The Problem With the Clinton Budget Surpluses

By: Wednesday September 5, 2012 10:18 am

The flip side to the fact that deficit spending in a recession is responsible is that the story of the 1990s, the story of prosperity through surpluses, was actually deeply irresponsible, laying the conditions for the current crisis. Joe Weisenthal has a masterful article out, drawing on the work of UMKC professor and MMT theorist [...]

Mid-Session Review Shows a Smaller Deficit, as Federal Spending Drops

By: Friday July 27, 2012 1:41 pm

The White House released its mid-year budget estimate today, and as Jackie Calmes writes, it shows a smaller annual deficit for the year. She doesn’t bother to mention that this is exactly what we don’t need right now. The annual deficit will be lower for the fiscal year 2012 and for the rest of the [...]

Second-Quarter GDP Drops to 1.5%

By: Friday July 27, 2012 6:55 am

The Bureau of Economic Analysis put out its first estimate on GDP for the second quarter of 2012, finding that it increased at an annualized rate of 1.5%, down from a revised 2.0% in the first quarter. This is below trend, though in line with expectations, and it suggests that the economy is stuck in [...]

Corporate Profits Zooming as Job Growth Lags

By: Friday June 1, 2012 7:47 am

The terrible jobs report should be matched with another set of data to point out that this is the economy that corporate executives have wanted for a long time. Because they are not suffering in a time of weak demand. They’re actually thriving. Corporate profits are soaring. The chart above shows corporate profits as a [...]

Spring Optimism/Summer Stall Dynamic Creeping Back Into Economic Forecasts

By: Thursday May 31, 2012 8:55 am

In both 2010 and 2011, promising economic indicators in the late winter and early spring have led to a downturn by the summer, dashing those hopes. I find it amusing in a time of a warming planet that this has, in every single year, been partially attributed to an “unusually warm winter.” Maybe that warmth [...]

Democrats Muddled on Fiscal Cliff Solutions as Lame Duck Session Nears

By: Tuesday May 29, 2012 7:05 am

I think at this point, we can say with a fair degree of certainty that Republicans have clear goals for the set of post-election measures that must be dealt with in the lame duck session. Generally speaking, they don’t care about the deficit, and that manifests itself by wanting to extend the Bush tax cuts [...]

CBO Looks at the Fiscal Cliff

By: Wednesday May 23, 2012 6:27 am

The Congressional Budget Office is out with their economic projections for the fiscal cliff. They pretty much match Goldman Sachs’ prediction from last week, but these are the numbers Congress is likely to parrot for the next 6 months, so we’d better take a look. CBO projects that $607 billion in deficit reduction items are [...]

Fiscal Analysis Shows Risks of Austerity Program

By: Friday May 18, 2012 10:16 am

The chart above is from a Goldman Sachs analysis, and it shows the effect of fiscal policy on growth from 2009 to the present, as well as projections for growth in a variety of scenarios surrounding the fiscal cliff, the combination of expiring tax cuts and imminent spending cuts all set for the end of [...]

Greek “Bank Jog” Threatens Eurozone

By: Thursday May 17, 2012 7:54 am

You can feel the heat being turned up on Europe. Greece is in the middle of what the Guardian has called a bank jog. In the 10 days since the elections which led to a political stalemate, a caretaker government, and new elections, Greek depositors have removed €3 billion from their banking system. It’s not [...]

Hollande Promises “New Pact” in Swearing-In Ceremony

By: Tuesday May 15, 2012 8:55 am

On a day when Greece called for new elections, with serious implications for the European economy and the future of the euro, the other country with elections on May 6 swore in their new President. Francois Hollande came to power in France calling for a return to growth rather than a single-minded focus on debt [...]

Greece to Hold New Elections

By: Tuesday May 15, 2012 7:35 am

It’s official: Greece will hold new elections after the various parties could not work out an agreement on a government after the Parliamentary vote on May 6. President Karolos Papoulias made the news today in a statement. The new elections should be held in mid-June. Greece has been in a political deadlock since elections nine [...]

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