What Babysitting Teaches Us About Monetary Policy

When a babysitting cooperative tried to solve some unexpected problems, its response resembled monetary policy.

Weekly Roundup: From Wimbledon to Estonia

Our weekly roundup includes stories from everyday economics that relate to the market, the minimum wage, the price system and productivity & human capital.

The Monetary Policy Mistakes of a Babysitting Co-op

There once was a French economist whose name was Say. Proclaiming that “Supply Creates Its Own Demand,” Jean-Baptiste Say (1767-1832) entered economic history with Say’s Law. All he meant was that workers are also consumers. The money you receive for producing a good or a service…

The One Question They Should Have Asked Janet Yellen

This bingo card was tweeted by Quartz just before Fed chair nominee Janet Yellen spoke to the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs. It reminded me that Monetary Policy is not what it used to be. For years, teaching…

Election Economics: Too Much or Not Enough Stimulus Spending?

For the first quarter of 2009, GDP declined at a 5.5% rate and, at 7.6% during January, unemployment was rising. With the economy in a tailspin, policy makers wanted to act quickly. Primarily split along party lines, the Congress responded with…

iPhone 5 Economics

Explaining the probable impact of the new Apple iPhone, one UPS employee recalled the impact of the last new iPad launch.  At its internal hubs, UPS created more work hours for part timers and enjoyed more revenue because of the volume…

Sweatshop Dilemmas

Is it okay to have sweatshops in developing nations? NY Times writer Nicholas Kristof, and Nobel prize winning economists Paul Krugman and Milton Friedman have all said, “Yes.” Kristof points out that the parents of children scavenging in a noxious…

Is Government the Solution or the Problem?

Maybe everyone got something from President Obama’s jobs plan. According to the Washington Post’s Ezra Klein, the “right” got tax cuts, the “left” got help for the unemployed and infrastructure spending, and everyone will get deficit reduction. For a quick…

Economic Humor

For laughter and economic insight, the following are wonderful. A Cartoon: From gocomics.com, a very hypothetical illustration of “The First Economist.” A Daily Show Excerpt: Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner’s problems with selling his house. The Economic Lesson Some serious reading…

Government Failure or Market Failure?

The illness? High unemployment and sluggish growth. The patient? The U.S. economy. And sometimes, according to Nobel Laureate Gary Becker, a stimulus pill just won’t work. In a WSJ opinion piece, Dr. Becker first explains that government misdiagnosed the illness.…