James Pethokoukis

About that surge in U.S. productivity …

August 11, 2009

(Lightly microblogging this week from the Great White North)

A bit of analysis (from IHS Global) on the 6.4 percent jump¬† in second-quarter business productivity from the world’s most competitive economy:

Cap-and-trade has a China problem

August 10, 2009

(Lightly microblogging this week from The Great White North)

There is no way this passes US Senate unless it has a tariff that penalizes nations who are not capping climate emissions, such as India and China.  So not only would cap-and-trade create more taxes and regulation, it might spur a bout of protectionism. It is the gift that keeps on giving.

Who would get hit by Democrat healthcare tax?

August 10, 2009

(Lightly microblogging this week from The Great White North)

A plan to tax health plans (via the Senate Finance plan) could create an AMT-type situation where rising inflation causes it to affect more and more Americans each year. Recall that the AMT originally affected only 155 wealthy households.

Will the U.S. job market improve faster than expected?

August 10, 2009

(Lightly microblogging this week from The Great White North)

Ed Yardeni makes the case that the job market may bounce back strongly, kind of (bold is mine):

4 reasons why the July unemployment report was worse than you think

August 8, 2009

Lots of temporary jobs and discouraged job seekers are the story. From David Rosenberg at Gluskin Sheff on the unemployment report:

Why the unemployment rate is headed higher

August 7, 2009

There were no high-fives at the White House today because of this probable economic reality, as explained by the guys at RDQ Economics (the great John Ryding and Conrad DeQuandros):

5 political impacts of today’s July jobs report

August 7, 2009

Rising U.S. unemployment, to borrow a phrase, has been a giant vampire squid wrapped around the face of the Obama administration, sucking out its popularity and thus draining momentum from its legislative agenda. But now the White House received some good news from the jobs front. The unemployment in July unexpectedly fell to 9.4 percent from 9.5 percent in June. This breaks a string of 16-straight months where the unemployment rate had either risen or stayed flat, including every month of the Obama term. (Recall the rate was 7.6 percent in January.)

U.S. corporate tax rates vs. the world (OECD)

August 7, 2009

How does the US corporate tax rate stack up against other nations? Take a look (via the Tax Foundation):

U.S. jobs numbers: charts edition

August 7, 2009

Another look at the July employment numbers:

080709jobs

Unemployment rate in July slips to 9.4 percent; another 247,000 jobs lost. Yuck

August 7, 2009

The bad news arrives. Here is the latest from the Labor Department on the July unemployment rate and the number of jobs lost (bold is mine):