By Jenn Smith, Berkshire Eagle Staff • Monday October 15, 2012
GREAT BARRINGTON -- The American Institute for Economic Research will be hosting its first symposium to help educators teach their students about finance.
The day-long Massachusetts Financial Educators’ Symposium is scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 24 at AIER’s center in Great Barrington. The program is being presented in partnership with the Massachusetts chapter of the JumpStart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy.
There’s more to a college than just the campus. The town and community that surround the campus is a key part of the quintessential college experience.
The American Institute for Economic Research recently ranked Ithaca, N.Y. the number one college town in the country. The town was also recently the recipient of “The Most Secure Place to Live” title by Farmers Insurance Group, one of the largest insurance groups in the country.
The AIER determines the rankings by measuring towns on three criteria: arts and leisure, unemployment, and entrepreneurial activity. Together, these factors make up the economic viability of a town.
The University of Nebraska won an $84 million contract with the United States Strategic Command. (Kevin Abourezk, Lincoln Journal Star 10/12/12) The U.S. Department of Defense awards contracts to American colleges and universities for national security research. This research is carried out in STEM departments: science, technology, engineering and math.
Ralls Corp. an affiliate of Sany Group, a Chinese construction equipment maker, was blocked by the U.S. government from building a wind farm in Oregon over national security concerns. The project was near restricted military airspace. (Reddy, Spector, Lublin, Wall Street Journal 10/19/12)
We’ll examine the correlation between these two developments. A look at what we know:
At least one province in China isn’t messing around when it comes to attracting talented minds.
In China’s Liaoning province, the local government announced that it would reward institutions with $16 million if they can produce and attract scientists and engineers who are considered elite academics.
These elite academics, known as yuanshi, obtain the prestigious title through the approval of the China Academy of Sciences or the Chinese Academy of Engineering. China Daily reports:
“That’s the new method to promote scientific and technological innovation. Talent is the key to innovation,” said a staff member at the Liaoning science and technology bureau who refused to be named.
Social Security recipients will get less than a 2% increase in their benefits next year to account for a rise in cost of living, according to an estimate
published Tuesday. That's less than half the increase in benefits they received in 2012.
The American Institute for Economic Research, a private think tank, estimates Social Security checks will increase between 1.5% and 1.7% in 2013.
The Labor Department will release its September inflation reading on Oct. 16, which is the final of 12 readings used to calculate the cost of living adjustment made annually to benefits. The Social Security Administration will announce the 2013 benefit increase at that time. Benefits increased by 3.6% in 2012, when inflation was higher.
Government debt hit a record $16 trillion last week, accompanied by the usual calls for tax increases to help plug the gap between revenue and expenditures. But for those who believe that the way out of our deficit includes raising taxes, there’s a cautionary study that suggests otherwise.
A study by the American Institute for Economic Research indicates that higher taxes are not the answer. In an examination of federal tax receipts as a percent of gross domestic product since World War II, the Institute concluded that federal receipts exceeded 20 percent of GDP only once, reaching 20.6 percent in 2000.
The dry spell that has affected corn and soybean prices may spell rising prices for food products next year. However, apparel prices could be expected to be flat to down in coming months thanks to record cotton stocks and low and stable cotton prices.
Given high prices for food crops, the USDA forecasts consumers may see an increase of 3%-to-4% in prices for meat and dairy products in 2013. After facing a shock a couple years ago from the spike in cotton prices, commodity-based cost pressures in apparel supply chains have been easing and may eventually lead to lower consumer prices for apparel.
(MoneyWatch) Severe drought across much of the U.S. is likely to produce steep inflation for a wide array of goods, from gasoline to beef, says Steve Cunningham, an economist with the American Institute for Economic Research.
That's because corn -- a crop that has been decimated by drought -- is used as feed for beef and poultry; is manufactured into ethanol, a gasoline additive; and is cooked into corn syrup, a sweetener in everything from cereals to ketchup. And, of course, that doesn't count corn's simple uses, whether to be eaten alone or made into anything from chips to tortillas.
By Pratisthya Gyawali (AIER Visiting Research Associate)
Global demand for advanced degree holders, combined with U.S. immigration policies, is causing America to lose some of the world’s brightest minds.
After funding their studies and awarding them degrees, America forces some 50,000 highly educated foreign-born workers out of the country each year. This is because of stringent caps on temporary and permanent employment visas that were put in place 45 years ago, in the case of the temporary visas, and 20 years ago, in the case of the permanent visas. These policies need to be brought into the 21st century if America is to remain competitive.
Great Barrington, MA -- American Institute for Economic Research (AIER), a nationally recognized, independent economic research organization, announced today that Stephen J. Adams will join the organization as its new President. Adams’ appointment as AIER’s new President is effective August 6.
Before accepting the position with AIER, Adams served as Deputy Director of the National Fund for Workforce Solutions, a collaboration of national and local philanthropies supporting the career advancement of low-wage workers through employer engagement and system reforms.
One of the great American monetary economists and easily the most prominent female among them during her lifetime, Anna Schwartz, died Thursday, June 21, 2012, in New York City. She was 96 years old.
I first met Anna Schwartz in 1987 (I was 41 and she was 71) and we subsequently became friends. Anna knew several of the monetary scholars who attended AIER’s summer programs and conferences, and she both visited and contributed articles to AIER numerous times over the last 15 years or so.
A recent report warned Social Security could run out of money by 2033, and some policy makers have suggested raising the retirement age. But Steve Cunningham of the American Institute for Economic Research says that strategy would fail to reduce costs, and would disproportionately hurt blue collar workers. He speaks with host Michel Martin.
Bill Tatro and Walker Todd are first time guests. Tatro will explain the dynamics of Irving Fisher’s debt deflation model and how policy makers have gotten the world into this depression. More importantly, he has a recipe for not only protecting the wealth you have but for using the knowledge of what is to come to profit from it as the Dow heads from its current 13,000 to 13,500 range toward his predicted target of 3,500 by 2016. Walker Todd, a former Cleveland Federal Reserve economist and attorney, will answer a question that Jim Sinclair did not answer when I posed it to him at the latest CMRE.
Investors know what they want. And generally speaking, it's pretty straightforward. They want their portfolios to outperform in bull markets, and hold steady, decline only slightly, or even increase in value when markets turn bearish.
The objectives are easy to explain. But achieving them... well, that's the hard part. And like the Quest for the Grail -- arguably the most elusive object known to man -- so it is with stock returns. Even the most skilled investors concede it's hard to find what they desire: consistent ways to outsmart the market.
Warmer weather brings out bursting flowers, chirping birds and... consumers? The last one may be a little harder to gauge.
Balmy weather in the first quarter of 2012 had people shopping for new wardrobe items. But when chilly weather set in, they pulled back.
The International Council of Shopping Centers reports April U.S. chain-store sales rose by 0.6% on a year-over-year basis. It attributes the flat number to an earlier Easter this year than last (April 8 vs. April 28) and abnormally warm weather in March that pulled demand forward.
On March 14 of this year, Goldman Sachs executive Greg Smith stunned Wall Street with a public resignation letter, explaining why he could no longer work there. He described in detail the “toxic and destructive” corporate environment, saying the giant investment bank no longer deserves to be trusted, since clients’ needs came second to Goldman profits.
Consumers wondering why they don't have any money in their pockets to buy dog food at the same time the government is telling them inflation remains tame needn't worry about their sanity.
As the Labor Department gets ready to report on the consumer-price index for March on Friday, the American Institute for Economic Research is cautioning that "everyday prices" for such things as food, fuel and prescription drugs are skyrocketing.
The think tank estimates that consumer inflation, as ... [read more]
The economy's been growing at a rate less than half the average for the recoveries following the nine previous postwar recessions. Accompanying the worst recovery ever is the longest period of sustained high unemployment since the Great Depression, the Congressional Budget Office has noted.
Real average hourly earnings fell 1.1 percent between February of last year and this February, said the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Many economists have spent a great deal of time trying to understand why, despite prodding from both the Federal government and Federal Reserve, the American economic "recovery" has been tepid at best. In an article entitled "The Housing Trap" by Dr. Zinna Mukherjee, Research Fellow at the American Institute for Economic Research, the author explains how the upsurge in home ownership in America led to reduced savings rates and has ultimately led to a deepening of the Great Recession.
Price momentum is a key component of chart analysis. Traders commonly look for stocks moving in a certain direction or signs that the direction of a stock’s price is about to change. The idea is that momentum is a trader’s friend, if it can properly be identified and analyzed.
The argument against price momentum is that price movements are random. Share prices, many argue, adjust quickly to reflect new information, and new information cannot be predicted. Thus, trend analysis does not lead to improved long-term performance.
A study recently published by the American Institute for Economic Research (and recommended to me by an AAII member) suggests that price momentum may actually be the result of traders adjusting prices to incorporate trend information.