May 23, 2013 |
Almost a century ago, Thomas Marshall, Woodrow Wilson's vice president, got tired of listening to senators blather on about the nation's needs and uttered the words that made him immortal: "What this country needs is a good five-cent cigar. " Today, with 24/7 blathering as our national political pastime, let me adapt Marshall's 1917 remark: What this country needs to get its act together is a good five-alarm financial crisis. I mean, look around. Except for the Federal Reserve, which has consistently...
April 21, 2013 |
The International Monetary Fund recently held a conference that should concern most people despite its arcane subject — " Rethinking Macro Policy II . " Macroeconomics is the study of the entire economy, as opposed to the examination of individual markets ("microeconomics"). The question is how much "macro" policies can produce and protect prosperity. Before the 2008-09 financial crisis, there was great confidence that they could. Now, with 38 million unemployed in Europe and the United States — and recoveries that are feeble...
April 17, 2013
Columnist, The Washington Post Neil Irwin is a Washington Post columnist and the economics editor of Wonkblog, The Post's site for policy news and analysis. Each weekday morning his Econ Agenda column reports and explains the latest trends in economics, finance, and the policies that shape both. He is the author of "The Alchemists: Three Central Bankers and a World on Fire," a book about the efforts of the world's central banks to combat the financial crisis and its aftermath, to be published in spring 2013 by the Penguin Press.
April 16, 2013 |
RNS () — With the help of pagans, Jains and people of a range of other faiths, the Council for a Parliament of the World's Religions has raised more than $144,000 in two weeks using a crowdsourcing campaign in a desperate bid to survive a financial crisis. The Chicago-based interfaith network was recently ordered by a U.S. court to pay $276,000 in expenses related to its 2004 meeting in Barcelona, Spain. Deadly train bombings in Madrid months beforehand prompted a drop in expected attendance.
April 9, 2013 |
BERLIN — Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble on Tuesday played down differences in their views on whether to focus more on growth or austerity in lifting Europe's economy, but deep divides between the two remained. On the second day of his trip to Europe, Lew met with Schaeuble, the architect of Germany's response to the financial crisis buffeting the continent, and argued that more must be done to encourage economic growth. Germany...
April 5, 2013 |
Is Washington likely to break up the country's biggest banks? No, not right now. But perhaps soon. Political momentum for dismantling them has been, in recent weeks, overstated. That unanimous vote in the Senate for a budget amendment critical of big banks? It was a nonbinding amendment to end "too-big-to-fail subsidies. " As it happens, there isn't a line item in the federal budget titled "too-big-to-fail subsidies. " The vote was a freebie against the abstract concept of taxpayers subsidizing Wall...