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Kellyanne Conway: Donald Trump's 100 days have already reshaped America
Posted: April 29, 2017 at 06:05 AM (Saturday)

An unprecedented string of accomplishments and progress has already had a positive impact on millions of us. Donald J. Trump has launched his presidency with a 100-day stretch of accomplishments and progress that has had a positive impact on millions of Americans.President Trump has enacted more legislation and signed more executive orders in ...


Review & Outlook: A GDP Warning for the GOP
Posted: April 28, 2017 at 07:20 PM (Friday)

The worst growth in three years shows the need for tax reform. The U.S. economy grew by a scant 0.7% in the first quarter of 2017, and Republicans should take it as a warning that they’d better start moving on tax reform if they want to prevent a midterm election washout ...


John Bolton: China's choice on North Korea
Posted: April 28, 2017 at 07:18 PM (Friday)

For 25 years, U.S. presidents, Republican and Democratic alike, have tried persuasion (through diplomacy) and coercion (through economic sanctions) to induce North Korea to abandon its nuclear-weapons and ballistic-missile programs. All these efforts have failed. Pyongyang happily commits to denuclearize in exchange for economic benefits, ...


Who Are The Turncoat Republicans Protecting ObamaCare?
Posted: April 28, 2017 at 06:12 PM (Friday)

Health Reform: Republicans in the House voted nine times to fully repeal ObamaCare when they knew President Obama would veto it. Now that they actually can repeal ObamaCare, dozens of "moderate" Republicans are blocking even a partial repeal. When House Speaker Paul Ryan pulled the American Health Care Act from the floor in late March, it was ...


Henry Kissinger: The Man Who Saved Europe the Last Time
Posted: April 28, 2017 at 06:10 PM (Friday)

Konrad Adenauer restored democracy to Germany and helped unify a devastated Continent. The attribute of greatness is reserved for leaders from whose time onward history can be told only in terms of their achievements. I observed essential elements of Germany’s history—as a native son, as a refugee from its upheavals, as a soldier in the ...


Adam Millsap: Alaska Is Struggling But All Is Not Lost
Posted: April 28, 2017 at 04:09 PM (Friday)

America’s economy is growing at a slow yet steady pace, but Alaska is not doing so well. Its GDP has been declining for years and it’s currently in a recession. The shale oil boom and low oil prices have been a boon for most of us, who get cheaper gas and energy as a result, but for Alaskans, low profits in the oil industry are a source ...


Mike Stopa: The triumphs of Trump’s first 100 days
Posted: April 28, 2017 at 03:24 PM (Friday)

Donald Trump promised us — his supporters — that if we were able to help him win the presidency, he would deliver so much winning that we would get sick of it. We would win with a border wall and illegal immigrants would go home. We would win better trade deals and industry would return to the heartland. We would win against ISIS, we would ...


Shelley Goldberg: What Traders Need to Watch in the Canada Dairy Dispute
Posted: April 28, 2017 at 07:00 AM (Friday)

Last week, President Donald Trump accused Canada of taking advantage of U.S. dairy farmers. The behavior of the U.S.'s northern neighbor "is a disgrace," he told reporters. Despite the harsh words, it remains to be seen how closely Trump plans to match his rhetoric with action. This week, he said he had decided to delay making good on a ...


Hugh Hewitt: Trump’s first 100 days give conservatives a lot to celebrate
Posted: April 27, 2017 at 07:41 PM (Thursday)

Sea change. An enormous one. That's the only way to understand President Trump's first 100 days — as a breaking from and often a breaking of the Obama presidency, one every bit as turbulent as what's encountered by a sailing ship going from calm seas into a hurricane. Trump's first 50 days were a jumble of ups and downs, mostly downs. ...


John Lehman: The U.S. Navy Must Be Everywhere at Once
Posted: April 27, 2017 at 06:18 PM (Thursday)

A recent mishap with the USS Carl Vinson is a case study for rebuilding the fleet to about 350 ships. The aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson was steaming toward North Korea, the Trump administration insisted two weeks ago. Except that it wasn’t. A Navy press photo showed it thousands of miles away, near Indonesia, and heading south. The ...


Daniel Press: World Bank And IMF Get African Development Wrong, Again
Posted: April 27, 2017 at 05:56 PM (Thursday)

It's springtime in Washington D.C., which, for the uninitiated, means not only cherry blossoms and Nationals' baseball, but the spectacle of the World Bank's and International Monetary Fund's annual spring meetings. Thousands of bureaucrats and advocacy groups discuss how the world's economies are faring. Africa was of special concern and ...


Charles Koch: Trump’s policies must not benefit only big businesses like mine
Posted: April 27, 2017 at 01:48 PM (Thursday)

Like Alexis de Tocqueville nearly 200 years ago, I believe American society thrives when people act out of an enlightened regard for themselves that constantly prompts them to assist each other. I remain optimistic that our nation can unify around policies that promote a system of mutual benefit for people from all walks of life. As ...


Jeffrey Dorfman: The Demise Of The American Middle Class Is Greatly Exaggerated
Posted: April 27, 2017 at 10:03 AM (Thursday)

The Pew Research Center has a new report out on the middle class in Western Europe but it has caused a stir in the U.S. because some statistics on the American middle class are included for comparison. Many are interpreting the Pew report as documenting the demise of the American middle class. In particular, the U.S. is shown with the ...


Tim Duy: Yes, the Stock and Bond Markets Can Both Be Right
Posted: April 27, 2017 at 07:00 AM (Thursday)

Equities have renewed their rally -- and so have bonds, and that is creating much alarm among some investors. Whereas the former suggests the stage is set for solid growth, the latter and the accompanying narrowing of the yield curve raises red flags about the health of the economy. I am not sure there is much of a puzzle here. This dichotomy ...


Mark Zandi: Trump will not get a win with this tax proposal
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 07:10 PM (Wednesday)

He hopes that his proposal for massive tax cuts will be a slam dunk. It isn't. Like most things that involve Washington, it's complicated. And even if the president gets precisely the tax cuts he says he wants, it won't be a win for the nation's finances or economy.
Let me begin with what I like about the tax plan. It results in a tax code that ...


Martin Feldstein: Balancing Lost Tax Revenue the Reagan Way
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 06:31 PM (Wednesday)

Gradually increasing the Social Security eligibility age can offset revenue loss from Trump’s tax cuts. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin calls the Trump administration’s tax proposal “the largest tax reform in the history of our country.” The plan would slash corporate tax rates from 35% to 15% and roll back increases in individual rates ...


Douglas Holtz-Eakin: Trump’s tax plan is built on a fairy tale
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 05:57 PM (Wednesday)

President Trump is correct to press for tax reform, correct to argue that corporate rates should be reduced and correct to look for policies that boost the United States' anemic economic growth rate. But the "rough draft" of Trump's tax plan, rolled out at the White House on Wednesday, falls short of being a real tax reform suitable to ...


Robert Samuelson: The Bumpy Road To Adulthood
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 05:16 PM (Wednesday)

Growing up isn't what it used to be. There's a yawning gap between the end of adolescence and the beginning of adulthood: a period when millions of 20-somethings and 30-somethings have many adult freedoms without all the responsibilities. Social scientists have tried — so far in vain — to name this new life-stage, but no one should question ...


Mohamed El-Erian: Trump Tax Plan Will Intensify the Race Between Growth and Debt
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 04:21 PM (Wednesday)

The broad outlines of a bold tax plan the Trump administration presented Wednesday marked a step toward validating what stock markets have already priced in. Whether this tax reform can make it through Congress, and whether it evolves into the "historic" and meaningful accomplishment that the administration is targeting, will depend on its ...


Greg Ip: Dear Canada, It’s Not Personal, It’s Just Trade
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 03:22 PM (Wednesday)

Trump administration’s hardheaded approach on trade serves as a reminder that allies can disagree. The day after the Trump administration announced a 20% tariff on lumber imports from Canada, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross was asked if he was comfortable taking action against “an extremely close ally and neighbor.” “They’re an important ...


Arthur Garson: Both parties can win if we cut health care costs
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 03:09 PM (Wednesday)

There's a trillion dollars of waste in our health care system. Largely absent from the current health-care debate in Washington is one astonishing number: We waste fully one-third of our medical care dollars, about $1 trillion out of $3 trillion annually, according to a paper by Donald Berwick and Andrew Hackbarth that was published in The ...


Tyler Cowen: U.S. Can Afford Trump's Radical Tax Cut
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 02:00 PM (Wednesday)

The Trump administration announced Wednesday its intent to proceed with a radical cut to the corporate income tax, lowering it to 15 percent. We haven't been presented with enough details to conclude whether such a plan can work, but I've been seeing some of my fellow economists claim -- incorrectly -- that we can't afford those changes. There ...


Stephen Roach: A World Turned Inside Out
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 09:19 AM (Wednesday)

NEW HAVEN – Slowly but surely, a bruised and battered global economy now appears to be shaking off its deep post-crisis malaise. If the International Monetary Fund's latest forecasts are borne out – an iffy proposition, to be sure – the nearly 3.6% average annual growth in world GDP expected over the 2017-2018 period would represent a ...


Jim O'Neill: Fixing Fixed-Investment Incentives
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 08:49 AM (Wednesday)

LONDON – Back in February, I noted that the global economy at the end of 2016 was in a stronger cyclical position than most people had expected, given the political upheavals of the previous 12 months. That upward momentum carried through to the first quarter of 2017. According to the latest "nowcast"-type indicators, world GDP growth is ...


Mark Mills: Energy Revolutions Hidden In Plain Sight: Part 1 of 3 -- Shale Crushes Solar
Posted: April 26, 2017 at 08:40 AM (Wednesday)

Policymakers, tech plutocrats, and a cacophony of pundits serially talk about revolutions in energy and technology. "Revolution" is a powerful word but is so overused in these domains that it's lost meaning. But real revolutions, by definition "radical and pervasive changes," do matter. Using the proper meaning of the word, this series ...


Diana Furchtgott-Roth: President Trump Gets Serious About Tax Reform
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 08:12 PM (Tuesday)

LONDON—Here in the UK the corporate tax rate is a flat 20 percent, and anyone with a small business incorporates to take advantage of it. Prime Minister Theresa May wants to lower that rate to 17 percent in 2020. So President Trump’s plans to lower the corporate tax to 15 percent do not seem radical from this side of the Atlantic. A 15 ...


Stephen Moore: Growth Can Solve the Debt Dilemma
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 06:53 PM (Tuesday)

Hitting a 3% target would result in an economy that’s nearly $13 trillion larger in 30 years. The Congressional Budget Office’s latest report on the nation’s fiscal future is full of doom and gloom. The national debt will double in the next 30 years to 150% of gross domestic product—which is Greece territory. Interest payments may become ...


William Isaac and Richard Kovacevich: The Shattered Arguments for a New Glass-Steagall
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 06:50 PM (Tuesday)

Investment banking isn’t risky. What’s dangerous is creating stand-alone firms that can’t diversify. Gary Cohn may not be the first White House official you’d expect to favor reinstating Glass-Steagall, the Depression-era law that split commercial banks from investment banks. Yet Mr. Cohn, the former Goldman Sachs president who now leads ...


Allan Meltzer: Three Democrat Errors
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 06:00 PM (Tuesday)

In the months following the presidential election, Democratic Party leaders have made a number of decisions that are neither in the near- nor the long-term interest of the party or the public at large. Two are narrowly political; a third is more fundamental for our future. Together, they show the party following the familiar path: stand ...


Trump's Corporate Tax Cut, A Supply-Side Shot In The Arm
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 05:38 PM (Tuesday)

Taxes: If White House rumors are correct, President Trump is about to make slashing the corporate tax rate to 15% the centerpiece of his tax-reform plan. It's a smart move. Not only will it kick start the economy and job growth, but it's likely he'll be able to get bipartisan support. Right now, there is no consensus on broad-based tax reform. ...


Jared Bernstein: When talking about Trump’s corporate rate reduction, do not forget pass-throughs
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 02:38 PM (Tuesday)

As information dribbles out regarding President Trump's tax cut plan — that's "tax cut" plan, not "tax reform" plan — we're learning that the administration wants to cut the corporate rate to 15 percent. That's a big drop from its current 35 percent rate, though many businesses pay less than that because of all the loopholes in the corporate ...


Republicans Are Jeopardizing A Great Tax Cut Over A Foolish And False Barrier
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 02:29 PM (Tuesday)

WITH A MIND-SET that could have come straight out of Alice in Wonderland, Republicans are foolishly tying themselves in knots over whether they should go for a big tax cut or a small one. Incredibly, in their minds, the big barrier to a robust reduction worthy of Presidents Kennedy and Reagan is arcane legislative rules they can’t bring ...


Peter Roff: Donald Trump Is Winning the '100 Days,' Though Liberals Won't Admit It
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 11:00 AM (Tuesday)

The liberal establishment is desperate to sell the narrative that the president is failing. The tradition of taking stock of presidential accomplishments after the first 100 days of a new administration goes back to Franklin Roosevelt, who invited the assessment as part of his effort to combat what has become known as The Great Depression. ...


Peter Orszag: A Better Goal for Trump on Health Care
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 08:30 AM (Tuesday)

Rather than renew their failed effort to repeal and replace Obamacare, President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans should move on to another aspect of health care: the need to contain costs and improve value. Such a shift would allow them to be far more productive. For many if not most Americans, cost trends and value matter more ...


John Cochrane: Long Run Lira?
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 08:00 AM (Tuesday)

Luigi Zingales inaugurated a series of essays in Il Sole 24 Ore, an Italian newspaper, on whether Italy should stay in or get out of the Euro, and graciously asked me to contribute. My view, here in English, here in Italian. To be clear, I kept to Luigi's terms of the debate. This piece is only about whether Italy is better off in the long ...


Julian Assange: The CIA director is waging war on truth-tellers like WikiLeaks
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 07:39 AM (Tuesday)

Mike Pompeo, in his first speech as director of the CIA, chose to declare war on free speech rather than on the United States' actual adversaries. He went after WikiLeaks, where I serve as editor, as a "non-state hostile intelligence service." In Pompeo's worldview, telling the truth about the administration can be a crime — as Attorney ...


Martin Feldstein: Inconvenient Truths About the US Trade Deficit
Posted: April 25, 2017 at 05:19 AM (Tuesday)

CAMBRIDGE – The United States has a trade deficit of about $450 billion, or 2.5% of GDP. That means that Americans import $450 billion of goods and services more than they export to the rest of the world. What explains the enormous US deficit year after year, and what would happen to Americans' standard of living if it were to decline? It is ...


Peter Morici: Illegal immigration crackdown should take skilled labor into account
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 09:40 PM (Monday)

An emphasis on skilled workers would boost growth and reduce a feared nativist backlash. President Trump's crackdown on immigrants committing crimes and employers abusing H-1B visas to replace qualified Americans with low-wage foreign workers may be welcome. However, those fall far short of the comprehensive reform needed to better ...


Bjorn Lomborg: Making dollars count in Haiti
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 09:13 PM (Monday)

In every country, every day, a lot of money is spent by various governments and agencies with the intention of making life better for citizens. In Boston, priorities are set by City Hall, the state, and the federal government — along with a host of privately controlled philanthropic organizations. Just like everywhere, these decisions are ...


Bobby Jindal: ObamaCare Repeal Needs a Direction
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 07:14 PM (Monday)

Focus on reducing the costs of health care, and more Americans will end up getting covered. Before you start a journey, it helps to know where you are going. That’s obvious advice—but instructive as Republicans consider next steps in the effort to repeal ObamaCare. Before getting lost in arcane Senate rules, technical modifications to the ...


Stephen Hessler: A Better Idea for Bankrupt Big Banks
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 07:11 PM (Monday)

Unlike Dodd Frank, the new act would require that parties with the same legal rights receive the same treatment. The most significant Wall Street reform in nearly a decade may soon become law. Last Friday President Trump directed Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to review Title II of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act, which gives the federal ...


Never Mind Macron And Le Pen — Can Anyone Make France Great Again?
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 05:21 PM (Monday)

French Elections: Markets like predictability. That's why they soared following the results of the French presidential election, which showed that centrist political upstart Emmanuel Macron is strongly positioned to defeat rightist candidate Marine Le Pen in a runoff on May 7.
The first-round presidential election results on Sunday ...


Glenn Harlan Reynolds: Hate speech is free speech, Gov. Dean
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 01:48 PM (Monday)

I tell my constitutional law students that there are a couple of statements that indicate that a speaker is a constitutional illiterate who can safely be ignored. One is the claim that the Constitution views black people as ⅗ the worth of white people (actually, it was all about power in Congress, with slaveowners wanting black people to ...


Marc Thiessen: Forget the critics, Mr. President. Your first 100 days have been just fine.
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 11:17 AM (Monday)

Despite the best efforts of the White House "PR apparatus" to sell the president's first 100 days as a success, the New York Times declared in an editorial, the new administration has, in fact, been plagued by "many missteps" including a "bungled sales job" on his first major legislative initiative and a "snakebit" confirmation process, all ...


Jared Bernstein: DSA, Dynamic Scoring Abuse
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 07:16 AM (Monday)

There are two big fiscal stories to watch this week: tax reform and the little matter of funding the government. I'll write about the funding later in the week, but these days, the only way the dysfunctional Congress seems to be able to prevent the government from shutting down is by extending these budget patches ("continuing resolutions"). ...


Noah Smith: Cracking the Mystery of Labor's Falling Share of GDP
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 07:00 AM (Monday)

Economists are very worried about the decline in labor's share of U.S. national income. One reason they're concerned is because when less of an economy's wealth flows to workers, it exacerbates inequality and increases the risk of social instability. But another reason is that this trend throws a wrench in economists' models. For ...


Mohamed El-Erian: New Life for the SDR?
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 06:49 AM (Monday)

WASHINGTON, DC – The rise of anti-globalization political movements and the threat of trade protectionism have led some people to wonder whether a stronger multilateral core for the world economy would reduce the risk of damaging fragmentation. After all, lest we forget, the current arrangements – as pressured as they are – reflected ...


Michael Boskin: The Coming Technology Policy Debate
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 06:19 AM (Monday)

STANFORD – What do the leaks of unflattering email from the Democratic National Committee's hacked servers during the 2016 US presidential election campaign and the deafening hour-long emergency-warning siren in Dallas, Texas, have in common? It's the same thing that links the North Korean nuclear threat and terrorist attacks in Europe and ...


Steve Forbes: The French Election, We May Have Avoided A Political And Economic Cataclysm
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 06:00 AM (Monday)

PHEW! THAT WASa close call. Sunday’s first round in France’s presidential election–the runoff between the top two contenders is May 7–could have precipitated the most serious post-WWII crisis in Europe, with profoundly damaging consequences for both the Continent and the U.S. One of the finalists is Marine Le Penn, a xenophobic, ...


John Cochrane: Inflating our troubles away?
Posted: April 24, 2017 at 06:00 AM (Monday)

These are comments I gave on "Inflating away the public debt? An empirical assessment" by Jens Hilscher, Alon Aviv, and Ricardo Reis at the Becker-Friedman Institute Government Debt: Constraints and Choices conference, April 22 2017, along with generic comments on the conference in general. This post contains ...