Late last month, a team of economists at the University of Washington released their findings on the past couple minimum wage increases in Seattle. Unsurprisingly, this was covered by just about every news outlet. To my surprise, many are divided over what the Seattle economists found. Economists at UC Berkeley did their own study and had different findings. This led to a lot of people, including economists, calling the University of Washington’s study flawed. The only problem is that their study isn’t as flawed as critics claim.
Lately, there have been a lot of articles written about millennials. Some have hit pretty close to home for me, seeing that I am a millennial. But I decided to dig a little deeper to see what exactly the future may hold for me when I finally finish my bachelor’s degree at the University of Oregon. I was startled by the price of homes around the Pacific Northwest, my desired region to live in. Sadly, this will cause not only myself, but many other millennials, to rent an apartment. After a while of thinking about the demand shock that this will likely cause, it started to beg the question: Will millennials cause a little deflation in the housing market?
Believe it or not, most people can start saving money with just one penny. The intuition is similar to Couch to 5K: Start with an insanely small amount and work your way up. Instead of nine weeks, this entire activity will take you a year to complete. If you follow the goals that I set for you, you will have saved over $1,700! The secret is simple: Literally start saving with just a penny. (more…)
I have been told by several people that a PhD in economics should only be pursued for one of two (if not both) reasons: You will regret it if you don’t or you want to teach at a four-year university. Based on my education and what I’ve seen concerning graduate school, this pretty much seems to be the case. Why, then do so many people believe that an economist needs a master’s degree at the very least? A lot of it has to do with the fact that people don’t really know what they’re talking about.
It often concerns me when people don’t seem to understand something they should have learned about in high school such as writing a check, balancing a personal budget, and major differences between a bank and a credit union. Sarah Silverman explains why she left her bank for a credit union in a video for NowThis. Just when you thought you couldn’t politicize much more in America, the credit union has now fallen victim to it. There’s a lot of benefits to a credit union. I even advocate switching to them! There’s just one big problem: I don’t think Sarah Silverman or NowThis understand credit unions very well. Before we get too far ahead of ourselves, here’s the video so you can see what I’m talking about.
Last night, Rachel Maddow from MSNBC did an exposé on President Trump’s tax return from 2005. During the election, Mitt Romney claimed that Trump was hiding a bombshell in his tax returns. Thanks to Rachel Maddow, a bombshell was found. Perhaps it wasn’t the bombshell we were all thinking it would be. As Rachel Maddow found out, the problem with political bombshells is that you could wind up blowing yourself up if you play with them.
Why would a department want to make their major harder to obtain? While it sounds a little backwards, making it harder to earn a degree in economics not only helps the reputation of your school, it helps the reputation of your department. Think about the psychology between reputation and academic rigor: Ivy League schools are extremely hard to get into, but their courses aren’t necessarily harder (if they’re harder at all) than anywhere else. Since most people don’t know the second part, many believe an Ivy League graduate has some sort of mythical power in their field. The ugly truth: Half of the time, it’s just brand loyalty.