Workers of the World, Good Night!

I spent the 1981-82 school year in Israel as a visiting professor at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem through a Fulbright Fellowship. This was the year of the bombing of the Ossiraq Nuclear reactor near Baghdad and the Lebanon War. Though less threatening than the 1967 Six-Day War and the 1974 Yom Kippur war, the […]

Signs of Continuing China Inflation

Economists have been virtually universal in their prediction that Chinese inflation would peak this summer — so much so that I’ve felt like a pretty lonely skeptic.  As far as I can tell, the forces that have been driving prices upwards for the past 18 months remain essentially unchanged, and are likely to continue. The […]

Achuthan: “It’s Too Late” for Obama on Jobs

Economic Cycle Research Institute co-founder Lakshman Achuthan was on Tech Ticker yesterday discussing the outlook for the economy. Business Insider does a good write-up of his commentary, highlighting the fact that the ECRI has yet to signal a double dip. However, I wanted to add a few comments as well. ECRI’s underlying message is this: […]

Ben Bernanke Doesn’t Get the Message

I was on vacation last week (far from Jackson Hole) when Ben Bernanke gave his widely anticipated speech. The media (see the Times, for example) seemed to focus mainly on his criticisms of the political branches and economic policymaking, which were accurate enough. But in my opinion, Bernanke drew the wrong lessons from those observations. […]

The Eurozone Crisis Then and Now

The expansion of the European financial crisis and its deepening into a political crisis has followed a clear causal chain produced by a series of missed opportunities. The problem began in early 2009, as a knock-on effect from the 2008 global financial crisis, which had already claimed Iceland as a victim. Iceland was not an […]

Vignettes from RBI Annual Report 2010-11

RBI is worried about fiscal consolidation at the Centre, or the lack of it. They do not mince too many words on it. The need to balance consumption and investment is stressed. Government fiscal multiplier is higher for capital expenditure than for government consumption expenditure. Not surprising. India’s inflation threshold is around 4% to 6%. […]

Apple’s Creative Destruction of Competitors

One of the things that seems to have gotten lost in the avalanche of Steve Jobs coverage has been the impact he has had on technology investors. I refer not to the entire technology sector as an investable asset, but rather, the utterly crushing effect Apple has had on specific competitors as Jobs remade entire […]

Who Is Alan Krueger?

He’s a professor of economics and public affairs at Princeton University and President Obama’s choice to lead the White House Council of Economic Advisers. “I have nothing but confidence in Alan as he takes on this important role as one of the leaders of my economic team,” the President said yesterday when he announced Krueger’s […]

Policymakers Need Better Data on the Economy

Binyamin Appelbaum recently highlighted the measurement problems we have with US data. Not only are the data often very slow to arrive, there can be substantial revisions to many series after they are released and the revisions can change the picture of the economy substantially. As I’ve written about before, I would like to see […]

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