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.

The Recession Risk

Dec 23, 2016

Anirban has good news about the odds of a recession occurring in the next year.

Japanese Millenials

Dec 22, 2016

How the frugality of 25 to 34-year-olds in Japan is affecting the country's market.

Chinese Imports

Dec 21, 2016
Robert Scoble/flickr

Anirban Basu discusses the impact of China's manufacturing and export centers on American firms.

Energy Production

Dec 20, 2016
USFWS/Joshua Winchell

Anirban Basu on energy production, which he calls "one of the most dynamic aspects of the U.S. economy."

The Urban Revival

Dec 19, 2016

As indicated by an article written by Adam Bednar of the Daily Record, the impending death of America’s suburbs may have been greatly exaggerated.  For years, urbanists have trumpeted the prospective rebound of the American city after decades of out-migration. 

A wave of populist fervor is washing across much of the advanced world, and at the root of this emerging political dynamic are economic trends.  As indicated by a McKinsey Global Institute Report, with the exception of a brief hiatus during the 1970s, much of the past 70 years has been associated with buoyant global economic and employment growth. 

Global economic growth is expected to pick up faster than previously thought in coming months due to expected tax cuts and public spending in the U.S. – this according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.  In its most recent economic outlook report, the OECD estimates that global growth will accelerate from 2.9 percent this year to 3.3 percent in 2017 and 3.6 in 2018. 

Over time, women have made significant progress in cracking and collapsing various glass ceilings.  One of the final remaining glass ceilings is in the world of investment, including in the U.S. 

As indicated by writer Josh Mitchell, the federal government is on pace to forgive at least $108 billion in student debt in coming years – this as an increasing number of borrowers seek assistance in paying down their loans.  The result will be reduced revenues to finance higher education going forward. 

The Top 400 Club

Dec 12, 2016

It is often said that the rich are getting richer.  New data indicate that the really really rich have become much much wealthier.  According to recently released data from the Internal Revenue Service, total income reported on the top 400 tax returns rose 20 percent in 2014.  

Home to Silicon Valley, the life sciences cluster in San Diego and Hollywood, California has emerged as one of America’s more rapidly expanding economies.  Still, a recent study by CoreLogic finds that for every homebuyer coming into that state, there are three Californians selling their homes and moving elsewhere. 

Earlier this month, you got to sleep in an additional hour.  That hour felt terrific, though you weren’t awake to realize it.  While many people enjoy daylight savings this time of year, and dislike it intensely during the spring, the presumption may be that there is little economic impact. 

Detroit is making a comeback.  As reported by the Wall Street Journal, the unemployment rate in the Detroit metropolitan area sat at five point four percent in September.  Detroit was one of the hardest hit communities during the recession, with a regional unemployment rate that peaked above seventeen percent in mid-two thousand and nine. 

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the average fuel economy of twenty fifteen model year vehicles increased by half a gallon to a record high of nearly twenty five miles per gallon.  Mazda had the highest average fuel economy at nearly thirty miles per gallon.  Fiat Chrysler had the lowest, at less than twenty one miles per gallon. 

Average hourly pay in America rose by ten cents an hour last month to an average of twenty five dollars and nine two cents according to the U.S. Labor Department.  That’s two point nine percent higher that it was a year ago, the sharpest twelve month increase since two thousand and nine. 

There are a significant number of people who distrust government economic data.  A Marketplace Edison research poll, for instance, found that roughly a quarter of Americans “completely distrust the economic data reported by the federal government."

It’s Monday and for many of us that means the onset of a new workweek.  One of the goals for each of us is return home safely after each and every working day.  Unfortunately, there are a number of occupations in which that is unusually difficult. 

The Millennials, those young adults among us, are now the largest generation in the country.  Collectively they have annual spending power of six hundred billion dollars and each member spends an estimated eight five dollars per day on average. 

There may be some people who are nervous about our near-term economic future.  While it is true that the economy continues to churn out new employment opportunities, rising home prices, and more output, the recovery is now in its eighth year. 

As pointed out by writer Ian Talley, the weak global economy may be producing at least one benefit – it is forcing the adoption of economic reforms in some of the worst places in the world in which to conduct business.  The World Bank ranks one hundred and ninety economies around the world in terms of their business climate. 

The recent improvement in economic performance has manifested itself in a number of ways, including in the form of faster output and wage growth.  Homeownership represents another emerging bright spot.  

The earnings of African Americans have begun to accelerate sharply in recent months.  According to recently released data from the U.S. Labor Department, median weekly earnings for full-time African American workers rose by nine point eight percent during the third quarter from a year earlier, the fastest rate of growth on records dating back to two thousand. 

It’s Friday, and for some people that means getting a head start on the weekend by pulling that two seat convertible out of the garage.  But those little two seaters aren’t quite as popular as they once were – the reason, we’re getting older.  As reported by Bloomberg, baby boomers are beginning to outgrow their midlife crisis years, and that’s bad news for automakers seeking to sell sports cars. 

Halloween was a few days ago, so perhaps it’s a bit late to be talking about zombies.  But as reported by the New York Times, the walking dead have been gnawing at Europe’s persistently weak economy – by that one is referring to both zombie banks and zombie companies.  Here’s what this means. 

Oil prices aren’t nearly as low as they were earlier this year.  You might be wondering if further increases are ahead.  While it’s tough to predict oil prices for a number of reasons, including because prices can be impacted by geopolitical events largely unrelated to fundamental principles of supply and demand, one could make the case that oil prices are destined to remain relatively low over the foreseeable future. 

You may have heard that skepticism regarding free markets is rising.  A recent survey conducted by Harvard determined that a majority of eighteen to twenty nine year old Americans do not believe in modern capitalism at all. 

Today, some people will enjoy treats, some will suffer tricks.  It’s not really that different from the functioning of the labor market.  A recent article by Josh Zumbrun asks us to imagine two workers who are the same age, gender, race, have similar educational backgrounds, live in the same community, work in the same occupation and industry. 

As pointed in a recent Bloomberg article, economists say the darndest things.  For instance, in a recent Wall Street Journal survey, a group of economists indicated that the odds of the next recession beginning within the next four years is nearly sixty percent. 

Twenty sixteen may be remembered for many things, including as the year of the stereotype.  Broad statements have been made about many groups of people this year.  Sometimes, these stereotypes are positive.  For instance, there is a conventional view that Asian Americans are generally pretty successful in school and in the workplace. 

There has been considerable focus placed upon financial literacy in America during the year following the Great Recession.  The notion among many observers was that too many Americans were unaware of the financial consequences of their decisions, including decisions to take on debt.