Monday, October 6, 2014

General Economics

Fox News | Failed toll road privatization leaves Indiana in driver's seat
For once, it may be taxpayers who get away with highway robbery.
Market Watch | 6 things to watch for as economic clouds gather in Europe
More analysts are starting to believe that the Bank of England will be the first big central bank to hike rates. But just how soon will it begin to tighten the screw?

Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
Wall Street Journal | Regulatory Capture 101
The financial scandal du jour involves leaked audio recordings that purport to show that regulators at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York were soft on Goldman Sachs . Say it ain’t so.
Bloomberg | World Bank Cuts Developing East Asia 2015 GDP Forecast
The World Bank lowered its forecasts for growth in developing East Asia this year and next as China’s expansion moderates and policy makers brace for tighter global monetary conditions.
CNN Money | Thomas Piketty: We don't know enough about inequality
There are few rock stars in economic and tax policy, but Thomas Piketty is one of them. The famous French economist is an authority on income inequality.
Mercatus Center | Income Inequality and Rising Health-Care Costs
A new Kaiser Family Foundation survey reports that health-insurance premiums rose by a “modest” 3% in 2013. Even more modest, however, was the 2.3% growth of workers’ earnings last year. These figures merely illustrate a long-term trend of rising health costs eating away at wages.
AEI | Creating more homeowners without building a crisis
Sales of existing homes in August were down 5.3% year-over-year. The housing lobby says credit is too tight. The commissioner of the Federal Housing Administration and the director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (regulator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) have called for lenders to further loosen lending standards.

Health Care

Fox Business | The Affordable Care Act One Year Later
This time last year there seemed to be a new catastrophe or scandal every day related to the roll-out of the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. ObamaCare:  many predicted the federal website would never be up and running by the looming deadline, the cost kept escalating, private contractors publically blamed bumbling bureaucrats and vice versa.


Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
Forbes | Janet Yellen And The Wizard Of Oz: Time To Stop The Farce
Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen reminds me of the Wizard of Oz. Like Ben Bernanke and her other predecessors, she puts on a great show working the levers that create an image of superior wisdom and power, but when you pull aside the curtain, she’s simply just another fallible human being whose abilities are less than awe-inspiring.
Market Watch | Fed's new labor market conditions index edges higher in September
The Federal Reserve's new labor-market conditions index rose to a reading of 2.5 in September, from 2 in August.


The Daily Signal | Why One State Legislature Is Using Your Tax Dollars to Operate Its Own News Service
In addition to the gaggle of TV, radio, online and newspaper reporters who regularly cover the Nebraska Legislature, a handful of lesser-known reporters who write about the legislature also work for it.

Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
CRS | Research Tax Credit: Current Law and Policy Issues for the 113thCongress
Technological innovation is a primary engine of long-term economic growth, and research and development (R&D) serves as the lifeblood of innovation.


CNN Money | Voters to decide on raising minimum wage
It's mostly been Democrats beating the drum to raise the minimum wage this year.

Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
Real Clear Markets | Friday's Jobs Number Was So 2007
Imagine how you would feel if you were in the following situation. You're taking a trip on the U.S. Economy Bus Line. There are 319 million people on the bus with you. It has been a rough ride so far, with lots of lurching and swerving.
The Daily Signal | Why Can’t Employers Find People for These Jobs?
Good economic news has been rare enough the past few years that it’s easy to be skeptical when it appears. But data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics say job vacancies, economy-wide, rose 18 percent during the first half of 2014.

Market Watch | Why strong hiring may continue through rest of the year
The U.S. economy has produced at least 200,000 new jobs in seven of the past eight months and all signs point to similarly strong hiring through the end of the year.
Wall Street Journal | Behind the U.S. Jobless Rate: More Job Gains Than Dropouts
As close fans of the monthly jobs report know, the unemployment rate can decline for two different reasons, broadly speaking: Either unemployed people find jobs and employment rises, or unemployed people give up entirely on the labor force and thus are excluded from the calculation.
Wall Street Journal | The Longer Run Is Here: U.S. Jobless Rate Falls Into Fed Forecast Range
The unemployment rate has finally reached the range in which Federal Reserve officials estimate the rate should settle in the longer run.


CNN Money | AIG trial puts Geithner, Bernanke and Paulson on hot seat
The U.S. government's $182 billion bailout of AIG in 2008 cameunder widespread attack for being far too generous.

Econ Comments & Analysis                                                                                            
Bloomberg | American Banks Stockpile Treasuries as Deposits Top Loans
American banks are loading up on U.S. government debt, a sign they remain cautious on the economy even with the jobless rate at a six-year low and corporations at their healthiest in a generation.
The Daily Signal | All About the Money: Why Government Spending and Debt Matter for Millennials
If you’re a millennial who recently returned to your college campus or started your first job, you probably haven’t paid much attention to the trillion-dollarspending measure Congress passed without much fanfare.