Sunday, September 22, 2013

22/9/2013: Two articles on the Great Recession

Two recent posts on the Great Recession in the US worth reading:

The former argues pretty cogently that "The reality is that the recession never ended for 95% of U.S. households, and by many metrics the recession has deepened."

The latter has a handy guide to its core arguments as per drivers for the Great Recession:

"The reason why the economy is not recovering and will not recover can be explained in five simple points:

  1. Wealth and standard of living increases can only be achieved by producing more, not less.
  2. Capital increases are required to produce more. Wage gains are directly tied to productivity gains and more capital enables productivity to rise. 
  3. The private sector uses and expands capital. 
  4. Government destroys capital. It confiscates it from the private sector and uses it for consumption, effectively reducing the supply. Jobs, income and growth that otherwise would have developed do not. The rare exception is if government “invests” in capital projects like roads, infrastructure or meaningful education. If properly chosen, this government spending can assist in the production of capital.
  5. The proportion of assets and capital confiscated has increased greatly over the last century. At some point, the capital and wealth left behind in the private sector is inadequate to reproduce itself. That is when economic growth turns negative and standards of living decline. Long before that point growth rates diminish."

At a very general level, the above 5 points are fine. More fine detail would add the role of credit/leverage, as I argued here:

And a nice chart to sum it all up:

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