Category Archives: Economic Growth

That’s Not Fair

Economic issues are once again afoot, and, as usual, they are connected to politics.  The Marketplace Fairness Act has been introduced in the Senate and may be voted on this week.  The title of the bill is misleading.  Its supporters argue its purpose is to “level the playing field” between traditional physical businesses and the upstart internet businesses, by allowing states to require collection of sales taxes by out-of-state sellers from a buyer in another state.  To put it more simply, online sellers would… Continue Reading ››

Fiscal Austerity–taking another hit today from Bill Gross

PIMCO’s Bill Gross came out swinging today against European austerity today, this after reports that Reinhart and Rogoff’s well-regarded work on debt had some statistical errors on the danger of debt.  So today Mr. Gross told the FT, “The U.K. and almost all of Europe have erred in terms of believing that austerity, fiscal austerity in the short term, is the way to produce real growth. It is not,” Mr Gross told the Financial Times. “You’ve got to spend money.”… Continue Reading ››

Immigration Reform: Response to Marc Clauson

I thank my esteemed colleague, Marc Clauson, for his timely response to yesterday’s post on immigration reform. I do look forward to the ongoing debate on this issue as Congress crafts immigration reform legislation. Immigration policy has been problematic for decades with major revisions in the law in 1996 and 1986. Unless our current law is substantially changed, we will be debating US immigration law for decades to come. I think I’ll respond to Marc’s points in the order in… Continue Reading ››

Immigration Reform Misses the Mark

The ”gang of eight” (Senators Schumer, McCain, Durbin, Graham, Menendez, Rubio, Bennet, and Flake) is expected to release the long awaited bipartisan framework for comprehensive immigration reform tomorrow, April 16. While the legislation will go through Congress’s meat grinder of debate and approval, the four pillars of the proposal do provide another rung in the ladder of debate on immigration reform. According to CBS News “The bill, in broad strokes, would tighten border security, modernize the visa system, and crack… Continue Reading ››

Obama budget, Stimulus vs. Austerity, Friday’s unemployment #s and more

Rather than a single subject today, I’d like to offer some quick thoughts on several recent economic events and get your feedback on what you’d like to hear more about.  Post in the comments if you’d like more details. First up, we are told we will finally have a budget submitted by the President this week, which is over two months late.  Mr. Obama will propose a “fiscally responsible” budget, which will  ‘My budget will reduce our deficits – not… Continue Reading ››

Economic Freedom in the 50 States

Arthur Laffer and Stephen Moore published a very interesting editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal. The editorial highlights the fact that states which have more economic freedom are more prosperous than states with less economic freedom. States with lower taxes and less onerous regulations provide a better environment for entrepreneurship. This relatively rich economic soil attracts new business and lays the foundation for continued economic achievement. Economic growth is the pathway to prosperity and away from poverty. Also today, the… Continue Reading ››

Business Investment Up while Consumer Confidence is Down?

Good news about economic growth? While consumer confidence took a nosedive in March thanks largely to continued fiscal uncertainty focused on the sequester, business investment is up in the first quarter of 2013. Although uncertainty over the fiscal sanity of our politicians and unease about the global economy are still very real, some US firms are investing in physical capital and increasing production. Economist’s predictions for economic growth are much more optimistic this month than last. The fact that we… Continue Reading ››