September 03, 2013
Why Do Economists Blog (Policy Edition) (II)?
Six years ago, I asked this question, and noted that it was primarily economists who had served a stint in government. Still, it was a pretty rarified group; now it's less so.
August 29, 2013
David Brooks on What Works and What Doesn’t
Or, it would be a better world if people who pronounced on policy measures knew something about policy efficacy
August 28, 2013
Most influential economics blogs
According to Onanalytica Indexes, it looks like you're reading one of the ten most influential economics blogs.
April 09, 2013
2013 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge
Despite much bracket-busting, the nation's best college basketball team seems somehow to have emerged as winner of the 2013 men's NCAA basketball tournament. Congratulations to Louisville, and congratulations to budwysor, who won the coveted championship of the 2013 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge, in part by picking not only Louisville as winner but also 5 of the last 8 teams standing. Thanks to all the others who participated. And if things didn't go your way, there's always next year!
March 17, 2013
2013 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge
Yes, it's coming! The all new (well, actually it's somewhat similar to last year's) 2013 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge. Here we once again invite all Econbrowser readers to test your skill (or luck) at predicting the outcomes of the U.S. college mens' basketball tournament. All you have to do is go to the Econbrowser group at ESPN, do some minor registering to create a free ESPN account if you haven't used that site before, and fill in your bracket with who you think might be the winners of each game. Just be sure you complete your predictions before Thursday, because the Econbrowser group does not allow changes in your bracket after the tournament begins on Thursday. And be forewarned that some of the people who compete in the Econbrowser NCAA challenge really know what they're doing!
January 23, 2013
Links for 2013-01-23
Quick links to a few items I found of interest.
January 04, 2013
Think Tanks in the Economics Profession (II)
December 17, 2012
Heritage on Gun Control
From their website:
The wake of a violent tragedy is an appropriate time for reflection, investigation, prayer, and the promotion of healing. It is a particularly inappropriate time for political opportunism. ...
November 29, 2012
Some Speculation Regarding Asian-American Voting Patterns in 2012
Noahpinion asks: “[W]hy did Asian-Americans break so strongly for Obama? I provide my (slightly different) answer.
November 23, 2012
Business Insider has a very nice interview with Bill McBride, in which Bill explains why he is more optimistic about the economy than many others. And yes, the praise of Bill is all well deserved.
November 10, 2012
Links for 2012-11-10
A few links to some items I found of interest.
September 10, 2012
Influencing the internets
It seems UFollow's algorithms decided I'm among the 100 most influential columnists and bloggers. Other econbloggers on their list included Paul Krugman, Felix Salmon, Ezra Klein, Yves Smith, and Bill McBride.
June 27, 2012
Links for 2012-06-27
Quick links to another proposal for Europe, and estimates of U.S. consumer benefits from lower natural gas and gasoline prices.
May 30, 2012
Links for 2012-05-30
Quick links to a few items of interest.
April 14, 2012
Links for 2012-04-14
Quick links to a few items I found interesting.
April 04, 2012
2012 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge
Congratulations to the University of Kentucky for winning the 2012 U.S. college men's basketball championship. Congratulations also to the 28% of those of you in our world famous Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge who successfully predicted that Kentucky would win. The high honors go to a reader with the moniker Heteroskedastic, who correctly anticipated that Kansas would be the team Kentucky would beat in the finals, as well as picking 3 of the last 4 and 5 of the last 8 standing. Thanks to all who participated, and try again next year!
April 01, 2012
Halbert L. White, Jr., 1950-2012
It is with great sadness that I report that UCSD Economics Professor Hal White passed away Saturday morning after an extended struggle with cancer. He was an irreplaceable colleague and dear friend, and we will miss him greatly.
March 14, 2012
Links for 2012-03-14
Quick links to a few items I found interesting.
March 12, 2012
The Amazing Prescience of the Capitol Steps
I've been a fan of the Capitol Steps for decades now, but only recently have I fully appreciated the prescience of their musical insights. I hope Econbrowser readers will too, by singing along to this twenty year old song, "Favored Right Wing" [sample], sung to the tune of "My favorite things". (This song is so old, that no complete online version exists, and I had to laboriously transcribe the words by hand(!), so apologies if there are a couple errors.)
2012 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge
Enough on oil prices and the Fed. I know what you've all really been waiting for is the 2012 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge, where you can test your skills (and luck) at predicting the outcomes of the U.S. college men's basketball tournament. All you have to do is go to the Econbrowser group at ESPN, do some minor registering to create a free ESPN account if you haven't used that site before, and make your picks for the winners of each game. Just make sure you complete your entry before Thursday, because the Econbrowser group only allows predictions before the tournament begins. And be forewarned that some of the people who enter this group really know what they're doing!
March 04, 2012
The power of habit
Charles Duhigg has a very interesting new book called The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business.
February 01, 2012
Links for 2012-02-01
Quick links to a few items I found interesting.
January 18, 2012
Links for 2012-01-18
FT Alphaville on crude oil and the eurozone crisis.
VoxEu notes the systematic international tendency for official deficit figures to understate the magnitude of the change in public debt.
Liberty Street Economics on forecasting with internet search data.
January 16, 2012
Think Tanks in the Economics Profession
Indicators via representation at the Allied Social Sciences Association meetings.
December 29, 2011
The Year in Review: Fantastical Pseudo Economics
Since the media are full of "year in review" pieces, I thought I’d make a contribution of my own. One of the best things about being a blogger is being able to comment quickly on the most outrageous, nonsensical assertions presented in the guise of analysis. Here are my "ten best" (actually -- most hilariously deluded) excursions into the fantasy world from my postings to Econbrowser. The inspirations range from Speaker Boehner's math to the Heritage Foundation's simulations (where have you gone, Bill Beach!)
December 10, 2011
Advice for the academic job market
For new econ Ph.D.'s about to look for a job, the University of Wisconsin has provided a short video of what you might expect when you give your first talk presenting your research to the faculty.
November 15, 2011
Links for 2011-11-15
Quick summaries of a few items of interest.
November 01, 2011
Geography and income
Running a little behind, so I decided today to reprint something I wrote 4 years ago as an excuse to call attention to some charts I still think are pretty interesting.
October 23, 2011
Links for 2011-10-23
Dave Altig and Patrick Higgins at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta have raised their estimate of 2011:Q3 real GDP growth from 1.4% as of the beginning of September to 3.2% currently.
Enterprise Products Partners and Enbridge Inc. announced plans to build a new pipeline from oversupplied Cushing, Oklahoma to the Gulf Coast (hat tip: Jim Brown). I reviewed the great need for such a pipeline here, and this may be one way to get one built without having to wait forever for White House approval.
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco President John Williams reviews lessons from the last 3 years on the effects of unconventional monetary policy.
Michael Plante and Mine Yucel at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas review the evidence on the role of speculation in recent oil price moves.
October 11, 2011
Sargent and Sims
I'm a little late getting to this (by standards of cyberspace time anyway), but I wanted to comment on Monday's announcement about the Nobel prize in economics.
September 28, 2011
Links for 2011-09-28
Social anthropologist David Graeber claims that barter economies never operate the way that economists assume.
James Kahn and Robert Rich worry that the U.S. has entered a phase of weak productivity growth.
September 06, 2011
Links for 2011-09-06
Swiss National Bank announces it will buy foreign currency in unlimited quantities to achieve a target exchange rate. That's quantitative easing with real meat on it.
Jim Brown on the importance of immediately opening up Alaska to more oil exploration and development.
Felix Salmon on why it's depressing to see S&P giving AAA rating to a new security structured from subprime loans.
Felix Salmon again on how to solve the problems with the U.S. Post Office.
Journal of Statistical Software on estimating state-space models.
July 27, 2011
University of Oregon economics professor Mark Thoma has an interesting article on the direction economics should be taking.
June 29, 2011
Links for 2011-06-29
Some quick links to recent analyses of health care costs, oil price shocks, and forecasting commodity prices.
June 13, 2011
Links for 2011-06-13
Some items I found interesting:
- Tyler Cowen outlines what I see as the responsible approach to the U.S. federal fiscal challenges: slow the growth of government spending.
- Some undergraduates at Rutgers University have developed a nice site to track economic indicators. And Bill McBride has an invaluable summary of which ones really matter.
- From the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston: Oil and the Macroeconomy in a Changing World: A Conference Summary.
- The Office of Personnel Management on shifting costs of Postal Service retirement funding to U.S. taxpayers.
- And Glenn Reynolds warns beware of bimbots.
April 05, 2011
2011 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge winner
Congratulations to (1) the University of Connecticut, 2011 NCAA men's basketball champion, and (2) A. Chaves, who, in part because he or she successfully predicted (1), is winner of this year's world-famous Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge.
And condolences to most of the rest of us, who messed up pretty badly with our predictions. Not that I wouldn't have made pretty much the same calls if the same teams were to play again.
March 27, 2011
Update on Japan
A few quick links:
- Toll of dead and missing is in the tens of thousands, with hundreds of thousands still in temporary shelters.
- Dangerous reactor situation persists as evacuation area broadened.
- Automakers face supply problems.
- Impressive photos of rapid road repair.
- Hideaki Akaiwa: a hero's epic told in a modern style.
March 25, 2011
Bloggers Beware! (If You Work at a State University in Wisconsin)
The Republican Party of Wisconsin has made an open records request for the emails of a University of Wisconsin professor of history, geography and environmental studies in an apparent response to a blog post the professor wrote about a group called the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).
March 16, 2011
More on Japan
I wanted to add a few quick additional comments to Ilan Noy's reflections on the possible economic implications of the tragedy in Japan.
March 14, 2011
2011 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge
If you're not too busy forecasting oil prices and the stock market, try your hand at the 2011 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge. All you have to do is go to the Econbrowser group at ESPN, do some minor registering to create a free ESPN account if you haven't used that site before, and make your picks for the winners of each game. Just make sure you complete your entry before Thursday, because the Econbrowser group only allows predictions before the tournament begins.
March 13, 2011
AP: GOP budget targets agency that warned of tsunami
WASHINGTON (AP) — A spending plan being pushed by Republicans would slash funding for the agency that warned Hawaii and the West Coast about the devastating tsunami in Japan.
March 07, 2011
The 25 best financial blogs
If you only follow one economics blog, it has to be Calculated Risk, run by Bill McBride. The site provides concise and very accessible summaries of all the key economic data and developments. One of the reasons McBride is able to do this so well is that he has an almost uncanny knack of recognizing which facts really matter. He began the blog in 2005 because he saw a disaster brewing in the form of the housing bubble, and tried his best to warn the rest of us of what was coming. I've followed him closely ever since, and I don't know if he's ever been wrong. My advice is, if you've come up with a different conclusion from McBride on how economic developments are going to unfold, you'd be wise to think it over again!
December 30, 2010
Best economics blogs
December 19, 2010
What to expect in 2011
I didn't have time to put together a detailed post for today. But fortunately, I see that Bill McBride has done a much better job than I could of summarizing what to look for in 2011.
October 31, 2010
Links for 2010-10-31
Some quick links on the flash crash, China's rare earth elements monopoly, Larry Summers, and economics at UCSD.
October 30, 2010
The Chamber of Commerce Is the International Cosmopolitan Elite
Not that there's anything wrong with that!
I have been pondering two seemingly separate issues -- the first, what constitutes an "elite". David Brooks says it's bobos; Charles Murray says it's those who "...spend school with people who are mostly just like them -- which might not be so bad, except that so many of them have been ensconced in affluent suburbs from birth and have never been outside the bubble of privilege. Few of them grew up in the small cities, towns or rural areas where more than a third of all Americans still live." Personally, I always thought American elites were football players and the folks highlighted on Entertainment Tonight, given the amount of attention devoted to those two groups. (See other recent commentary here) The second, as a social scientist, what interests should one expect the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to be lobbying for  (since we do not have direct observation on the funding of the group, we need to infer the interests). I have come to a single answer that partly addresses both of these two questions:
September 18, 2010
Keep on Cooking Your Eggs and Washing Your Pre-Washed Spinach Thoroughly
Fortunately for me, I don't like peanut butter. From NYT, on the Senate bill to expand FDA powers and increase funding:
September 15, 2010
Links for 2010-09-15
Quick links on sources of job creation, recession probabilities, and alternative ways to access your favorite economic books.
July 22, 2010
Bruce Bartlett Reminds Us: WMD, Medicare Part D, Steel Tariffs, Harriet Miers
Bruce Bartlett reminds us of the George W. Bush: Screwup-in-Chief, 2001-2008. Short version: Iraq, WMD, unfunded Medicare Part D, Sarbanes-Oxley, Katrina, Harriet Miers, no vetos until second term, tax rebates+credits and nonpermanent tax cuts, steel tariffs, ag subsidies, keeping Cheney, compassionate conservativism, signing McCain-Feingold after threatening to veto, neutering SecTreas, and GSEs.
July 09, 2010
Links for 2010-07-09
A new study by Fed economists Neil Bhutta, Jane Dokko, and Hui Shan concludes that the median borrower does not strategically default until equity falls to -62 percent of their home's value.
Karl Smith is not impressed by the USDA's claims about the effects of a soda tax on childhood obesity.
Political Calculations compares the attractiveness to businesses of locating in California versus Texas.
Some analysts have claimed that basketball star LeBron James saved himself $12 million in taxes by choosing to play in Florida rather than New York, though Aaron Merchak, David Henderson, and Frank Stephenson refine the calculation.
And some UCLA scientists found that brain scans can predict what you're going to decide better than you can.
June 23, 2010
Links for 2010-06-23
Tim Duy thinks the fanfare about a new Chinese currency policy is overdone:
The PR overload suggests the Administration is desperately in need of a "win," no matter how trivial.... While China appears willing to adjust the parity rate, changes are likely to be more window dressing than anything else. The industrial base shifted from the US to China over the past twenty years, a transition aided by the Clinton Administration's commitment to a strong dollar, and it is not going to come rushing back for a few percentage points of currency value. The structural shift has happened, and it won't reverse easily.
When Bill McBride says he expects house prices to decline, I pay attention:
When months-of-supply is below 6 months, house prices are typically rising-- and above 6 months-of-supply, house prices are usually falling.... We are much closer to the price bottom now than in 2008, and I don't expect that severe of a price decline. But I do expect house prices to fall in the 2nd half of 2010 and into 2011-- probably another 5% to 10% for the major house price indexes (Case-Shiller and CoreLogic).
A federal judge overturned the moratorium on new deepwater offshore drilling:
"An invalid agency decision to suspend drilling of wells in depths of over 500 feet simply cannot justify the immeasurable effect on the plaintiffs, the local economy, the Gulf region, and the critical present-day aspect of the availability of domestic energy in this country," [U.S. District Judge Martin] Feldman wrote....
The temporary injunction by [Judge] Feldman appears unlikely to bring a swift resumption of deepwater drilling: Oil companies say they're reluctant to start new ventures as an uncertain appeals process unfolds.
June 16, 2010
Links for 2010-06-16
Three interesting figures on fuel consumption, job creation, and prospective interest rates.
April 26, 2010
Non-Economic Question of the Day: Should I Take My (US) Passport If I Visit Arizona?
Reading this factsheet pertaining to SB 1070, I think the answer is yes.
April 17, 2010
Hal Varian passes along this amusing result if you query Google Insights for Search for searches on "mixed drinks" and "hangovers."
April 07, 2010
Links for 2010-04-07
A few items from the 'sphere that you might find interesting.
April 05, 2010
NCAA tournament winner
It was an exciting basketball tournament, right down to the final game.
March 29, 2010
Robert Samuelson on Economics
And on unavoidable spending, and debt crises, and on budget accounting...
From the Washington Post: comes this headline:
March 18, 2010
What the heck is a "Punk Staffer"?
And how does a "punk staffer" differ from a non-punk staffer?
March 15, 2010
2010 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge
If you're both a very faithful and a very passive Econbrowser reader, for two years now you've sat on the sidelines while you watched other, equally faithful but less passive readers participate in the world-famous Econbrowser NCAA Tournament Challenge, in which brave souls pretend they can predict a significant number of the winners of the games of the NCAA men's basketball tournament. If so, here's your third chance to sit on the sidelines again, or maybe even to participate this time.
March 01, 2010
What Are These Three Numbers?
These numbers are expressed in billions of FY2010 dollars.
Figure 1, in billions of FY2010 dollars.
February 28, 2010
What drives media slant?
University of Chicago professors Matthew Gentzkow and Jesse Shapiro propose an answer.
February 22, 2010
The Demand for Stimulus Funds
From Bloomberg today:
...more than 100 congressional Republicans and several Democrats who, after voting against the stimulus bill, wrote Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood seeking money from $1.5 billion the plan set aside for local road, bridge, rail and transit grants. The $862 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act passed last year with no Republican votes in the House and three in the Senate.
January 15, 2010
Haiti relief efforts
One of the organizations to which I have made a contribution is Heart to Heart International.
January 13, 2010
Links for 2010-01-13
Stuart Staniford, who earlier had been persuaded that global oil production might have already peaked, now comments on the potential for increased production from Iraq to push the peak up to a decade down the road.
King Banaian on disturbing developments in Argentina and Venezuela.
Economists comment on the role of the Fed in the housing bubble. Two in particular worth emphasizing:
Marvin Goodfriend: Interest rate policy was appropriately stimulative in the 2002-3 period. But rates should have been raised less mechanically and more aggressively in 2004-5 on grounds of the usual macroeconomic conditions.... A somewhat tighter stance of interest rate policy then could have cut off the last year or so of the house price appreciation and prevented the worst part of the subsequent adjustment.
Mark Gertler: If we could go back in history and make one policy change, I'd go after sub-prime lending. Absent non-prime lending, the likely outcome of the housing correction of 2007 would have been a mild recession like 2000-2001, and not the debacle we experienced.
December 16, 2009
Links for 2009-12-16
- NY Fed economist Erkko Etula finds that he can predict oil prices using the volume of broker-dealer financial assets.
- Washington University Professor James Morley and separately Kansas City Fed economist Todd Clark haven't given up on the Great Moderation.
- My colleague Eli Berman discusses his book Radical, Religious, and Violent: The New Economics of Terrorism
- Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac may seek an increase to their $400 billion federal lifeline before the end of the year.
- Billy Hallowell puts together a blog carnival on Facing Up to the Nation's Finances.
- Berkeley Professor Petr HoYava proposes a new theory of gravity.
December 11, 2009
College football playoffs
November 26, 2009
Blogonomics: Some Random Thoughts
Back in late October, I was invited to a Bank of Canada workshop (organized by Brigitte Desroches and James Rossiter), entitled "Understanding economic outcomes in uncertain times". I was flattered (and a little surprised) to be asked to participate in a panel discussion on "blogonomics", chaired by David Wolf of the Bank of Canada. On the panel were esteemed fellow bloggers David Altig of Macroblog and Stephen Gordon of Worthwhile Canadian Initiative.
August 29, 2009
Of Ideologues and Ranters
From Arnold Kling's entry yesterday:
Kwak goes on to endorse Chinn's ideological rant that the Bush tax cuts caused the financial crisis. Yes, I know that Chinn is speaking in the tone of economic analysis rather than a rant, but only a left-wing ideologue would take the thesis seriously. I bet Kwak cannot find a blog post of Chinn's where he made a policy point against Democrats/liberals or for Republicans/conservatives.
August 27, 2009
I Am Even More Confused Now...
August 19, 2009
Honesty, Dishonesty and Competence: Comments on Posner's Critique
Richard Posner has a critique of public intellectuals who work in the public sphere (with special reference to Christina Romer), either in government service, or in journalistic fora. Mark Thoma and Brad Delong have already made clear the (many) points at which Mr. Posner has gone astray. Parenthetically, I'll add that I wonder about the analytical abilities of anybody who lumps Philip Glass (!) and Elliott Carter together into the highbrow music category (see page 18 in his tome Public Intellectuals: A Study of Decline (1991)). More substantively, I have a few of additional observations, some of which are amplifications of Brad Delong's points.
August 10, 2009
Links for 2009-08-10
I spent the last week of July as a visiting scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, home to Macroblog and a number of superb economists. Their Center for Quantitative Economic Research is now going to be reporting my GDP-Based Recession Indicator Index, as you'll see from following the link.
And I was interested in this story from the Wall Street Journal:
Houston-based Apache Corp. [APA] has agreed to provide natural gas for export to Asia through a proposed project in Canada, the latest sign that huge gas discoveries in North America are reshaping global energy markets. Kitimat LNG Inc., the Canadian company planning to build the liquefied-natural-gas export terminal in Kitimat, British Columbia, will announce Monday that Apache has become the second major North American gas producer to sign on to the project. Last month, another Houston-based gas producer, EOG Resources Inc., signed a similar deal....
"We're confident that there's going to be plenty of gas available for export for a long time," said Greg Weeres, vice president of Pacific Northern Gas Ltd., which is planning to build a pipeline to supply gas to the Kitimat facility.
July 25, 2009
Links for 2009-07-25
You might find these interesting:
July 17, 2009
Links for 2009-07-17
Some quick remarks about the evidence for economic recovery, central bank independence, and Goldman Sachs.
July 16, 2009
In the news
Russ Roberts, Mark Calabria, and I weigh in on the lessons from CIT at the NYT.
And the WSJ surveys economics blogs. I'll give away the plot: the one you're reading rates "five calculators" on the geekiness scale.
July 12, 2009
Links for 2009-07-12
Keith Hennessey, who used to have Larry Summers' job in the Bush White House, on the challenges facing the White House in framing discussion of the effectiveness of the existing stimulus package. See Obama's apparent answer here.
And a hilarious story via Calculated Risk on why Wells Fargo is suing itself.
June 26, 2009
Links for 2009-06-26
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York has put together some very useful timelines of the financial crisis, if you want a handy reference for what happened when in both the United States and around the world.
The BEA reported that disposable personal income increased 1.6% between April and May. In the absence of the stimulus cuts to personal taxes and increases in social benefit payments, the number would have been 0.2%. Real personal consumption expenditures were up 0.2% for the month, though that leaves the April-May average 0.1% below the January-March average. Calculated Risk, always your go-to source for these matters, sums it up this way:
Usually PCE and Residential Investment (RI) lead the economy out of recession, and right now both remain weak. As households increase their savings rate to repair their balance sheets, it seems unlikely that PCE will increase significantly any time soon.
June 17, 2009
Clive Granger memorial pages
The UCSD Economics Department has set up a remembrance page in honor of Clive Granger. Those of you who contributed such moving remarks here at Econbrowser are invited to enter them also on the UCSD remembrance page, as well as to visit the other material collected there.
May 28, 2009
Clive W. J. Granger, 1934-2009
It is with great sadness that I report that Sir Clive Granger passed away last night. He had been a wonderful colleague and good friend.
April 28, 2009
Links for 2009-04-28
Washington University Professor James Morley on typical recession shapes and why they suggest we might see a strong recovery.
Harvard Professor Lucian Bebchuk on how to buy troubled assets while avoiding some of the problems pointed out by many analysts.
Oil 101 looks like a useful new book by commodity trader Morgan Downey.
And the Shadow Open Market Committee is back in business.
April 07, 2009
Some useful resources
Hal Varian and Hyunyoung Choi (paper here) document the usefulness of Google Trends and Google Insights for Search for purposes of updating assessments of current economic magnitudes. I see that Mark Thoma also calls attention to this intriguing data source.
April 06, 2009
2009 NCAA Bracket Econbrowser Challenge Winner
March 21, 2009
2009 NCAA Bracket: Round 1
Congratulations to J. Graham, who successfully predicted 7 of the 10 NCAA round 1 upsets to lead the 2009 NCAA Bracket Econbrowser Challenge and come in ahead of 99.9% of the global ESPN entries. The future for Graham 1 does not look so bright, however, since Wakeforest's first-round loss blew a pretty big hole in the rest of that nice bracket.
March 18, 2009
2009 NCAA Bracket Econbrowser Challenge
OK, I said I wouldn't give you any hints, but decided to pass one along anyway. Here are President Obama's picks.
March 16, 2009
It's tournament time!
I know, you've been regretting all year that you didn't get a chance to enter the the 2008 NCAA Bracket Econbrowser Challenge. Well guess what? Here it is March of 2009 and you have a brand new chance!
February 27, 2009
Point of Clarification: The Economic Report of the President, 2009
Misinformation in the talk-show world. From today's Rush Limbaugh show (which is titled "A Teachable Moment on Tax Hikes"):
CALLER: Thank you for taking my call. I just wanted to point out something to you about your comments on taxing, and Obama's own economic advisors agree with you, and it's in a report that I found online. It's the Economic Report of the President. It's issued by the Council of Economic Advisors, which were appointed by Obama, and there's an entire section in that report that says lowering tax rates stimulates economic growth.
RUSH: That was then. They have removed that from the website. What's the woman's name that wrote that? I'm having a mental block. Romer. Christina Romer. She wrote that. She put it on their website and once Obama won: Bam! It came off, and now in its place is: "Spending a dollar generates a dollar and a half." It used to be, "Reducing taxes every dollar generates a dollar and a half," or a half a dollar. They've totally reworked it. She's been neutered, as it were.
February 01, 2009
Links to a few items I found interesting on non-residential structure investment, the "bad bank" proposal, and separation of powers.
December 24, 2008
Links for 12-24-08
Today I outsource to a couple of links I found interesting:
Dave Cohen on oil prices.
Stephen Gordon on economists' fatal flaw.
James Morley on the need for a new Fed-Treasury accord.
December 07, 2008
...is repudiation of the no-nothing-ness of the past. From Bloomberg:
Dec. 7 (Bloomberg) -- President-elect Barack Obama said the nation owes its military veterans "a sacred trust" and named retired four-star General Eric Shinseki to make the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs "a 21st century" system.
"No one will ever doubt that this former Army chief of staff has the courage to stand up for our troops and our veterans," Obama said at a press conference in Chicago, held on the anniversary of the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. "No one will ever question whether he will fight hard enough to make sure that they have the support that they need."
Shortly before the 2003 U.S. invasion to oust Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, Shinseki told Congress it would take several hundred thousand troops to stabilize postwar Iraq, more than then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld had estimated.
Rumsfeld roundly rejected Shinseki's assessment, insisting the effort could be accomplished with a U.S. commitment of no more than 150,000 troops. He also cut short Shinseki's tenure as chief of staff, which critics of the Bush administration said was punishment for Shinseki's testimony.
December 01, 2008
So long, Tanta
November 28, 2008
William Kristol on Economic Theory and Practice
I don't usually read Bill Kristol's column, but once in a while, my eyes get caught by a headline (that's the difference between reading online and "on paper"), and I'll check out what he has to say. The other day, I read his column "Admit we don't know" on the current economic crisis that, while not in my mind "wrong", seemed puzzling to me. Pay attention to the last paragraph (highlighted in bold).
November 08, 2008
A new one for the playbook
Via Hot Air, an interesting way to score a touchdown.
October 13, 2008
The Nobel Prize in Economics to Paul Krugman
From the The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel's description of Krugman's scientific contributions:
Trade and Geography -- Economies of Scale, Differentiated Products and Transport Costs
By the late 1980s, researchers had begun to integrate economies of scale into general equilibrium models of location and trade, thereby giving precision to the verbal analyses of earlier researchers and adding important new insights. In the resulting work, now commonly known as the new economic geography, economic geographers made use of the new tools, along with economists who took a renewed interest in the field. Several researchers took part in these developments, but the most influential contributions were made by Paul Krugman.
October 10, 2008
The McCain and Obama Economic Advisers Debate
...at the UW-Madison. Ike Brannon spoke on behalf of the McCain-Palin campaign and Austan Goolsbee on behalf of the Obama-Biden campaign. Here's the link to Proposals for Change (Adobe Flash required).
October 02, 2008
"Do I Feel Lucky?"
Reader Bruce Hall inquires why Econbrowser has not weighed in on the rescue debate. First, I'll observe there has been plenty of commentary on the web. But if compelled, then speaking only for myself, I think the members of Congress who voted against the plan the first time should, this time around, ask themselves this single question: "Do I Feel Lucky?" Those who are familiar with this quote will understand my meaning.
September 11, 2008
June 30, 2008
Play chess like the pros
While I'm on the subject of the benefits of slowing down I should perhaps mention this hilarious chess game between grandmasters Maxim Dlugy and Hikaru Nakamura.
June 03, 2008
Bruce Mizrach prepared some very thoughtful questions for an interview at the Society for Nonlinear Dynamics and Econometrics Symposium in San Francisco two months ago. We discussed a broad range of topics, including my background, Markov-switching models, the Fed, oil prices, and why I blog. Below are links you can follow to see the answers to particular questions.
April 07, 2008
Quite the finish
Amazing championship game for the NCAA men's college basketball tournament.
March 31, 2008
NCAA basketball: Round 4
Sixteen entries in the 2008 NCAA Bracket Econbrowser Challenge correctly picked all of the Final Four teams in the NCAA basketball tournament, including our two leaders who also correctly picked all of the Elite Eight finalists.
March 29, 2008
"Antarctic Ice Shelf Disintegration Underscores a Warming World"
Satellite imagery from the National Snow and Ice Data Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder reveals that a 13,680 square kilometer (5,282 square mile) ice shelf has begun to collapse because of rapid climate change in a fast-warming region of Antarctica.
NCAA basketball: Round 3
And after Round 3 of the 2008 NCAA Bracket Econbrowser Challenge we have not one but two entries (from N. Klingenstein and H. Parsley) that correctly picked all of the Elite Eight finalists. How they knew Davidson would get there is beyond me.
March 22, 2008
In memoriam: John E. Flavin, Jr. (1922-2008)
Some personal reflections on the last year of my father-in-law, who died Thursday at the age of 86.
NCAA basketball: postmortem for Round 1
Herewith an update on how the 2008 NCAA Bracket Econbrowser Challenge stands after round 1.
March 21, 2008
NCAA Basketball: Day 1
We seem to have no fewer than six separate entries in the 2008 NCAA Bracket Econbrowser Challenge with a perfect score so far, having accurately predicted the outcome of all 16 of the first night's basketball tournament games. And five of those perfect entries all seem to have been submitted by a certain M. Goodrum.
Hmmm... this guy could be tough to beat.
March 19, 2008
2008 NCAA Bracket Econbrowser Challenge
March 18, 2008
No, I'm not talking about the credit markets-- I'll take those up in my next post, I promise. But first I need to discuss something really important, namely, the men's college basketball tournament.
December 24, 2007
We wish a merry Christmas to all our readers and friends.
November 23, 2007
Why do some economists blog? (Policy edition)
Several people have asked why economists blog. Here are a couple random thoughts centered on individual characteristics.
October 30, 2007
The Salem witch trial of Elizabeth Jackson Howe
For Halloween I could perhaps write something about what's spooking the Fed as they contemplate tomorrow's fed funds rate decision. But I decided instead to write about the Salem witch trials.
October 29, 2007
Econoblogger at work
Cute pic from the Curious Capitalist.
September 28, 2007
Bugged by Excel
A colleague calls my attention to the fact that Excel 2007 is prone to a curious arithmetic miscalculation.
September 14, 2007
The commercialization of space
Google seems to be thinking big.
July 10, 2007
English for fun and profit
Continuing the travelogue from my recent visit to Tokyo, I was also struck by the romantic way that English gets employed commercially, with free-spirited metaphors that must mean something different to Japanese than they would to Americans. Here are some examples.
July 03, 2007
What is an Econbrowser?
I asked TouchGraph Google Browser, and here's what it thinks.
May 29, 2007
George Borjas thinks he understands Paris Hilton
My former colleague George Borjas has a notion that he might get more traffic for his new blog if he discusses the economics of Paris Hilton.
You think he's right?
May 25, 2007
One (Non-Isolated) Example of the Current State of Affairs in Government Administration
Special counsel finds GSA chief violated Hatch Act
By Daniel Pulliam firstname.lastname@example.org May 23, 2007
A report from the federal agency that investigates allegations of illegal political activity in the government has concluded that Lurita Doan, the head of the General Services Administration, violated the Hatch Act.
April 21, 2007
Assorted links to updates on some of the stories we've been following at Econbrowser, including declining Saudi Arabian oil production, the role of mortgage-backed securities, and pressures on public pension funds to take on additional risks.
March 26, 2007
This week's Carnival of the Capitalists is hosted by Political Calculations (of calculate your own recession probability fame). In addition to PC's usual dazzling display of cool scripts, Ironman had the excellent taste to designate Econbrowser's Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble as "The Best Post of the Week, Anywhere". Which maybe gives y'all a chance to start a new thread for discussion of just what's been driving the housing market.
March 18, 2007
Life on Saturn's moon?
The mainstream media caught the story of apparent seas made of methane or ethane on Saturn's largest moon Titan. But there was an even more interesting account about tiny Enceladus.
February 24, 2007
Creative exam answers
Now this is funny.
February 13, 2007
Resources for economics students and professors
Here is a collection of links to recent news stories that apply some of the ideas we've covered in the principles of economics class I'm teaching at UCSD this quarter.
January 12, 2007
The Return of Knowledge-Based Policy-Making?
NOAA admits a human role in global warming. OMB drops -- based on a critical National Academies of Sciences report --plans to implement a flawed risk-assessment procedure. Are these harbingers of change?
January 02, 2007
Could be the greatest game in the history of college football, says Matt Zemek.
November 24, 2006
Martin Kelly is your source for news on the death of Alexander Litvinenko.
November 15, 2006
Ain't no use to sit and wonder why, Bob
June 08, 2006
Here and there around the web
A few items catching my eye around the web this week, including probability of recession, progress on refining capacity, and Greg Mankiw and his dog.
March 06, 2006
The economics of email
Last week I received the following email message. I bet some of you did, too.
January 17, 2006
The neoclassical paradigm
Do economists have a sensible way of thinking about the world?
January 11, 2006
Putting arcane symbols into Powerpoint presentations
I've just written up the Idiot's Guide to Using Tex with Powerpoint. Here it is (it's only one sentence long):
Download this, find the symbol you want, and copy and paste it into your presentation.
December 27, 2005
Here and there around the web
Catching my eye here and there around the web this week: the source found for one of Saturn's rings and some interesting comments on Enron, Iran, and Americans serving in Iraq.
December 22, 2005
Podcast with Kudlow & Company
I had a reunion with two of my previous pajama party participants, Paul Hoffmeister of Polyconomics, and Larry Kudlow of Kudlow and Company and Money Politics. This time we had an old-fashioned spoken conversation on the state of the economy that's available as a podcast.
December 10, 2005
Blogjam at the PJ Corral
I participated in a blogjam yesterday hosted by Pajamas Media. What's a blogjam, you ask?
December 08, 2005
Best business weblog award
October 21, 2005
Here and there around the web
Catching my eye here and there around the web: latest housing indicators may not be as bullish as they seem, what to make of all the indictments, price-gouging is all-American, and more insights into fuel use per dollar of GDP.
July 15, 2005
On a lighter note
Who says economists don't have a sense of humor? Well, maybe you will, after you find out that I admit to having chuckled over these accounts. Judge for yourself.
July 09, 2005
Here and there around the web
Catching my eye here and there around the web: Supreme Court speculation, a natural experiment in market microstructure, a troubling Kansas court decision, pirates, and an expression of support for those in London.