Here’s an important editorial on something I haven’t written enough about: wage theft, i.e., situations wherein “employees are forced to work off the clock, paid subminimum wages, cheated out of overtime pay or denied their tips.” Sometimes this meshes with misclassification, another violation of labor law, wherein regular employers are classified as self-employed. According to… Read more
Just how much slack remains in the labor market? It’s a key question for the Fed, of course, which is explicitly gauging many indicators—not just unemployment—for signs of inflationary pressures. Thus far, such pressures have been noticeably absent from their favored measure: the core PCE, which if anything, has decelerated of late. Chair Janet Yellen… Read more
If there’s something awry in the logic of Larry Summers’ argument here for more infrastructure investment, I certainly can’t see it. Based on low real interest rates, still high unemployment particularly among blue-collar production and construction workers, and most of all, the need for productivity-enhancing investments in our aging public goods, Larry is very much… Read more
To open our full employment event last week, Larry Summers presented an extremely compelling case for the importance of using fiscal policy to close our persistent output gaps, lower unemployment, and repair some of the economic damage resulting from “austerity,” i.e., reducing budget deficits in weak economies. At the same time Larry was presenting this… Read more
Over at the NYT Economix blog: the flow point I made earlier here at OTE, getting back to ground zero on private sector jobs is not much to crow about, and sure, there’s a bit of wage growth, but nothing to get all wound up about, inflation-wise.