Social Security is NOT broken. It is NOT in danger financially or economically. It is in danger politically from people who claim it's broken and they want to "fix it". But the history of changes and opposition to Social Security belies their claims. I'll deal with why SS is actually in good shape economically and … Continue reading The Real Danger to Your Social Security is Political, not $
From Econospeak (and cross-posted at Angry Bear). When it comes to international trade statistics & analyses, we are flying blind. Our models and theories (the ones that conclude that "free trade" is always best policy) are all based on the idea that private firm A in country B trades with private firm C in country … Continue reading Trade today is different
From Angry Bear: Beginning of the year economic blues in the US? I think so. Just looking over Spencer's CPI post; here is an excerpt (the first paragraph): The CPI report was encouraging. The total CPI rose 0.2% and the year over year increase is only 2.6%. Although real average hourly earnings fell, real weekly … Continue reading CPI and Velocity of Money data for January indicate deflation worry
From ataxingmatter: How much do the wealthiest Americans make, and how much do they pay in taxes?. How much do the wealthiest Americans make, and how much do they pay in taxes? Bloomberg.com's Ryan Donmoyer has a brief story out on recent IRS statistics of income. See Top Earners Averaged $345 million in 2007, IRS … Continue reading How much do the wealthiest Americans make, and how much do they pay in taxes?
The New-and-Improved (?) Wall Street is betting on death. They're for it. Yes, from those delightful folks that brought us MBS (mortgage backed securities) and CDS (credit default swaps), the instruments that in turn brought us GFM (global financial meltdown), we have a new candidate: pools of securities backed by "life settlements". I'll let Marshall … Continue reading OMG – The New-and-Improved (?) Wall Street is betting on death
via Against Monopoly. The steady drip of details about the financial crisis continues. PBS News Hour has Paul Solman interviewing an ex-bank regulator, William Black who now teaches at the University of Missouri link here. Points Black makes that are worth thinking about: Following the S & L collapse, more than 1000 executive insiders were … Continue reading Against Monopoly: Most of the big banks are insolvent
We hit record territory some time ago. No matter how it's measured, either absolute #'s or as % of labor force or % of population, we (the U.S.) has a level of long-term unemployment far greater than anything we have seen since the Great Depression. see my post To Some, It’s a Depression for the specifics … Continue reading Long Term Unemployment: A Public Health Hazard
Interesting Q & A on Labor Compliance in China. Did Anyone Learn Anything from Nike? from All Roads Lead to China. ... what are the biggest compliance issues that exist in china? The more common compliance issue in China is about working time. It is found in almost every factory as the Chinese law is … Continue reading China: Working Conditions & Globalization
A good explanation of the role of inventories (and inventory changes) in GDP, including examples from 2009. From Calculated Risk. First, GDP is Gross Domestic Production. What is being estimated is "domestic production", but what is being measured is mostly domestic consumption. Right away we can see that if something is produced domestically and then … Continue reading Inventories & GDP Explained
The Baseline Scenario concludes with a warning that Goldman must be dealth with: And the US government, at the highest levels, has to ask a fundamental question: For how long does it wish to be intimately associated with Goldman Sachs and this kind of destabilizing action? What is the priority here - a sustainable recovery and … Continue reading Why do we always find Goldman, Sachs where there’s trouble?