Archives: April 2009

Swine flu...

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 27, Categories: Health

...just what we didn't need. From the NYT: Hoping to head off a global pandemic of swine flu that has surfaced in North America, the European Union’s health commissioner on...

Innovation Account at the BEA

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 22, Categories: Innovation

I've been burrowing through government data ("I do it so you don't have to) and discovered that the BEA's website now has a section labeled "Innovation Account". Very nice. I...

The Reverse Black Swan, Part II

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 17, Categories: Political Economy

In the Reverse Black Swan Part I, I drew three conclusions from Taleb's work. 1) Unexpected technological breakthroughs are possible. That's good 2) The timing and nature of the breakthroughs...

One Deep Cause of the Financial Crisis

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 16, Categories: Innovation

A major underlying cause for the financial crisis has been unexpected and repeated failures in nonfinancial innovation over the past ten years. These disappointments, in the aggregate, undercut the long-term...

More Bad News for the Trade Bubble

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 15, Categories: Trade

I was reading one of my favorite bloggers, Brad Setser, and he had this to say: The FT – more than most – has recognized the challenges created by a...

Falling Retail Sales: Good News?

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 14, Categories: Financial Crisis

Retail sales in March fell by 1.1%, with the biggest drop coming in electronics and appliance stores, which fell by 5.9%. This provoked a herd of handwringing among economists, investors,...

Emails of yesteryear

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 13, Categories: Financial Crisis

I was just cleaning out my inbox, and found a PR email from April 2006. The title: CEO of Major Icelandic Bank Disputes Dire Forecasts The email from the PR...

Separated at Birth: Imports versus Home Prices

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

My new favorite chart: Goods imports versus home prices, indexed to start with September 2001 in both cases. They both zoom up, and they both collapse to roughly the same...

Good News! The Trade Bubble Continues to Collapse

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

This morning's trade report shows that the trade bubble continues to collapse--and that's good news. The trade deficit shrunk to $26 billion in February, or an annual rate of $313...

The Magazine Cover Indicator and Paul Krugman

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 04, Categories: Journalism

BusinessWeek and other magazines have famously been attacked for the magazine cover curse--the idea, true or false, that magazine covers are a contrarian indicator. I've never believed this, based on...

The industry with the lowest unemployment rate is...

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 03, Categories: Labor Market

...ah, come on, you know, the answer. It's a good time to be part of the government. According to today's job market report, the unemployment rate for government workers is...

What Really Happened to Consumer Spending

Posted by: Michael Mandel on April 02, Categories: Financial Crisis

Here’s a more detailed version of the analysis in my latest BW story. Right now it looks like personal consumption expenditures have fallen by only 0.4%, or $40 billion, over...

The Reverse Black Swan, Part I

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

I recently reread The Black Swan and came to a surprising conclusion: Once I looked beneath the snarkiness, Nassim Nicholas Taleb's book is brilliant--and I don't use that term lightly....

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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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