2019 Economic Recap

A month to month recap of the US economy in 2019! January Federal Open Market Committee voted to hold interest rates steady February US economy grew by 2.4% in the fourth quarter. Trump plans to spend $6.7 billion spent for border security. March President Trump nominated campaign adviser Stephen Moore and  former GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain to the Federal Reserve’s board of governors. April Unemployment dropped from 3.8% to 3.6%. May US begins increasing tariffs on Chinese goods. US announces ending waivers for Iran and other oil supplying countries. June China and US come to an agreement and resume trade. July Boris Johnson was confirmed Continue reading 2019 Economic Recap

New Year, Old Tradition: the history and economics of Champagne

The holidays aren’t over yet! New Years Eve is just around the corner which means more consumer spending on… you guessed it, Champagne! For New Years celebrations alone more than 39.8 million bottles of Champagne will be purchased in the U.S. But why champagne? How has that become our nation’s and most of the worlds drink of choice for celebration? Champagne is a symbol of luxury in our world today and as we know, luxury goods as opposed to normal goods do not behave the same as far as consumption goes. Some Champagne may even be considered a Veblen good (a good Continue reading New Year, Old Tradition: the history and economics of Champagne

Dec the Halls With Dead Weight Loss: An Economist’s Christmas Story

‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house, Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse Children asleep lying under their covers Hoping for money from their rich grandmothers.   As good economists they know the costs That presents only bring deadweight loss.   Alas when they woke, they found under the tree Something that noone should ever see. Gift boxes wrapped up with ribbon and bow The little economists thought no, no, no, no.   This will never do, the little economist said in his head While holding the sweater with too itchy of thread. Smiling Continue reading Dec the Halls With Dead Weight Loss: An Economist’s Christmas Story

Disney+ Just Can’t Wait to be King

Earlier this month, Disney launched their video streaming service, Disney+. This streaming service will provide all of Disney’s works and respective companies under their company (Marvel, Star Wars, Pixar, and more!). So what will this mean for the future of the streaming media market? First, let’s get this out of the way and say that Disney did not need enter the streaming video market to continue being successful! Disney has been one of the biggest house hold names around the world for generations, creating value in their brand and time after time making lovable family movies. This is a sugar Continue reading Disney+ Just Can’t Wait to be King

Common Hour Gone Wrong

In an attempt to unite the campus, University of Puget Sound established one hour every week from noon-1:00pm, locally known on campus as “Common Hour”. This time of the day is supposed to be an hour in which no classes happen in order to allow faculty, staff, and students alike to bond and enjoy the beautiful Pacific Northwest and perhaps mingle over a hot cup of joe in Diversions Cafe. Burnt tongues aside, there are other consequences of the joyous hour. Firstly, since there are no scheduled classes during Common Hour, it seems nearly every club or department decides to Continue reading Common Hour Gone Wrong

Tariffs: Expectations vs. Reality

The purpose of Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs is to protect  domestic suppliers and firms as well as to encourage steel/aluminum production in the United States . Tariffs, in general, are a tax on imports to increase the price which results in a larger producer surplus, revenue collected on account of the tariff, and deadweight loss. Overall, tariffs create market inefficiency and hurt the wellbeing of an economy because of it. Of course, there are many more factors to think about. The market for steel and aluminum affects much more than just those involved in the production. It affects all Continue reading Tariffs: Expectations vs. Reality

Yield Curve and Politics 101

The yield curve (showing investment rates over time) is an indicator of an economy’s health. When the curve is sloping up, the economy is expanding and overall doing well. It is when the curve starts to level out that it becomes worrisome as this generally means that an economic slowdown – or recession – is on the rise. Looking at the curve’s latest data from the U.S Department of the Treasury, we are bound to see a slowdown very soon. Slowdown or Recession?: “The United States does not define a recession as two consecutive quarters of shrinking output” however that Continue reading Yield Curve and Politics 101

Air Travel is Costing Us

The threat of climate change is growing at alarming rates and one player in particular is not helping: airlines. Air travel is one of the most efficient means of travel, but what is it really costing us? Even though air travel is a form of shared transportation (something we tend to think of as having positive externalities associated with lowering our carbon footprint), it is actually making us worse off. Right now, air travel accounts for 2.5 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions, but in thirty-one years, it could take up to a quarter of the world’s carbon budget. In Continue reading Air Travel is Costing Us