Posted tagged ‘Econ Homework’

Some Econ Homework

July 16, 2019

Austrian Business Cycle Theory, Explained, by Murry N. Rothbard, at mises.org. This is a short explanation of the boom-bust cycle that is created by monetary intervention into the free market via bank credit expansion. Excerpt from the article:

…bank credit expansion sets into motion the business cycle in all its phases: the inflationary boom, marked by expansion of the money supply and by malinvestment; the crisis, which arrives when credit expansion ceases and malinvestments become evident; and the depression recovery, the necessary adjustment process by which the economy returns to the most efficient ways of satisfying consumer desires.

Keynesian Fake News In The Wall Street Journal, by Daniel J. Mitchell, at mises.org. Government spending will not stimulate the economy. Government can only spend what it takes from the private sector. There is only a transfer of how the private sector would allocate its production, to government politicians and bureaucrats who will allocate their newly confiscated production according to what they value. Government doesn’t produce anything that it can exchange for money. It can only confiscate private sector production. The transfer via taxes is a transfer of something for nothing. It is not only theft, it is a reduction of wealth.

Why Socialism Must Fail, by Hans Hermann Hoppe, at mises.org. Excerpt from the article:

Socialism and capitalism offer radically different solutions to the problem posed by scarcity: everybody can’t have everything they want when they want it, so how can we effectively decide who will own and control the resources we have? The chosen solution has profound implications. It can mean the difference between prosperity and impoverishment,

“The United States is not fully socialized, but already we see the disastrous effects of a politicized society as our own politicians continue to encroach on the rights of private property owners. All the impoverishing effects of socialism are with us in the U.S.: reduced levels of investment and saving, the misallocation of resources, the overutilization and vandalization of factors of production, and the inferior quality of products and services. And these are only tastes of life under total socialism.”

When Will The Stock Market Respond to 2016’s Liquidity Collapse? by Frank Shostak, at mises.org. Intervention into the free market via lower interest rates and an increase of the money supply leads to artificial booms and all to real busts. If the Fed is to keep the Stock Market from correcting the Feds previous monetary expansion, it has to lower interest rates.

Social Pressure vs. Consumer Preferences, by Joakim Book, at mises.org. Excerpt from the article:

“Indeed, on a more fundamental economic level, this is the logical conclusion of division of labor. Taking information from others is how we survive in large-scale complex market societies. This is easy to see when discussing a broken car or leaking pipes: you could probably learn how to fix those pipes yourself and develop your car mechanic skills to be able to repair the car, but it would likely take much more time, effort and money than you’re willing to part with — hiring a specialist makes economic sense. Similarly, you can think of relying on others’ tastes when it comes to music or food flavors or TV shows to be a trove of useful information, deflated appropriately by how much you tend to like what others like.”

What’s Up With The Obsession About Low Interest Rates, by Mark J. Perry, at carpediemblog. Excerpt from the article:

“Raising/lowering prices, wages, or interest rates can only benefit one half of the market (buyers or sellers, workers or employers, borrowers or savers, but not both) and those benefits come at the direct expense of the other half of the market (buyers/sellers, workers/employers, borrowers/savers). In other words, it’s is zero-sum outcome that redistributes gains and losses, but without any net gains, similar to the Keynesian stimulus fallacy illustrated below.”

So what’s with the obsession, especially the political obsession, with lower interest rates that are guaranteed to do great harm to savers while benefiting borrowers?”

“The answer must be that there’s a much greater political short-run payoff from lower interest rates than from higher interest rates. That is, borrowers (including corporations) must have a louder and more organized political influence than disorganized savers. In that case, aren’t lower interest rates a form of legal plunder and crony capitalism that allow borrowers to take advantage of savers enabled by easy monetary policy by the Fed?”

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Some Econ. Homework

June 22, 2016

The Fed Has Whiffed Again: Massive Monetary Stimulus Has Not Helped Labor, by David Stockman, at davidstockmanscontracorner.com. The Feds injection of 4 Trillion electronically printed dollars into the economy hasn’t produced a return worth that kind of “investment”. Fewer workers working fewer hours means less is being produced. Just because you print money doesn’t mean goods and services are being produced. It only means goods and services are being demanded by using money not backed by any production. Say’s law is being shown to be true.

“Say’s Law can be explained in the following terms:”

1) “The way that a buyer demands a good is by supplying a different good.”

2) “The supply of one type of good constitutes the demand for other, different goods.”

3) “The source of demand is production, not money. Money is only a temporary parking place for past production.”

“In the modern economy with division of labor, most of us demand goods when we supply our labor. I work as a software engineer. I supply my labor writing computer software. And from that supply I am able to demand other goods, such as coffee.”

Pity The Poor Central Bankers: Playing Masters Of The Universe Is No Longer Fun, by Charles Hugh Smith, at oftwominds.com. Here is an excerpt from the article: “Central Banks can create free money for financiers, but they can’t move the needle of the real economy, except to distort and cripple it with perverse incentives to gamble borrowed money on malinvestments and skimming operations…….as former Master of the Universe Ben Bernanke noted: “higher stock prices will boost consumer wealth and help increase confidence, which can also spur spending (that) will lead to higher incomes and profits that, in a virtuous circle, will further support economic expansion.”

I guess former Master of the Universe Ben Bernanke has never read Say’s Law: “The Source of demand is production, not money. Money is only a temporary parking place for past production.

Printing money distorts the pricing system. Market discovery of prices (not Fed manipulated prices) is how information about how much to produce and consume is transmitted to producers and consumers in a free market. The interest rate is the most important of these discoveries, because interest rates coordinates production across time. We live in a world where resources and capital have misallocated for the last decade plus. The cure is to quit printing money and allow the market to set interest rates. What are the odds?

The Fed Pours Water On The Job-Growth Hype, by Ryan McMaken, at mises.org. The administration and the media has been telling us how good the economy has been doing. I guess the Fed hasn’t received the memo. The Fed would normally raise interest rates if the economy is doing well because it would be afraid of it overheating.  The Fed will adjust its monetary policy to weather they think the economy is too hot, or too cold, or just right. The fact that the Fed has raised the interest rate once by a 1/4 point since they lowered it to near zero in 2008 tells us everything about what the Fed thinks of the economy. So where has most of the $4 trillion in printed money ended up? If you say in the financial markets to prop up asset prices, in order to help banks, go to the head of the class. Do you think these false stock prices can stay afloat without more printed money???

Central Banks Are Wrong About Inflation and Deflation, by Frank Shostak, at mises.org. Let’s go to Murray Rothbard writing in Man Economy And State for the definition of inflation and deflation.

ROTHBARD: “The process of issuing money beyond any increase in the stock of specie, may be called inflation. A contraction in the money supply outstanding over any period, (aside from a possible net decrease in specie) may be called deflation. Clearly, inflation is the primary event and the primary purpose of monetary intervention. There can be no deflation without an inflation having occurred in some previous period of time.

Movements in the  supply-of-goods and in the demand-for-money schedules are all the results of voluntary changes of preferences on the market. The same is true for increases in the supply of gold or silver. But increases in fiduciary or fiat media (printed money) are acts of fraudulent intervention in the market, distorting voluntary preferences and voluntarily determined pattern of income and wealth. Therefore, the most expedient definition of inflation is one we have set forth above: an increase in the supply of money beyond any increase in specie.”

The absurdity of the various governmental programs for “fighting inflation” now becomes evident. Most people believe that government officials must constantly pace the ramparts, armed with a huge variety of “control” programs designed to combat the inflation enemy. Yet all that is really necessary is the government and the banks (nowadays controlled almost completely by the government) cease inflating. The absurdity of the term “inflationary pressure” also becomes clear. either the government and banks are inflating or they are not; there is no such thing as “inflationary pressure”.

CONCLUSION

Let’s not be fooled by the “Masters of the Universe’ when it comes to monetary policy and interest rates. With a little bit of reading on the topic, you could come up with the policy for fixing our economic problems. That policy would be to quit electronically printing counterfeit money and allow the market to set the interest rates. The solution is very simple but it is not easy. Why?  Because of the Fed’s previous inflationary policy, the resulting recession that would occur when we implement the cure would be politically difficult for politicians and the Fed to let happen. They have been trying to keep the correction from happening since 08, but at some point economic reality will correct all the Feds previous money printing, and it won’t be pretty.

Some Econ Homework

May 11, 2016

How You Don’t Cure Poverty, by Henry Hazlitt, at mises.org. Here are some excerpts from the article:

From the beginning of history sincere reformers as well as demagogues have sought to abolish or at least to alleviate poverty through state action…..The most frequent and popular of these proposed remedies has been the simple one of seizing from the rich to give to the poor…… The wealth is to be “shared,” to be redistributed,” to be “equalized.” In fact, in the minds of many reformers it is not poverty that is the chief evil but inequality….. all schemes for redistributing or equalizing incomes or wealth must undermine or destroy incentives at both ends of the economic scale. They must reduce or abolish the incentives of the unskilled and shiftless to improve their condition by their own efforts, and even the able and industrious will see little point in earning anything beyond what they are allowed to keep. These redistribution schemes must inevitably reduce the size of the pie to be redistributed. They can only level down. Their long-run effect must be to reduce production and lead toward national impoverishment.”

This brings us to the subject of minimum-wage laws. It is profoundly discouraging that in the second half of the twentieth century, in what is supposed to be an age of great economic sophistication, the United States should have such laws on its books, and that it should still be necessary to protest against a nostrum so futile and mischievous. It hurts most the very marginal workers it is designed to help…..I can only repeat what I have written in another place…… We cannot make a man worth a given amount by making it illegal for anyone to offer him less. We merely deprive him of the right to earn the amount that his abilities and opportunities would permit him to earn, while we deprive the community of the moderate services he is capable of rendering. In brief, for a low wage we substitute unemployment.

We come now to the final false remedy for poverty to be considered in this article—outright socialism. By “outright socialism” I refer to the Marxist proposal for “the public ownership and control of the means of production”…..Now the word “socialism” is loosely used to refer to…….the redistribution of wealth or income—if not to make incomes equal, at least to make them much more nearly equal than they are in a market economy. But the majority of those who propose this objective today think that it can be achieved by retaining the mechanisms of private enterprise and then taxing the bigger incomes to subsidize the smaller incomes.”

Why Private Investment Works & Government Investment Doesn’t, at Prager University.

When government tries to pick losers and winners, it typically picks losers. Why? Because in the free market consumers pick winners to leave the losers to Government.”

Another reason Government can’t out perform the free market is because it doesn’t have a tenth of the knowledge that exists in the free market. Also, in the market, when the individual takes the risk he knows he takes the loss if he is wrong. When the Government picks a loser it tries to keep it propped up by subsidizing it with tax dollars. The wasting of scarce resources is kept at a minimal level in the market, because the risk taker stops the unprofitable activity before too long. Resources are liquidated and put toward a more productive use according to consumers desires. Government has no such incentive to stop the nonprofitable activity. They continue wasting scarce resources long after the activity had proven unproductive. If Government bureaucrats were truly in the venture capital business, they would have gone bankrupt years ago.

Economics: It’s Simpler Than You Think, by David Gordan, at mises.org.   From the article:

“…. Skilled entrepreneurs succeed, but many in business fail. The market operates by sorting out of the successful from the failures by the test of profitability. Given this fact, it is as essential that the failures be allowed to fail as it is that those who succeed be allowed to keep their profits. Attempts to prop up failures disable the market.

This vital point can be used to answer a common objection to free trade. Many people object to free trade because, in some cases, foreign competition drives domestic companies out of business, causing unemployment. To the response that expanded trade creates jobs elsewhere in the economy, the reply often given is, what about the workers who do lose their jobs? They are often unable to secure new jobs as good as those they had previously. The fact that others are better off is small solace to them.”…….“In a free economy, capital migrates to talented entrepreneurs eager to pursue profitable opportunities. Innovations like the automobile, computer, and online retail services destroy jobs, but the process leads to better, higher-paying jobs … to create jobs in abundance, we must allow the free marketplace to regularly annihilate them.”

” According to Ben Bernanke, Timothy Geithner, and many others, only the massive bailouts of financial institutions in response to the collapse of the housing market saved the economy from disaster…in the financial crisis of 2008….. but it is essential to the proper working of the market to allow the businesses that had acted recklessly to fail. Had this been done, the economy could have quickly readjusted. “Capitalist societies can rebound from anything. In particular, they can bounce back from bank failures that do not exterminate human capital or destroy their infrastructure. An interfering government is the only barrier to any society’s revival, and that is why the global economy cratered amid all the government intervention in 2008.

 

Related ArticleHere is Some Econ Homework, at austrianaddict.com.

Related ArticleYour Economic Homework, at austrianaddict.com.