Monday , November 18 2019
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Tag Archives: Economics

Garett Jones on open borders

I am very pleased that the new Bryan Caplan and Zach Weinersmith open borders graphic novel has hit #1 on The Washington Post non-fiction bestseller list.  I am also pleased to see Garett Jones examine the idea in a new short paper, here is part of his critique: I use the same constant returns to scale framework as Caplan, in which the migration of every human being to the United States would increase global output per capita by about 80%. I then estimate that in the benchmark model, where...

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Radio discussion: Tax changes

JT informed me that we will be discussing taxes and tax changes at the federal level tomorrow. Yay! So I thought by way of a bit of backdrop we would look at just a few pieces of information. Nothing new here or deep insights or pictures, just a starting point for the discussion. Start with federal tax revenues and outlays. This is not a pretty picture. The one interesting think to point out with this graph is that you really can almost draw a straight line between the beginning...

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Social Security isn’t doomed for younger generations

No, it is not one of the great Boomer rip-offs, as I argue in my latest Bloomberg column.  Here is one excerpt: According to his [Blahous’s] estimates [link here], if no further steps are taken to shore up the finances of Social Security, the system will stop being able to meet its scheduled payment obligations sometime in the 2030s. (Note that benefit hikes are part of the schedule.) That would be bad, but even under this scenario the system is still paying out a roughly constant level...

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The winners and losers from Airbnb

Overall, renters in New York City suffer a loss of $178mm per annum, as the losses from the rent channel dominate the gains from the host channel. I find that the increased rent burden falls most heavily on high-income, educated, and white renters, because they prefer housing and location amenities most desirable to tourists. Moreover, there is a divergence between the median and the tail, where a few enterprising low-income households obtain substantial gains from home-sharing, especially...

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Politically Incorrect Paper of the Day: The United Fruit Company was Good!

The United Fruit Company is the bogeyman of Latin America, the very apotheosis of neo-colonialism. And to be sure in the UFC history there is wrongdoing and plenty of fodder for conspiracy theories but the UFC also brought bananas (as export crop), tourism, and in many cases good governance to parts of Latin America. Much, however, depends on the institutional constraints within which the company operated. Esteban Mendez-Chacon and Diana Van Patten (on the job market) look at the UFC in Costa...

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A Coasean solution for New Delhi?

If the late Ronald Coase could be called upon to advise the Delhi government, he would persuade chief minister Arvind Kejriwal to pay farmers in Punjab and Haryana to stop burning crop residue. In recent times, air quality in Delhi has remained poor throughout the year for various reasons, including the rapid loss of green cover, construction of homes and infrastructure projects, and vehicular as well as industrial pollution. But for a few weeks every November, it gets almost impossible to...

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Do the rich save more?

Yes, not a surprise but here are some details: We identify a strong negative relationship between the consumption rate and the lifetime net resource. The predicted APC [average propensity to consume] of the highest net resource cohort about 0.03, which is two standard deviations smaller than the lowest resource cohort. That is from a new paper by Ilin, Ye, and Yu (Yu is on the job market).  Of course this relates to the recent wealth tax debate — almost all of that tax would fall on the...

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Rent control is also not great for labor market outcomes

I had never thought of this before: This paper, using a novel data set on rent stabilization in New  York City, takes a first step in investigating the policy’s unintended consequences on tenant labor market outcomes, while also exploring the impact of policy awareness on those outcomes. Recognizing the potential endogeneity of living in a rent-stabilized unit, this paper uses three decades of housing vacancy data to construct an instrumental variable leveraging variation in the availability...

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ND County Clusters by Income Source

One of the most frequent questions I get regarding the nature of the regional economies within North Dakota focuses on proper comparisons. The question boils down to a search for comparable peers, and while there are jokes to be made regarding nobody compares it is an excellent question. So I start this process with a simple cluster analysis (k-means) looking only at the annual percentage change in farm and non-farm income from 2016 to 2017. The interesting constraint on this looks...

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