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QE not key in explaining worrisome market signs

Following up on my last post, a Financial Times chart of the day highlights an inability of QE (quantitative easing) and other central bank activity to explain signs of danger on the bond markets. US tightening is proceeding very slowly and will result in no net tapering of QE at the world level. The markets

17 Jul 2017
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“Tantrum 2” uncovering worrisome securities overvaluation?

As US political observers watch the momentous attack on Obama’s Affordable Health Care Act unfold, the world’s financial markets continue to fret over a possible bond bust. Is financial instability about to become important again in the industrialized world? There are a number of things going on here, all of them reported in various financial news

15 Jul 2017
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Dictatorship in the workplace?

Imagine workplaces so oppressive they have come to the renewed attention of alarmed philosophers. Author Elizabeth Anderson of the U. of Michigan, an old instructor and cross-disciplinary colleague of mine–and other scholarly contributors–document the trend in Private Government: How Employers Rule Our Lives (and Why We Don’t Talk about It), a new book from Princeton

29 Jun 2017
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Cross-Border Post Keynesian conference closes

Yesterday and the day before were conference days for me, with the 6th Cross-Border Post Keynesian conference ending less than 24 hours ago on the Buffalo State campus. Among the many last-day highlights were the Edward Elgar book exhibit and a talk by Doyoun Won of the University of Utah. I gave two presentations on

21 Jun 2017
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Trump’s moves on macro policy make things tougher

Key macro policy moves on the part of the administration in recent weeks include: Appointments to the Fed (see my previous post) Proposed budget with cuts in nondefense discretionary items and net increases in defense (New York Times breakdown) A single-sheet tax plan with huge cuts for the rich and little for people of modest means

07 Jun 2017
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New Fed Board hawk a “reverse-causation” champion

The two probable Federal Reserve Board nominees whose names surfaced late last week should on balance bring a hawkish view on inflation to contest the mainstream (neoclassical) Keynesian stance of Chair Janet Yellen on macro policy. They can be expected to seek a higher trajectory for U.S. short-term and long-term rates. In particular, Marvin Goodfriend, one

06 Jun 2017
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The Nation gets around to MMT!

…and even says that it has “rock star appeal”–no surprise at our end, of course. The article on modern money theory is to appear in the magazine’s May 22-29 issue, and can be found on its website. For more on the media’s take on this movement in economics as well as the coordinates of some

24 May 2017
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Trump tax plan brings helpful discussion of “vigilante” bond theory

The Financial Times‘s Alphaville blog notes discussion of a “bond vigilante” effect has returned with the announcement of Trump’s deficit-increasing tax plan. The idea is that anticipations of increased bond supply will force interest rates on US Treasury securities upward–a “crowding out” effect colorfully attributed to bond traders called “vigilantes.” There is currently little evidence

22 May 2017
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Vegan issues meet the health care policy debate

I have not talked about health care very much since the new US administration began. Warren Buffett has made the news with an argument that health care costs were a far bigger problem for business than corporate taxes, which are another big item on the agenda of the new administration. Unlike most economists quoted in

18 May 2017
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Financial precariousness not ebbing

What has  happened to the big bubble in risky, nonsovereign-currency debt–most emerging market bonds, domestic junk bonds, etc? What has not defaulted appears to be continuing to inflate, with buyers piling into these markets. Some articles in the press have in fact been observing that relative calm has lulled investors in some types of securities,

15 May 2017
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