The Morning Economic Report | WYPR

The Morning Economic Report

Monday-Friday at 7:33 am

Anirban Basu, Chairman Chief Executive Officer of Sage Policy Group (SPG), is one of the Mid-Atlantic region's leading economic consultants.  Prior to founding SPG he was Chairman and CEO of Optimal Solutions Group, a company he co-founded and which continues to operate. Anirban has also served as Director of Applied Economics and Senior Economist for RESI, where he used his extensive knowledge of the Mid-Atlantic region to support numerous clients in their strategic decision-making processes.  Clients have included the Maryland Department of Transportation, St. Paul Companies, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Players Committee and the Martin O'Malley mayoral campaign.

He is the author of numerous regional publications including the Mid-Atlantic Economic Quarterly and Outlook Maryland. Anirban completed his graduate work in mathematical economics at the University of Maryland.  He earned a Masters in Public Policy from Harvard University in 1992.  His Bachelors in Foreign Service is from Georgetown University and was earned in 1990.

cjuneau/flickr

In the ongoing debate regarding immigration, one argument put forward for limiting immigration is that reductions in the supply of foreign labor will lead to higher wages among native-born Americans. New research indicates that this equation for improved labor market outcomes isn’t quite so simple. As reported by The Wall Street Journal, a team of economists has analyzed the mid-century Bracero program, which allowed nearly half a million seasonal farm workers per year into the U.S. from Mexico.

GDP

12 hours ago
AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

Last year, the U.S. economy expanded just 1.6 percent in terms of gross domestic product or GDP. 2016 will go down as yet another year of tepid growth. But there are a growing number of economists who are expressing skepticism about the accuracy of the GDP measure.

Karen/flickr

When many of us were growing up, it was quite customary for someone to be on strike. Over time, the strike or work stoppage has become a rarely used instrument for labor unions to extract better treatment from employers or higher levels of compensation. According to data recently made available by the U.S. Labor Department, fewer major work stoppages occurred over the past ten years than occurred each year from 1947 to 1981.

Jo Sau/flickr

There has certainly been much concern expressed about the declining economic circumstances of American men in recent decades. But American men are hardly alone in facing adversity. The Resolution Foundation, a British think tank, has published new research indicating that British men born between 1981 and 2000 will earn $12,500 pounds less in their twenties than Generation X men.

China's Economy

Feb 21, 2017
Thomas Depenbusch/flickr

China is home to the world’s second largest economy. Considerable concern has been expressed regarding the Chinese economy in recent years due to a combination of rampant debt and fears of overbuilt real estate markets. For now, China’s economy continues to perform. Chinese gross domestic product expanded 6.7 percent last year and ended the year on a high note.

A Dynamic Economy?

Feb 20, 2017
Michael Daddino/flickr

We economists could easily make the case that America’s economy is in fine shape. Jobs are being created, unemployment is low, wages are rising faster than inflation, which remains contained, and national output remains ascendant. But while economists express such views, our fellow countrymen and women don’t seem to be buying it.

The Rise in Contract Employees

Feb 17, 2017
Kathryn Decker/flickr

Even as hiring activity remains brisk and more firms spend resources training employees, many American companies are activity planning to hire fewer people in the future. As indicated by writer Lauren Weber, the outsourcing wave that moved thousands of apparel manufacturing jobs to China and dozens of call center operations to India remains just as likely to happen within companies across the U.S. and in virtually every industry.

Job Training

Feb 16, 2017
flickr

With the economy approaching completion of its eighth year of recovery, employers large and small are complaining that they can’t find workers with the right skill sets. Skilled workers in manufacturing, construction, logistics, finance, technology and other industries have been steadily scooped up as the economy has expanded. The result is that more businesses are now spending resources to train people to satisfactorily fill available job openings.

Job Growth

Feb 15, 2017
Jeremy Sternberg/flickr

Many economists have been indicating that the economy is approaching full employment. This doesn’t mean that the unemployment rate will soon be zero – it means that we are approaching a situation in which a tighter labor market will eventually translate into more inflation, which in turn will produce higher interest rates.

Jon Welsh/flickr

Economists generate lots of forecasts. Usually, we offer many caveats along with our estimates, indicating that the accuracy of our forecasts is threatened by a set of risks. Risks can take many forms, including geopolitical risks like war or terror, policy risks such as unanticipated actions by the Federal Reserve or a presidential administration, or sudden financial market corrections.

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