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

Debt, Recession, and That Ol’ Devil Denominator

Krugman recently presented this graph, showing household debt as a percentage of GDP. and made this comment. Second, a dramatic rise in household debt, which many of us now believe lies at the heart of our continuing depression. There are those who seem to believe that if Krugman says it, it must be wrong.   Here […]

Predicting Recessions, The Great Stagnation, and Will There Be a Double Dip?

by Mike Kimel Predicting Recessions, The Great Stagnation, and Will There Be a Double Dip? There’s a lot of talk about a double dip recession these days. I don’t think there’s a precise definition of a double dip recession, but I think if there was it would be something like this: “a recession, followed by […]

Balance sheet recessions

Mark Thoma in The Fiscal Times takes a stab at explaining this recession and policy: As this year comes to a close, and as we finally begin the recovery stage of the recession, it’s a good time to look back and ask how policymakers could have improved their response to the downturn. What can we […]

Inflation Detour II: Crisis and Recovery across Great "Fluctuations"

We are now almost 24 months into the Great Recession. While many expect NBER will eventually say that The Great Recession ended several months ago, they have not yet. By contrast, the recession that began The Great Depression, per NBER, lasted 43 months. It seems only fair to compare the two, so I trust I […]

One of These Things is Not Like the Others

I try to like the NYTimes Economics Reporting. I really do. Heck, any place that publishes Uwe Reinhardt can’t be all bad. But David Leonhardt, as he does often enough that I hesitate to read his work, again goes beyond the pale today, and clearly does so deliberately. The offending paragraph: Twenty-two months after the […]

Current Recession vs the 1980-82 Recession

By Spencer. We are getting an interesting debate between different economic bloggers today and I thought I would put in my two cents worth. Casey Mulligan at economix began it with an argument that the current recession is not as severe as the 1981-82 recession because that recession was really two recessions and if you […]

NBER generally gets it right

Brad DeLong suggested a bit before the U.S. election that there was virtually no non-political reason for NBER not to admit the United States was in a recession.* A little late, but they generally got it right. As Floyd Norris notes: The National Bureau of Economic Research said today that the current recession began a […]

Not Just Developing Countries

The most interesting presentation I saw at the AEA last January was Maccini and Yang’s discussion of the effect of rainfall on the health and growth of Indonesian babies.* It was subsequently discussed as an NBER working paper** by Jason Shafrin, and the thing that made it most interesting is that Maccini and Yang found […]