Labor Force Participation Overview

From Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta: Men, as a group, have been less and less inclined to participate in the labor market since at least World War II. From 1970 to 1999, the male participation rate declined from 80 percent to 75 percent. This decline coincided with rising participation by women, with the female participation…

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Busted: The Sad Data Manipulation of Prof Mark Perry

@TBPInvictus here: It was exactly one year ago – here – that I penned my first piece on Seattle’s then-new (just going into effect) minimum wage. That piece focused on interesting (and wholly unsubstantiated) claims that the law – at that time it had been in effect about a week – was already a failure and had caused…

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Why Can’t We Find Productivity Gains?

  You can see the computer age everywhere but in the productivity statistics.  –Robert Solow   Government data [Friday] showed that the U.S. gained 215,000 new jobs last month. Unemployment ticked up to 5 percent from 4.9 percent, as more people returned to the labor force. Wages increased 0.3 percent month to month, and are up…

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Portland is a Boomtown

I spend a decent amount of time traveling around the U.S. speaking at conferences and visiting clients. Doing this is a visceral form of economic research — you can see just how various regions arerecovering and expanding with your own eyes. It doesn’t take much to realize that, to paraphrase science fiction writer William Gibson,…

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Karma Still a Bitch: Seattle Min Wage Edition

@TBPInvictus here (second time today!): Although it bears absolutely no relevance to the city of Seattle proper, AEI’s Mark Perry spent a fair bit of time last year tracking and reporting on the level of “Food Services and Drinking Places” employees (often considered a proxy for minimum wage workers) in the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), an area…

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No Cure for Stupid: Seattle Min Wage Edition

@TBPInvictus here: The New York Post’s editorial board apparently cares very little for factual data that disagree with their ideology. Don’t bother me with details and facts and data when I have an ideological narrative to push onto an unsuspecting public. Exhibit 1 is the simple truth that AEI’s Mark Perry is not an honest broker of…

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Emerald City Minimum Wage Shenanigans

@TBPInvictus The recent piece by AEI “scholar” Mark Perry on Seattle’s minimum wage – see here – has continued to make its way throughout the right wing echo chamber. It was picked up at the Competitive Enterprise Institute (of which I’ve never heard), then on over to the Foundation for Economic Freedom (never heard of…

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The Great Minimum Wage Experiment

Today’s jobs report confirms much of what we already know: Workers are finding employment at a steady but unspectacular rate, private-sector job creation is good but not great, hours worked are ever so slowly ticking up and wage increases are pretty much nonexistent. This got me thinking about the push to increase minimum hourly wages…

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The Ongoing, Fraudulent Assault on Seattle’s Min Wage

@TBPInvictus (Thanks to Michael Hiltzik  (@hiltzikm) at the LA Times for his recent piece, which is linked to below. It is on his work that I am building.) Mark Perry continued his assault on Seattle’s new minimum wage with a piece at the AEI blog titled “New Evidence Suggests That Seattle’s ‘Radical Experiment’ Might Be…

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Donald Trump and Other Republicans Are Unemployment “Truthers”

Bruce Bartlett is an economist who has worked on Capitol Hill, the White House and the Treasury Department. ~~~ Among Donald Trump’s stump sound bites is that the national unemployment rate is far, far higher than the official rate of 4.9 percent. He is not alone in making such claims. Both former Texas Governor Rick…

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Invest with a Telescope…Not a Microscope

It was another bloody week in the stock market (S&P 500 index dropped -3.1%), and any half-glass full data was interpreted as half-empty. The week was epitomized by a Citigroup report entitled “World Economy Trapped in a Death Spiral.” A sluggish monthly jobs report on Friday, which registered a less than anticipated addition of 151,000 jobs, […]

Minimum Wage Update

@TBPInvictus If you’ve been paying attention to the ongoing minimum wage debate, there have been some recent developments. The Washington Post gave some column inches to Mark Perry, who’s been trumpeting absolutely worthless “data” about Seattle for over a year now. In his WaPo piece, which was ostensibly about Walmart, Perry claims: The stories collected from…

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Retired (until there is a job available)

544 thousand jobs added in the final two months of 2015 appears fantastic, so why doesn’t it seem that way recently?  And why is the unemployment rate quickly flattening at about 5%?  These are interesting questions that demand new insights into the probability and mechanics of the participation data last year.  What we witness from…Read More