Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Wrap Up for January 2019

Even a college degree is no longer a guarantee, that one can expect to maintain a career which provides a smooth transition to retirement. "A majority of new retirees in 2014 said they were forced to retire."

Trump as the Dr. Strangelove of financial markets.

Dietz Vollrath looks at the "deep roots" of growth and development. Also, Part 2.

An 80 year low for U.S. population growth.

Recommendations on books for effective altruism, by Will MacAskill

There are lots of new books to look forward to in 2019.

Ricardo Hausmann: Lack of transparency is a problem in most instances, but especially so, when it comes to debt obligations. "Secrecy has a place in government, but not in international public-sector finance."

Fiscal policy is not a reasonable option for the next recession. At least not as a first line of defense.

"Rising Government Debt: Causes and Solutions for a Decades-Old Trend"

Low unemployment is about more than just "strong" or "weak" labour markets. Graphs tell the story.

"Blogsplaining is the use of logic to solve an obvious problem, but without acknowledging the cultural imperatives that make the solution impossible to implement. In other words, blogsplaining is the thankless task of solving a problem no one wants you to solve."

Will the artificial intelligence story unravel this year?

Some MMT perspectives:
One problem for an MMT approach is that it "calls for raising taxes to control inflation when the economy is strong." Here's Brad Delong's recent take on MMT. From AEI, a question and answer post. Scott Sumner also provides an example from history that monetary policy - not fiscal policy - determines the price level: "In 1968 President Johnson raised taxes and balanced the budget, in the hope and expectation this would hold down inflation. Instead, inflation got even worse, as monetary policy was still highly expansionary."

Sumner added: "If MMT proponents are right that fiscal policy determines inflation, it would mean that Congress caused inflation to move towards a 2-percent trend line after 1990. Given what we all  know about the dysfunction on Capital Hill, where no one even pretends they are adjusting the budget deficit to target inflation, how likely does that seem?"

"It's not just a figure of speech to say that life is too short for something."

Tyler Cowen in an article for Cato Unbound, explains the basic premise for Stubborn Attachments.

Patrick Lee Miller explores "Fukuyama's master concept of identity."

When it comes to the measure of GDP, inputs do not always equal productive outputs. While Michael Pettis is concerned about China, this issue is important for any nation's GDP calculations.

Rhetoric still has a place in economic dialogue.

John Kay explores "The Concept of the Corporation"

"manufacturing contributed more to productivity growth than its share of employment and sustained its contribution even as its productivity growth and employment share fell."

How important is economic mentality for how we envision growth?

"To whom does the U.S. government owe money?"

"fixing Social Security as it stands is fairly straightforward."

Edmund Phelps argues for a better understanding of economic dynamism.

"The human capital income of private business owners exceeds top wage income and top public equity income."

"Why hasn't technology improved government effectiveness?"

"Between 1991 and 2017 agricultural employment fell from 43 to 27 per cent of the global workforce."

It turns out the more money we have, the more time stressed we are.

"How machines are affecting people and places"

It's the larger than usual budget deficits during relatively healthy economic periods, which pose an emerging problem.

"U.S. Residential Real Estate Market Peaked in March 2018"

Scott Sumner describes his intellectual journey for some of his major monetary themes.

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