Economists have long known that aggregate measures of economic activity vary during recessions. Unemployment rates increase, for example, while both GDP growth and investment rates decrease. But when we look at actual firms, the individual units of production in an economy, during a recession do they all behave in the same way? And if not, can we use that information to learn … [Read more...] about When Worsening Credit Conditions Trigger Recessions
Does Happiness Sway Elections?
Economic performance has long been considered key to voter behavior. "It's the economy, stupid," said a campaign strategist for Bill Clinton, cementing a view that a government's economic record is what voters care most about. But too much emphasis on the economy may be missing other, no less consequential, factors. A recent study by George Ward of the Massachusetts … [Read more...] about Does Happiness Sway Elections?
When Globalization and Populism Meet
It amounts to an upheaval. Populist movements claiming to speak directly for the people and opposed to everything from bankers to immigrants and the institutions of liberal democracy have altered the political landscape in large areas of the world. Think Brexit in Great Britain, Syriza and Podemos in Greece and Spain, and the populist candidates in the most recent elections in … [Read more...] about When Globalization and Populism Meet