Feed on
  1. Within the black population, having an African-American name seems to be related to living one-year longer than if you did not have a uniquely African-American name.
  2. The revival (and labor market prospects) of Economic History? My colleague Stan Engerman could rightly be credited with some of this through his innovative work in Cliometrics.
  3. Low income / poverty explains everything. Remember that almost all of the expected problems that may come from global warming are related to issues that economic development can solve. In this case, our ability to migrate and adapt to warming is found to be a function of poverty as well.
  4. What happens when workers at a large firm are switched from (virtually) zero out-of-pocket health insurance coverage to high-deductible plans? Health care spending by consumers falls massively. Note however that folks do not seem able to price shop, or willing to price shop – the declines seem to come from large reductions in the amount of services used and not from switching or shopping. File as, “dog bites man.”
  5. A “freaky” algorithm for catching cheating students. In fact, the way we’ve caught most cheaters in the past has been by comparing wrong answers.
  6. Eliminate Fannie and Freddie. Now. If you want evidence of our political unwillingness to do the right thing, think back to the debate around the GSEs and their role in the crisis. There was fairly bipartisan acknowledgement that they were not useful entities, even if there is disagreement about how much of a role they had in causing the crisis.
  7. Another really interesting RCT by Banerjee and Duflo – compares the impact of giving away fortified salt for free versus merely at a discount with alternative messaging. You guess which intervention was more successful.
  8. What are the strongest predictors of improvement in reviving cities?
  9. Job training programs seem to work in Columbia. Note that this is not what we find in the US, though the vehicle through which they work there vs here may tell us why.
  10. From the economist who “ruined” Christmas, we learn that competitive radio outcomes could yield too much high quality stuff! And not enough low-quality stuff. Interesting.

Leave a Reply