Economy

Worth Reading
October 13, 2009

Are economists upset that a political scientist won the Nobel? Bloomberg tries to build a case that inflation expectations are rising. People are still worried about interest rate spreads. A potential benefit of congestion pricing: healthier babies. WaPo on possible cuts to pensions after big losses at funds. How far should the dollar drop?

Should Obama Spend Less Time in New York?
October 13, 2009

I see the point the AP is trying to make here, and, if true, it's a legitimate point. But I'm not sure their analysis quite demonstrates what they suggest it does: An Associated Press review of administration travel records shows that three of every four official trips Obama and his key lieutenants made in his first seven months in office were to the 28 states Obama won.

Olympia Snowe's Vote: Thanks But No Thanks. (Updated)
October 13, 2009

Mike Allen's "Playbook" helpfully anticipated the conventional wisdom in response to Olympia Snowe's "yes" vote today:  —SNOWE VOTES “YES”: Clearly the outcome Baucus is rooting for, as he made a lot of concessions to bring her onboard. The bipartisan nod Snowe brings to the bill strengthens Baucus’s hand as he, Reid and Dodd merge the Health and Finance committee bills. Snowe’s buy-in makes it easier for Baucus and Reid to sell reform to moderate Democrats — think Landrieu, Ben Nelson, Bayh — who are arguably more conservative than Snowe.

The White House's Theory Of Bank Size
October 13, 2009

On Friday morning, Diana Farrell--a senior White House official--made a significant statement on NPR’s Morning Edition, with regard to whether our largest banks are too big and should be broken up. “Ms. DIANA FARRELL (Deputy Assistant for Economy Policy): We understand Simon Johnson’s views on this, and I guess the response is the following….   “Ms.

Why They Keep Making Those Awful "Saw" Movies
October 13, 2009

Well, OK, so I only saw the first one in the series. (And no pun intended, seriously.) But the violence-porn level was high enough for me -- and the production values looked cheap enough --  that I didn't need to see the rest. So I was surprised to see an ad last night for Saw VI, due out later this month. The first Saw opened in 2004, meaning there's been a new installment every year since.

Geithner and Summers, From the Baseline
October 13, 2009

Just wanted to engage in a little crass self-promotion for those who come directly to The Stash, or who took the Internet off for Columbus Day: I have a piece in our current issue about the tennis-playing habits of the Obama economic team--Larry Summers, Tim Geithner, and Gene Sperling, et al--which, I half-seriously suggest, can be understood as a metaphor for their West Wing interactions.

Worth Reading
October 12, 2009

Nobel reactions from around the web. What's more important for China's future: social or financial reforms? Daily Beast: Raleigh-Durham is America's smartest city. Is the dollar doomed? The ethnic split in the political donations of NFL players. Can network maps prevent the next financial crisis?

The Nobel in Economics--Another Political Message?
October 12, 2009

It seems more or less beyond dispute that the Nobel committee was trying to send a political message by giving Barack Obama the Peace Prize. Now it looks like the Nobel brass has decided to send a similar, if slightly more subtle, message in awarding the economics prize to Elinor Ostrom of Indiana and Oliver Williamson of Berkeley.

Are Government Workers Overpaid?
October 12, 2009

Henry Blodget passes along this startling statistic: The average federal worker makes $75,419 a year, while the average in the private sector is $39,751. Why is that, exactly?  Is it because Federal workers are 80% better than private-sector workers? And remind us again why, in the interest of cutting the deficit, the government shouldn't just slash 20% of its budget across the board? Why indeed. The only problem is that this figure is wildly inaccurate.

Moneyball
October 12, 2009

Geithner and Summers go to tennis camp.

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