Economics

An Open Letter to Trump on Tax Reform

To: President Donald Trump        Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin Re: Tax Plan—Changing the time frame of the capital gains tax to encourage long-term growth, while providing tax relief to those who need it. From: Jon Lukomnik, author, What They Do With Your Money: How the Financial System Fails

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An A to Z of Economics: Part II

Niall Kishtainy— Welcome to part two of Niall Kishtainy’s A-Z of Economics. Compiled exclusively for the Yale Books Blog to celebrate the publication of A Little History of Economics, Kishtainy’s A-Z brings to light the stories behind key economic terminology. Read on for M-Z, and if you missed A-L, you can read it

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An A to Z of Economics: Part 1

Niall Kishtainy— To celebrate the publication of A Little History of Economics, we asked its author—writer, economist and historian Niall Kishtainy—to explain some of the most important staples of economic terminology for us in a handy A-Z of Economics. This post originally appeared on the Yale University Press London blog.  Read on

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The Gift Economy of the Earliest Christians

Thomas R. Blanton IV— The apostle Paul, a Jewish preacher of the “good news” of Jesus of Nazareth, promoted a “spiritual economy” within the small groups of the early Christian movement in the middle of the first century CE. Although at first blush the phrase “spiritual economy” might appear to be

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The Value of Data in Governance

Jennifer Bachner— Data have been collected and analyzed for millennia, but never before have these processes been so ubiquitous. Data journalism, with its focus on eye-catching visualizations and infographics, is transforming an industry from mere collection of information to effective presentation. Businesses rigorously analyze consumers’ browsing and purchasing histories to

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The Hidden Hindrance to Innovation

Fredrik Erixon & Björn Weigel— What’s ailing Western economies? They are suffering from multiple problems: declining growth in GDP per capita; a slower pace of productivity and corporate investment growth; a workforce that is generally unhappy with their jobs; and a general reduction of economic opportunity. However, there is one factor that

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The Rise of the Arab Gulf States

Rory Miller— In the early 1970s, the six Sunni Muslim monarchies of the Arab Gulf—Saudi Arabia, Oman, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar, Bahrain and Kuwait—took control of their own fortunes. Since then, they have used their oil and gas wealth to pursue stability at home and influence abroad. In

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Who Owns Sovereign Wealth?

Angela Cummine— Last week, Alaskans received their annual dividend check from the Alaska Permanent Fund. The $53 billion savings fund was set up in 1976 to preserve and augment a share of the state’s resource revenues for future generations through prudent investment in financial markets. Every year since 1982, a

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The Dilemma of the Sharing Economy

Carlo Ratti and Richard Sennett— In 1899, the American sociologist Thorsten Veblen coined the phrase “conspicuous consumption” in his book The Theory of the Leisure Class. The phrase was double-edged: Veblen was critical of the wealthy flaunting their wealth, but he recognized that more ordinary people used goods and services

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The Economic Implications of Citizenship

Andreas Fahrmeir— U.S. citizenship has emerged as an issue several times during this year’s presidential campaign. There were debates on whether birthright citizenship is (and should be) protected by the constitution, and concerning the relationship between birth in the U.S. and descent from a U.S. citizen in determining whether individuals

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