iOS app Android app

Dean Baker
GET UPDATES FROM Dean Baker
 
Dean Baker is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, DC.

He previously worked as a senior economist at the Economic Policy Institute and an assistant professor at Bucknell University. His blog, Beat the Press, features commentary on economic reporting.

He received his Ph.D in economics from the University of Michigan.

He has written numerous books and articles, including The United States Since 1980, Cambridge University Press, March 2007; The Conservative Nanny State: How the Wealthy Use the Government to Stay Rich and Get Richer, Center for Economic and Policy Research, 2006; Social Security: The Phony Crisis (with Mark Weisbrot), University of Chicago Press, 1999; "Asset Returns and Economic Growth," (with Brad DeLong and Paul Krugman), Brookings Papers on Economic Activity (2005); "Financing Drug Research: What Are the Issues," Center for Economic and Policy Research, 2004; "Medicare Choice Plus: The Solution to the Long-Term Deficit Problem," Center for Economic and Policy Research, 2004; The Benefits of Full Employment (with Jared Bernstein), Economic Policy Institute, 2004; "Professional Protectionists: The Gains From Free Trade in Highly Paid Professional Services," Center for Economic and Policy Research, 2003; "The Run-Up in Home Prices: Is It Real or Is It Another Bubble," Center for Economic and Policy Research, 2002. His book Getting Prices Right: The Battle Over the Consumer Price Index (M.E. Sharpe, 1997) was a winner of a Choice Book Award as one of the outstanding academic books of the year. He was also the author of the weekly online commentary on economic reporting, the Economic Reporting Review (ERR), from 1996 - 2006.

He has worked as a consultant for the World Bank, the Joint Economic Committee of the U.S. Congress, and the OECD's Trade Union Advisory Council.

His columns have appeared in many major media outlets including the Atlantic Monthly, the Washington Post, and the London Financial Times. He is frequently cited in economics reporting in major media outlets, including the New York Times, Washington Post, CNBC and National Public Radio.

Entries by Dean Baker

Finance in America: Promoting Inequality and Waste

(0) Comments | Posted July 28, 2014 | 9:25 PM

In the crazy years of the housing boom the financial sector was a gigantic cesspool of excess and corruption. There was big money in pushing and packaging fraudulent mortgages. The country paid a huge price for the financial sector's sleaze.

Unfortunately, because of the Obama administration's soft-on-crime approach to...

Read Post

Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, Yet Again: Review of Dead Men Ruling

(1) Comments | Posted July 22, 2014 | 12:09 PM

Gene Steuerle is not a standard right-winger who believes that a dollar in the pocket of a middle class or poor person is a dollar that could be in the pockets of the rich. He is a serious budget analyst who has does important work on tax and budget issues...

Read Post

Cheap Talk at the Fed

(12) Comments | Posted July 21, 2014 | 8:15 PM

Federal Reserve Board Chair Janet Yellen made waves in her Congressional testimony last week when she argued that social media and biotech stocks were over-valued. She also said that the price of junk bonds was out of line with historic experience. By making these assertions in a highly...

Read Post

Fun Accounting and the Export-Import Bank

(1) Comments | Posted July 14, 2014 | 8:27 PM

The establishment types in Washington have become really worried in recent weeks because one of their major troughs, the Export-Import Bank, may not be reauthorized by Congress. The Ex-Im Bank has long been a favored source of below market loans for Boeing, General Electric, and other major companies. If these...

Read Post

The Good News About Obamacare in the June Jobs Report

(226) Comments | Posted July 7, 2014 | 9:18 PM

Many people touted the 288,000 new jobs the Labor Department reported for June, along with the drop in the unemployment rate to 6.1 percent, as good news. And they were right. For now it appears the economy is creating jobs at a decent pace. We still have a long way...

Read Post

Will India Be the Uber of the Pharmaceutical Industry?

(7) Comments | Posted June 30, 2014 | 8:33 PM

Many self-styled libertarians have been celebrating the rise of Uber. Their story is that Uber is a dynamic start-up that has managed to disrupt the moribund cab industry. The company now has a market capitalization of $17 billion.

While Uber's market value probably depends mostly on its ability to...

Read Post

The Sharing Economy and the Mystery of the Mystery of Inequality

(9) Comments | Posted June 23, 2014 | 8:01 PM

Last week I had a fascinating 3:00 a.m. cab ride from San Francisco airport to a hotel in downtown Oakland. My cab driver was an immigrant from Pakistan who was putting two kids through college. After working for years as a driver he managed to save enough money to buy...

Read Post

Doing for the Poor and Doing to the Poor

(24) Comments | Posted June 16, 2014 | 8:44 PM

Washington is full of well-meaning types who want to help the poor. The list of prospective helpers includes not only the standard liberal do-gooder types talking about programs like pre-K education, but also conservatives like Paul Ryan who argue that taking away food stamps and other benefits will give low-income...

Read Post

Why Do Coal-mining Jobs Matter So Much More Than Jobs Lost to Trade?

(50) Comments | Posted June 9, 2014 | 7:29 PM

When President Obama announced plans to curtail the use of coal over the next 15 years, major news outlets like National Public Radio and the New York Times rushed to do pieces on the prospective loss of jobs in coal-mining areas. There are a bit less...

Read Post

The Veterans Affairs Scandal and Plans for Downsizing the Social Security Administration

(13) Comments | Posted June 2, 2014 | 8:17 PM

The media have been rightly focusing their attention on the long waiting lists for veterans seeking medical care, and even worse, the Department of Veteran's Affairs cover-up. Unlike President Obama's birth certificate and the attack on the consulate at Benghazi, delaying or denying care to veterans is really a scandal....

Read Post

The Wall Street Pension Scam

(48) Comments | Posted May 27, 2014 | 9:09 PM

In recent years there has been a regular drum beat of news stories warning us about the enormous unfunded liabilities of state and local pension funds. Much of this has come from reports issued from well-endowed foundations, most notably the Pew and Arnold foundations who have a joint project on...

Read Post

Stress Test: The Indictment of Timothy Geithner

(0) Comments | Posted May 24, 2014 | 10:31 AM

At one point in his autobiography, Timothy Geithner proudly recounts responding to a question from Damon Silvers, a lawyer with the AFL-CIO who was at the time a member of the Congressional Oversight Panel for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). Silvers had referred to Geithner's background in banking. As...

Read Post

Stuart E. Eizenstat: Director of the Day

(0) Comments | Posted May 8, 2014 | 9:28 AM

Co-authored with Arthur Phillips, research associate at the Center for Economic and Policy Research

Directorships: 3
Total director compensation, 2008-2012: $1,974,211
Average annual director compensation: $394,842
Average compensation per full year of service as director: $151,448

Stuart E. Eizenstat, a graduate of Harvard Law School,...

Read Post

New York Times Turns Paul Krugman Into His Opposite

(0) Comments | Posted May 5, 2014 | 8:33 PM

Remember Paul Krugman yelling that huge budget deficits will impose an enormous burden on our children and threaten to sink the economy? You probably don't remember this because he has been strongly arguing the opposite position for the last five years.

This is why it was striking to see...

Read Post

Richard D. Parsons: Director of the Day

(0) Comments | Posted May 2, 2014 | 1:06 PM

Co-authored with Arthur Phillips, research associate at the Center for Economic and Policy Research


Directorships, 2008 - 2012: 5
Total director compensation, 2008 - 2012: $3,572,317
Average annual director compensation, 2008 - 2012: $714,463
Average compensation per full year of service as director: $229,655

Read Post

What Problem Is Privatizing Fannie and Freddie Meant to Solve?

(0) Comments | Posted April 28, 2014 | 6:29 PM

President Obama's chief economist, Jason Furman, weighed in behind efforts to privatize Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac last week. The main plan on the table is a bill forward by Senators Tim Johnson and Mike Crapo, the chair and ranking member, respectively, on the Senate Banking Committee.
...

Read Post

Judith Rodin: Director of the Day

(0) Comments | Posted April 23, 2014 | 4:03 PM

Co-authored with Arthur Phillips, research associate at the Center for Economic and Policy Research

Directorships, 2008 - 2012: 3
Total director compensation, 2008 - 2012: $3,209,317*
Average annual director compensation, 2008 - 2012: $641,863
Average compensation per full year of service as director: $229,237

Judith Rodin...

Read Post

Economic Policy in a Post-Piketty World

(160) Comments | Posted April 22, 2014 | 8:37 AM

Thomas Piketty's new book, Capital for the 21st Century, has done a remarkable job of focusing public attention on the growth of inequality in the last three decades and the risk that it will grow further in the decades ahead. Piketty's basic point on this issue is almost too simple...

Read Post

Ernesto Zedillo: Director of the Day

(0) Comments | Posted April 16, 2014 | 9:47 PM

Co-authored with Arthur Phillips, research associate at the Center for Economic and Policy Research.

Directorships, 2008 - 2012: 5*
Total director compensation, 2008 - 2012: $3,626,109**
Average annual director compensation, 2008 - 2012: $725,222
Average compensation per full year of service as director: $244,276

*Zedillo was a...

Read Post

The Hedge Fund Managers Tax Break: Because Wall Streeters Want Your Money

(41) Comments | Posted April 14, 2014 | 4:07 PM

The coming of tax day provides a great opportunity for everyone to focus on their favorite tax break, and there are many from which to choose. However for all the sneaky and squirrelly ways that the rich use to escape their tax liability, none can beat the hedge fund managers'...

Read Post