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Jon Talton

Analysis and commentary on economic news, trends and issues, with an emphasis on Seattle and the Northwest.

October 17, 2014 at 10:19 AM

Vote: Are you anxious about the economy

The laugh line in the otherwise somber play The Shadow Box is delivered by the saucy (and dying) grandmother to her repressed and puritanical daughter: “Does that make you anxious?”

So here we are with the Dow up 300 points a few days after dropping 400 points. The stock market indices, as the great economist Paul Samuelson said, “predicted nine out of the last five recessions!” Still, it’s a stomach-churning ride if you’re a working stiff whose nestegg keeps getting vaporized every few years.

Larger anxieties are out there. Inflation is falling so much that deflation is becoming a concern, very bad news for everything from growth to paying down debt. Falling commodity prices are another deflationary signal. The global economy is slowing, with Europe in another recession and even the Germans in trouble. The Other Washington is in gridlock with worse to come if the scorched-earth GOP takes the Senate. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen warns that inequality will do serious harm to the economy. Thanks to cable “news,” Ebola is panicking Americans…

Meanwhile, Seattle powers ahead. But, as I learned in 2007-08, recessions arrive here late. And don’t forget that state employment growth has stalled for two straight months.

So….


This Week’s Links:

China wastes 35 metric tons of grain a year, enough to feed 200 million | Businessweek

Will Ebola vanquish the MBAs who run our hospitals | Naked Capitalism

Just try to refinance, I dare you | Bloomberg View

Bill Gates takes on Thomas Piketty on inequality, hilarity ensues | Dean Baker

Andreessen: All of the biggest, oldest tech companies will be forced to split up | Business Insider

The high cost of cheap clothes | Vice

Tale of two Silicon Valleys: wage theft, billionaires and the rest of us | Pando

Invisible hands: The businessman’s campaign to dismantle the post office | Angry Bear


Today’s Econ Haiku:

Welfare queen JP

Wants NYC incentives

For a new HQ


Follow me on Twitter @jontalton. You won’t be bored.


 

Comments | Topics: deflation, eurozone, Federal Reserve

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