Interest Rates, Liquidity Preference and Inflation

Article of the Week from Fixing the Economists

by Philip Pilkington

On my post about Austrian and Marxian capital theory a commenter left a fairly predictable ‘Austrian comment’ which denied that they assume perfect foresight in their theory of interest rates and investment, gave a confused story about accounting identities (apparently if consumption rises then by identity profits fall; someone tell the NIPA crowd that they have it all wrong!) and insisted that I knew nothing about Austrian economics.

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Are Consumers Carrying Too Much Debt? - Or Maybe They Are Just Plain Poor!

February 14th, 2015
in aa syndication, weekly economic summary

Written by

Is personal debt restraining economic expansion? Many pundits talk about the debt unwinding cycle not being complete from the Great Recession. Is there some magic formula for deciding if debt levels are too high and need unwinding? Is there historical data which supports a certain debt level being optimum? Total household debt is shown as over 120% of GDP which seems like a large number (and is larger than several advanced economies).

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Stratfor: Income Inequality - A Question With No Easy Answer

February 12th, 2015
in stratfor

by Ian Morris

At an event in Beijing last November, I had the good fortune to meet the French economist Thomas Piketty, who has sold 1.5 million copies of his book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century,since it was first published in 2013. Pacing up and down in front of a packed auditorium, Piketty explained that because the rate of return on capital is now higher than the growth rate of the global economy, the proportion of the world's wealth that is owned by a small elite will likely keep increasing; in other words, we should expect to see a divergence of wealth as the rich get much richer.

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Here’s Clear Evidence That The Fed Has Suppressed Americans’ Wage and Salary Growth

February 12th, 2015
in aa syndication

by Lee Adler, Wall Street Examiner

We’ve been hearing noises that wage gains for US workers are picking up. It seems to be coming from analysts who are cherry picking data points to suit their point of view. So, I figured:

“Gee, let’s make a chart of that to see if it really is true.”

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Groundhog Day in Greece

February 11th, 2015
in eurozone and euro

by Thorsten Beck,

The Greek-Troika conflict is roiling markets, boardrooms and cabinet offices around the world. Crises are best solved by recognising losses, allocating them and moving on, so the biggest risk, this column argues, is that a compromise kicks the can further down the road. As the can rolls on, the scenery becomes politically and socially less attractive – fuelling the rise of political animosities, nationalism, and fringe parties. Greece is a special case but indicative of the core problem – deficient EZ governance structures that mean societies are stuck with increasing socioeconomic exclusion and political despair. The crisis will continue until the necessary further deepening of EZ institutional structures is completed.

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