Wednesday, July 27, 2016

How Do Babies Learn So Much From So Little So Quickly?

A very fascinating speech but the a hint of dangerous advocacy of central planning of children at the end, when she mentions "investment in children."


Obamacare Medicaid Cost Explosion: 49% Above Projections

A new government report shows that the average ObamaCare Medicaid expansion enrollee cost the federal government $6,366 in 2015, 49% above the per-person cost of $4,281 projected a year ago, writes Jed Graham.

Brian Blase, a research fellow in Health Policy at the Mercatus Center, was first to highlight the cost explosion, notes Graham.

He said it likely stems from incentives built into the Medicaid expansion that, for now, is 100% paid for by the federal government.

"The rates are much higher than the amounts for previously eligible Medicaid adult enrollees and suggest that states are inappropriately funneling federal taxpayer money to insurers, hospitals and other health care interests through the (Affordable Care Act) Medicaid expansion," Blase has written.

The upshot, Blase says, is that federal Medicaid spending and budget deficit projections are likely to be revised upwards when the Congressional Budget Offices takes into account the higher cost trajectory for Medicaid expansion enrollees.


No Fed Rate Hike But Door Open to Move as Soon as September

In a statement today following a two-day meeting of the FOMC, the Federal Reserve upgraded its assessment of the economy’s recent performance and said near-term risks to the outlook have diminished, effectively leaving the door open to raise rates later this year, possibly as early as September, reports WSJ.

Nine of 10 members of the Fed’s policy-making committee voted to leave the benchmark federal-funds rate unchanged at between 0.25% and 0.5%, but they offered a more upbeat description of the labor market and other sectors of the economy.

The labor market has “strengthened,” the Federal Open Market Committee said after its two-day meeting. That was brighter than the FOMC’s assessment six weeks ago, when the central bank said the pace of improvement in jobs growth had “slowed.”

“Near-term risks to the economic outlook have diminished,” the FOMC said in is statement.

Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City President Esther George voted against the committee’s action on Wednesday because she preferred to raise rates immediately. Ms. George dissented at the March and April meetings, too.

The full statement is here.


A Satisfied Reader

Lifted from the comments:

Listen Robert,

It’s okay that you don’t post what I write, it’s your website you can do as you will. The satisfaction I get is that YOU and I both KNOW FOR A FACT that your M2 pseudo-Austrian theory of the business cycle has no merit. It is neither Austrian, Keynesian, nor Chicagoan…it is just plain old Wenzelian bunk. You don’t post what I say, not because I’m being rude or a jerk, but because you can’t defend it. And that’s where my satisfaction lies. Each time I don’t see replies from you regarding my challenge or refusal by you to post what I quickly scribble only reaffirm that you know...that I know...that you know...NOTHING of what you talk about. Chew on that for a bit...

Sustainable Farmed Fish? Give Me a Break

By Don Boudreaux
Today on the radio I heard an ad for a DC-area supermarket chain that boasts that it now has on sale – as in, selling for a reduced price – “sustainably farmed fish.”
I really dislike the word “sustainable” (and all of its variations) as used today to signal holier-than-thou environmental ‘awareness.’  As Robert Solow said about this concept,
It is very hard to be against sustainability.  In fact, the less you know about it, the better it sounds.
But advertising “sustainably farmed fish” – implying, as it does (rather bizarrely), that unsustainably farmed fish are common – is especially annoying.  While the absence of property rights in oceans and other large bodies of water, and in uncaught fish, might well lead to overfishing (that is, to a genuinely unsustainable manner of acquiring fish for human consumption), the very essence of a fish farm implies property rights in the fish stocks.  And where there are property rights there is sustainability.  A fish farmer is no more likely to allow his stock of fish to be depleted than is the owner of Triple Crown winner American Pharaoh to allow his horse to be slaughtered for sport, or than are you to allow the cost of motor oil to prevent you from ever changing the oil in your car.
Private property rights give to each owner incentives to consider not only the current values of alternative uses of the things that he or she owns, but to consider also the future values of alternative uses.  In other words, private property rights internalize on each owner not only the immediate, current costs and benefits of the chosen use of the property, but also the more-distant, future costs and benefits of that use.  Your cost today of changing the oil in your car might well be greater than the benefit such an oil change would yield to you if you knew that, say, your car would be stolen and destroyed tomorrow.  But because you own the car and expect either to keep it for several more years or to sell it, you care about the car’s future.  Your ownership of the car makes you care about that asset’s future.  Ownership is very much like a pair of eyeglasses: it cures economic myopia.
It’s depressing that those people who today are most likely to worry about resources being “unsustainable” – people who are most likely to prattle publicly about “sustainability” – are those people who also are most likely to disparage private property rights and to argue for government policies that weaken and attenuate such rights.  Such people are those who are most likely to wish to further collectivize the provision not only of environmental amenities such as park space and animal conservation, but also of health care, of education, of housing, and of a host of other private goods and services.  Such people also are those who are most likely to protest prices made higher by market forces, and to applaud rent-control and other government-imposed price ceilings on a variety of consumer goods and services.
In short, the people who today howl most frequently and loudly for “sustainability” are those who most frequently and loudly oppose the legal and economic institutions – private property and market-determined prices – that alone reliably promote genuine sustainability.
The above originally appeared at Cafe Hayekk.

Trump: The Minimum Wage Has to Go Up

Donald Trump displays more economic ignorance.

Minimum wage laws are evil.

If Trump becomes president, I am going to have no problem finding material for EPJ.

Come to think of it, I won't have problems with material if Hillary is president either,

Donnie or Hillary as president won't be good for most of you, but it will be a gift to EPJ.


Bitcoin Tracking as Official EU Policy

 The European Commission is proposing the creation of a database that will hold information on users of virtual currencies, which will record data on the user's real world identity, along with all associated wallet addresses.

They are using the terrorist attacks as the cover:
This is the first proposal part of an action plan that the EU got rolling after the Paris November 2015 terror attacks and that it officially put forward in February 2016 and later approved at the start of July 2016.

There is nothing libertarian about e-currencies. They are very trackable. Governments are beginning to realize this.

(via Softpedia ht Mark Addleman)

Behavioral Economics: The Easy Way I Save $200 a Month Without Any Effort At All

By Kathleen Elkins

City life isn't cheap. It'll eat your paycheck up mercilessly if you let it.

I learned this pretty quickly upon moving to New York City a year ago.

After covering my necessities such as food, my fixed costs — rent, internet, and cell phone bill — and directing a chunk of my paycheck to my 401(k) plan, there wasn't much left over for spending on all that this glamorous city has to offer, let alone for savings.

Sure, I was saving for retirement in my 401(k), but there are bound to be bigger purchases down the road — a car, home, and potentially graduate school — that also require savings. Plus, it would be nice to have some extra cash set aside so I can travel at some point and splurge on the occasional vacation.

To force myself to start chipping away at these savings goals, I opened a high-yield online savings account, which will allow my money to grow 100 times more than it would in my traditional savings account. I chose Ally, which offers a generous 1% interest rate (compared to the 0.01% at most traditional "big banks"), but there are a bunch of online bank options out there.

Next, I set up a recurring automatic transfer from my checking account to my Ally savings account — the first day of every month, $200 is automatically sent to my Ally account.

All I had to do was link my Wells Fargo checking account to my Ally account online, then select an amount I wanted to transfer and how frequently I wanted the transfer to occur. Now, I never see that $200, meaning I don't even have the chance to spend it if I wanted to.

By making things automatic, I've essentially finagled my budget so that my savings goals are now a fixed cost. I treat this $200 like I would rent or utilities — I must set it aside every month — which keeps me from skimping on my savings goals.

David Bach, author of "The Automatic Millionaire," calls this "paying yourself first." When most people get their paychecks, they spend it on their necessities, fixed costs, and "wants," and then save whatever is left over. This is a faulty system, he notes, because oftentimes whatever money is left over is not enough.

And if you're wondering, it wasn't as hard as I imagined it would be to part with that $200. If you never see it, you learn to live without it pretty quickly.

The above originally appeared at Business Insider.

The Austrian School of Economics: "One of the Greatest Intellectual Achievements in Human History"

A great exposition by Professor Joesph Salerno on the Austrian School of economics at Mises University in Auburn, Alabama, on 25 July 2016.


Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Turkey Economics: After Erdogan Announced 3-Month State of Emergency, The Currency Dropped to an All Time Low

An Uber driver today, who is originally from Turkey, asked me if it was a good time to invest in the country.

I told him probably not that I like to buy when there is blood in the streets but Erdogan probably has a lot more wrecking to do.

(via Steve Hanke)

First-Time Foreclosure at Lowest Level in 16 Years!

 Data provider Black Knight Financial Services reported Tuesday that first-time foreclosure starts were the lowest not just since the housing bubble burst, but since 2000, reports Andrea Riqueir at MarketWatch.

There were 77,657 such starts in the second quarter, Black Knight said. That’s a 16% decline from the first quarter and 25% lower than the same period a year ago.

Repeat foreclosures are also falling rapidly: there were 114,620 in the second quarter, down 17% from the first quarter and 8% compared to a year ago, but still more than double the level they averaged from 2000 to 2005.

This nothing like what a recession looks like.


BOOM New Home Sales Highest in Nearly 8 1/2 Years

Sales of new single-family houses in June 2016 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 592,000, according to estimates released jointly today by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

This is 3.5 percent  above the revised May rate of 572,000 and is 25.4 percent above the June 2015
estimate of 472,000.

These numbers, year-on-year are simply off the charts.

Midwest sales were up 44% year-on-year, in the Northeast up  30%,  in the West up 24%. in the South is up 21.

This is not what not what a recession looks like.


Bernie's Socialist View on Venezuelan Food Lines



EVIL FT Calls for Central Banks to Take Over E-Currency Creation

Banksters and their apologists have realized that e-currencies are a very good method to create, track and control money.

The establishment organ, The Financial Times, via columnist Martin Sandbu, is now promoting e-currency controlled by central bankers.

Sandbu writes:
E-cash: coming soon to a wallet near you
Regular Free Lunch readers will know our sympathy with proposals for central banks to take over the role of money creation (a public good if anything is) from the private sector. They would do so by giving individuals and companies a convenient way to hold official digital money (as they already offer banknotes and coins) instead of deposits with private banks..

 e-cash, because it can in principle be tracked, does not offer the anonymity of physical cash. This is of course also an advantage as it makes illicit business transactions harder...
The upshot is that e-cash is both much more useful and easier to implement than is often thought. Central banks should get down to business.
E-currency adoption by central banks would be a very serious step on the way to monetary socialism.

The idea that a central bank could easily determine how much e-currency is in a certain sector and re-allocate the currency based on the desires of the state is not a difficult scenario to imagine, if a central bank e-currency becomes the medium of exchange in the land.

 Not good. Not good at all.


A Chaos of Words: This is Policy Advocacy?

By Don Boudreaux

Each and every day at least ten unsolicited e-mails arrive in my e-mailbox from persons, politicians, or organizations peddling outlandish schemes to save the world from shadowy demons and other imaginary ghouls.  An e-mail that I just opened from the “Institute for Local Self-Reliance” is pretty typical.  Here it is in full – written to me by one “Nick Stumo-Langer” who, despite our apparently being on a first-name basis with each other, I’m sure that I’ve never met:
Hi Don,
The Democratic Party platform has now officially solidified a commitment to “generating 50% of our electricity from clean energy sources within a decade”, and renewable energy has never had a greater national prominence.
While prices for solar arrays are plummeting and attitudes across the political spectrum are changing in support of renewables, monopoly electric utilities are trying their hardest to undervalue and attack local ownership of clean energy resources.
This is an important discussion for your readers  as they grapple with the topic of renewable energy. I’d love to set up a conversation with you and John Farrell, the director of our Energy Democracy initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance.
“What we’re seeing now is an obvious divide between investor-owned electric utilities trying to defend their profits, while customers are trying to make the best economic decision for themselves,” said John.
At the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, we fight against big utilities that are crushing individuals’ ability to produce their own energy. These monopoly electric utilities develop policies that encroach on rooftop solar by proposing plans that pay their customers less and allow less of an ownership stake.
Please let me know if I can set you up with an interview with John. You can email me at, or give me a call at 612-844-1330.
I’m especially annoyed by the part in which I’m warned that
big utilities that are crushing individuals’ ability to produce their own energy. These monopoly electric utilities develop policies that encroach on rooftop solar by proposing plans that pay their customers less and allow less of an ownership stake.
I’ve read this passage several times and still cannot decipher it save to determine that it’s meant to make me oh-so-angry at “big” and ‘monopolistic’ utilities.  But, pray, what are “policies that encroach on rooftop solar” – policies that utilities “develop … by proposing plans”?  The policies are said to “encroach” “by proposing plans.”  What does this chaos of words mean?  And for what, precisely, are customers paid less and allowed less of an ownership stake?*
Perhaps the answers are clear and will be revealed to me if I spend a few minutes clicking through this outfit’s website.  But my time is too precious to waste.  If the teaser e-mail cannot be deciphered, why should I believe that the contents of the website are more carefully worded and decipherable?
It’s true, I confess, that my suspicions that this outfit is a source of nothing but nonsense are further raised by the outfit’s name: Institute for Local Self-Reliance.  Anyone who thinks, or even hints at thinking, that human welfare is improved the more “locally” we consume and otherwise conduct our economic affairs knows too little about reality, history, and economics to take seriously.  Such a person is one who mistakes slogans for scholarship and first impressions for full analyses.  Such a person “feels” rather than thinks.  Any organization founded to promote such an “ideal” is one that I want nothing do do with and, more importantly, want it to have nothing to do with me.
Still, out of sick curiosity I clicked on the link.  I found what appears to be this outfit’s mission statement:
The Institute’s mission is to provide innovative strategies, working models and timely information to support environmentally sound and equitable community development. To this end, ILSR works with citizens, activists, policymakers and entrepreneurs to design systems, policies and enterprises that meet local or regional needs; to maximize human, material, natural and financial resources; and to ensure that the benefits of these systems and resources accrue to all local citizens.
I’m amused by the “… accrue to all local citizens.”   Is any citizen not local?  Isn’t each of us, no matter how dependent each of us is (as each of us in the modern world certainly is), a citizen of some locale?  How would the meaning of the above mission statement change if the phrase “local citizens” was replaced by the word “people”?
Oh, oh – yes.  Don’t tell me!  The mission statement is meant to emphasize that the benefits that each person gets will, once this outfit’s policies become the diktats of the land, come not from some distant place but from each person’s locale.  For example, all or most of my “human, material, natural and financial resources” – and the benefits to me therefrom – will come from Fairfax, Virginia, and not from some impersonal, distant place such as Washington, DC.
It would be funny if, contrary to reality, outfits such as this one had no prospect of actually influencing government policies – funny because this outfit pretends to be devoted to localism yet boasts of its support for national policies to make locales more self-reliant.
* I do not doubt that many utility companies use the power of the state to secure for themselves genuine monopoly power and other special privileges.  But the problem with this reality has nothing to do with how ‘local’ or ‘non-renewable’ or ‘carbon-dependent’ or whatever these companies might or might not be.  The problem with this reality is that the state unjustifiably has the power to bestow special privileges on these companies.
The above originally appeared at Cafe Hayek.

Major Food Price Index Jumps 8% in the Last Three Months

The Economist's food-price index jumped 8% in the last 3 months, led by the rising price of soybeans and sugar.

Be prepared serious price inflation is lurking.


(ht Steve Hanke)

Tom Woods at His Best: Down with "Leadership"

Tom Woods delivered the opening lecture of Mises University 2016.

Find the time to listen to this. There are geat arguments, history and explanations throughout.


Monday, July 25, 2016

INTENSE A Scientist Might Have Found the Fountain of Youth

Tony Wyss-Coray studies the impact of aging on the human body and brain. In this eye-opening talk, he shares new research from his Stanford lab and other teams which shows that a solution for some of the less great aspects of old age might actually lie within us all.

A Chinese Migrant With No College Education But With a Hayekian Kind of Mind Makes a Major Discovery

A Chinese migrant worker with no college degree has found a solution to a complex math problem.

CNN tells the story:
Yu Jianchun, who works for a parcel delivery company, said he'd always had a passion for numbers and has created an alternative method to verify Carmichael numbers.
His solution amazed academics, who said his proof was much more efficient than the traditional one. 
"It was a very imaginative solution," said Cai Tianxin, a math professor at Zhejiang University.
"He has never received any systematic training in number theory nor taken advanced math classes. All he has is an instinct and an extreme sensitivity to numbers."
Carmichael numbers are sometimes described as "pseudo primes" -- they complicate the task of determining true prime numbers, which are divisable only by 1 and itself. They play an important role in computer science and information security.
Yu worked on his proof during his free time while building a new home in his village last year.
"I was overwhelmed with joy, because my solution was completely different to the classic algorithm," said Yu.
William Banks, a mathematician at the University of Missouri, who works with Carmichael numbers said, if verified, an alternative proof would be an exciting discovery for his field.
He said that the only construction of an infinite family of Carmichael number was done by academics 20 years ago.
"There have been additional theoretical results in this area -- including several by myself and my co-authors -- but these are all variations on a theme," he said.
Yu presented his proof -- along with solutions to four other problems -- to the public on June 13 at a graduate student seminar on the invitation of Cai.
However, it took Yu more than eight years of writing letters to prominent Chinese mathematicians to get any recognition for his talent.
Cai, the professor, says he will include Yu's solution in an upcoming book.
But what really caught my eye in the CNN story is this: 
Yu, who describes himself as shy and introverted, said he would pore over numbers with a calculator while he studied animal breeding at a vocational school....
"I'm slow-witted," he says. "I need to spend far more time studying math problems than others. Although I am sensitive to numbers, I barely have any knowledge about calculus or geometry."
He has a damn Hayekian kind of mind.  F.A. Hayek once wrote an essay titled Two Types of Mind (Chapter 3). In the essay,  he discussed two types of scientific thinkers, the "master of his subject" versus the "puzzler."

WHAT PRESERVED ME from developing an acute
feeling of inferiority in the company of those
more efficient scholars was that I knew that I
owed whatever worth-while new ideas I ever had
to not possessing their capacity, i.e. to often not
being able to remember what every competent
specialist is supposed to have at his fingertips.
Whenever I saw a new light on something it was as
the result of a painful effort to reconstruct an
argument which most competent economists

would effortlessly and instantly reproduce..

I am inclined to call minds of this type the
"puzzlers." But I shall not mind if they are called
the muddlers, since they certainly will often give
this impression if they talk about a subject before
they have painfully worked through to some
degree of clarity.

Their constant difficulties, which in rare
instances may be rewarded by a new insight, are
due to the fact that they cannot avail themselves
of the established verbal formulae or arguments
which lead others smoothly and quickly to the
result. But being forced to find their own way of
expressing an accepted idea, they sometimes discover
that the conventional formula conceals
gaps or unjustified tacit presuppositions. They
will be forced explicitly to answer questions
which had been long effectively avoided by a
plausible but ambiguous turn of phrase or an
implicit but illegitimate assumption.


Restoring First Principles: The Economic Future of the United States

Civil Wars and Soaring Price Inflation

Hanke's Law:

Prof. Steve Hanke says civil wars lead to climbing price inflation.

New Tyler Cowen Book

Tyler Cowen announces that The Complacent Class: The Self-Defeating Quest for the American Dream  is available for pre-order.

Cowen writes:
Very little of the content of this book has appeared on Marginal Revolution.  It contains my thoughts on the death of American restlessness, what is happening with segregation by race and income, how we have become a nation of “matchers,” why crime rates will move up, the ultimate sociological roots of the economic great stagnation, why Steven Pinker is probably wrong about world peace, what we can learn from the riots and violence of the 1960s, why the bureaucratization of protest matters, marijuana vs. cocaine vs. heroin, in which significant way gdp statistics really do under-measure productivity, the importance of cyclical theories of history, and what Tocqueville got right and wrong about America.

And much more!  Most of all it is about why the future will be a scary place.

I also am making a special offer for those who pre-order the work.  Just send me an email to (or my gmail), and tell me you have pre-ordered The Complacent Class, and I’ll send you a free copy of another work by me — about 45,000 words — on the foundations of a free society.

I have been revising this second one for over fifteen years, and it is called Stubborn Attachments: A Vision for a Society of Free, Prosperous, and Responsible Individuals.  It is finally ready.

You will receive links to an on-line version with images, a pdf with images, and a plain vanilla pdf for Kindle.

In that work, I outline a true and objectively valid case for a free and prosperous society, and consider the importance of economic growth for political philosophy, how and why the political spectrum should be reconfigured, how we should think about existential risk, what is right and wrong in Parfit and Nozick and Singer and effective altruism, how to get around the Arrow Impossibility Theorem, to what extent individual rights can be absolute, how much to discount the future, when redistribution is justified, whether we must be agnostic about the distant future, and most of all why we need to “think big.”

These are my final thoughts on those topics.  And to be fair, this is likely to come out someday as a more traditional book, but that will not happen soon as I have not shopped it around to any publisher.  So if you pre-order The Complacent Class, you’ll get what is an advance and also free copy of Stubborn Attachments.

From the blurb toThe Complacent Class:
Since Alexis de Tocqueville, restlessness has been accepted as a signature American trait. Our willingness to move, take risks, and adapt to change have produced a dynamic economy and a tradition of innovation from Ben Franklin to Steve Jobs.

The problem, according to legendary blogger, economist and bestelling author Tyler Cowen, is that Americans today have broken from this tradition―we’re working harder than ever to avoid change. We're moving residences less, marrying people more like ourselves and choosing our music and our mates based on algorithms that wall us off from anything that might be too new or too different. matches us in love. Spotify and Pandora match us in music. Facebook matches us to just about everything else.

Of course, this “matching culture” brings tremendous positives: music we like, partners who make us happy, neighbors who want the same things. We’re more comfortable. But, according to Cowen, there are significant collateral downsides attending this comfort, among them heightened inequality and segregation and decreased incentives to innovate and create.

The Complacent Class argues that this cannot go on forever. We are postponing change, due to our near-sightedness and extreme desire for comfort, but ultimately this will make change, when it comes, harder. The forces unleashed by the Great Stagnation will eventually lead to a major fiscal and budgetary crisis: impossibly expensive rentals for our most attractive cities, worsening of residential segregation, and a decline in our work ethic. The only way to avoid this difficult future is for Americans to force themselves out of their comfortable slumber―to embrace their restless tradition again.
Cowen is a mixed bag, you just never know what you are going to get.

My Cowen favorites have been, Discover Your Inner Economist: Use Incentives to Fall in Love, Survive Your Next Meeting, and Motivate Your Dentist and An Economist Gets Lunch: New Rules for Everyday Foodies.

I was not impressed with The Great Stagnation: How America Ate All the Low-Hanging Fruit of Modern History, Got Sick, and Will( Eventually) Feel Better and Average Is Over: Powering America Beyond the Age of the Great Stagnation, These two seem to contradict each other,

I'll review The Complacent Class when it is out.


TAKE THIS BRITS Prime Minister To Launch Horrific Industrial Policy

So is this a ramification of Brexit?

Economist reports:
Theresa May, Britain’s new prime minister, has certainly been bold, maybe even foolhardy, in some of her cabinet appointments. But she has been equally bold in elevating “industrial strategy” to the top of her new government’s agenda—a move that could mark a clear break with her predecessor’s governments. The very term has been frowned upon in Conservative Party circles since Margaret Thatcher’s leadership. Yet Mrs May argued for “a proper industrial strategy to get the whole economy firing”, in her pitch for taking over from David Cameron. And once installed in Downing Street she quickly created a whole new department, of “Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy”.
I mean Economist even gets how horrific a turn this is:
The phrase in Britain will always be linked to the Labour governments of the 1970s, and to the ruinous industrial failures of that period. In an era in which Keynesian economics and planning dominated policymaking, it was a left-winger, Tony Benn, who proclaimed the need for such a strategy. This was mainly in response to the obvious failings of Britain’s unprofitable, strike-prone and outmoded industrial base. As minister for industry in the middle of the decade Mr Benn intervened ever more closely in loss-making companies such as Triumph motorcycles, just as his immediate successors intervened on a much larger scale to prop up huge corporations such as British Steel. Almost all these interventions failed disastrously, losing billions of pounds for taxpayers without saving the companies; the strategy was derided as “picking winners”. After Mrs Thatcher became prime minister in 1979 the nationalised industries were largely broken up and, in a new era of free-market economic liberalism, the notion became unfashionable. Even when the Labour Party was restored to power under Tony Blair after 1997, it remained firmly off the agenda.
Rebellion against backroom globalism is not good when the masses don't understand the evils of national planning. Things could turn for the worse as they might in the U.K.:
There must be doubts as to how far Mrs May can take an industrial strategy in a majority Conservative government. For now the policy remains somewhat inchoate, but already free-market types are worried. Mark Littlewood, head of the Institute of Economic Affairs, one of Mrs Thatcher’s favourite think-tanks, argues that adopting even a limited industrial strategy could tempt the government into going further by propping up loss-making industries such as steel—especially once Britain leaves the EU and is no longer bound by European rules against state aid. So far it seems mild enough. But, aware of a popular mood souring against globalisation and a government keen to occupy the political centre-ground abandoned by Labour, many Tories will be on the lookout for signs of mission creep. Well-intentioned interventions could quickly become counter-productive. 
Note well America: As I have pointed out, Donald Trump has hinted that he is in favor of introducing industrial policy to the U.S.

SEE: The Most Under-Reported Sentence in Donald Trump's Foreign Policy Speech


Jack Lew Returns from the Foreign Outposts...

and so the Treasury puts out this notice.

Treasury Building
U.S. Treasury Department Office of Public Affairs


In the afternoon, Secretary Lew will meet with President Obama at the White House. This meeting is closed press.


Also see:

HOT On the Way to a One World Order Currency: IMF Will Study Expanded Use of SDR

Jack Lew Still Plotting in China

Serious Jack Lew Plotting In China

Jack Lew Calls for Continued Government Manipulation of Economies

'10 Emerging Markets of the Future'

By Chloe Pfeiffer

A new report from BMI Research has identified the "10 emerging markets of the future" — the countries that are set to become new drivers of economic growth over the next 10 years.

BMI estimates that these countries will cumulatively add $4.3 trillion to global GDP by 2025 — roughly the equivalent of Japan's current economy.

In general, manufacturing and construction are the sectors that will drive the economies. BMI reports that new manufacturing hubs are set to emerge in Bangladesh, Myanmar, and Pakistan, and that these countries will see particularly strong growth in exporting manufacturing industries. And construction growth is going to be widespread throughout all the countries — partly to facilitate increases in urban populations and partly to help develop the manufacturing sector.

On the other hand, extractive industries — like mining, oil, and gas — are going to play a far smaller role in driving growth than they have the past 15 years.

While it might provide bright spots for some countries, the report states, "the ubiquitous commodity-driven growth model that was derailed by the 2012-2015 collapse in commodity prices is not coming back."

Here are the 10 new emerging markets and the sectors that drive their growth:


Primary sector: Agribusiness

Key exports: Garments, agricultural products

2015 GDP growth: 6.4%

Unemployment rate: 4.9%

Exchange rate: 77.42 Bangladeshi taka per US dollar

"Bangladesh's export-oriented industrial sector already accounts for more than a quarter of GDP and will continue to develop as a global manufacturing hub in the coming years."