PEF home page and weblog
Since I was a graduate student in the last millennium, I’ve been fascinated by the role of the cotton textile industry in recent economic history, beginning with that momentous event still being heard around the world, the First Industrial Revolution. It just caught fire in Bengladesh. There are books about cotton as a staple – [...]
The Globe and Mail (Feb 28) reports that “in the past few years…Canada’s resource plays have attracted international attention, and Canada has punched above its weight in generating fees for bankers and lawyers. Deals last year such as the takeovers of Nexen Inc. and Progess Energy made Canada the second-biggest source of deal fees in [...]
A version of this article appeared today in the Globe and Mail’s Economy Lab. (This version includes references to the debate plus charts and graphs from data specially tabulated from Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey. The data don’t include the self-employed.) President Obama put the idea of raising the minimum wage on the radar in [...]
Late in the last calender year, the U.S. FCC (Federal Communications Commission) sent a letter to the FAA (U.S. Federal Aviation Administration) advising it to “enable greater use of tablets, e-readers, and other portable devices” during flights. “They empower people to stay informed and connected with friends and family, and they enable both large and [...]
A special event was held at the Vancouver & District Labour Council last week to commemorate the history and contributions of the Trade Union Research Bureau.
This article was published in an abridged form today in the National Post. http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2012/12/21/armine-yalnizyan-sorry-andrew-coyne-but-income-inequality-is-a-real-problem/ I like this opening better so I posted it here. You couldn’t have made it through 2012 without running into a story about income inequality. Chances are, it made you think about how you fit into the story. That’s “entirely constructive”, [...]
The Ontario Nurses Association has been publishing some awesome economic analysis over the last couple of years, highlighting the talents of their new economist & PEF member Salimah Valiani. Apart from a strong analytical & quantitative approach, ONA’s recent research has been very refreshing in the emphasis it has placed on gender analysis and the [...]
I had a good old-fashioned knock-em-down drag-em-out debate with Ian Lee from Carleton University on CBC’s Power & Politics yesterday re C377. http://www.cbc.ca/player/News/Politics/ID/2318279928/ There were a number of “zingers” from Prof. Lee that are worth considering: • He said “hundreds of thousands” of Ontarians have their salaries listed on the government’s sunshine list (reporting salaries [...]
Errol Black was a wonderful progressive economist and activist in Manitoba who contributed enormously over the years to our collective knowledge on labour economics, economic development, unions, and more, and was core in founding the Manitoba branch of the CCPA. He passed away on the weekend; here is a very fitting obituary written by his [...]
This is a guest post by Paul Tulloch, of LivingWork.ca and frequent commentator on this blog, reporting on some significant and timely work he prepared for the northern gateway pipeline review panel, analyzing correlations betwen the price of oil and the Canadian dollar. Exchange Rates, the Price of Oil and the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project Joint Review Panel [...]
In the spirit of “know thy enemy”, I recently read Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom. (Note to the anxious – I survived the experience, and remain a convinced left Keynesian democratic socialist.) Hayek is, of course, the totemic figure of neo liberalism who fought Keynes and Keynesian economics in the 1930s and is the intellectual [...]
Bill Curry reports in today’s Globe that, at last year’s economic policy retreat, business leaders urged Finance Minister Flaherty to reduce the pay of “overpriced” Canadian workers, including through anti union right to work legislation. Coincidentally, or not, the subsequent 2012 federal Budget introduced new rules which will require most EI claimants to accept jobs [...]
“Making a speech on economics is a lot like pissing down your leg. It may seem hot to you,but it never does to anyone else.” Cited in Robert A. Caro, Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson (2012)
As we know, Dutch disease is about damage to industry from resource exports. As we witness the widespread drought this summer in North America and the damage to crops, Dutch disease needs to be redefined to also include the damage to agriculture. The Canadian West eats its own as it produces oil.
Occasionally we can still get a glimpse of the radical difference between modern and pre-modern concepts of time. A significant number of Marshall Islanders have migrated to the U.S. According to a recent story in the NY Times (july 4): “They puzzle over the American obsession with time…” The principal of an Arkansas school where [...]
In this age of austerity, we are constantly told by governments that we have to tighten our belts. Tuition fees have to go up; public pensions, Unemployment Insurance and social assistance benefits have to be cut; universal public health care is no longer affordable, and so on ad nauseam. But, as my friend Peter Puxley [...]
The CCPA today released my report: “The Big Banks Big Secret” which provides the first public estimates of the emergency funds taken by Canadian banks. The report bases its estimates on publicly available data from CMHC, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, US Federal Reserve, the Bank of Canada, as well as quarterly [...]
Posted by David Macdonald under asset backed commercial paper, auto industry, Bank of Canada, banks, capitalism, corporate profits, economic crisis, economic risk, financial crisis, financial markets, financial regulation, free markets, global crisis, income distribution, inequality, recession, Role of government, Uncategorized.
April 30th, 2012
This is my latest column for Canadian Business magazine. Giorgio, a hard-working, smart-as-a-whip University of Toronto student, asked me a great question after a recent guest lecture: What if the biggest challenge facing Canadian businesses and governments in the coming years isn’t an aging society but the economic and fiscal drag of hundreds of thousands [...]
Posted by Armine Yalnizyan under economic growth, economic risk, employment, labour adjustment, population aging, skill shortages, temporary workers, Uncategorized, unemployment, young workers.
April 11th, 2012
So recent is the word “globalization” that, if you consult the revised 1978 edition of The New Political Dictionary: The Definitive Guide to the New Language of Politics by the eminent neo-conservative writer William Safire, you will not find it. Instead you will find “Globaloney,” a term used in the early 1940s to riducule the [...]
On January 5th, 2012, the American Economics Association adopted new guidelines for the disclosure of potential conflicts of interests by economists. Please find my disclosure information below (thanks to Andrew Leach for turning the AEA guidelines into a template, which I have used as the basis for my own). Employment: I have been employed with the Canadian [...]
What is this thing called “globalization?” To be absolutely precise, it’s the word that took over discourse about the global economy and pretty much everything else for what seemed like an eternity but, in fact, labelled a phenomenon that lasted only for a single decade, that of the 1990s, from the end of the Cold [...]
The Mark have published a pre Budget commentary from yours truly.
Inequality of well-being among families with children is increasing at an even faster rate than income inequality, according to a new study by Peter Burton and Shelley Phipps, “Families, Time, and Well-Being in Canada”. They find that total family working hours have increased for most families, but not for those at the top of the [...]
I expect some folks who oppose the Occupy movement will weigh in on merit – that the top 1% are deserving of their riches because they include people who pay a lot of wages and salaries for ordinary folk. That is, the story of hard-working, risk-taking entrepreneurs who should not be punished for being successful. [...]
The UNTCAD just published its annual report on Trade and Development, titled Post-crisis Policy Challenges in the World Economy. The report describes a two speed global recovery, showing how developing economies have come out of the crisis stronger then their developed European and American counterparts. There the author invokes the contradictory forces at work in [...]
Today (June 15th) the Toronto Star broke news that the NDP was planning to drop the term “socialism” from its party’s platform. This was a mere formality of what had been in existence for decades: the party hasn’t been “socialist” in any shape or form for a very long time. On the very same day, [...]
For the wine lovers among us progressive economists, which definitely includes me, this NBER paper offers up a, well, sobering argument. “We examine the value of terroir, which refers to the special characteristics of a place that impart unique qualities to the wine produced. We do this by conducting a hedonic analysis of vineyard sales [...]
There’s a shockingly honest and accurate article about Canada’s deteriorating trade performance in today’s Globe and Mail by Barrie McKenna. It notes that Canada’s trade balance improved dramatically in November (almost completely closing October’s $1.5 billion). However, it cited some Bay Street economists lamenting that this was for the “wrong reasons”: namely, a sharp slowdown [...]
The Update of Economic and Fiscal Projections released today is fairly upbeat on the recovery in the job market, noting that “all of the jobs lost during the recession have now been recouped.” Well yes, but that still leaves us down 211,000 permanent full-time employee positions, with all of the net job creation over teh [...]
Further to my earlier post on the turn to fiscal austerity on the part of the IMF, OECD and G20, it increasingly strikes me that there is a fundamental contradiction between G20 goals going into the Toronto summit. At Pittsburgh, the G20 called for a “Framework for Strong, Sustainable, and Balanced Growth.” “We will need [...]