Arguably the most famous central banker of all time, Alan Greenspan is frequently referred to as “the maestro” for his work as the chairman of the Federal Reserve. Despite his renown, he was also known to use quite an obscure index to assess the overall health of the American economy. Understanding the index is simple, decreasing sales of men’s underwear indicate a poor overall state of the economy at large while increasing sales suggest health. His reasoning: only in times when people are comfortable and confident in the economy will the spend money on something they do not necessarily need. Continue reading The Men’s Underwear Index
I am unashamed to admit that in my single semester employed by UPS Phonathon, the school lost money on me. As I worked my hardest to get pledges, very few people were interested in allowing me to facilitate their donation to the university. After my semester, the hourly wages I accrued vastly exceeded the donations I was able to facilitate. For those who are unfamiliar, the phonathon is an on-campus employment opportunity led predominately by students. The phonathon is responsible for all the calls made to alumni with the request of financial donations. So, if and when the school starts Continue reading The Economics of Phonathon
Video streaming has surpassed traditional TV in media consumption as shown by the wild success of Netflix. The only problem with being such a successful company in a relatively new industry is the massive number of other firms who want in on the profits. Since Netflix first transitioned from a DVD mailing company to the streaming giant they are today, many firms have rolled out their own competing streaming services. Some of the most notable are Amazon video and Hulu but now, even more companies are working to enter the industry. Apple, T-Mobile, Comcast, and Disney will all be launching Continue reading Disney and Chill?
Adam Smith created the concept of the “invisible hand” intending it to refer to the market forces at work which determine resource allocation in an economy but now, there is a very real possibility that technology could create a new, much different invisible hand. While communism is in the news less frequently now than it was in the recent past, there are still nations committed to living out Marx’s thought experiment. For the sake of simplicity, I am going to ignore the social aspects of communism in favor of the much more exciting economic factors relating to a centrally planned Continue reading Will Technology Lead to Successful Communism?
The S&P 500 is a stock market index which tracks the overall performance of the 500 largest American companies (based on market capitalization). This is a great metric which can be used to understand the swings of the overall market and is also the model for some of the most popular index funds. An index fund is a fund with a portfolio which mimics that of a specific market index (for a more in-depth explanation see here). In the case of the S&P 500, the fund would be comprised of the companies represented in this index. So, instead of investing Continue reading Why Does the Total Stock Market Typically Beat the S&P 500?
While taxation would be a key tool in enabling the government to curb the carbon emissions of the US, there will be lots of pushback. History shows that Americans are always resistant to new taxation, so the process of creating successful pollution controls could take some time. For some, time is of the essence and alternatives to taxes are being employed. For the Ski industry, climate change is the biggest threat to their ongoing profitability. It has been projected that the climate will change so significantly that skiing will no longer be possible in the Colorado Rockies as soon as Continue reading The Key to Ending Climate Change: Making it Profitable
Everywhere you look there are inevitably headlines about the imminent threat of climate change. The oceans are rising, the ice caps are melting, and the forests are burning. The Green New Deal could be a game changer in helping to slow down some of these harmful impacts of climate change. That being said, rather than focus on how exactly policy will help address these issues, there is a much greater focus on the grand vision of what will be accomplished. This plan has lofty goals of both limiting climate change while also addressing social and economic concerns of the nation. These Continue reading Saving the World, One New Tax at a Time
Maybe you’re a Game of Thrones enthusiast, maybe you’re not. Either way, you are most likely aware of what a moat is. You know, the classic pit filled with water which surrounds nearly every storybook castle… The concept of a moat is incredibly simple. If invaders are forced to deal with a challenging obstacle before they can attack the castle, the likelihood of a successful invasion is decreased. The concept is thousands of years old, but it has recently been given a new application in the world of security analysis and finance. The term economic moat was coined by none Continue reading The Economic Moat, a New Application for an Old Concept