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Jared Bernstein
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Jared Bernstein is a Senior Fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, former economist for the Obama administration, and a CNBC and MSNBC contributor.

Entries by Jared Bernstein

The Tradeoff Between Inflation and Unemployment: What We Don't Know Can Hurt Us

(4) Comments | Posted July 28, 2014 | 10:38 AM

To assert that economists are having trouble figuring out the relationship between inflation and unemployment is like saying chefs can't figure out what to do with salt and pepper. It's that fundamental. Yet, we're befuddled, and that has powerful policy implications.

For example, a prominent macro economist recently suggested to...

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What Does the Minimum Wage Do? An Interview With Author/Economist Paul Wolfson

(34) Comments | Posted July 24, 2014 | 11:22 AM

To celebrate the fifth anniversary of the last increase in the federal minimum wage and to call attention to the fact that the federal wage floor has not risen in five years, the US Department of Labor has declared July 24th to be a "Day of Action."


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GOP: Tax Evasion as a Back Door Strategy

(149) Comments | Posted July 21, 2014 | 7:59 AM

My CBPP colleague Chuck Marr flags something important from a recent press release by Rep. Dave Camp, the Republican Chair of the tax writing committee in the House.

In regard to their bill to patch the Highway Trust Fund through next May, Rep. Camp writes:

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What's the Matter With (Tax Cuts) in Kansas?

(28) Comments | Posted June 29, 2014 | 11:27 PM

Well, how about that? Cut taxes and you end up with less tax revenue. That's the punchline of this important piece by Josh Barro over at the New York Times on the outcome of recent tax cuts in the state of Kansas.

Barro does a fine job on...

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Whoa! Whassup with That Big Negative Q1 GDP Revision?

(0) Comments | Posted June 25, 2014 | 1:31 PM

Yes, you read those headlines right: real GDP contracted at a 2.9 percent rate according to revised data released on Wednesday. That's contracted, as in went down.

So, are we, like, back in recession (granting that a lot of people think we never left)?

Nope. That was a...

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Listening to the OECD and IMF (!?#*!) on the EITC/Minimum Wage Connection

(2) Comments | Posted June 18, 2014 | 11:05 AM

I see where my CBPP colleague CC Huang has a nice post up summarizing one of the recommendations from a new Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development's (OECD) report on the U.S. economy.

The report touts the virtues of the EITC as a wage subsidy for...

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Cantor and Crony Capitalism

(1) Comments | Posted June 15, 2014 | 9:07 PM

It's both easy and tempting to over-interpret Rep. Eric Cantor's historical primary loss.

I'm not a political pundit, but surely one of the main lessons was the very prosaic: "don't neglect your district."

Beyond that, one interesting issue to come out of Cantor's totally unexpected defeat is the feasibility --...

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The Fantasy That Tax Repatriation Can Pay for Highways (or Anything Else...)

(0) Comments | Posted June 11, 2014 | 10:38 AM

Like a bad penny, this tax repatriation idea just keeps coming back.

You know, the one where you offer a bribe to multinational corporations in the form of a big tax cut to "repatriate" their foreign earnings. In this case, members on both sides of the aisle are conspiring to...

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Jobs Report, First Impressions: Steady as She Goes, But She Needs to Go Faster

(15) Comments | Posted June 6, 2014 | 10:35 AM

The nation's payrolls grew by 217,000 last month and the unemployment rate held steady at 6.3%, according to this morning's report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It's a good report, solidly in line with expectations. One could make the case that the job market has settled into a decent...

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The Costs of Inequality to the Growth of Most Households' Incomes

(1) Comments | Posted June 3, 2014 | 9:56 AM

Yesterday I pointed out that adding in federal taxes and transfers does not much alter the trend in inequality over the last few decades. This morning, I'd like to feature another look at the costs of inequality--again, after accounting for taxes and transfers--in terms of income losses to...

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Why Is Capital So Much Stronger than Labor?

(39) Comments | Posted June 2, 2014 | 8:03 AM

Thomas Piketty's analysis of inequality through the ages kicked off an important debate about the causes of and solutions to the problem of the increased concentration of wealth and income. Central to Piketty's economic mechanics is his assumption that, barring some cataclysm, wealth will increasingly accumulate to those at the...

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The Current Economy: Green Shoots or Brown Ones?

(12) Comments | Posted May 29, 2014 | 12:02 PM

I was listening to an interview with Tim Geithner this weekend, and after going through his (highly readable) new book, they asked him where he thought the economy was headed. "I don't believe forecasts," he said, which sounded smart to me (he then proceeded to forecast).

He was pretty bullish...

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What's Holding Back Immigration Reform?

(28) Comments | Posted May 23, 2014 | 4:41 PM

I participated in a National Journal forum on immigration reform yesterday, led by the great Steve Clemons.

Given the discussion, I'd guess that anyone who didn't know the issue and happened to stumble into the event would be vigorously scratching their head to figure out why comprehensive reform...

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Arguing Taxes, Transfers, and Market Outcomes

(14) Comments | Posted May 22, 2014 | 5:00 PM

Inequality analyst Scott Winship feels "systematically ignored" by "writers and researchers" including myself. Since he's a smart and interesting critic in this space, not to mention an old fellow traveler, allow me to correct that.

Scott is one of a number of analysts who criticize Thomas Piketty's work for focusing...

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The Minimum Wage Isn't Just a Wage: It's a Standard

(227) Comments | Posted May 17, 2014 | 11:37 AM

I've been doing a bit of historical research for a minimum wage paper and keep stumbling on these interesting and compelling ideas from the framers of that and similar policies (h/t: GL).

Arguments about minimum wages tend to be about two things: will it hurt its intended recipients and the...

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Job Report, First Impressions: A Tale of Two Surveys

(43) Comments | Posted May 2, 2014 | 9:31 AM

Payroll growth was strong and broad based last month and the jobless rate fell sharply, but that seemingly impressive decline in unemployment was wholly due to the shrinking labor force. In other words, a confusing month of labor market data as the two surveys reported on today tell very different...

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Tax Extenders: Fiscal Hypocrisy in Motion

(6) Comments | Posted May 1, 2014 | 8:31 AM

"Oh yes, they're the great extenders"...the package of tax cuts that Congress routinely extends every year or two rather than making them a permanent part of the budget so that you'd, you know, have to come up with offsets to pay for them (see table 2

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Inequality and Pay: 'Rents' vs. Merit

(70) Comments | Posted April 29, 2014 | 4:12 PM

In the age of Piketty, it is increasingly recognized that historically high levels of economic inequality are a serious and growing problem in many economies across the globe. The problems caused by this phenomenon range from stagnant incomes and sticky poverty rates for the majority on the "have-not" side of...

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Maybe Quantitative Easing Was Helping a Little More than You Thought

(18) Comments | Posted April 24, 2014 | 5:50 PM

It's hard to find anyone outside the Fed to say something positive about the impact of their quantitative easing, or "large-scale asset purchase" program. And while there's certainly some concrete evidence that it had its intended direct impact of lowering longer-term interest rates, there's less evidence that it hit its...

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Tax Fairness: What Do People Think About It?

(6) Comments | Posted April 15, 2014 | 1:59 PM

I've been thinking about tax fairness in recent days, and was thus interested to peruse the Gallup results of the question. Nothing too surprising -- those who pay more in federal taxes think they're too high; almost nobody thinks their tax bill is too low. Stop the presses!

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