Archives: November 2005

U.S. R&D spending rose in 2004

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 29, Categories: Growth

The R&D statistics for 2004 have not yet been officially released, but I've learned from an inside source that they will show a rise in both nominal and real spending....

In the U.S., Nukes Are Going Nowhere Fast

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 29, Categories: Energy

My colleague Peter Coy contributes this item: Joe Barton thinks America needs more nuclear power plants, and the Republican congressman from Texas is exasperated that utilities are dragging their heels...

'Buoyant' is the word for today

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 29, Categories: Macro

Bloomberg News writes today: New reports on U.S. consumer confidence, new home sales and durable goods orders depicted an even more buoyant economy than some analysts previously thought. Is the...

Is the Job Market Really 'Buoyant'?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 29, Categories: Labor Market

The current WSJ refers to "today's buoyant job market" (left hand column, page B1). Here's my informal poll. Who here thinks the job market is 'buoyant'?...

United Kingdom R&D goes into the tank

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 29, Categories: Growth

Nondefence R&D spending at United Kingdom businesses dropped by 6% in 2004, adjusted for inflation, according to a new report. (Thanks to Stumbling and Mumbling and Brad DeLong). That's a...

Do Economists Know about the Internet?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 28, Categories: Tech

Economists don't seem to find the Internet very interesting. I looked at the preliminary schedule of presentations for the annual meeting of the economics profession, to be held in Boston...

The Case for a Long and Deep Recession

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 28, Categories: Macro

Paul Ashworth, senior international economist at Capital Economics Ltd in London, has written a new report, titled "The coming US recession" which lays out the case for a long and...

How Low Can Manufacturing Go?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 23, Categories: Trade

Surprise! New data shows that manufacturing's share of the economy is falling, but no faster than in the past.

401(k) Matches Don’t Work

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 22, Categories: Investments

Until now, evidence on the efficacy of 401(k) matches has been mixed. But finally some serious evidence is in, and it’s a surprise.

GM: The Last Long-term Leader?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 22, Categories: Investments

I was just cleaning up my office (here is a picture of the disaster area in progress) The good thing about cleaning up is that you find things that are...

From Sony's Site

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 22, Categories: Tech

I was looking at Sony's own posting on its copy protection mess, and came on this interesting tidbit: On slower machines, especially ones running Windows 98 and Windows ME, the...

Does a global investment shortage matter?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 21, Categories: Trade

I'm getting tired of the "glass half empty" crowd. Now Brad DeLong has weighed in, saying that we have a "global investment deficiency". Hmmm...we also happen to have the fastest...

How the Democrats are Blowing It

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 17, Categories: Macro

Democrats are confused. They propose this great platform of innovation-improving ideas: Provide scholarships for science and engineering students, double funding for NSF, increased funding for broadband, more money for energy...

Is Innovation a Special Interest?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 17, Categories: Tech

The media seems stuck with the assumption that 'support for innovation' equals 'pandering to the tech industry.' Just look at the media coverage (or the lack thereof) of the "Innovation...

The Two Most Important Variables for 2030--Part 2

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 15, Categories: Growth

In the previous post, I looked at war as one of the two determining variables of future prosperity. In this post I will focus on the other key variable, our...

Global inflation

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 15, Categories:

The fall in today's core PPI raises the broader question about what's happening to global inflation. Jack Treynor (President of Treynor Capital Management, Inc. and editor of the Financial Analysts...

Optimism on China from Goldman Sachs

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 15, Categories: Growth

I've actively argued that China faces the threat of a dangerous financial crisis over the next few years. But a new report from Goldman Sachs, "China's Ascent: Can the Middle...

The Two Most Important Variables for 2030--Part I

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 14, Categories: Growth

If you wanted to project the prosperity of the world economy in 2030, what would be the two most relevant variables? I'd vote for these two. 1) Whether there is...

Innovation--Mark Thoma (and the NYT) ask the right question

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 13, Categories: Growth

Mark Thoma cites an article in today's NYT, and asks the right question: Are Innovations in Inventiveness Slowing for U.S. Innovators?. In my view, our ability to maintain our innovativeness...

Is Japan still stuck in the muck

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 11, Categories: Growth

Japan still has deflation--that's the big news from today's GDP report . Real GDP rose by 0.4% in the third quarter, but nominal GDP only rose by a feeble 0.2%,...

Blinder on trade versus technology

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 10, Categories: Growth

Alan Blinder writes: It has long been a mystery to economists why so many people view creative destruction that stems from technology as okay, while similar creative destruction that stems...

The right way to measure growth?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 09, Categories: Growth

Kevin Drum over at the Washington Monthly has a thought about how to better measure growth: If I had to choose one single thing as the most important determinant of...

India and pharmaceuticals

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 09, Categories: Trade

From a new press release from Purdue University: WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - India is poised to become a major venue for outsourcing in chemical and pharmaceutical manufacturing, says a new...

India as Number 1

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 09, Categories: Trade

The New Economist points us to a new report on the Indian economy by Deutsche Bank. The DB report reproduces a table, which I've never seen before, ranking which countries...

Is Europe Really More Equal?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 09, Categories: Income Distribution

I like France. I've spent portions of my last two vacations there, (pictures available on request) and would happily go back there again, even with all the troubles. But I...

The Economics of English

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 08, Categories: Trade

Does India have enough English-speaking workers? Here's an interesting comment from an Indian columnist, Sucheta Dalal. She writes: The BPO and IT industries today absorb so much of the smart,...

Whither the Euro?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 08, Categories: Trade

As noted before, I hate currency stories. Still, here's one from Bloomberg this morning: Euro Declines to Two-Year Low on French Riots, Rate Outlook Nov. 8 (Bloomberg) -- The euro...

French Riots and Unemployment

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 07, Categories: Labor Market

Could the riots in France spell the beginning of the end of the European economic model? See here for more. Here's a comparison of youth unemployment rates in different countries(via...

Hurricane Again

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 07, Categories: Macro

The night of August 29, I went on CNN International and explained to a global audience how Katrina really wasn't going to affect the economy very much (remember, that was...

Should Medical Spending Count as Investment?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 07, Categories: Health

I argue here why at least a portion of medical spending should count as investment and savings in the national income accounts. In particular, spending on prenatal health, childhood health,...

"Mulatting"

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 04, Categories: Tech

I asked my teenage daughter about her relationship with technology, and here's what she wrote (almost edit free): My dad suggested I write about networking, but I’m not going to...

Long Productivity

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 03, Categories: Growth

After today's unexpected good productivity numbers, I decided to see what twenty-year productivity growth looks like. Here is the chart: That's pretty impressive. The twenty year time period should wash...

Good productivity numbers

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 03, Categories: Macro

The BLS reported that third quarter productivity growth was 4.1%, the highest number in more than a year. This is far higher than most economists were predicting just a month...

Why I don't like currency stories

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 02, Categories: Investments

I will admit it--I don't like currency stories. The dollar is up, it's bad news. The dollar is down, it's bad news. Case in point--the story on page C1 in...

What makes a number big?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 01, Categories: Growth

Some numbers seem big, but really aren't. In the Sunday Times magazine, Roger Lowenstein has a scarifying piece called "The End of Pensions." In this piece he writes: The amount...

Good news or bad news?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 01, Categories: Education

Would you say this is good news or bad news? The headline on a new press release from the Conference Board reads: "ADVANCED ECONOMIES LOSING LEAD IN EDUCATION, SAYS ANALYSIS...

Computer sales are down

Posted by: Michael Mandel on November 01, Categories: Tech

Business spending on computers fell by 0.6% in the third quarter, according to new data released yesterday by the Commerce Dept. That may not sound like much, but it's the...

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Michael Mandel, BW's award-winning chief economist, provides his unique perspective on the hot economic issues of the day. From globalization to the future of work to the ups and downs of the financial markets, Mandel-named 2006 economic journalist of the year by the World Leadership Forum-offers cutting edge analysis and commentary.

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