Friday, April 29, 2005

Since we're talking policy, here are some fiscal links.

Here is a CBO report on effective tax rates and info on who pays income taxes. Here is a link to historical tax brackets. Check out the 1944-45 rates.

Fed policy debate heats up!

Stephen Roach argues that the Fed is has engineered interest rates that are too low. David Altig provides a response and Global Trader's Diary provides comments and links to Altig.

How bad is 3.1% real gdp growth?

David Altig discusses the pessimistic response in the press to yesterday's real gdp numbers.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

High Energy Prices Slow Economic Growth

The U.S. economy expanded at the slowest pace in two years in the first quarter, as high energy prices helped put a damper on spending by consumers and businesses and forced the already huge trade deficit to widen. BEA Press Release

Can you say compensating differential?

How much would they have to pay you to do this? By the way, what's a compensating differential?

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Cops and Crime

Check out this scatter diagram of crime and police presence and the discussion on causation and natural experiments at the Marginal Revolution.

The Return of Institutions

In this post, David Warsh discusses new ideas on economic growth by Daron Acemoglu. Scroll towards the bottom for a summary. The entire post is interesting, especially the history of thought on economic institutions. (hat tip to Lynne at the Knowledge Problem)

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Chile vs. U.S.

Here is an editorial that compares the U.S. social security system to the Chilean system.

Fed Expected to Hike Rates

It looks like the Fed will hike rates again at their meeting next week.

Saturday, April 23, 2005


Looking for something interesting to read? Check out this review of Steven Levitt's new book. Among other things, he argues that Roe vs. Wade made a significant contribution to the decline in crime in the 1990s.

Social Security Debate

The great social security debate continues. Here is some background. Here is the transcript of a panel discussion of the issues at the Brookings Institution earlier this year. One of the participants, Jeff Brown, is a Miami econ alum.

Why are oil prices so high?

High oil prices are in the news and in our pocketbooks. Why are they so high? Here is a news story that tries to answers this question. Lynne Kiesling, a Miami econ alum, has a post on her blog discussing the current energy bill.

More: Here is a link to an analysis of the history of oil prices with cool graphs. The data only goes to 2003. The current spot price of West Texas Intermediate is about $54.39, which in 2000 dollars is about $53.