Wednesday, March 19, 2014

General Economics

National Journal | The World's Poor Have Not Recovered From the Great Recession
In the seven years since the Great Recession began, much of the world still has not recovered. Well, perhaps national economies have. But still pained in the wake of the financial collapse are the world's poor and youth. 
FOX News | US current account deficit narrows to lowest level in 14 years as exports, income rises
Large increases in exports and overseas investment income narrowed the U.S. current account deficit to the lowest level in 14 years in the October-December quarter.

Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
WSJ | The Economic Roots of American Retreat
A recent Pew Research Center survey finds that, by 56% to 29%, the American public says that it is more important for the United States to minimize its involvement in the Ukrainian crisis than to take a firm stand against Russian actions. Meanwhile, the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll finds that 57% of Americans believe the U.S. is still in recession.
Weekly Standard | The Obamacare of Real Estate
Top Senate Banking Committee members released plans this week to wind down mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and replace them with a complicated apparatus disturbingly similar to Obamacare.

WSJ | Two Economists on School Reform: We Know (A Few) Things That Work
Into this debate come two economists, Greg J. Duncan of the School of Education at the University of California at Irvine, and Richard J. Murnane of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, with an encouraging message: We do have evidence that a few approaches work.
Heritage Foundation | How to Avoid Another Housing Crisis
What’s one thing Congress could do to help the economy and American homeowners?
Library of Economics | Keynes for limited government?
The Free Exchange Economist blog recently published a nice celebration of Hayek's "The Road to Serfdom", that was published some 70 years ago. It might not be Hayek's best book, but it is still the most popular one.

Health Care

Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
Real Clear Markets | Obamacare's Disappearing Insurance Mandate
House Republicans have called the White House's bluff on Obamacare's mandate that requires everyone to buy health insurance. And Democrats are mad.
FOX Business | Study Finds ObamaCare Not Necessarily Increasing Insurance Competition
As the ACA draws near its year-one enrollment deadline on March 31, a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) shows competition in state's insurance markets varies.
Heritage Foundation | The Impact of the Affordable Care Act on the Health Care Workforce
The Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA) is projected to expand health insurance coverage to an estimated 30 million to 34 million people. However, expansion of coverage is not an expansion of actual care, and the distinction is becoming clear.


CNN Money | 4 things to expect from Yellen's Fed
Get ready for Janet Yellen's first policymaking meeting as head of the Federal Reserve.
WSJ | What Will It Take for the Fed to Raise Rates?
Since short-term interest rates were set near zero more than five years ago, the timeline for raising them has been a moving target. First there was "some time" which became "an extended period." Seeking more specifics, the market was then told rates would begin to rise in mid-2013, by late 2014 and then mid-2015.

Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
WSJ | Stress Tests Won't Prevent the Next Financial Crisis
On March 26, the Federal Reserve will release the results of the "stress tests" it conducted on the nation's 30 largest banks. The findings will purportedly reveal how well a bank can withstand a financial crisis, but the Fed's decision to implement more complex stress tests doesn't address what caused the financial crisis of 2008.

WSJ | What to Watch From the Fed Meeting
The Federal Reserve concludes a two-day policy meeting Wednesday, the first with Janet Yellen officially at the helm.


Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
Market Watch | Big banks gang up to squash tiny tax
America’s too-big-to-fail banks are freaking out over one Republican lawmaker proposing a tiny tax that would likely never get past their massive lobbyist force, anyway.
Investors | Tax Reform Should Begin With Eliminating Corporate Taxes
My daydream is to lock all members of Congress and the president in a classroom with a big whiteboard and not let them out until they can pass a basic test in public finance. The first thing I'd teach them about is tax incidence — who really bears the burden of a tax.
CRS | The Mortgage Interest and Property Tax Deductions: Analysis and Options
Concern has increased over the size and sustainability of the United States' recent budget deficits and the country's long-run budget outlook. This concern has brought the issues of the government's revenue needs and fundamental tax reform to the forefront of congressional debates.


CNN Money | North Dakota wants you: Seeks to fill 20,000 jobs
In a new recruiting campaign to be rolled out in May, the North Dakota Economic Development Foundation is aiming to fill more than 20,000 jobs -- ranging from truck drivers and oilfield workers to receptionists and food servers.

Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
Forbes | The Law That Lets Obama Demagogue Overtime Pay And Puts The Squeeze On Oregon Berry Farmers
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was passed in 1938, one of those statist measures that FDR and his allies said were necessary to combat the Depression. It is the law that puts federal politicians and especially bureaucrats in the Department of Labor in charge of key aspects of labor contracts, including the minimum wage and mandatory overtime pay.

WSJ | Big Business May Soon Post More Job Openings
Moderation may be the key word from the latest chief executive survey done by the Business Roundtable. But at least CEOs aren’t cutting back on hiring.


CNN Money | Russia's U.S. debt not a threat
Russia and the United States have levers to pull in their diplomatic showdown over Ukraine, but the amount of U.S. debt held by Russia won't be one of them.