement Fund

    Tyler Durden
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:15 pm
    Submitted by Jeff Thomas via Doug Casey's InternationalMan.com, As a general principle, I’ve always tended to avoid entrusting others with my money. I’ve avoided funds, as they are often based upon investments that are peaking or close to peaking. I’ve avoided pension funds, as they’re often structured in a similar manner. And whenever by law I’ve been required to be invested in such funds, they’ve rarely been successful over the long term. In the end, I would invariably have made more money by pursuing those investments that had great promise but at…
  • Commodity Carnage Will Hurt These 10 States The Most

    Tyler Durden
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:50 pm
    As we’ve seen in Louisiana and West Virginia, the commodities downturn has had a real impact on state budgets.  Back in April for example, we explained how a sharp decline in oil tax revenue helped push LSU to the brink of bankruptcy and in West Virginia, the impact of falling coal prices has put significant pressure on the state’s books.  The commodities rout can be at least partly explained by a combination of two factors. Slumping demand from China (i.e. a cessation of the bid which, in the pre-crisis world, producers assumed would exist in perpetuity) and easy access to…
  • Why China Will End Up Like Japan

    Tyler Durden
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:25 pm
    Submitted by Eugen von Bohm-Bawerk via Bawerk.net, When Nixon took the dollar off gold on August 15th 1971 he did not end the Bretton-Woods arrangement. On the contrary, he exacerbated the very same destructive effects that had forced him to renege on the promise to pay gold at a fixed exchange rate to the dollar in the first place. To fund wars and an ever expanding welfare state the custodian of the global reserve currency had fallen for the almost irresistible temptation to print excess dollars above and beyond what was prudent relative to bullion levels. After closing the gold window no…
  • Majority Of Americans Now See Guns As The Solution To Mass Shootings

    Tyler Durden
    27 Jul 2015 | 4:05 pm
    Obama failed: in the aftermath of the 2012 Newtown, CT school massacre which left 26 unarmed, defenseless people dead, the president pushed as hard as he could to pass legislation that would enact strict gun control and further limit the applicability of the Second Amendment. Not only did he not succeed, but according to a 2014 Pew Research Poll there has been a 9% rise in the number of Americans who think gun ownership could "protect people from becoming victims of crime."   Incidentally, this conforms with what former Texas governor Rick Perry, and a 2016 GOP presidential candidate,…
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    nextnewdeal.net

  • Hillary Clinton's Economic Agenda is Good for Women, But Should Be Even Bolder

    tprice
    16 Jul 2015 | 11:42 am
    Hillary Clinton gave her first major economic policy address earlier this week and outlined her goals for lifting wages for the middle class, expanding social services, and addressing growing economic inequality. She said that an important ingredient to strong economic growth is women’s workforce participation, and promised to knock down many of the barriers that hold women—and our economy—back. But she failed to mention one issue that is critical to the economic wellbeing of women and their families: access to reproductive health care.  It was encouraging to hear Clinton acknowledge…
  • Beyond Fairness: Skyrocketing CEO Pay Is Bad for Our Economy

    tprice
    16 Jul 2015 | 6:23 am
    Next week marks the 5th anniversary of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Protection Act. While the law has made some solid strides toward regulating Wall Street (with the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau arguably the most potent and popular), there is still much work to be done, particularly in the realm of CEO pay reform. From 1978 to 2014, executive compensation at American firms rose 997 percent, compared with a sluggish 10.9 percent growth in worker compensation over the same period. While CEO pay continues its determined ascent up a seemingly limitless mountain of…
  • Transforming Education to Close the Creativity Gap

    tprice
    14 Jul 2015 | 12:45 pm
    This week, the Roosevelt Institute's Next American Economy project is releasing a series of thought briefs in which experts examine how the economy will change over the next 25 years. Read the introduction here. “Education should equip young people to shape an uncertain future so they can live more successful lives, on their own terms and together. They need the confidence and the capabilities to make their world together, in the face of tightening constraints on resources, rising aspirations, exploding opportunities for collaboration and pervasive institutional upheaval. They need an…
  • Paths to Prosperity: What Workforce Development Will Look Like in 2040

    tprice
    14 Jul 2015 | 12:34 pm
    This week, the Roosevelt Institute's Next American Economy project is releasing a series of thought briefs in which experts examine how the economy will change over the next 25 years. Read the introduction here. Fifty years ago, the path to professional success and economic stability was pretty clear: Get good grades -> Go to college -> Find a well-paying job -> Climb the corporate ladder -> Retire Today, this path is much more ambiguous. Many icons of modern-day success—Zuckerberg, Gates, Jobs—are college dropouts. In lieu of lifelong employment, young people are…
  • Working in the Cloud: How the Platform Economy Will Transform Employment

    tprice
    13 Jul 2015 | 9:03 am
    This week, the Roosevelt Institute's Next American Economy project is releasing a series of thought briefs in which experts examine how the economy will change over the next 25 years. Read the introduction here. Digital platforms are the base upon which an increasing number of activities—economic, social, and political—are being organized. If the Industrial Revolution was organized around the factory, today’s changes are organized around the algorithms running in the cloud. The salience of these digital platforms suggests that we are in the midst of a reorganization of our economy in…
 
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    Jared Bernstein | On the Economy

  • Raising the Medicare retirement age would not save money; it would cost money.

    Jared Bernstein
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:20 am
    Paul K starts us out this week with a compelling defense of Medicare, age 50 this week, against mindless right-wing attacks. In passing, Paul points out that raising the Medicare eligibility age would “hardly save any money.” He’s talking about the federal budget here, but if one broadens the scope, as I think you should, to the whole economy, increasing the Medicare retirement age will increase, not lower, the all-in (private + public) cost of health care. Why? Very simple: because you’re taking the youngest and healthiest people (65 and 66 year-olds) out of the lower…
  • We are definitely not Greece! But if we do this we could get a little bit closer…

    Jared Bernstein
    24 Jul 2015 | 10:34 am
    First, we’re not Greece by a huge long shot, and anyone who makes this comparison should be assiduously avoided (a bit more background here, if you like, but trust me on this one). Second, one way in which Greece really dropped its fiscal ball was in its failure to collect taxes. According to this piece, 90% (!!) of their tax receipts went uncollected in 2010. So, one way we could be more like Greece if we wanted to would be to eviscerate our tax collection system. But why would anyone want to do that? For that, you’ve got to read the latest on proposed cuts to the IRS in…
  • The tilt, or lack thereof, in the tax code

    Jared Bernstein
    24 Jul 2015 | 8:50 am
    I recently touted the benefits of a financial transaction tax (FTT), and in the intro, I made a comment about how our tax code is titled toward the wealthy. Chris Edwards very reasonably takes issue, correctly noting that our federal tax code is, in fact, quite progressive, meaning that low-income households face a much lower tax burden as a share of their income than higher income households. My piece wasn’t about the broader code so I didn’t take the time to elaborate what I meant. My bad, but let me do that here. The fact is that our tax system contains a large number of provisions…
  • Caddy Tax, Part 2: Responding to some fair criticisms

    Jared Bernstein
    24 Jul 2015 | 7:40 am
    Over at PostEverything. It’s an important tax with useful incentives. But my original post paid inadequate attention to some key features.
  • You down with FTT?! (yeah, you know me…)

    Jared Bernstein
    22 Jul 2015 | 5:02 am
    Over at the NYT, featuring some solid, new research from the TPC. This fits into the patient capital discussion we’ve been having as well.
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    Freakonomics

  • Aziz Ansari Needs Another Toothbrush: A New Freakonomics Radio Episode

    Stephen J. Dubner
    22 Jul 2015 | 8:00 pm
    Our latest Freakonomics Radio episode is  “Aziz Ansari Needs Another Toothbrush,” in which the comedian, actor — and now, author — answers our FREAK-quently Asked Questions. (You can subscribe to the podcast at iTunes or elsewhere, get the RSS feed, or listen via the media player above. You can also read the transcript, which includes credits for the music you’ll hear in the episode.) Aziz Ansari, modern romanticist. (photo: Ruvan Wijesooriya) Aziz Ansari is best known for playing Tom Haverford on Parks and Recreation, the NBC sitcom starring Amy Poehler. The…
  • Aziz Ansari Needs Another Toothbrush Full Transcript

    Freakonomics
    22 Jul 2015 | 8:00 pm
    This is a transcript of the Freakonomics Radio podcast “Aziz Ansari Needs Another Toothbrush” [MUSIC: Anton Dakanto, “Bistro” (from Plate of Jell)] Aziz ANSARI: I read the Internet so much I feel like I’m like on page a million of the worst book ever. Stephen J. DUBNER: Aziz Ansari is a comedian, an actor, and now an author. Today, he answers our FREAK-quently Asked Questions. For instance: DUBNER: Hey, what do you collect, if anything, and why? ANSARI: At a certain point, I started buying some older cameras. I think you get cooler pictures and it’s kind of fun to drop…
  • Any Strategic Reading Tips for a Survivor Applicant?

    Stephen J. Dubner
    17 Jul 2015 | 8:36 am
    From a computer scientist (and self-professed “data nerd”) named Scott Griggs: Hi!  Long time reader/listener here, looking for some quick reading list recommendations… I have submitted another application to be on CBS’s Survivor, the reality show of outwit, outplay, outlast fame.  The game is physical as well as mental and includes a large social aspect concerning relationships, building trust, evaluating motives, and building/destroying alliances with other contestants. Do you have any reading recommendations you think could help if I ever get cast on the show? …
  • The Economics of Sleep, Part 2 Full Transcript

    Freakonomics
    16 Jul 2015 | 10:00 am
    This is a transcript of the Freakonomics Radio podcast “The Economics of Sleep, Part 2” [MUSIC: Ruby Velle & The Soulphonics, “Coming Home To You” (from It’s About Time Stephen J. DUBNER: So are you saying right here and right now that you vow from today going forward, that for one week, that you’re going to do what? That you’re going to put all your screens outside of the bedroom at a certain time, let’s say? Is that what you’re…? Lauren HALE: Absolutely. DUBNER: On last week’s show – “The Economics of Sleep, Part 1” – we talked to…
  • The Economics of Sleep, Part 2: A New Freakonomics Radio Episode

    Freakonomics
    16 Jul 2015 | 10:00 am
    Our latest Freakonomics Radio episode is “The Economics of Sleep, Part 2.” (You can subscribe to the podcast at iTunes or elsewhere, get the RSS feed, or listen via the media player above. You can also read the transcript, which includes credits for the music you’ll hear in the episode.) The economist Matthew Gibson found that people on the eastern edge of time zones make more money. (photo: Jamie Mullins) In our previous episode, we primarily discussed the health implications of sleep. This time, we look at the economic impact. One big takeaway: if you sleep more, you will…
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    interfluidity

  • How to fix the Euro

    Steve Randy Waldman
    23 Jul 2015 | 6:38 pm
    I broadly agree with the Angloamerican consensus about the, um, challenges associated with the Euro from an economic perspective. (David Beckworth has a very nice explainer.) We do understand that the Euro was adopted for political more than economic reasons. Unfortunately, with the benefit of hindsight, the hoped-for political benefits of the common currency seem to have materialized less than the long-warned economic problems, and the economic problems have now poisoned the politics. But we are where we are. I think it unlikely that the Euro will be dismantled except in the context of a…
  • Price stickiness is not a mystery, and it is not psychology

    Steve Randy Waldman
    19 Jul 2015 | 4:16 am
    I mean to write about something else today, so this will be short. But I’d like to point out, as gently as possible, a mistake in the premise underlying this post by my friend Tyler Cowen. To be fair, it is not a mistake that is uniquely Cowen’s. Macroeconomists invoke price stickiness as an assumption in their models. They treat it as an axiom, a given, and therefore a mystery. Often they lazily fill in the darkness with catch-alls like “psychology” or “money illusion”, hypotheses about as useful as pomegranate seeds are as an explanation of seasons.
  • I love Germany. And Greece. And especially Finland.

    Steve Randy Waldman
    14 Jul 2015 | 5:37 am
    If you are sympathetic to Greece and therefore mad at Germany, you are a sucker. If you think the Greeks are lazier and more dishonest than is usual in the human species, you are also a sucker, and have let a political framing cajole you into bigotry. If you think Germans are unusually cruel, you have also let politics make a bigot of you. If you are taking sides in a conflict framed as nation versus nation, you have already taken the wrong side. You’ve made a basic error, like picking a day when a tricky prosecutor asks whether you committed the murder yesterday or last Thursday. (I…
  • Banks and Greece’s bailouts

    Steve Randy Waldman
    5 Jul 2015 | 2:21 pm
    Greece’s 2010 assistance program was largely a bailout of European banks, initiated to prevent a wider banking crisis. I didn’t expect this claim, from the previous post, to be very contentious. But apparently it is, so I’ll overdocument below. Certainly a bank bailout was not the program’s sole purpose — fear of contagion to other indebted Eurosovereigns was also concentrating people’s minds. But the operation was not a huge help to Greece except in the sense replacing private creditors with more generously scheduled official creditors gave the country…
  • Greece

    Steve Randy Waldman
    3 Jul 2015 | 6:25 pm
    Greece is a remarkable country full of wonderful people, but along dimensions of development and governance, the place is plainly pretty fucked up. It has been fucked up that way for a long time, for decades at least. This has never been secret. Anyone who has visited Athens knows it has far more in common with Bucharest or Istanbul than with orderly Western European capitals. In the run up to Greece’s joining the Euro, everyone who wanted to know knew that Greece’s qualifications to join the Eurozone were, shall we say, ambitious. Mainstream establishment banks…
 
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    Credit Writedowns

  • The Greece debt bailout negotiations are really about France, not Greece

    Edward Harrison
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:37 pm
    This post was originally written for Credit Writedowns Pro on 12 Jun before Greece defaulted on loans to the IMF. The situation in Greece is not about Greece at all. It is about enforcing an economic framework onto all Eurozone countries. And because the policy goal is primarily about enforcing this economic framework everywhere in the eurozone, there is less policy space available […] The most in-depth research and analysis is on Credit Writedowns Pro. The Greece debt bailout negotiations are really about France, not Greece originally appeared on Credit Writedowns Links: RSS - Daily…
  • Did lending by foreign banks really cause the Greek debt crisis?

    Edward Harrison
    23 Jul 2015 | 10:51 am
    There are a lot of competing narratives going around as to why Greece is in such trouble relative to the rest of the eurozone. A lot of this centers on whether Greek fiscal profligacy or poor credit controls by foreign banks was the main cause of the Greek debt crisis. Let me throw my hat into this ring with a few comments. What I say below will generally shade toward the problem being one of fiscal profligacy worsened by an ECB monetary policy that was inappropriate for the eurozone periphery as a whole and Greece in particular. The most in-depth research and analysis is on Credit Writedowns…
  • The coming Greek bank nationalization, bail-in and privatization

    Frances Coppola
    20 Jul 2015 | 4:20 am
    The existence of capital controls eliminates contagion and makes it possible to bail-in deposits that would normally be considered to have systemic consequences. The more I look at it, the less benign this bailout deal appears. Indeed it looks to me as if it was set up to do considerable damage to the Greek economy. Once this becomes apparent, Greeks are surely likely to change their minds about staying in the Euro. The most in-depth research and analysis is on Credit Writedowns Pro. The coming Greek bank nationalization, bail-in and privatization originally appeared on Credit Writedowns…
  • Variable geometry bites back: Schäuble’s motives

    Guest Author
    18 Jul 2015 | 10:34 am
    Success of the German-inspired solution for the latest Greek crisis is far from assured. If it fails, the Eurozone may be changed forever. This column argues that the failure would lead to an outcome that has been favoured for decades by Germany’s Finance Minister, Wolfgang Schäuble. Perhaps the package the Eurozone agreed is just a backdoor way of getting to the ‘variable geometry’ and monetary unification for the core that the Maastricht criteria had failed to achieve. The most in-depth research and analysis is on Credit Writedowns Pro. Variable geometry bites back: Schäuble’s…
  • The new European Union

    Guest Author
    14 Jul 2015 | 6:09 am
    The new bailout deal for Greece was not easy. This column argues that it was also a failure. It will not be enough to recapitalise banks, it asks for structural reform that exceeds Greek capacities, and it raises the Greek debt-to-GDP ratio to unsustainable levels. In a few months or quarters, the programme will fail and the Grexit question will flare up again. The most in-depth research and analysis is on Credit Writedowns Pro. The new European Union originally appeared on Credit Writedowns Links: RSS - Daily - Weekly - Twitter - Facebook - Contact Related posts: The end of European bailouts…
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    Liberty Street Economics

  • Just Released: The U.S. Treasury Market on October 15, 2014

    Blog Author
    20 Jul 2015 | 4:00 am
    Nashrah Ahmed, Alain Chaboud, Dobrislav Dobrev, Joseph Fiorica, Michael Fleming, Frank Keane, Michael McMorrow, Suraj Prasanna, Ernst Schaumburg, Nathaniel Wuerffel, and Ron Yang The $12.7 trillion U.S. Treasury market plays a critical role in the global economy, serving as the primary means of financing the U.S. government, a risk-free benchmark for other financial instruments, and a key venue for the Federal Reserve’s implementation of monetary policy. On October 15, 2014, the market experienced unusually high volatility, record trading volume, and a rapid “round-trip” in prices…
  • Have Dealers' Strategies in the GCF Repo© Market Changed?

    Blog Author
    20 Jul 2015 | 4:00 am
    Nina Boyarchenko, Thomas Eisenbach, and Or Shachar In a previous post, “Mapping and Sizing the U.S. Repo Market,” our colleagues described the structure of the U.S. repurchase agreement (repo) market. In this post, we consider whether recent regulatory changes have changed the behavior of securities broker-dealers, who play a significant role in repo markets. We focus on the General Collateral Finance (GCF) Repo market, an interdealer market primarily using U.S. Treasury and agency securities as collateral. We find that some dealers use GCF Repo as a substantial source of funding for…
  • The Effect of the Strong Dollar on U.S. Growth

    Blog Author
    17 Jul 2015 | 4:00 am
    Mary Amiti and Tyler Bodine-Smith Correction: This post was updated on July 17 to replace the term “export volumes” with “real export values.” Although the terms are often used interchangeably, the term “real export values” is deemed more precise. We have updated the post accordingly. The recent strengthening of the U.S. dollar has raised concerns about its impact on U.S. GDP growth. The U.S. dollar has appreciated around 12 percent since mid-2014, rising against almost all of our trading partners, with the largest gains against Japan, Mexico, Canada, and the…
  • A Discussion of Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century: Does More Capital Increase Inequality?

    Blog Author
    15 Jul 2015 | 4:00 am
    Maxim Pinkovskiy Second in a two-part series My aim in the second post of this series on Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century is to talk about the economist’s research accomplishment in reconstructing capital-output ratios for developed countries from the Industrial Revolution to the present and using them to explain why wealth inequality will rise in developed countries. I will then provide a critical discussion of his interpretation of the history of capital in the developed world. Finally, I’ll end by discussing Piketty’s main policy proposal: the global tax on…
  • The Survey of Consumer Expectations Turns Two!

    Blog Author
    13 Jul 2015 | 8:00 am
    Giorgio Topa, Olivier Armantier, Wilbert van der Klaauw, and Basit Zafar The Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE) turned two years old in June. In this post, we review some of the key findings from the first two years of the survey’s history, highlighting the most noteworthy trends revealed in the data. The SCE is a nationally representative, Internet-based survey of a rotating panel of about 1,300 household heads in the United States. The survey contains a monthly core questionnaire that elicits consumers’ expectations on a broad variety of…
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    The Incidental Economist

  • Healthcare Triage: What is Flibanserin (AKA “Female Viagra”)?

    Aaron Carroll
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:02 pm
    “Female Viagra” and regular or “male” Viagra were both originally investigated as treatments for conditions other than sexual dysfunction. Viagra came out of studies on hypertension, and “female Viagra” for depression. But… that’s where most of the similarities end. How so? Let’s discuss. Flibanserin, sometimes called “female Viagra”, is the topic of this week’s Healthcare Triage: For those of you who want to read more: FDA Briefing Document: Joint Meeting of the Bone, Reproductive and Urologic Drugs Advisory Committee (BRUDAC) and the Drug Safety and Risk Management…
  • Recently read, recently resolved

    Austin Frakt
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:00 am
    Read, or nearly: Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, by Yuval Noah Harari—At over 400 pages, it’s not that brief, but it’s worth it. It’s my kind of history book, light on details, heavy on concepts. The big one: civilizations are built on myths or mental constructs (religion, culture, class, rights, justice, money, etc.). It’s the only way to achieve a scale of organization (e.g., millions of people) beyond what biology would facilitate on its own (e.g., hundreds). Here’s an interview with the author, which inspired me to read the book. (In truth,…
  • Hospitals’ Medicare margins

    Austin Frakt
    26 Jul 2015 | 6:38 pm
    Brad Flansbaum drew my attention to this testimony before the House Ways and Means Committee by Mark Miller, Executive Director of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (emphasis added): However, hospitals’ overall Medicare margin—a measure of the relationship between Medicare payments for, and hospitals’ costs of, providing care to Medicare patients—is negative. In 2013, the median hospital margin was –5.4 percent. Relatively efficient hospitals (i.e., hospitals with lower costs and better quality over three years) had a median margin of 2 percent in 2013. Part of the reason…
  • Canadian sanity

    Austin Frakt
    25 Jul 2015 | 7:00 am
    Via Seth Trueger: @afrakt
  • How ‘Medical’ Is Marijuana?

    Aaron Carroll
    24 Jul 2015 | 1:37 pm
    The following originally appeared on The Upshot (copyright 2015, The New York Times Company). It is becoming easier to get marijuana, legally. In the last 20 years or so, 23 states, as well as the District of Columbia, have passed laws that make it legal to use marijuana for medical treatments. So have some countries, like Austria, Canada, Finland, Germany, Israel and Spain. Advocates believe that this has allowed many with intractable medical problems to receive a safe and effective therapy. Opponents argue that these benefits are overblown, and that advocates ignore the harms of…
 
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    LewRockwell

  • They’re All Government Motors Now

    Eric Peters
    26 Jul 2015 | 10:01 pm
    GM gets ribbed a lot (and rightly so) for being “government motors” … having accepted (no, demanded) enormous sums of taxpayer money in order to avoid bankruptcy. The bailouts were the corporate equivalent of EBT (which conservatives somewhat oddly or at least, inconsistently, dislike . . . their ire apparently reserved for needy and greedy humans rather than needy and greedy corporations). Anyhow, the plain fact is they’re all government motors now. Every car company is a subsidiary of Uncle. Either they are on the dole, or they are on the payroll. Does it really matter (to us,…
  • Houston’s LGBT Bathroom Ordinance

    No Author
    26 Jul 2015 | 10:01 pm
    The Texas Supreme Court dealt Houston’s contentious LGBT ordinance a major blow Friday. The court ruled that the city of Houston must repeal or allow a vote on the Equal Rights Ordinance, an ordinance that qualified for the ballot but was kept off by Houston’s mayor, who sparked outrage when she tried to subpoena sermons and communications of local pastors. The Equal Rights Ordinance banned businesses that serve the public from discriminating against gay or transgender people. Conservative activists say that the ordinances can be used to allow men who identify as women to use…
  • The War on Extremism

    No Author
    26 Jul 2015 | 10:01 pm
    hat tips: Nafeez Ahmed and Tony Gosling On July 20, 2015, UK Prime Minister David Cameron delivered a major speech to justify ongoing wars on “extremism.” Supporting corporate media analyses are here, here, here, here; with some honesty from George Monbiot, with a 1-minute corporate media cry for more military armed attacks “on this evil”: Cameron’s speech promotes the UK “Extremist Bill” that bans all media (such as you’re reading now), and sends police to close any organization dictated by government as “extremist” (honest analyses by Glenn Greenwald and via…
  • Sweat It Out

    Joseph Mercola
    26 Jul 2015 | 10:01 pm
    By Dr. Mercola While many go to great lengths to avoid it, sweating actually has many important health- and beauty-related benefits. Your skin is the largest organ of your body, and serves important roles just like any other bodily organ. For example, sweating helps your body: All of these benefits promote general health, and recent research1,2,3,4,5 has even shown that regular sauna use correlates to a reduced risk of death from any cause, including lethal cardiovascular events. Men who used the sauna (Finnish-style, dry heat sauna) seven times per week cut their risk of death from fatal…
  • Carroll Quigley’s Conspiracy Theory

    No Author
    26 Jul 2015 | 10:01 pm
    Academic historians dislike the concept that history is often made by groups of individuals plotting together in confidence, even though one obvious way to get big things done is to make plans with your friends and allies while keeping your rivals in the dark as long as possible. One exception is the late Georgetown history professor Carroll Quigley, who in 1949 completed a book rather grandly entitled The Anglo-American Establishment. Decades later Bill Clinton was an undergrad student of Quigley (he got a B from him). In Clinton’s 1992 acceptance speech at the Democratic convention, he…
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    Angry Bear

  • Global Liquidity and U.S. Monetary Policy

    Dan Crawford
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:23 am
    by Joseph Joyce Global Liquidity and U.S. Monetary Policy The events in Greece and the Ukraine have only partially drawn attention away from the financial markets’ focus on changes in U.S. monetary policy. Federal Reserve officials seem to be split over when they will raise their Federal Funds rate target, and by how much. But […]
  • The F story about the Great Inflation (knowledge transmission)

    Dan Crawford
    26 Jul 2015 | 8:12 am
    Simon Wren-Lewis takes a look back to the 60s and 70s…”The reason I write about this now is that I’m in the process of finishing a paper on the knowledge transmission mechanism and the 2010 switch to austerity, and I wanted to look back at previous macroeconomic crises.”  Robert Waldmann is part of this post. The […]
  • Tale of Two Charts: Medicare 2009 and 2015

    Bruce Webb
    24 Jul 2015 | 8:36 pm
    (From main Angry Bear page you may need to click ‘Read More’ to see Charts) http://www.socialsecurity.gov/history/pdf/tr09summary.pdf http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/TRSUM/ http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/TRSUM/ 2009: Medicare Unsustainable. From less than 4% of GDP heading straight for 11%. 2015: Medicare You Decide. Still less than 4% of GDP heading for 6% Why is JEB still having the same conversation about viability of […]
  • Table IV.B5: Social Security OAS and DI Actuarial Balances by 25 Year Subperiod

    Bruce Webb
    24 Jul 2015 | 3:06 pm
    Table IV.B5.—Components of Summarized Income Rates and Cost Rates, Calendar Years 2015-89 [As a percentage of taxable payroll] Lots of numbers here but the only ones want to focus on are those in the last column, those which show actuarial balances for each of the OAS and DI Trust Funds for for the next 25, […]
  • Open thread July 24, 2015

    Dan Crawford
    24 Jul 2015 | 4:47 am
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    Macro and Other Market Musings

  • The Big Lesson of the Eurozone Crisis

    22 Jul 2015 | 9:03 am
    Paul Krugman notes that Eurozone crisis is a vindication of that optimum currency area (OCA) theory. I agree but would note the crisis also sheds light on the specialization versus endogeneity debate surrounding the OCA criteria. Interestingly, Krugman himself wrote some of the literature in this debate back in the early-to-mid 1990s.So what is the specialization versus endogeneity debate? To answer this question, first recall that the OCA theory says members of a currency union should share similar business cycles, have economic shock absorbers (fiscal transfers, labor mobility, and price…
  • Who Predicted the Eurozone Crisis?

    15 Jul 2015 | 11:34 pm
    According to a recent Bloomberg article, nine people saw the Eurozone crisis coming years before anyone else. Wow, only nine people saw it coming? That is remarkable, these folks must be truly prescient if only they foresaw the crisis. Except that this claim is terribly wrong. There were many economists who saw the problems of a European monetary union before it formed. One prominent economist not on the Bloomberg list is Martin Feldstein who wrote a famous 1997 Foreign Affairs article that began as follows;Monnet was mistaken... If EMU does come into existence, as now seems increasingly…
  • Did Monetary Policy Really Offset Fiscal Austerity in Canada?

    13 Jul 2015 | 12:00 pm
    The blogosphere is once again talking about Canada's successful fiscal austerity in the mid-to-late 1990s. Paul Krugman rekindled the conversation with this statement:[L]ook at everyone's favorite example of successful austerity, Canada in the 1990s. Canada came in with gross debt of roughly 100 percent of GDP, roughly comparable to Greece on the eve of the financial crisis. It then proceeded to do a pretty big fiscal adjustment -- 6 percent of GDP according to the IMF's measure of the structural balance, which is about a third of what Greece has done but comparable to other European…
  • Was Grexit Invevitable?

    28 Jun 2015 | 9:24 am
    So it appears the Eurozone crisis has finally crossed the rubicon. Greece is going to default on Monday and this likely will put in motion its departure from the currency union. The Eurozone as we know it may soon cease to exist.Was this breakup inevitable? Many observers would say yes. The Eurozone, after all, is not an optimal currency area and therefore likely to create problems. Martin Feldstein, for example, in 1997 wrote this in Foreign Affairs:Monnet was mistaken... If EMU does come into existence, as now seems increasingly likely, it will change the political character of Europe in…
  • The Long Unwind of Excess Money Demand

    25 Jun 2015 | 10:22 am
    Two years ago I was part of a panel discussion on Fed policy at the American Enterprise Institute. I talked about why money still matters as way to make the case that the economy was still being plagued by excess money demand. This problem occurs when desired money holdings exceed actual money holdings. This imbalance causes a rebalancing of portfolios toward safe assets away from riskier ones and in the process causes a decline in aggregate demand. This is one way to view the long slump.My argument back then was that even though the excess money demand problem peaked in 2009 it still was…
 
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    niesr.ac.uk

  • The implications of the Trade Union Bill

    JohnForth
    15 Jul 2015 | 10:51 am
    The government has today announced plans to place further restrictions on ballots for industrial action. This blog looks at the prevalence of industrial action in Britain and the likely implications of the Bill for employment relations. How common are strikes in Britain today?
  • George Osborne is committing to the wrong target

    Alasdair Smith
    14 Jul 2015 | 2:21 pm
    This is a guest blog by Professor Alasdair Smith, Professor Emeritus of Economics (and former vice-Chancellor) of the University of Sussex. George Osborne proposes to pass a law enshrining his fiscal target of a balanced budget in ‘normal’ times. This proposal is at first sight paradoxical. Why should a government pass a law requiring it to do what it wants to do? As always with Mr Osborne, there’s the political objective of making life uncomfortable for the opposition.
  • EVEL’s Unintended Consequences

    14 Jul 2015 | 12:47 am
    Only two hours after the Scottish referendum result was declared, Prime Minister Cameron announced that “just as Scotland will vote separately in a Scottish parliament on their issues of tax, spending and welfare, so too England as well as Wales and Northern Ireland should be able to vote on these issues”.[1]
  • Subjective well-being varies across ethnic group and across migrant generations in the UK

    CinziaRienzo
    13 Jul 2015 | 6:49 am
    Migrants who recently arrived in the UK experience higher levels of well-being than natives and established migrants generation.
  • A Budget for hard-working Poles

    JonathanPortes
    9 Jul 2015 | 4:33 am
    My colleague Monique Ebell wrote an excellent blog yesterday setting out the combined impact of reductions in tax credits and increases to the National Minimum Wage announced in the Budget.  She works through the impacts on incomes and work incentives for a number of example families, and concludes the following:
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    Bruegel - Latest Updates

  • Griechenlands Schuldenlast kann und muss im Euroraum erleichtert werden

    23 Jul 2015 | 6:49 am
    Der wohl größte Schaden der Konfrontation mit Griechenland ist ein allgemeiner Vertrauensverlust. Damit Griechenland wieder wachsen kann, müssen die Menschen, Unternehmen und Investoren wieder Vertrauen in die Zukunftsfähigkeit des Landes fassen. Hierzu bedarf es natürlich einerseits einer legitimen und kompetenten Regierung sowie einer effizienten Verwaltung und Gerichtsbarkeit. Aber auch die Frage der Schulden ist zentral, selbst wenn kurzfristig der Schuldendienst derzeit vernachlässigbar ist. Niemand bezweifelt die Analyse des IWF, dass die Nachhaltigkeit der griechischen…
  • Competitive gains in the Economic and Monetary Union

    23 Jul 2015 | 3:58 am
    This event was organised in the frame of the 10th Anniversary of Bruegel on 21 July 2015 in Madrid. It brought together a panel of high level economic experts to discuss the competitive gains achievable through reinforcing the Internal Market and structural reforms.    
  • Antitrust, regulatory capture and economic integration

    23 Jul 2015 | 2:43 am
    Highlights - There is growing worldwide concern about bias in the enforcement of competition law in favour of domestic firms. Even seemingly neutral antitrust laws can lead discrimination if they are enforced selectively. - Authors investigate the distortions that national competition authorities generate when they pursue non-competition goals in favour of domestic firms, and discuss ways to address this negative policy development in a globalised world. - The distortions identified in the paper would dissipate if governments agreed that the sole objective of competition law ought to be the…
  • Blogs review: Understanding the Neo-Fisherite rebellion

    20 Jul 2015 | 12:15 am
    What’s at stake: Neo-Fisherism is on the blogs again. The idea that low interest rates are deflationary – that we’ve had the sign on monetary policy wrong! – started as a fringe theory on the corners of the blogosphere 3 years ago. Michael Woodford has now confirmed that modern theory, indeed, implies the Neo-Fisherian view when people’s expectations are infinitely rational. For Woodford, this is however a paradox of perfect foresight analysis, rather than something actually relevant for monetary policy.   Are low interest rates deflationary? Noah Smith writes that over the…
  • Greece budget update

    17 Jul 2015 | 9:53 am
    As discussion continue in the Greek parliament and in Bruxelles on the next steps towards the third Greek programme, the Greek finance ministry published the latest budget execution bulletin, with data up to June and comparing the actual outcomes with the estimates presented in the 2015 budget. The state budget primary balance picked up again in June, compared to the previous month. Greece recorded a primary surplus of 1.9 billion euros over the first five months of the year, against an expected primary deficit of 1.2 billion euros. In cumulative terms, the state primary balance has therefore…
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    TaxVox

  • How Did the Gas Tax Lose Its Mojo, Even Among Conservatives?

    Howard Gleckman
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:21 pm
    With just a few days left before federal funding for highway programs expires, the Senate is debating all sorts of amendments to an extension-- from export subsidies to the Affordable Care Act. But there is one subject it will not debate—the gas tax. Except for a handful of lawmakers, nobody in Congress or the White House will even utter the words in public. Until recently, motor fuel taxes were the primary way Congress funded the Highway Trust Fund. But the levy has not been increased for more than two decades and the fund increasingly relies on general revenues to keep the asphalt…
  • Compliance, Complications, and Competition

    Renu Zaretsky
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:00 am
    The latest from the Hill… The Senate continued its work on highway funding yesterday: It blocked Senator Ted Cruz’s effort to tie the bill to the Iran deal; approved reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank; and defeated a symbolic Affordable Care Act repeal amendment. The House and Senate both hope to pay for the road bill with stricter tax compliance. But giving the IRS more to do would be difficult, especially since Congress has been slashing the agency’s enforcement budget. Candidate Clinton and capital gains: A complicated waiting game. Hillary Clinton would raise taxes on the…
  • "The Long and Winding Road... Will Never Disappear..."

    Renu Zaretsky
    24 Jul 2015 | 5:00 am
    The Senate’s six-year highway bill inches forward, after dropping a Social Security provision. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell won 14 Democrats’ votes for the bill after he agreed to drop a $2.3 billion offset. The money would have come from barring people with felony warrants from getting Social Security benefits. The Senate will keep voting on amendment today and, perhaps, into the weekend. Twelve days, hath September, or else a shutdown, do you remember? On the other side of the Hill, Speaker John Boehner said the House will have to pass a stop-gap funding bill if it wants to avoid a…
  • Who Benefits Most From Repealing the ACA Cadillac Tax?

    Howard Gleckman
    23 Jul 2015 | 10:36 am
    Republicans and some Democrats in Congress are pressing to repeal the Affordable Care Act’s Cadillac tax—a 40 percent excise tax on high-cost employer-sponsored health insurance plans. Backers of repeal argue that curbs on these generous plans would disproportionately hurt low- and middle-income workers. But a new Tax Policy Center analysis shows that story is overstated. In 2018, when the tax is scheduled to kick-in, it would barely change average tax liability. By 2025, it would reduce taxes only modestly. Middle- and upper-middle-income taxpayers would benefit the most, though average…
  • Big Talk, Growing Opposition

    Renu Zaretsky
    23 Jul 2015 | 5:00 am
    Can the Senate pass a highway bill? Last night, the Senate finally voted to begin debate on its version of a transportation bill. But it is in for a tough slog thanks in part to two GOP presidential hopefuls. Ted Cruz has threatened to tie the Iran deal to the measure. The Texan wants an amendment that “ensures no Iranian nuclear deal unless Iran recognizes Israel and frees American hostages.”  Not to be outdone, Rand Paul may introduce an amendment to block all federal funding for Planned Parenthood. Plus, Export-Import Bank supporters may try to add an amendment…
 
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    Eschaton

  • Where Are All The White People At

    27 Jul 2015 | 4:30 pm
    Sometimes I just do not understand.The same goes for longtime Alhambrans adapting to the city's new Asian identity. At the new hybrid 99 Ranch on a recent weekday, more than 80% of the shoppers were Chinese.A white couple, Mike and Kathy, wandered into the store recently and began to explore. They examined the rotisserie chicken cartons under the heat lamp at the front and admired the bread selection at the bakery.But despite the store's efforts to disguise itself as a Western grocery store, Mike described it as an exotic cultural experience.They left without buying anything, then drove to…
  • Happy Hour Thread

    27 Jul 2015 | 2:00 pm
    enjoy
  • Lords

    27 Jul 2015 | 12:00 pm
    They're clearly better than the riffraff.He paid women in prostitution for their services in a grace and favour flat in Dolphin Square for which he pays £1,000 a month instead of the going rate of nearly £3,000. This man’s “private life” is subsidised to the hilt by the taxpayer, and that is what really sticks in the craw. That, and his comments about Asian women. He asks if there will be any “nice little young Asian women” at the party, before adding, “they sort of look innocent but you know they are whores”. As he was the guy in the Lords responsible for making sure that his…
  • In The UK, As It Is Here

    27 Jul 2015 | 10:11 am
    QOTD:It’s worth remembering that in the press, public opinion is often used interchangeably with media opinion, as if the public was somehow much the same as a group of radically rightwing billionaire sociopaths.This is specific to one candidate, but the basic dynamic is the same.To be fair, much of the negative commentary on Corbyn explicitly focuses on how badly he will play in the media, without asking why that should be when he is the only candidate with any obvious personality or charm. In lieu of any charisma from the preferred candidates, Tony Blair appeared like a prize-winning…
  • WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

    27 Jul 2015 | 10:00 am
    Not so good.Stocks fell in Europe for a fifth day after the Shanghai Composite Index tumbled 8.5 percent as Chinese industrial company profits decreased in June.
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    Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science

  • Ripped from the pages of a George Pelecanos novel

    Andrew
    27 Jul 2015 | 7:45 am
    Did anyone else notice that this DC multiple-murder case seems just like a Pelecanos story? Check out the latest headline, “D.C. Mansion Murder Suspect Is Innocent Because He Hates Pizza, Lawyer Says”: Robin Flicker, a lawyer who has represented suspect Wint in the past but has not been officially hired as his defense attorney, says police are zeroing in on Wint because his DNA was found on pizza at the crime scene. The only problem, Flicker said is that Wint doesn’t like pizza. “He doesn’t eat pizza,” Flicker told ABC News. “If he were hungry, he wouldn’t order…
  • On deck this week

    Andrew
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:00 am
    Mon: Ripped from the pages of a George Pelecanos novel Tues: “We can keep debating this after 11 years, but I’m sure we all have much more pressing things to do (grants? papers? family time? attacking 11-year-old papers by former classmates? guitar practice?)” Wed: What do I say when I don’t have much to say? Thurs: “Women Respond to Nobel Laureate’s ‘Trouble With Girls’” Fri: This sentence by Thomas Mallon would make Barry N. Malzberg spin in his grave, except that he’s still alive so it would just make him spin in his retirement Sat: If you leave your datasets…
  • The 3 Stages of Busy

    Andrew
    26 Jul 2015 | 6:06 am
    Last week I ran into a younger colleague who said he had a conference deadline that week and could we get together next week, maybe? So I contacted him on the weekend and asked if he was free. He responded: This week quickly got booked after last week’s NIPS deadline. So we’re meeting in another week. That’s busy for you: after one week off the grid, he had a week’s worth of pent-up meetings! I thought I was busy, but it’s nothing like that. And this made me formulate my idea of the 3 Stages of Busy. It goes like this: Stage 1 (early career): Not busy, at least…
  • Ira Glass asks. We answer.

    Andrew
    25 Jul 2015 | 6:11 am
    The celebrated radio quiz show star says: There’s this study done by the Pew Research Center and Smithsonian Magazine . . . they called up one thousand and one Americans. I do not understand why it is a thousand and one rather than just a thousand. Maybe a thousand and one just seemed sexier or something. . . . I think I know the answer to this one! The survey may well have aimed for 1000 people, but you can’t know ahead of time exactly how many people will respond. They call people, leave messages, call back, call back again, etc. The exact number of people who end up in the…
  • 45 years ago in the sister blog

    Andrew
    24 Jul 2015 | 6:17 am
    The post 45 years ago in the sister blog appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science.
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    macroblog

  • Getting to the Core of Goods and Services Prices

    macroblog
    17 Jul 2015 | 8:37 am
    In yesterday's macroblog post, I highlighted an aspect of a recent Wall Street Journal article that concerns how households perceive inflation. Today, I'm going back to the same well to comment on another aspect of that story, which correctly notes that service-sector prices are rising at a faster clip than the price of goods. Of course, this isn't just a recent event. Core services prices have outpaced core goods prices over the past 50 years, save a few short-lived deviations. What's unusual about the current recovery, as the chart below shows, is how low services inflation has been. In the…
  • Different Strokes for Different Folks

    macroblog
    16 Jul 2015 | 8:20 am
    A recent Wall Street Journal article offered an interesting conjecture. The author stated,"[b]ecause consumers pay service bills more often than they buy most goods other than food and gasoline, perceptions of inflation skew on the high side." Research supports the idea that inflation perceptions are unusually influenced by particular prices. For example, some authors have noted that inflation expectations appear to be unusually influenced by movements in gasoline prices. This research by Georganas, Healy, and Li shows that inflation perceptions are affected by how frequently people buy a…
  • Have Changing Job and Worker Characteristics Restrained Wage Growth?

    macroblog
    15 Jul 2015 | 10:31 am
    In the wake of the Great Recession, nominal wage growth has been subdued. But it is unclear how much of this relatively low wage growth reflects protracted weakness in the labor market versus other factors, such as changes in the composition of the workforce and jobs over time. Wage growth tends to vary across personal and job characteristics, so it stands to reason that changes in the composition of the workforce, alongside demographic and work characteristics, could be an important explanation of overall movements in wage growth. In this post, we explore the impact of the changing mixture…
  • Far Away Yet Close to Home: Discussing the Global Economy's Effects

    macroblog
    1 Jul 2015 | 12:09 pm
    In case you needed any motivation to take interest in the outcome of ongoing negotiations between the Greek government and its international creditors, this excerpt from the Wall Street Journal ought to do it: Global growth is really important. We are all connected through the financial markets, through foreign-exchange markets," Fed governor Jerome Powell said last week in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. "If global growth weakens, or remains weak, and we get into a trend of that, then yes, that will be a big headwind for the United States economy." Last week, I participated in the…
 
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    Stumbling and Mumbling

  • "Demography is destiny"

    chris
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:58 am
    Talking about the "glass floor" which limits social mobility, Alan Milburn says: It’s a social scandal that all too often demography is still destiny. This is true in a far bigger way than Mr Milburn means. There's a policy which suppresses social mobility and ensures that demography is destiny for millions of people. I refer, of course, to immigration controls. If you support social mobility you must, logically, favour open borders. For example, someone migrating from Zimbabwe, where GDP per head is barely $2000 per year, to a minimum wage job in the UK would see their…
  • On welfare incentives

    chris
    25 Jul 2015 | 5:35 am
    A loyal reader has chastised my defence of welfare benefits for ignoring incentive effects. This deserves a reply. The issue here is not about Osborne's welfare cuts, simply because these haven't, net, made much difference to incentives. On the one hand, the rise in the "living wage" relative to Universal Credit will increase incentives to work. But on the other hand, this won't affect under-25s (who aren't covered by the wage floor); cuts to in-work tax credits reduce work incentives; and the higher taper rate reduces incentives to work longer. Overall, says the…
  • Yes, Labour must change

    chris
    24 Jul 2015 | 6:02 am
    Tony Blair's speech this week, paradoxically, reminded us of the need for new, radical economic policies. He said: The most important characteristic of this world is: the scope, scale and speed of change. Change defines it. Let's leave aside the obvious snark that one thing that hasn't changed is Blair's talk of change. He was talking about the "breathtaking pace of change" 20 years ago*. As Alan Finlayson wrote (pdf), the rhetoric of modernization has been a key element of Blairism. Instead, my point is that it is because the world has changed that New Labour is…
  • Corbyn's success, Labour's shame

    chris
    23 Jul 2015 | 6:20 am
    When Graham Dilley went out to bat in the famous 1981 Headingley test match, Ian Botham told him that "we wouldn't survive long just blocking, so we might as well have a swing." This same reasoning, I suspect, explains Labour members support for Jeremy Corbyn. If the choice were between an election victory under, say, Andy Burnham or a defeat under Corbyn, most Labour members - though perhaps not all - would support Burnham. But that's not necessarily the choice. Maybe Labour will lose under any leader. If so, they might as well follow the Botham principle and have a…
  • Reality vs the Bubble

    chris
    21 Jul 2015 | 6:09 am
    Last night's vote on the Welfare Bill shows that Labour is divided. The division though, isn't so much between left and right as between reality and the Bubble. The Bill will cost the poorest (pdf) families hundreds of pounds per year, increase homelessness and child poverty (pdf) and create insecurity for many low-paid workers who are at high risk of losing their jobs*. And its motives are based in large part upon myths - that welfare spending is a burden, that there's a pressing need to cut the deficit, and that there are distinct groups of workers and claimants rather than…
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    Moneybox

  • Hillary Unveils Her Wonky Plan to Jack Up Taxes on Rich Investors

    Jordan Weissmann
    24 Jul 2015 | 2:53 pm
    Hillary Clinton has unveiled what might be the first truly interesting economic proposal of her presidential campaign. During a speech in New York on Friday, she detailed a plan to hike taxes on income from investments that high-income Americans hold for less than six years. It is part of a broader platform designed to fight what she refers to as "quarterly capitalism"—corporate America's focus on maintaining short-term profits in order to appease shareholders. "American business needs to break free from the tyranny of today's earnings report," Clinton said. Frankly, a…
  • Can the Marijuana Industry Rebrand Itself as Health Food?

    Will Yakowicz
    24 Jul 2015 | 1:54 pm
    This post originally appeared in Inc. Upon entering Dixie Elixirs' headquarters in Denver, you're greeted by a big sign that reads: "The Future of Cannabis." Since its 2009 founding, Dixie has updated its image from a "pot soda" company to a gourmet THC edibles manufacturer whose carbonated drinks and snacks, containing ingredients like pepita and sea salt, look like they could be found on a shelf at Whole Foods. It's just one example of how marijuana businesses are rebranding the plant to distance pot from its hippie-stoner-outlaw…
  • Conservatives Think They Have a Magic Formula for Raising People Out of Poverty

    Jordan Weissmann
    24 Jul 2015 | 4:48 am
    I haven't yet read Ta-Nahesi Coates' new book, Between the World and Me. But I did find myself groaning while reading Rich Lowry's review of it at Politico. This was not due to anything Lowry wrote specifically about Coates' work—which, again, I haven't opened—but because he trots out a bit of received conservative wisdom about fighting poverty in a very irksome way. It's a canard I fear we'll hear a lot during the presidential election. Lowry, who edits National Review, says he dislikes Between the World and Me because it is too nihilistic and doesn't offer a "positive program"…
  • So Long, McDonald’s Monthly Misery Watch. It’s Been Real.

    Alison Griswold
    23 Jul 2015 | 5:25 am
    Dear McDonald’s, It’s been a lovely run. Every 30 or so days, you’ve shared your monthly same-store sales figures, and every 30 days or so, we’ve dutifully compiled the numbers into charts to follow their rise and fall (mostly fall). We watched in December as comps in the United States peaked into positive territory for the first time in 13 months and even stayed there through January, before toppling 4 percent in February. We stood by in June as global comps dropped 0.3 percent to mark a year of consecutive declines. But in late May you told us that these rendezvous would have…
  • New York Is About to Launch an Especially Terrible Experiment With the $15 Minimum Wage

    Jordan Weissmann
    22 Jul 2015 | 3:34 pm
    As was widely anticipated, a board convened by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo voted Wednesday to raise the minimum wage for fast-food workers across the state to $15 per hour. Once the recommendation is approved by the state's labor department, as most expect it will be, it will become law. This, of course, follows after San Francisco, Seattle, and Los Angeles all passed ordinances that will push their citywide pay floors to $15. Whatever you might think about the wisdom of those moves—I'm skeptical—New York's plan seems to be far more ill-conceived. There are two main reasons. First, while…
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    Economic Development Blog » Economic Development Blog -

  • Corporate America Signs on to American Business Act on Climate Pledge

    Economic Development HQ.com
    27 Jul 2015 | 6:15 am
    Today, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and the leadership of 13 of America’s largest businesses will jointly launch the American Business Act on Climate Pledge. American Business Act on Climate Pledge (photo -whitehouse.gov) The 13 companies are Alcoa, Apple, Bank of America, Berkshire Hathaway Energy, Cargill, Coca-Cola, General Motors, Goldman Sachs, Google, Microsoft, PepsiCo, UPS, and Walmart. By signing on to the American Business Act on Climate pledge, these companies representing $1.3 trillion in revenue and a combined market capitalization of at least $2.5 trillion will be…
  • Auburn, Economic Development Partnership of Alabama Attract Mercedes-Benz Supplier Schmidt

    Economic Development HQ.com
    26 Jul 2015 | 8:58 pm
    German manufacturer Schmidt Maschinenbau GmbH is building its first U.S. manufacturing facility in Auburn, AL. Schmidt Automotive (photo – auburnalabama.org) Supported by the City of Auburn Economic Development Department, Alabama Dept. Of Commerce, and the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, Schmidt is investing $17 million in Auburn and will create 50 new well-paying jobs. Headquartered in Westhausen-Lippach in South Germany, Schmidt Maschinenbau GmbH already has nearly 200 employees located at two production plants, including one at their headquarters site and the other one…
  • Bendix Picks Avon, Ohio For New Headquarters

    Economic Development HQ.com
    26 Jul 2015 | 8:04 pm
    Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems LLC announced plans to build their new headquarters on a 60-acre site in Avon, OH. Bendix (photo – bendix.com) Bendix’s selection of the Avon site ensures that Lorain County and Ohio will retain more than 500 jobs the company has in the region, in addition to the creation of up more good-paying new jobs. Back in February, Bendix had announced that it would relocate to a new location in Northeast Ohio within a 20-mile radius of its current headquarters in Elyria, OH. The Avon site the company has selected is just 10 miles from Elyria. In a release…
  • Metro Nashville, TN Economic Development Teams Secure Relocation of Amedisys Corporate Jobs

    Economic Development HQ.com
    24 Jul 2015 | 6:33 am
    Executives of home health and hospice care company Amedisys Inc. joined Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Randy Boyd to announce the company’s plans to open a new executive office at Cummins Station in downtown Nashville, TN. Nashville, TN (photo – Exothermic/flickr) Supported by TNECD, the Metro Government of Nashville and Davidson County, and the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, the company is investing $2.5 million and will create 120 jobs in Nashville over the next five years. More importantly, these 120 jobs will include the majority…
  • Start-UP NY Economic Development Program Draws 12 More Projects to New York State

    Economic Development HQ.com
    23 Jul 2015 | 8:56 pm
    The Start-UP NY economic development program, which makes business expansions and locations tax-free in designated areas associated with colleges and universities in New York State, has got itself 12 more participants. Start-UP NY (photo – ny.gov) These 12 new projects are expected to create a combined total of 385 new jobs and generate $7.3 million in investments over the next five years. All told, the Start-UP NY program now includes 128 companies sponsored by 25 different colleges and universities statewide. Together, the sponsored projects of these 128 companies involve investments…
 
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    Washington Center for Equitable Growth

  • Monday DeLong Smackdown Watch: How Important Is the Euro’s Effect on Exchange Rates on the German Economy, Anyway?

    Brad DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:36 pm
    Daniel Davies: What Would the German Export Sector Look Like?: “DeLong: ‘Just consider what the state of Germany’s export sector would be right now if Germany were not part of the euro, and had the real exchange rate of Switzerland.’ I’ve considered it, and I think the answer is actually ‘more or less the same’. Looking at the actual current account of Switzerland suggests that a Germany which had fixed to CHF wouldn’t have necessarily done any worse…. And the story of the 00s in German exporting (the 90s, of course, were when Germany ran quite sizeable deficits) is…
  • Things to Read on the Evening of July 27, 2015

    Brad DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:05 pm
    Must- and Should-Reads: Must-Read: Paul Krugman: The Essential Obstfeld Christine Lagarde: Press Release: Appoints Maurice Obstfeld as Economic Counsellor and Director of the IMF’s Research Department Maurice Obstfeld: Models of currency crises with self-fulfilling features Maurice Obstfeld and Kenneth Rogoff: Exchange Rate Dynamics Redux Must-Read: Ezra Klein: “It will be normal… Must-Read: Henry Farrell: A Brief Theory of Very Serious People Paul Blustein: Laid Low: The IMF, the eurozone, and the First Rescue of Greece Must-Read: Tim Duy: The Fed Is Closer to Hitting Its…
  • Must-Read: Nick Bunker: Compensation Inequality and Productivity Growth

    Brad DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 3:02 pm
    Must-Read: The “but compensation growth has been faster than wage growth since 1975!” literature has always seemed to me to a bit like introducing a game of Three-Card-Monte to the inequality debate: I see every reason to think that the increases in benefits that are the wedge between compensation and income growth went overwhelmingly to those near the top of the income distribution… Nick Bunker: Compensation Inequality and Productivity Growth: “Growth in total compensation for lower-paid workers was slower… …than wage growth in that same spot on the wage…
  • Must-Read: Matthew Yglesias: Robots Aren’t Taking Your Jobs

    Brad DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:16 pm
    Must-Read: Let me register a complaint about the very sharp Matt Yglesias: http://vox.com seems to me to be getting a little #Slatepitchy these days–and that is a problem. Bait-and-switch between what the headline and the teaser promise and what the article delivers is already the reason I do not click on links to Slate… The right teaser would be: “Don’t worry that robots are taking your jobs–they are not (at least, not yet). Do worry that robots are not amplifying your productivity.” Matthew Yglesias: Robots Aren’t Taking Your Jobs: “The good…
  • Must-Read: Brink Lindsey: Low-Hanging Fruit Guarded by Dragons: Reforming Regressive Regulation to Boost U.S. Economic Growth

    Brad DeLong
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:06 pm
    Must-Read: The very sharp Brink Lindsey continues to try to find common bipartisan technocratic policy ground… Brink Lindsey: Low-Hanging Fruit Guarded by Dragons: Reforming Regressive Regulation to Boost U.S. Economic Growth: “The U.S. economy is slowing down… …Labor participation is falling, the pace of human capital accumulation is slackening, the rate of investment is in long-term decline, and growth in total factor productivity has been low for three of the four past decades…. Progressives, conservatives, and libertarians have a strong common interest in…
 
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    FiveThirtyEight » Economics | FiveThirtyEight

  • The Cost Of Child Care Might Not Be Skyrocketing

    Andrew Flowers
    23 Jul 2015 | 8:53 am
    It’s become conventional wisdom that child care costs are burdensome for American families and that the burden is growing fast. But new research suggests that the claim of skyrocketing child care costs is overblown.In a recently released but not yet peer-reviewed working paper, Chris Herbst, a professor at Arizona State University, reassesses the data and finds the growth in U.S. child care costs over the past quarter-century to be modest.His findings clash with “Who’s Minding the Kids?” — the Census Bureau’s standard-bearer report on child care costs in the U.S.,…
  • How The NYPD Abused Citizens In The Name Of Data, And How One Cop Exposed It

    FiveThirtyEight
    22 Jul 2015 | 8:33 am
    Exposing police misconduct can be risky, even for a cop.“Crime By The Numbers,” a short documentary directed by Don Argott for FiveThirtyEight and ESPN Films’ Signals series, tells the story of Adrian Schoolcraft. Schoolcraft, as a New York Police Department officer, blew the whistle on the NYPD’s abuse and misuse of CompStat, a system to track crime trends in New York City.But in trying to fix the injustices of New York’s policing system, Schoolcraft experienced that injustice personally.
  • The Science Of Grading Teachers Gets High Marks

    Andrew Flowers
    20 Jul 2015 | 3:45 am
    Is evaluating teachers an exact science? Many people — including many teachers and their unions — believe current methods are often too subjective and open to abuse and misinterpretation. But new tools for measuring teacher effectiveness have become more sophisticated in recent years, and several large-scale studies in New York, Los Angeles and North Carolina have given those tools more credibility. A new study released on Monday furthers their legitimacy; and as the science of grading teachers advances, it could push for further adoption of these tools.This evolving science of…
  • The Numbers Behind Hillary Clinton’s Economic Vision

    Ben Casselman
    13 Jul 2015 | 1:19 pm
    There was a single thread running through Hillary Clinton’s big economics speech on Monday: the importance of raising wages for working Americans. That’s no coincidence: The six-year-old economic recovery has succeeded in restoring corporate profits and creating jobs, but it hasn’t brought pay raises for many workers. Wage growth is running ahead of inflation, but it remains low and hasn’t accelerated as the economy as a whole has improved. And as Clinton stressed throughout her speech, many of those problems predate the recession, suggesting deeper structural challenges in the U.S.
  • Expensive Cigarettes No Longer Keep Teenagers From Smoking

    Andrew Flowers
    9 Jul 2015 | 11:30 am
    Fewer American teens smoke cigarettes today than 20 years ago. And taxes on cigarettes are much higher, too. For a while, these two trends were related, because teens wouldn’t pay the high price of a pack, but not anymore. Young people are no longer responding to higher cigarette taxes by smoking less.Some perspective is important: More than one in three teenagers smoked in 1997, but fewer than one in four did in 2013. And within the past decade, 31 states have jacked up their tax on cigarettes, especially after the Great Recession strained many governments’ budgets. Although reducing…
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    Vox - All

  • What Americans really think about the Iran deal

    Zack Beauchamp
    27 Jul 2015 | 1:00 pm
    It matters what Americans think of the Iran deal. Congress has a chance to vote on whether to kill it. The next president will have a say in executing it. And this thing could be around for 25 years, during which time Congress will likely continue trying for some kind of role. Lawmakers and politicians, in determining how to approach the Iran deal, will almost certainly consider public opinion. So what does that public opinion look like? So far, polling results on the Iran deal, on their face, are baffling. Here are a few of the key polls so far: Pew 38 percent of American who are aware of…
  • This policing innovation helped fight crime. But it also led to more corruption.

    German Lopez
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:59 pm
    One of the big successes in US policing over the past three decades was the push to make law enforcement more data-driven. The big crime-tracking system that came out of this, CompStat, has been widely credited with helping cut crime in the US. But what if this approach has also led police to be too focused on data, turning policing into a numbers game in which cops try to make as many arrests as possible and manipulate the figures to look good? John Eterno, a retired New York City Police Department captain and associate dean and director of graduate studies in criminal justice at Molloy…
  • Why babies in medieval paintings look like ugly old men

    Phil Edwards
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:58 pm
    Like this video? Subscribe to Vox on YouTube. Why are the babies in medieval art so ugly? To find the answer, I spoke to Matthew Averett, an art history professor at Creighton University who edited the anthology The Early Modern Child in Art and History. But really, just how ugly are these babies? Ugly might be too weak a word for medieval babies These babies look like horrifying tiny men with high cholesterol and strong opinions about housing association rules. They're babies like this one from 1350: Print Collector/Getty Images This 1350 baby in "Madonna of Veveri" by the Master of the…
  • Worm wars: The fight tearing apart the global health community, explained

    Julia Belluz
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:45 pm
    Intestinal worms are a massive health problem in low- and middle-income countries, afflicting up to a quarter of the world's population. Over the past 20 years, many organizations have pushed large-scale "deworming" initiatives, which often involve giving every child in a school deworming pills on a regular basis. These programs — largely inspired by an influential study that ran in the late '90s in Kenya — were thought to not only treat children, but also improve their school performance and overall health. In other words, very inexpensive pills seemed to be "one of the most potent…
  • China's stock market is falling again, and it's a huge problem for the government

    Timothy B. Lee
    27 Jul 2015 | 12:20 pm
    (Javier Zarracina / Vox) Three weeks ago, the Chinese government took extreme measures to reverse a massive 32 percent drop in stock prices. The plan worked — over the next two weeks, stocks gained 17 percent. But now the government has a bigger problem: Stocks fell 8.5 percent on Monday, the largest one-day decline in eight years, and people are blaming the government for it. Stock markets play an essential role in developed economies, directing resources to businesses where they'll be used most productively. But they can only serve this role if governments let them. This month, the…
 
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    Commentary - Money, Banking and Financial Markets

  • Are we overestimating inflation (again?)

    Steve Cecchetti and Kim Schoenholtz
    27 Jul 2015 | 5:16 am
    Twenty years ago, a group of experts – the “Boskin Commission” – concluded that the U.S. consumer price index (CPI) systematically overstated inflation by 0.8 to 1.6 percentage points each year. Taking these findings to heart, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) got to work reducing this bias, so that by the mid-2000s, experts felt it had fallen by as much as half a percentage point.We bring this up because there is a concern that as a consequence of the way in which we measure information technology (IT), health care, digital content and the like, the degree to which conventional…
  • AIIB: The first international financial institution of the 21st century

    Steve Cecchetti and Kim Schoenholtz
    20 Jul 2015 | 5:28 am
    In 1945, a group of 43 nations led by the United States, then the world’s dominant economic power, created the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (now part of the World Bank Group) and the International Monetary Fund – the “Bretton Woods institutions” – to promote reconstruction after World War II.There were a number of goals. First, given the experience of the interwar period, there was a perceived need to coordinate exchange rate policy and both control and cushion the impact of cross-border capital flows. Second, there was a desire to provide technical…
  • Interview with Axel Weber

    Steve Cecchetti and Kim Schoenholtz
    16 Jul 2015 | 5:14 am
    Axel Weber, Chairman of the Board of Directors, UBS Group AG; Member, Group of Thirty; former President, Deutsche Bundesbank; former member, Governing Council, European Central Bank; former German governor of the International Monetary Fund.Has the experience of the crisis changed your view of the central bank policy tool kit?Chairman Weber: Not necessarily. Even though many of the instruments we now consider unconventional policy instruments were not part of the tool kit for a few decades, they were conventional instruments in the past. So I don’t think that the tool kit has changed that…
  • After Greece: Saving EMU

    Steve Cecchetti and Kim Schoenholtz
    13 Jul 2015 | 5:37 am
    Euro-area leaders announced yet another agreement with Greece this morning. However, the survival of the euro area has never been about the fate of Greece. Instead, it is whether the Europeans will implement the reforms necessary to keep the euro area together. If they do, the common currency will endure. If they don’t, then the euro may not survive the next big adverse shock.Saving the euro requires the creation of a truly pan-European financial system. While a unified financial market would surely improve capital allocation across the continent, it is a full euro-area banking union that…
  • China's stock market boom and bust

    Steve Cecchetti and Kim Schoenholtz
    6 Jul 2015 | 4:23 am
    Ask a well-educated person which country boasts the largest equity market and you’ll usually get the right answer: the United States. Ask which country has the second largest market and you’re likely to get a range of answers: Japan? Britain? Germany?The answer is China. In terms of annual trading volume, China’s equity market has been #2 since 2009. Measured by total market capitalization, it has been #2 for seven of the past nine years. As of May 2015, the market capitalization of domestic issues on the booming Shanghai (SSE) and Shenzhen (SZE) exchanges combined surpassed US$10…
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    Republic 3.0

  • Growing numbers of “benefit companies” pursue both purpose and profit

    Anne Kim
    24 Jul 2015 | 4:15 am
    In 30 states and the District of Columbia, shareholders can even sue companies that don’t live up to their mission. The post Growing numbers of “benefit companies” pursue both purpose and profit appeared first on Republic 3.0.
  • Revisiting welfare reform

    Anne Kim
    22 Jul 2015 | 4:59 am
    A potential update to welfare reform is no substitute for poverty reduction. The post Revisiting welfare reform appeared first on Republic 3.0.
  • Segregation and its impacts on Latino education and earnings

    Anne Kim
    20 Jul 2015 | 12:05 pm
    Latinos achieve lower earnings and education in the nation’s most segregated cities, says a new study. The post Segregation and its impacts on Latino education and earnings appeared first on Republic 3.0.
  • One man’s crusade to make Congress work better

    Anne Kim
    14 Jul 2015 | 4:12 am
    Ban incumbents from campaigning against each other, says Sen. Joe Manchin, and require a five-day workweek. The post One man’s crusade to make Congress work better appeared first on Republic 3.0.
  • How “Queen of the Hill” can help fix our highways

    Phil LaRue
    13 Jul 2015 | 4:02 am
    Congress should adopt this bipartisan solution to save the Highway Trust Fund from a looming shutdown. The post How “Queen of the Hill” can help fix our highways appeared first on Republic 3.0.
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    Principles of Economics and Business

  • US Economy at a Glance [Infographic]

    12 Jul 2015 | 8:29 am
    We live in a globalized world where virtually all countries interact with each other. As a result the economy has become increasingly complex. Despite this (or perhaps just because of it), it is important to know what is going on in the world around you. After all, well-informed citizens make better decisions. However, being an informed citizen is easier said than done these days. We are confronted with so much information through the media and the internet that finding and processing relevant information has become quite a challenge. In other words, we face an information overload.In…
  • What Type of Entrepreneur Are You?

    30 Jun 2015 | 6:17 am
    There is no such thing as the stereotypical entrepreneur. Even though there are some traits that most entrepreneurs may have in common (e.g. persistence, dedication), we can find a wide variety of different personality types among them. To provide a simple overview we will try to classify these types into several groups. This will also allow you to find out what kind of entrepreneur you are.Now, to make this distinction we will need two dimensions. The first one is whether or not entrepreneurs are trying to predict the future. This is important because it significantly affects their…
  • How to Become a Successful Entrepreneur [Infographic]

    16 Jun 2015 | 12:40 am
    Starting your own business is a tough job. There are thousands of new companies founded every year all around the world, but most of them fail within the first five years of operation. However, for the few ventures that actually make it, the upside potential is virtually unlimited. The latest research on entrepreneurship (see also: Entrepreneurial Method) shows that the success of a venture depends on much more than just its business case. Hence, if you want to start your own business, you have to know what it takes to be successful and how you can increase your chances.With this in mind…
  • The Entrepreneurial Method

    28 May 2015 | 5:06 am
    There are thousands of new companies founded every year all around the world. Most of them fail within the first five years of operation. However, there are a few extremely successful ventures that become incredibly valuable in a short period of time.Hence, we have asked ourselves: What does it take to be a successful entrepreneur. Why are some successful while most others fail. And how can we increase the chances of becoming successful entrepreneurs?Fortunately enough, scientists have already done quite a lot of research on this. One concept that stands out is what we call…
  • Why Do Firms Need Growth?

    14 May 2015 | 10:32 am
    Growth is one of the most prominent business objectives of many firms. In recent years it has become almost self-evident that a company has to grow in order to be successful. No matter what firm or business, there always seems to be a need for further expansion. In other words, growth has become an imperative.Admittedly, this may not come as a surprise, considering we live in an economic system that builds on constant growth (see also Do We Really Need Economic Growth?). In that sense, companies would need to grow simply because they are a part of the system and all the others are doing…
 
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    Innovative Advisory Group

  • Inflation Monitor – July 2015

    Kirk Chisholm
    23 Jul 2015 | 7:05 am
    Inflation Monitor – July 2015 Inflation Monitor Summary - Composite Ranking * The Inflation Equilibrium is a quick summary for the whole data series of the inflation monitor. If you don't like statistics, this is the chart for you.   Inflation Monitor - July 2015 - Introduction I hope you enjoyed your Independence Day. While Greece may not have the same appreciation of our holiday, they had one of their own... A Bank holiday. While the Greek Crisis in Europe seems to be solved??? The greater problem persists. The Greek people voted a resounding "NO" on the terms and the Greek…
  • How Self Directed IRAs Can Help Protect You From Stock Market Crashes and Halted Trading on Exchanges

    Kirk Chisholm
    9 Jul 2015 | 7:23 am
    How Self Directed IRAs Can Help Protect You From Stock Market Crashes and Halted Trading on Exchanges I never attempt to make money on the stock market. I buy on the assumption that they could close the market the next day and not reopen it for five years.   - Warren Buffett If you were paying attention yesterday, then you probably heard that the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) halted trading for 3.5 hours and Chinese stock market continue to crash. So much for Wall Street having a lazy summer. Should you worry about these events? Yes... and No. As of today you should not have much to…
  • Inflation Monitor – June 2015

    Kirk Chisholm
    26 Jun 2015 | 8:15 am
    Inflation Monitor – June 2015 Inflation Monitor Summary - Composite Ranking   * The Inflation Equilibrium is a quick summary for the whole data series of the inflation monitor. If you don't like statistics, this is the chart for you.   Inflation Monitor - June 2015 - Introduction It is officially summer and most markets are becoming more quiet. This is of course excluding the ongoing crisis in Greece. They must love the attention because they have been dragging out this "crisis" since 2011. Everyone involved in this mess (on both sides) has a reason to kick the can down…
  • What You Don’t Know About Renting vs Buying a Home Can Cost You Money

    Kirk Chisholm
    22 Jun 2015 | 7:29 am
    What You Don’t Know About Renting vs Buying a Home Can Cost You Money   "If you rent a home, it is an expense. When you buy a home, it is an expense. If you buy a home and rent it out to a third party, it becomes an investment. A better way to put it is that when you are renting, you rent from a landlord. When you buy a home to live in, you are renting from yourself." This is the third and last post of this series. The first post, Should You Rent or Buy a Home?, examined what factors you should consider when renting vs buying a home. The second post, What is the True Cost of…
  • What is the True Cost of Owning a Home?

    Kirk Chisholm
    10 Jun 2015 | 7:04 am
    What is the True Cost of Owning a Home?     In the prior post of this series, Should You Rent or Buy a Home?, I wrote about the pros and cons of home ownership vs renting. It is important to start here when you are considering whether to rent or buy a home. The decision of where to live should not be solely made on emotional attachment or financial considerations. It should be made up of both if you are planning on living in a home for many years. You want to love where you live. This week’s post will be focused more on the financial considerations of renting vs buying a home.
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    Hoosier Econ

  • Explosion of College Text Book Prices

    Hoosier Econ
    26 Jul 2015 | 10:12 am
    Economist Mark J. Perry has a new chart out showing overall inflation, especially in college textbooks. The Unsustainable Trajectory of College Textbook Prices, the new era of $400 textbooks is here http://t.co/e5uarCMOYe pic.twitter.com/DhqcUHS9nE — Mark J. Perry (@Mark_J_Perry) July 26, 2015
  • Medicine Crap Shoot: Antibiotic Drugs

    Hoosier Econ
    26 Jul 2015 | 5:43 am
    The Boston Globe had an article that produced disturbing notes on antibiotic medicine and how it’s prescribed in healthcare. Overall the theme is good in promoting a major overhaul in educating future doctors about anitbiotics and how to properly prescribe them. The full article can be viewed here, which is a great read. Here are […]
  • Chart: Why Cable Television is About To Change….Dramatically

    Hoosier Econ
    24 Jul 2015 | 4:56 pm
    Via Wall Street Journal (full article here) – TV viewership is dropping across all age demographics, of course, as cord-cutting and cord-shaving pick up, and online video grows in popularity. And younger people have always watched less TV than older groups — that’s why advertisers generally pay a premium to reach them.
  • The Problem With Hillary Clinton’s Tax Proposal on Short-Term Investments

    Hoosier Econ
    24 Jul 2015 | 6:30 am
    Last night I saw someone post this article “Hillary Clinton Wants To Increase Taxes on Short-Term Investments”. Click on the title for the full article but here is a quick snippet: Clinton’s proposal would increase taxes on investments held for slightly longer than a year on a sliding scale. It would, for example, tax top […]
  • Picture of Top 20 Cities Americans Fled Last Year

    Hoosier Econ
    23 Jul 2015 | 1:29 pm
    Data compiled by Bloomberg between 2013 – 2014. Read full article here.
 
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    EKOINGGAS

  • Future bright for RI poultry firms

    21 Jul 2015 | 9:45 pm
        Indonesia's poultry companies will enjoy a more favorable business environment this year with lower commodity prices and the lifting of Japan's ban on processed-chicken import from Indonesia, according to analysts as reported by the Jakarta Post.    Bahana Securities analyst Michael . Setjoadi said that lower corn and soybean price would help offset the adverse impact of rupiah depreciation for the sector, in which 80 percent of costs of goods sold (COGS) are imported. US soybeans have lost 7.3 percent in two weeks, the biggest decline since July, while corn…
  • Indonesia sets sights on more Asian buyers

    15 Jul 2015 | 3:40 am
         Indonesia poultry suppliers are week s away from making their exports of processed chicken to Japan in a decade, an endorsement of quality that will boost the country's push into a regional market dominated by Thailand.     That is good news for global commodities giant Cargill Inc and Indonesian food group, PT Indofood Sukses Makmur Tbk, which have announced plans to invest several hundred million dollars in Indonessian's poultry sector, aiming to tap a chunk of Asia's export potential, as well as strong domectic growth.    …
  • Jakarta to invest in cattle breeding in NTT

    13 Jul 2015 | 8:12 pm
        The Jakarta administration has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) admistration to invest in cattle breeding in NTT to meet the city's demand of 150 tons of beef per day.    The MoU was signed by Jakarta Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama and NTT Governor Frans Lebu Raya in Kupang and witnessed by President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo lately.    According to Maritime Affairs and Agriculture Agency head Darjamuni, the city will provide prime cattle for cattle breeders in NTT and develop quarantine facilities…
  • Cargill Sees $1 bln Investment in Indonesia; Eyes Poultry Sector

    12 Jul 2015 | 11:01 pm
         Cargill Inc. may invest $1 billion in Indonesia over the next three to four years, with a focus on entering the poultry sector and expanding it's palm business in the Southeast Asian country, the CEO of the top global commodities trader said on Tuesday.    Earlier this year, Indonesia entered talks to resume poultry shipments to Japan after a 10-year stoppage, with any agreement likely to be worth an estimated initial $200 million per year. These government discussions followed soon after a food safety scandal involving Chinese meat…
  • Poultry Firms See Net Profit Plunge this Year

    12 Jul 2015 | 9:32 pm
       Analysts predict that publicly-listed poultry companies will end the financial year with a deflating annual income due the slumping prices on the back of day-old chick (DOC) oversupply, a condition which is expected to continue to early next year before demands start bouncing back.    Mandiri Sekuritas Analyst Herman Koeswanto said in his published research that the last quarter of this year remained challenging of poultry firms, which he projected to book lackluster financial performance by year end, given slow recorvery in product prices.    He…
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