Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

Temporary Employment: A New Ugly Rearing its Head in Europe?

by Rebecca Wilder Temporary Employment: A New Ugly Rearing its Head in Europe? Last week Clive Crook opined on some fallacies of labor reform, specifically related to the unions and through the Spanish experience. Labor reform is a highly contentious subject, given its close ties to welfare and politics. Based on Clive Crook’s article, I […]

Which Economy Is Pursuing Procyclical Fiscal Policy?

by  Rebecca Wilder Which Economy Is Pursuing Procyclical Fiscal Policy? Today the BLS reported that the US unemployment rate dropped to 8.3% in January 2012. This is the lowest measured rate since February 2009 – a local trough. Also this week, Eurostat reported that the Euro area (EA) unemployment rate stabilized in December at 10.4%. […]

Is the ECB/EU Achieving Stated Objective of Balanced Growth

by Rebecca Wilder Is the ECB/EU Achieving Stated Objective of Balanced Growth? The primary objective of the European Central Bank is to maintain price stability; however, as a compliment to its primary objective, the Eurosystem “shall also ‘support the general economic policies in the Union with a view to contributing to the achievement of the […]

The ECB is Plugging Holes

by Rebecca Wilder The ECB is Plugging Holes Today the ECB released its monthly data on monetary developments in the Euro area (EA), as measured by M3 and its components. The market usually focuses on the marketable assets portion of M3, M3-M2, as a representation of funding access – here’s an FT Alphaville post highlighting […]

European Daily Catch: Know Your Consumers

by Rebecca Wilder European Daily Catch: Know Your Consumers Today’s European Daily Catch compares the aggregate implications of the reported January 1-point rise in French household confidence to the reported January stabilization of Italian consumer confidence. Specifically, French consumers could be ‘happier’ but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re spending more, while Italian household confidence translates rather […]

Japan’s Lopsided Financial Balances

by Rebecca Wilder Japan’s Lopsided Financial Balances Tim Duy and Paul Krugman discuss the merits and failures of Japanese policy. The sectoral snapshot of the economic financial balances shows that Japanese policy was indeed a success but also a failure. First, policy was a success, given the private sector was recuperating from the bursting of […]

Ratings Matter for the Euro Area

As you all have heard, Friday was (again) S&P’s day in the limelight. The rating agency downgraded over half of the 16 Euro area countries put on credit watch negative in December 2011. A quick look at my feed shows several takes on S&P’s action: the Economist’s Free Exchange comments on the now soft-core country, […]

What is a safe asset?

by Rebecca Wilder What is a safe asset? Last month, David Beckworth at Macro and Other Market Musings had some interesting thoughts on the global shortage of safe assets. His essay got me thinking about what is a safe asset? Beckworth alludes to three definitions of ‘safe’: (1) a credit being AAA-rated, (2) satisfying a […]

European Daily Catch: Unemployment and Retail

by Rebecca Wilder European Daily Catch: Unemployment and Retail Global labor reports prevailed today, but the US employment report took center stage. I’ll not comment on that report, so as to keep with my generally all things European theme here at The Wilder View. However, a quick sift through my feed reveals rather cynical takes: […]

Fractional Money Multipliers

by Rebecca Wilder Fractional Money Multipliers Money multipliers – the stock of money divided by a measure of base money (generally reserves plus currency in circulation) – are dwindling to fractions of what they used to be. FT Alphaville draws our attention to this fact on the Euro area (EA) using SocGen’s analysis. The money […]