The Independent Market Observer

Lessons in Economics: Keynes Vs. Hayek

August 19, 2021

I originally shared this post back in 2014, but I think you will find it still offers some valuable lessons for today. — Brad

I thought it would be fun to share a couple of videos that offer some entertaining—and surprisingly accurate—lessons in economics. Even better, they do so à la rap!

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Lessons in Preparing a Market and Economic Outlook

May 31, 2017

Spring conference season is over. I’m back at the office and happy to be here. Rather than relaxing, however, I am now wrestling with my next big project: preparing an outlook for the second half of the year. What will happen? And why?

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Confidence: What Is It, Anyway?

January 11, 2017

Rereading some of my recent posts, it occurred to me that I’ve talked quite a bit about “confidence” (and the improvements thereof) without actually defining what I mean by it. Much of social science, and economics, is based on hand-waving, so when you have actual data, it makes sense to employ it.

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Where Growth Comes From

August 11, 2016

Yesterday we talked about productivity and growth, with a sidelight on how recent low levels of growth are largely due to low business investment. Although that is certainly true, there’s more to the story.

Let’s take a deeper look at where growth has come from during this recovery and what that might mean for the future.

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The Opposite of Productivity

August 10, 2016

Words are funny. We talk about pros and cons, and everyone has heard the line about the opposite of progress being Congress. But what is the opposite of productivity? Surely it isn’t conductivity.

Whatever you call it, what we’re seeing in the economy is, in many ways, the opposite of productivity growth.

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5 Economic Research Tools for the Everyday Investor

May 18, 2016

Yesterday, we talked about managing your biases. Today, let’s look at some research tools that can help you do just that.

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Inflation: Three Shades of Gray

March 29, 2016

I left off last week with a discussion of the Federal Reserve’s interest rate policy and inflation. As I noted, the Fed may well be forced to raise rates faster than the market is now pricing in, as inflation increases.

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The Growing Money Supply—Not a Risk

March 23, 2016

Yesterday, we concluded that the recent decline in money velocity is due to the money supply increasing faster than economic growth, rather than a collapse in growth itself. So, at worst, slower money velocity is a symptom of potential trouble rather than a cause.

Today, let’s consider another side of the issue: is the fact that growth in the money supply exceeds that of the economy itself either a symptom or cause of future economic trouble?

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Rising Interest Rates, Part 3: What About Investments?

December 17, 2015

This post originally appeared last spring and is part 3 of a series on what happens when interest rates start to rise.

As this is the final post in my series on interest rates, it’s time to talk about what everyone is probably thinking: What happens to investments when interest rates rise? This question is especially pertinent given yesterday’s decision by the Federal Reserve on a rate hike.

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Rising Interest Rates, Part 2: Exploring the Gap

December 16, 2015

This post originally appeared last spring and is part 2 of a series on what happens when interest rates start to rise.

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