In his criticism of the Trans Pacific Partnership, Senator Schumer discussed at length the need to counter currency manipulation, with particular reference to China. (See developments here.)
Poverty, estimated using the official criteria and poverty threshold, or including taxes and non-cash benefits, rises in Wisconsin (while the officially reported Census measure declines in the US). [minor edits to clarify MDC 4/23]
Wisconsin employment falls in March; continues to lag the Nation.
Winter for …
The University of Wisconsin-Madison will eliminate about 400 positions, most of them vacant, and will close or restructure several academic programs across campus over the next two years in response to state budget cuts, Chancellor Rebecca Blank announced on her blog Friday.
I’ve been wrapping up some long term projects (not planned as long term — they just took longer than expected) on interest rate parity and term spreads, and that spurred me to look at current patterns in interest rates. Some quick observations: interest rates remain higher in emerging markets than in core industrial countries. So too are real rates are higher despite higher inflation rates. And term spreads are larger in the US than other countries.
One important factor in the growth prospects for the US economy is the trajectory of the dollar.  If the dollar stabilizes at March levels, US economic growth might rebound. On the other hand, continued appreciation bodes ill. Based on history over the floating rate era, the expected duration of an appreciation is about 5 years (depreciations about 2 years). The current surge in the dollar has only been going on for only slightly over half a year, although when dated from the trough of 2011Q2, it’s been going on just a bit over 4 years. Either way, by this metric, it appears that there is still some additional way to go before the dollar peaks.
My wife, Laura Schwendinger, is having her composition, “Creature Quartet”, premiered at the Wisconsin Union Theater on May 8th. The Quartet is made up of four larger movements which are framed by smaller movements, each one an ode to an extinct, endangered or mythical creature.
In Madison, WI, that is.
In response to my post on the effort to eliminate the Bureau of Science Services in the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, reader Ed Hanson rises to the defense of the effort.