Felix Salmon

The massive cost of underemployment

Those of us who have learned to always look at the formerly-obscure U6 underemployment measure on the first Friday of every month have long been shocked at the number of people who want to work full-time but who in fact are working part-time. A new study from Andrew Sum and Ishwar Khatiwada of the Center for Labor Market Studies quantifies the cost of today’s unprecedented levels of underemployment on society as a whole; I can’t find the version that was emailed to me online, but a shorter version is here.


John Paulson has only raised $90 million for his new gold fund — WSJ

In which Reuters describes Breakingviews as a “web-based upstart” — Reuters

Media payscale datapoint of the day

ProPublica — a 501(c)(3) nonprofit — is advertising for a social media intern:

Esquire’s investment advice

Courtney Comstock is absolutely right when she runs a story under the headline “You Know It’s Over When Esquire Magazine Is Telling Its Readers How To Invest In Gold Funds”. In a spectacularly silly article, Esquire’s Ken Kurson extolls the virtues of buying gold-denominated hedge funds, on the grounds that if the hedge fund doubles and gold doubles, then you’ll end up quadrupling your money! Genius.

When pension funds shun OTC derivatives

Has Illinois’s Kevin Joyce been reading Andrew Clavell? There’s something quite elegant in its simplicity about this:


Pakistani ambassador rejected because his name is NSFW in Arabic — FP

David Warsh on Haiti — Economic Principals

Using a computer to analyze drawings to see if they might be fake — NPR

Could losing its AAA be a good thing for the US? — Bloomberg

What is a bank? — The Deal

Revamping Goldman’s board

In all the bellyaching about the governance of the biggest banks, and the fact that their boards were spectacularly unqualified to provide any kind of oversight of what they were doing, Goldman Sachs has gone largely unmentioned. But what’s true of Merrill Lynch and Bank of America is true of Goldman too: its executives need some kind of adult supervision, seeing as how they work for their shareholders, rather than just for themselves.

When Germany bails out Greece

Faisal Islam does a great job explaining the problems facing Greece, and why Germany is likely to come up with some kind of bailout:

FT.com’s price hike

What’s happened to the FT’s online subscription rates? Leigh Caldwell was paying £6.12 per month last December, but then his debit card expired, he lost his FT.com access, and he went back to the site to renew. When he got there, he found that the renewal rate he was offered was more than double what he was paying before: £12.98 per month, for “premium” access.