Behavioral Economics

The intersection of psychology and economics, behavioral economics looks at human tendencies that involve biology and culture when predicting and explaining economic decision-making.

State Dilemmas

Do higher taxes make you want to move? Hearing that taxes were going up in Illinois, the governor of Wisconsin said, “Escape to Wisconsin.” According to census figures, people do seem to be moving to no income tax states. One…

Luxury or Necessity?

Can you live without your TV? Cell phone? Dishwasher? A Pew Research survey discovered that your answer in 2006 might have been different from now. Cars were at the top with 88% of all respondents saying they needed one. But…

The Value of a Price Tag

Asking, “Do More Expensive Wines Taste Better?” a group of researchers decided to find out. They described the results of their study in a working paper for the American Association of Wine Economists (AAWE). The researchers introduced their paper by…

The Value of a Price Tag

Asking, “Do More Expensive Wines Taste Better?” a group of researchers decided to find out. They described the results of their study in a working paper for the American Association of Wine Economists (AAWE). The researchers introduced their paper by…

Austerity and Harry Truman

What are people saying about austerity, the 2010 word of the year? According to Dr. Econ at the San Francisco Federal Reserve, households are demonstrating austerity by saving more and borrowing less. On the one hand, living within our means…

Regulatory “Pay-Go”

Too much regulation? Senator Mark Warner’s proposed legislation is an interesting approach. Concerned that regulation is “stifling fresh investment and discouraging innovation,” Senator Mark Warner says the incentives have to change. Currently, when federal agencies create new rules, their power…

A Price Story

Do you think that the BPP is more accurate than the CPI? Based at MIT, The Billion Prices Project (BPP) monitors close to 5 million items sold by approximately 300 retailers in 70 countries. Using the BPP, we can choose…

Education Matters

The NY Times tells us that students who graduate from “elite” colleges could be more likely than those at less elite schools to earn more and attend a prestigious graduate school. As a result, although the initial cost may be…

Unintended Green Incentives

True or False? When we become more energy efficient, we use up fewer resources. This New Yorker Magazine article says maybe. Citing the “rebound effect,” the article briefly takes us back to Williams Jevons, England, and 1865. In a book…

Do You Approve of Profits?

Two Questions: 1.How do you feel about profit? In their paper, “Is Profit Evil? Associations of Profit With Social Harm,” 3 University of Pennsylvania researchers discuss two studies that display people’s negative response to profit seeking activity. Ultimately, they conclude…