Spending is Still Too High

Recent Retail Sales data, October and November, have been relatively strong for an economy that is barely recovering from the Great Recession. Recent personal consumption expenditures, the national account data that is much broader than Retail Sales, surprised me with a strong growth rate of 2.8 percent per annum during quarter 3.

I have . . . → Read More: Spending is Still Too High

Average Taxes, Marginal Tax Rates, and a Free Lunch

A lot of state governments are in trouble, afflicted as they are with high expenses and weak revenues. They need to be thinking clearly if they are to have any hope of solving their problems. Unfortunately, lots of fuzzy thinking occurs when it comes to taxes. The biggest problem is that many people think . . . → Read More: Average Taxes, Marginal Tax Rates, and a Free Lunch

United States Household Wealth

The Federal Reserve released its third quarter Flow of Funds report, which includes measures of debt accumulation and household sector wealth. This data is fundamental to the applied New Classical macroeconomist as wealth is believed to be a key driver of consumption.

United States households continued to rebuild their balance sheets during the . . . → Read More: United States Household Wealth

OK, How About This

People who know me know that I’m a big supporter of increased immigration.  A surge of new educated immigrants would create an economic boom, solve our housing issues, and reinvigorate our cities.  Actually, I’d go one better than that.  I’d let anyone in who wanted to come, and I’d have them sign a large . . . → Read More: OK, How About This

Jobs, Labor Productivity, and Our Forecast

The Labor Department’s jobs report for November indicates that job growth has slowed and unemployment has risen from October. We had forecasted a gain of 50 thousand jobs and a steady unemployment rate. The actuals were a gain of 39 thousand jobs and a rise in the unemployment rate from 9.6 percent to 9.8 . . . → Read More: Jobs, Labor Productivity, and Our Forecast