Felix Salmon

The unhelpful lionization of small business

October 24, 2011

Jared Bernstein has the wonky version in the NYT, but Jim Surowiecki has the soundbite:

The Obama administration’s biggest macroeconomic mistake

October 13, 2011

I’m late to Ezra Klein’s big article about whether the Obama administration could have avoided our current economic woes, because I was having dinner last night with the head of the Bureau of Economic Analysis, and I wanted to see what he had to say first. And I’m glad I did!

Chart of the day, median income edition

October 10, 2011

Why has no one thought to do this before? Every month, the Current Population Survey goes out to a nationally representative sample of more than 50,000 interviewed households and their members. And in one of the questions, those households — or at least the households who didn’t answer the same question the previous month — are asked how much money they made, in total, over the past 12 months. That question has now been asked in 138 successive months, since January 2000. Which means that with a bit of clever analysis, it’s possible to put together an apples-to-apples comparison of what has happened to household income every month.

Unemployment’s here to stay

October 7, 2011

There’s no particularly good news in these numbers. For every glimmer of good news, like the upward revisions to previous reports totaling 100,000 new jobs or so, there’s an offsetting piece of bad news, like the broad U6 unemployment rate jumping up to 16.5% from 16.2%.

The alternative to tax-and-spend

October 5, 2011

Matt Yglesias’s post on Denmark this morning got me all misty-eyed for European tax-and-spend liberalism:

The negative correlation between obesity and indebtedness

October 2, 2011

Michael Lewis says something very odd in his big piece on California and the phenomenon of overconsumption:

¿Hard Keynesianism Chileno? ¡Claro po!

September 30, 2011

By Mark Dow

Matthew Yglesias has an interesting new post on Hard Keynesianism. It was succinct enough for me to be able to read the whole thing in between my tactical trades this morning and write a brief response.

Charts of the day, CBO testimony edition

September 14, 2011

Two charts jump out at me from Doug Elmendorf’s presentation to the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction. The first is the sheer size of various loopholes in the tax code:

How journalists deal with economists’ ethics

September 1, 2011

Financial Stability in Iceland

Craig Silverman emails with some questions about the proposed economists’ code of ethics, which I think is an excellent idea. He has an interesting angle: how does this affect journalists? Here are his questions, with my answers.