Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Interesting Picks

Businessweek's list of worst predictions for 2008.

WSJ look back at 2008, listing the year's most surprising economic events.

Picture of the day: How Wall Street devised exotic securities to earn fees from the debt boom.

As I had mentioned in my latest Hurriyet Daily News column, it's not mostly fiscal anymore, as IMF chief economist Olivier Blanchard and Carlo Cottarelli, Director of the Fiscal Affairs Department note in an interview. Incidentally, I wonder if Cottarelli, the ex IMF mission chief to Turkey, and the only IMFer to gain celebrity status in Turkey, is still a fan of Saibesaray and still does not have a Turkish girlfriend. Anyway, if someone told me a couple of years ago that IMF would publish a paper starting with the words fiscal policy, I would say "not in your wildest dreams". NYT Economix blog has a nice summary.

VIX, what is it good for?

FT piece on a topic I have mentioned several times in this blog (eg here): Developed country sovereign bond issuance is likely to swell and crowd out emerging market issuance in 2009. You should see the Turkish Treasury's efforts to tap the sukuk market in this respect.

Brad Setser shows that both capital inflows and outflows from the US have collapsed, but the US current account is still being financed, thanks largely to central banks.

David Beckworth summarizes the recent discussion on whether recessions can be "healthy" , i.e. the hangover debate.

Does employment increase spending (or vice versa)?

Speaking of employment, Casey Mulligan believes the US recession is partly due to a reduced willingness to work, which is refuted by David Beckworth. Mark Tahoma summarizes the arguments as well as provide links to a couple of useful papers on the same subject.

The Economist's The World in 2009 blog.

FRB Cleveland economists show that with the crisis, the structure of consumer finance has changed.

Rebecca Wilder summarizes the latest developments in the Fed's balance sheet.

All About Alpha, VIX and More and MarketSci list their most popular blogs in 2008.

Top 10 quotes of 2008 from the Big Picture.

An old idea having come back to life: The Fed should target asset price bubbles. Mark Tahoma responds.

Should the Swedish Central Bank stop handing out Nobel Prizes to financial economists? The Economist blog has a balanced view.

Model of optimal fiscal policy in a liquidity trap- While I really liked the model, he is bound to be accused of of hiding behind formulae again. Here's one unhappy customer, but about general macroeconomics rather than Krugman's model per se.

FRB Cleveland economist go over the most recent trends in labor costs.

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