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November 13, 2004

Budget, Debt, and Deficits
Will partial privatization of social security pass the global test?

This post is primarily about the implications of partial privatization of social security on the budget, not about its overall merits. For what it is worth, I personally think good old pay-as-you-go …

November 18, 2004

Taking away the punch bowl when the party is really getting going?

That is the classic view of the role of the central bank. It extends beyond using monetary policy to prevent "overheating" and price inflation. Most central bank regulate the banking system, and si…

November 20, 2004

Politics and Government
Optimist or Ostrich?

For those who want dispassionate economic analysis devoid of politics, read no further. Wait for my next dollar post. This is a center-left response to the Lexington column in this week’s Economist…

November 23, 2004

The budget deficit before all the bad stuff

Isn’t that what leaving any increase in deficit associated with partial privatization of social security off the books implies?Bush’s formula on the dollar in Santiago emphasized the need to control …

December 8, 2004

Budget, Debt, and Deficits
The central bank bid

It seems like America’s biggest creditors stepped up to the plate today. China’s rapidly growing reserves have to go somewhere ... From Bloomberg:"So-called indirect bidders, which include the forei…

December 9, 2004

Retired Wall Street Titans (and the renminbi-dollar)

Henry Kaufman’s name sits on the building where I work. If nothing else, that means you tend to take notice of his opinion.He nicely summarizes why many believe the dollar won’t fall much further, o…

November 30, 2004

United States
Their savings, our problem?

It seems like American households are now saving about a penny of every dollar they earn, and recently even less. Foreigners exporting to the US, in contrast, save roughly 35 cents of every dollar …

December 7, 2004

Capital Flows
Petroeuros

Monday’s FT had the story, drawing on this just released BIS report. It seems OPEC countries are holding fewer dollars and more euros in their external bank accounts. (Thanks to Marcel for alerting…

November 24, 2004

Financial Markets
Chinese yuan hits new low against euro, swiss franc, pound …

Just a reminder of what falling dollar currently means. Dollar depreciation is clearly part of what is needed to bring the US trade deficit down to a more sustainable level. But what is the case fo…

December 11, 2004

United States
The Global Test

My harping on the fact that US economic policy now has to pass a global test is not simply meant to score rhetorical points. I suspect that the same folks who financed the expansion of the US curren…