“omicron is a dud”

That’s one assessment of the impact on markets. Certainly in terms of public health impacts, that’s not true.

Source: Newsnodes, accessed 1/15/2022.



Source: Newsnodes, accessed 1/15/2022.


ICU use is also rising and projected to rise.

Source: IHME, accessed 1/15/2022.

So while hospitalizations relative to cases (and deaths to cases) are much lower, given the transmissability, it’s not clear to me that gross impact (hospitalization, ICU use) will be so much less. IHME projects (as of 1/15) peak deaths in this wave at 80% of Fall 2021 peak – so nontrivial.

Perhaps the comment refers to economic impact, rather than human cost. As noted in the previous post that elicited the dismissal of “dud”, we know high contact services (e.g., restaurant seatings) activity looks down.  More broadly, mobility, in-place work are down.

Source: Slok, personal communication, Jan 12, 2022.

Source: Slok, personal communication, Jan 12, 2022.

I will also add that whether omicron is a dud, macroeconomically, depends in part on how China responds to it, given its zero tolerance policy thus far.


139 thoughts on ““omicron is a dud”

  1. Econned

    It’s interesting that Menzie is this worked up over ‘Anonymous’ referring to Omicron as “a dud”. Menzie is so worked up that he penned this post to attack the claim made by ‘Anonymous’ and to disingenuously ponder what ‘Anonymous’ means by “a dud”. How do we know it’s not an honest attempt by Menzie? Because he never posed the question in the actual thread. Rather, this is just another example of Menzie finding pleasure of attacking his guests – pen a post to boost his ego once his fanboys come out in support. It’s the same damn screenplay every time.

    1. Moses Herzog

      You’re that guy that calls the 3-hour sports radio show 5 times a week to complain how bad and dumb the show is, aren’t you??

      Why not just go over to ZH, or that investment banker lawyer’s blog (I forgot the name now, it got some attention around 2010), or Tyler Cowen’s blog etc ad nauseam and be happy?? AEI has blogs I think. Heritage Foundation has blogs. I’m sure someone is still paying Peter Wallison to spew up his stomach bile. Head over there and hear your echo bounce back at you from the walls.

      1. Econned

        You’re talking out of ignorance – first, why is criticism bad? Second, I frequent numerous Econ blogs. Go back to reading your elementary econometrics books. Third, I am happy. Fourth, no echo here… you responding kind of makes your last sentence absolute horsey-sh*t.

        1. Moses Herzog

          So you’re saying you can dish out criticism, but you have a very difficult time accepting it. Got it.

          1. Econned

            Wrong. You provided no real criticism and I replied to you comment. How is that evidence of “very difficult time accepting”???

        2. pgl

          Criticism is not necessarily bad but you do not criticize – you troll. I trust you know the difference. But we know you have zero integrity. So hey!

          1. Econned

            I do both. I’m criticizing Menie’s comment here. It’s plain to anyone who doesn’t have Menzie-shaded glasses.

        3. Moses Herzog

          @ Econned
          BTW, I appreciate your moral support on my studying of basic econometrics, I need all the cheerleading I can get, and will gladly accept that cheerleading from whence any source it comes.

          1. Econned

            Btw, I was being genuine with my prior comments within a different thread regarding your learning econometrics. But here, I replied to your out of line comment with a dig of my own. And 99.99% of the time that’s how it goes with me replying to commenters on this blog… I reply with retaliatory shots of my own. But others always suggest I’m the one who does wrong. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

          2. noneconomist

            The guy who gets “worked up” over every comment made by the host criticizes the host for, yes, getting “ worked up.” And you. Of course,view yourself as the site’s prime critic!
            You long ago joined the omniscient CoRev as a riot. A regular riot to be sure.

          3. Barkley Rosser


            Actually CoRev is far superior to “Econned.” CoRev actually discusses matters of substance. He regularly makes erroneous factual claims and makes arguments that ate not all that logical. But at least he is making arguments about substantive economic matters under discussion here, like the impact of Trump tariffs and Chinese reaction on the soybean market. He also seems to be capable of making sympathetic personal remarks on occasion.

            None of this remotely applied to “Econned.” He has never here made a substantive and original comment on economic issues, whether wise or ignorant. Oh, he has made a few comments: I remember him providing his water example from a Zimbabwean menu in discussing hyperinflation, actually not a bad example, even if some of us mocked it at the time. But it is about the best he has provided.

            Orthewise it is mostly what we see here, nothing but a pile of personalistic slams at Menzie, repeats of ones he has made before, not a shred of actual discussion, followed, as always by a stream of personal attacks on anybody daring to criticize his sacred comments. All bow down to his insightful trolling presence.

    2. Barkley Rosser


      There is another obvious interpretation here. He found that the comment raised an interesting question worth investigating and reporting on. Indeed, he noted that there are two possible meanings for this, one involving public health and one involving the economy, with it unclear what Anonymous was referring to specifically. So Menzie checked them both out and found that there seems to be enough impact on both of these from the omicron variant that it is probably inaccurate to call it a “dud,” although that is a somewhat vague term so not precisely determinable.

      Now here is where you once again show your truly trolish colors. You accuse Menzie of being “worked up” and claiming that “…this is just another example of Menzie finding pleasure in attacking his guests.” What a pile of crap. How do you know what he feels? There is zero personal comment about Anonymous in this. All he said was that what Anonymous said if it applied to public health is “that’s not true.” This is a personal attack? It looks to be an accurate statement about a statement, although accurate statements can be personal attacks. But I see no personal attack in this. You are just out of your sick mind.

      OTOH, you, as in almost every comment you make here are engaging in a personal attack, in this case against Menzie, although I guess a bit also against Moses. But you have personally attacked a long list of people here with almost never making any statements that have any economic substance to them at all.

      You are still facing a challenge from me for you to provide us with a single example of a substantive and original comment on economics here. We are still waiting, and probably will, as your inevitable next post will probably just amount to yet another personal attack I shall not waste time replying to. Have a nice day!

      1. Econned

        Barkley Rosser,
        Please quote where I said it was a “personal attack”. This is why I ignore your comments. You lie. All the time. That or you can’t read. It’s embarrassing for your family and friends that you use your real name. What. A. Hack. You’re an academic in title only. A senile old man in reality.

    3. pgl

      I will say this about “Anonymous”. At least he tries to add actual information to the discussion which is something you never do. Now why don’t you take our advice and stop the bitching here and start your own blog. That way we can choose to ignore it if it is utterly worthless as your typical comment.

      1. Econned

        PaGLiacci, you’re the last commenter who should talk about ignoring my comments – you can’t get enough of my slamming you into the dirt. You comment endlessly. Clown

    4. Jacob

      Menzie is one of the *most* tolerant bloggers I’ve ever seen. If it were mine, I’d have banned you already.

      1. pgl

        Econned tells us he visits other economist blogs but he has not told us which economist blogs. I wonder why – could it be that everyone has banned this worthless loud mouth troll?

        1. Econned

          Marginal Revolution, Money Illusion, EconLog, Grumpy Economist, Economists View (formerly), Macro and Other Market Musings, In My Tribe. Just to name a few.
          I’m not sure I’ve ever experienced an occasion where the host of these blogs act like Menzie acts. Maybe it’s happened but certainly not on a near daily basis as Menzie is accustomed.

          1. pgl

            “Marginal Revolution, Money Illusion, EconLog, Grumpy Economist” are definitely your tribe.

            Mark Thoma’s EconomistView was excellent. I do not recall you ever posting there but maybe you were using a different name. Patrick R. Sullivan perhaps.

            But if you think Mark could not get snarky with right wing nutcases, you must have missed his Fuzz Charts (hint – best take down of Jerry Bowyer ever).

          2. Barkley Rosser


            I also do not remember you from Economists View. If you really do follow MR, you will know that I am a regular there, also being a good personal friend of Tyler Cowen. I do not remember seeing you post anything there, although perhaps you have occasionally and I just missed it.

            Perhaps you post under a different fake name on these other blogs, or perhaps you do not post much or at all since all those other bloggers are paragons of wisdom and good behavior compared to Menzie, at least according to you. I note on MR Tyler very rarely makes comments on threads once he posts, with most getting more comments than happen here. I shall grant that when he bases a post on a comment by somebody, more often than not it is one he approves of, although there are plenty of commenters on MR saying all kinds of nasty stuff about him. There are really a lot of pretty nasty trolls regularly commenting there. Some of them make you almost look like a good citizen, Econned.

          3. Econned

            Barkley Rosser,
            First, I also do not remember you anywhere else. But that’s a fact I don’t care about other than to inform you that your comments are ignore-worthy.
            Second, I’ve never once said “all those other bloggers are paragons of wisdom … compared to Menzie”. You’re misrepresenting my comments with the distorted reality inside your inventive mind.
            according to you.
            Third, you’re obfuscating (per usual) in your last mumbling. But the point you acknowledge – TC doesn’t regularly attack-post. Menzie is the reason for the sh*tshow in his comment section. Yes, as you note, there will always be bad seeds but Menzie propagates the bad seeds. Menzie feeds them and Menzie is fed in return.

            So, you have said zero in valid response to my overarching issue other than another useless and unimpressive name drop. You provided nothing. Again.

      2. Econned

        Menzie is tolerant because if he weren’t he would be the absolute biggest hypocrite in the econblogosphere.

        Menzie desires this.

        Menzie fosters this.

        Menzie is this.

        1. pgl

          You are way too modest. You are clearly the absolute biggest hypocrite in the econblogosphere. Take a bow!

          1. Econned

            The clown has spoken, folks. Stating that I’m being “modest” yet cannot point to an example of me being a hypocrite. Yes, the clown has spoken and it isn’t even aware of what it has said. That’s what’s clear here. Keep on honking, pgl, keep on honking. Silly clown.

        2. Barkley Rosser


          Wow. YOU grant that Menzie is not “the absolute biggest hypocrite in the econoblogosphere.” My my, such a kind remark from you. Those of us thinking that you mostly just make personal attacks on Menzie are clearly just wrong wrong wrong. Shame on us.

          1. Econned

            Again, you can not/will not address the actual issue. Why? Because you know that the meat of my argument is true. Maybe you agree/enjoy and are jealous that your ‘blog’ doesn’t get substantive comments? You can only get interactions by replying to people you refer to as trolls on someone else’s blog. Think about that for a minute before you hit reply with another hollow mumbling. And do so before the sundowners sets in. You are a troll as much as anyone on this site and it’s becoming increasingly boring to point out your hollow responses.

      3. Willie

        If I were Menzie, I probably would have banned all of us by now. But I’m not, and that’s a good thing, since I’m an outhouse economist at best, not the real deal. So a blog I had would have a lot of people banned, but not much worthwhile information.

        Actually, there’s usually something to learn from comments. At least for me. There’s positive learning and negative learning. So, tolerance up to a point is good.

    1. Econned

      Wonder if Menzie had any money riding on his recent failed inflation calls? I would be surprised if he had the guts to put his money where his mouth is. I’ve found that loud mouths are often for show (in this case pageviews) only.

        1. Econned

          Who said anything about Fan Duel? Another misguided and idiotic assumption/comment by PaGLiacci the resident clown. This, however, is par for you.

  2. Moses Herzog

    I will say that’s the first time I ever looked at IHME projections and thought they looked very low. But take that for whatever it’s worth from a Johnny Six-pack.

  3. Manfred

    Here goes Menzie again.
    Ok, fine. Let’s assume we have a can opener, and let’s assume that it’s not a dud. And that Omicron is doing all those bad things Manzie talks about with nice graphs and what not.
    The overarching question is, what is the Biden Administration doing about it? And – why didn’t the Biden Administration not foresee this? Don’t they have the best virologists, immunologists, scientists of all stripes, working for them (like Anthony Fauci)? Doesn’t the Biden Administration follow science?
    Menzie does not address this. Of course, had this been under the previous administration (which, like Lord Voldemort, shall not be named), then he would be all over it. He would be criticizing, shouting from the rooftops how incompetent they are, that they “are not following science”, Menzie would continuously be quoting Nancy Pelosi when she hysterically shouted “SCIENCE, SCIENCE, SCIENCE” some time in calendar year 2020.
    But not now. Menzie only gives a subdued picture of why, in his opinion, Omicron is not a dud. He does not even touch the Biden Administration.
    What a contrast Menzie.
    When your guys are in power, of course, they cannot do anything wrong.

    1. Econned

      This post is spot on. I would absolutely expect that if Trump were in office and all else were equal, Menzie would have multiple posts per week on the Trump administration’s failures. And, for full disclosure, I’m someone who thinks any likely or realized Biden response would be better than any likely Trump response.

      Menzie has been pegged. Again.

      1. Barkley Rosser


        Your effort to be substantive on this one is a total flop. No, Manfred’s post is a pile of stupid and ignorant garbage. Look at him chanting in capital letters about SCIENCE! not to mention joining the horrible sniping at Dr. Fauci. But then this is what you live for, sniping and making personal attacks.

        1. Econned

          Hahahahaha. Your comment is a total flop if you think I care about your opinion. Go take your meds.

          1. Moses Herzog

            I just have one question: How did Danny DeVito manage to steal your role as Louie De Palma on “Taxi”?? He was taller than you??

          2. noneconomist

            “Go take your meds.” Ah, the wit, the wisdom of the ever innovative mind. Where DO you get such zingers?

        2. noneconomist

          Remember: Manny has noted he has little time to waste on this site given his busy schedule earning a living, raising a family, being a patriot, and offering his expertise to those ( two, maybe three posters) who will most benefit from it.
          But once more, he’s taken time out from his exhaustive schedule to offer his thoughts on, well, why the host of this blog has not appreciated his obvious brilliance or the perceptive criticism (yawn) of brother Econned.
          Last we saw him here, he took valuable time away from his daily pursuits to criticize those who did not appreciate the many virtues of, uh, Rush Limbaugh.
          Cue the music, watch out windmills. His destiny calls and he goes.

        3. Manfred

          Oh Barkley.
          If my comment was a pile of garbage, so was the Wall Street Journal editorial from last Thursday.
          But again, you say it is a pile of garbage without proof, without evidence. And apparently for you, every criticism is a personal attack.
          You are sounding like Joe Biden, who said that if you are not for him, you are with Jefferson Davis.
          Way to go, Barkley.

          1. pgl

            The Wall Street Journal editorial from last Thursday? Maybe you can post what this rightwing rag wrote last Thursday. It should be a real hoot.

    2. Barkley Rosser


      How is anybody supposed to foresee the appearance of a new Covid variant, much less what its characteristics will be? We are still trying to pin down the latter, which is part of why there is a debate here. Is it a “dud” or not? Well, depends on how you define “dud,” but it is certainly not nothing.

      What has the Biden admin been doing about it? A lot. The main area where they fell down, as I noted in an earlier comment on another thread, was not having enough test kits available and ready to go. They have been trying to catch up on that, but they were and are behind on that.

      That said, the reason they did not emphasize tests, which they should have put more emphasis on, was that they were focusing on vaccinations, which Trump happens to support even as lots of his supporters do not. But ithere was good reason to focus on that. The delta virus was by all accounts much dealier than the earlier two, but the final number of deaths from it was less, and this was clearly due to widespread vaccinations. Nearly all the dead were unvaxxed.

      Now with omicron things have gotten murkier because it is so transmissable that vaccinations do not work as well at preventing catching it as they did for the delta variant. But the data is really only coming in now: it is overwhelmingly the unvaxxed who are getting hospitalized, with it even clearer as one goes to the more severe stages of ICu, ventilation, and death. And while omicron is much less deadly than delta, the death rate is rising as Menzie pointed out.

      1. Anonymous

        new covid variants……

        a reason for no common cold vaccine is the trouble in ‘hitting’ the virus it changes!!


        has anyone before seen evolution to avoid a non sterilizing inoculation?

        how could scientists not suspect?

        rose colored glasses on the regulators!

        see no evil!

        1. Barkley Rosser

          Dumb remark, Anonymous. Common cold does not kill people, or at least only very very rarely.

      2. Manfred

        again, you completely miss the point, as usual. Nice try defending this catastrophic administration.
        Biden said he was going to shut down the virus. He said that, it is public record. People elected him for this.
        He did not shut down the virus. Thus, he is a failure on that front.
        Biden also set a standard. He said that “any president under whose watch 220K people die, must resign immediately”. He said this in a tweet in October 2020.
        More people died under Biden than under the previous administration. When are you – Barkley – calling for Biden to resign? When is Menzie calling for Biden to resign? Let me take a wild guess: never, of course.
        Finally, Kamala Harris was the first anti-vaxxer. She said in October 2020, that if Donald Trump tells her to take the vaccine, *she will not take the vaccine*. This is public record. And this is a circle that you and Menzie cannot square, ever. You criticize the “right wing anti-vaxxers” completely forgetting that Kamala was the first one.

        Biden’s response to the virus has been horrible to catastrophic. Democrats came into office promising to be the “adults in the room”. They are worse than the previous administration. They promised to “follow science”, when in fact they only politicized the issue more and more, creating huge divisions in society.

        Nice try, Barkley, But it ain’t working.

        1. pgl

          So Biden has not yet brought heaven to earth so he must be a socialist failure.

          Dude – your MAGA rants are truly making me laugh so hard that my side hurts!

          Now where is that celebrated WSJ editorial from last Thursdaay?

        2. Barkley Rosser


          Yeah, Biden made an exaggerated promise a week before the election that he has not kept. Shall we start discussing the long list of failed promises Trump made in the 2016 campaign? Many of those were obviously totally crackpot when he made them, such as how he was going to get Mexico to pay for his wall. And then he delivered over 30,000 lies as president, probably more than all of our previous presidents put together. As it is, if the very deadly delta variant had not shown up, Biden probably would have been able to keep or come close to keeping his promise, but it did.

          As for Harris, she only briefly held that position. Sensibly changed her mind on it, unlike all these current anti-vaxxers who are cluttering up our hospitals leading to other people dying for their irresponsible foolishness, people with other health problems, many of whom got vaxxed and are not there because of stupidly and irresponsibly not getting vaxxed.

          Those not getting vaxxed are morally the equivalent of drunk drvers. Do you defend drunk driving, Manfred?

        3. noneconomist

          Hard working Manny, who said he has little time to dawdle here because of his multiple responsibilities has nonetheless found time to do just that.
          While you were, oh, dawdling, why didn’t you praise Trump for his role in developing vaccines (and being boosted himself) that millions of his most ardent followers refuse to take? Is there any possible connection to a continual increase in deaths and MAGA dummies who refuse to vaccinate?
          Surely, you’re not one of those?

      3. Barkley Rosser


        I did not read the WSJ editorial from last Thursday, and WSJ editorials have long been often way off. Not a source for anything.

        And the comment I am replying to provides substantive reply to your stupid piece of garbage post, and will not repeat. That “Econned” thinks your stupid garbafge post is a sign that “Econned” is not remotely as smart as he likes to present himself as. But then his “wit” has mostly amounted to coming up with various insults for people that he then endlessly repeats in his various trollish comments.

        Oh, I shall mention that his one other occasional ally is also way better than he is here. I am talking about R. Stryker, who having mocked him I acrtually feel sorry for him that he picked such an embarrassing fake name to use here. But I will note that while I regularly disagree with him, msny of his comments here are fairly intelligent and informed, and also usually on the substantive subject being discussed, again in sharp contrast with “Econned.”

  4. Bruce Hall

    It’s time for the government and medical establishment to quit hedging and come right out and say, “COVID is the new flu.”

    It is also the “new common cold”.

    Just as flu vaccines are only partially effective and there is no vaccine for the common cold, COVID vaccines are, at best, a weak strategy for dealing with COVID and, at worst, taking resources away from finding low-cost, effective treatments in the form of anti-virals that can halt the progression of a wide spectrum of variants once a person has been infected.

    1. Moses Herzog

      “In the clip, host Cecilia Vega referred vaguely to ‘encouraging headlines’ and a new study, then asked the CDC director: ‘Is it time to start rethinking how we’re living with this virus — that it’s potentially here to stay?’
      Walensky appeared to CHEERFULLY reply that those dying of covid-19 were mostly people with preexisting medical problems: ‘The overwhelming number of deaths — over 75 percent — occurred in people who had at least four comorbidities. So really, these are people who were unwell to begin with. And yes: really encouraging news in the context of omicron.’ ”


      I’ve stated on this blog before, I am a Democrat, and consider myself tilted pretty strongly to the left. But I just watched a weekend political show on PBS. And as they discussed Walensky’s advice to Americans to quarantine only 5 days and not even bother testing after just 5 days in quarantine, They kept saying “the head of the CDC”… “the head of the CDC”….. “the Head of the CDC”…. “the head of the CDC”. Then they mentioned Fauci’s name like 20 times on the SAME show. I wonder what is so hard about pronouncing the name Rochelle Walensky?? Does anyone know what would be so hard about saying her name when they discuss Walensky’s own words in TV interviews but can pronounce Fauci’s name 20+ times on the same show?? Is Rochelle Walensky requesting to be anonymous now as the head of the CDC?? Are they just going to show her silhouette now behind a lighted screen with underlying caption that says “Lady who heads the CDC?? ~~because I’m honestly dying to know.

      1. Anonymous

        Dr Walensky is the first hhs/fda official that is stating co’morbidity statistics evident in observations of wuhan and lombardi fatalities from feb 2020.

        the virus is dangerous to people with poor health concentrated on people with poor health over 74.

        the biden/blue jurisdiction response to the virus is what is harmful to people and the economy.

        if this observation were made in mar 2020 it should have caused extra safeguards in: ny, nj. ma, mi and ct nursing homes and among the alrady morbid population, which with obesity in usa is quite large.

        btw i agree with the greater barington papaerr.

        1. Moses Herzog

          You know who was President in March 2020, yes?? Are all of Biden’s supposed mistakes backdated to the the donald trump ClusterF*** ??

          1. Anonymous

            biden ran on correcting trump’s lax edicts, imposing his will, and beating the virus.

            all he has accomplished is demanding everyone get a vaccine that the virus has departed from.

          2. Barkley Rosser

            Being even dumber, or at least poorly informed, Anonymous. I think you should stick to discussing oil markets.

            The evidence is coming in from many sources overwhelmingly that, while existing vaccines are not as good at preventing infection by it than they were at earlier variants, they still provide strong defense against getting serious cases leading to hospitalization and even more so being in ICUs or going on ventilation or dying. They are not nearly as useless as you suggest. Where did you get such misinformation?

      2. Bruce Hall

        It’s probably because Fauci is a household name from his ubiquitous presence on TV. Walensky? That’s the common thought. Hence “the head of the CDC”.

        1. Moses Herzog

          @ Bruce
          This is a plausible reason, but I have suspicions it was related to something sociologically. In the end it’s probably something my weird brain is creating that has no relation to anything. But I appreciate the reply, and your point is a very reasonable theory.

        1. Moses Herzog

          “The Onion” for conservatives eh?? I think this could be dangerous for things such as the virus, but I will confess a couple headlines made me smile. But it also misleads people, which I am not a fan of. But I miss things like “MAD” magazine, so I guess I can give this a “pass” in the morality dept. As long as they are upfront about being satire.

        2. pgl

          And we thought Tucker Carlson was a very sick person. I’m glad you think this virus is some sort of joke.

    2. pgl

      Gee Bruce – it looks like you are still holding onto your claim that COVID would not adversely affect children. Of course your forecast that this pandemic would just wash away by the fall of 2020 seems to have been a wee bit off.

    3. 2slugbaits

      taking resources away from finding low-cost, effective treatments in the form of anti-virals that can halt the progression of a wide spectrum of variants once a person has been infected.

      You forgot to mention unicorns. The fact is that anti-virals are not “low-cost effective treatments.” Anti-virals are high cost treatments and only effective if the treatments begin at the onset of symptoms. The first line of defense should be vaccinations. Also, anti-virals are not and cannot be designed to protect against a “wide spectrum of variants.” It would be nice if they could, but they can’t. Like I said, unicorns. Anti-virals are pretty much limited to specific variants. I’ll also point out that you were one of those touting the benefits of hydroxychloroquine as an effective treatment for COVID-19, remember?

      What you should be worried about are new variants that arise out of the Omicron variant. Omicron is highly infectious, but tends to be less lethal because it doesn’t target the lungs as much as the Delta variant. Omicron is mostly in the nose and throat and as a consequence the length of time that a person is infectious (as opposed to being simply infected) is about half the time as it is with Delta. Now for some math. The R-naught calculation is a function of two parameters; the inherent contagiousness of the virus and the length of time that a person is infectious. If you had to bet money as to how the Omicron variant will evolve, your best bet would be that variants that increase the length of time a person is infectious will win out. That will increase the R-naught relative to Omicron (which already has a much higher R-naught than Delta). We don’t know how the Omicron variant will evolve, but the evolutionary path of least resistance points towards a longer period of people being infectious. And that is why we should be doing everything we can to vaccinate the world. That’s the only way to get out in front of the virus. Relying upon anti-virals as the principal line of defense is a losing strategy.

      1. pgl

        Thanks for rebutting Bruce’s last spin courtesy of Kelly Anne Conway. One wee addition – the funds for viruses were not taking resources away from anti-virals. I know Kelly Anne likes to call claims like that “alternative facts” but she and Bruce were how do we say – oh yea – lying.

    4. Willie

      It is the new flu and the new common cold. It is just deadlier than those. Oh, well, what’s a few dead people. Thin the herd. Something like that. Did I miss anything?

  5. pgl

    “Perhaps the comment refers to economic impact, rather than human cost.”

    The Lawrence Kudlow standard!

    It would be interesting to track hospitalization and deaths by whether the patient was vaccinated or not.

    1. Barkley Rosser


      I have seen a lot of evidence from the hospitals near where I am, and it is overwhelmingly unvaccinated people getting hospitalized, although some vaxxed are. Where the difference really shows up is in the more seveere stages, like one vaxxed person in ICU/ and none on ventilation and none dying. I have seen numbers for UK on this, and they support this also. It is the unvaxxed who are overwhelmingly getting the severe cases. I do not think I have seen any US national numbers yet.

      1. Moses Herzog

        It’s the same in my state and certainly if you’re going by anecdotal (respected Doctors interviewed on TV) it’s the same pattern nationally. Still haven’t gotten my booster, but you better believe I wear my mask in social settings outside the house.

          1. pgl

            In NYC – booster shot locations are like every other block. And there is still one of our Brooklyn Nets who has not even been vaccinated.

  6. ltr


    January 15, 2022



    Cases ( 1,773,636)
    Deaths ( 8,304)

    Deaths per million ( 890)

    [ Israel, which is at a theoretical herd immunity level of full vaccination, with boosters extending to 2 additional shots for those considered most at risk, is now running at 50,000 coronavirus cases a day. ]

    1. ltr

      Since emergency vaccination began in mainland China in June 2020, with priority to those most at risk, there have been only 2 coronavirus deaths. There has been no coronavirus death since January 2021. Domestic cases have lately been running at about 110 a day. * Precautions are taken, any case symptomatic or asymptomatic is contact traced with testing following. Quarantine follows a positive test or entry from abroad.

      Economic difficulties appear to have been remarkably limited through 2021, with policy makers working sector by sector as weakness was found. Technology assistance has been emphasized. Currently small businesses are being specially assisted.

      * The daily records have often been set down on Econbrowser.

    2. ltr

      I am working on data just now, but need to write that full vaccination with a range of vaccines from those developed in Cuba to Germany to China has been significantly to especially effective so far at preventing severe coronavirus cases and deaths. Vaccination is very, very important.

      Also, the Chinese experience with the coronavirus should be closely and respectfully studied since China has been remarkably effective at prevention and treatment and such effectiveness ought to be learned from as opposed to being repeatedly and fiercely dismissed from January 2020 in the likes of the New York Times.

  7. ltr


    January 12, 2022

    China’s factory gate prices further ease, consumer prices drop in December

    The Producer Price Index gained 8.1% for the year.
    The Consumer Price Index gained 0.9 percent for the year.



  8. Barkley Rosser

    Let us grant that the word “dud” is vague. It can mean anything from zero to “less than we thought it might be.”

    For Anonymous, he clearly focuses even more heavily on the oil industry than does Steven Kopits. The first publicity about the omicron variant in late November triggered a more than $10 one day decline in crude oil prices. That was no dud. And the prices sunk a bit more for a few more days. But then those early reports began to come out of South Africa that while omicron seemed to be more transmissable, it was much less deadly than the delta variant. The market stabilized, and then after a bit began rising, going all the way up to the highest level of the year, pulling back a bit, but then rising even more, now well up into the $80 plus per barrel range. From the standpoint of the crude oil markets, well, omicron looks to be a dud by now after a pretty spectacular entry.

    So Menzie has shown that while probably the health and economic impacts are not as great as for the earlier variants, both of them are noticeable, and it has taken some time for them to show up. The most lagging indicator is deaths, which lag hospitalizations which lag new cases. New cases seem to have peaked in some of the large cities where it first hit, and may be about to do so nationally (may even have done so this past week). But hospitalizations are definitely still rising, with deaths now also rising. Those deaths are only those from Covid, while there are definitely other ones happening due to people getting crowded out of hospitals due to this current surge, which is putting many hospitals under more strain than they have been through the whole pandemic. So the impact on deaths is greater than just what one sees for the deaths directly due to the omicron Covid variant.

    The economic effects are not all that dramatic, but they are there as well, again, probably less than what we saw previously. Of course the effects on the oil industry., while very briefly dramatic, have been over for some time now.

    Especially for Moses, who somehow seems to think I am in some camp forecasting rising oil prices to $100 per barrel, I am still in the potentially high volatility camp. Let me note what could fairly easily happen out there: either a sharp drop in prices or a sharp increase in prices, possibly even beyond the bounds I mentioned for last year.

    What could bring about a sharp drop? We had a rumor about a week ago about a possible new variant in Cyprus that combined the transmissability of omicron with the deadliness of delta. We could very easily have something like that at any moment, indeed something worse on both categories. That could be more seriously devastating than anything we have seen so far on the health front, with nobody able to do much about it. This could trigger a collapse of the global economy greater than what happened two years ago in Spring 2020. This would almost certainly lead to crude oil prices well below $40, even below $30.

    OTOH, we could have a combination of wars and natural disasters that could really hit the supply side of the oil industry hard. I have been somewhat discounting a Putin invasion of Ukraine basically because the Ukrainians themselves have not been taking it seriously. But the most recent developments have really raised the ante and I have heard Ukrainians kind of going silent. Putin is really doing his best to scare people, even if he does not invade. Bur war cannot at all be ruled out, with war in the oil producing areas of the Persian Gulf also not to be ruled out. So there we could have events that could send the price up, easily well over $100.

    So that is my bottom line position, Moses and everybody else , substantial possibility of severe movements one way or the other, non-dud events. Heck, we could have both happen in the same year, just at different times.

  9. AS

    I downloaded data on daily Covid cases from USA Facts.org to see if I could model weekly new claims for unemployment insurance, FRED series: ICSA.
    If we lag the Covid cases by one week and model data in the form of: dlog(icsa) = c + dlog(covid(-1)), from 2/2/2020 to the present, we get a coefficient on dlog(covid(-1)) of 0.38 with a t-value of 6.3, very significant.
    If we model data from 12/10/2020 to the present, we get a coefficient on dlog(covid(-1)) of 0.07, with a t-value of 1.5, not significant.
    What should we conclude? Are most of the cases among the non-working population and the reason for the significant coefficient from the data starting from 2/2/2020 due to the early shutdowns rather than due to the effects of the illness on working people?

    1. AS

      Since we have had 58+million cases, obviously working folks have contacted Covid, but have most of the serious cases been in the non-working groups, such as the aged, like me?

      1. Moses Herzog

        @ AS, all of the following is said with much respect to you, and your math, and only an attempt to be a “sounding board” or give another view of your well-founded points
        I think “non-working” is too wide a category. We could count most 5–16 year olds in that, right?? And yet that age group is only a minute minute small amount of the serious cases. I think your age group, judging from your own description, that’s a slam dunk on being most of the “serious” cases.

        But here is where much of the cognitive disconnect is (not for you but for the general public)~~ you have people like me, who most likely have never gotten the virus (I got very ill for basically one single night in mid-February of 2020–that doesn’t fit the profile of symptoms for Covid—they last way longer than 16–24 hours) but have to change their work habits for fear of giving it to loved ones. Even though this category of person never got the virus, you lose productivity and you lose wages, and you lose normal spending/consumption habits in order to protect people you love, or even strangers that you don’t want to be the cause of the death of. I don’t like your phrase “due to the early shutdowns”. Shutdowns are not the “explanatory variable”. They are an outcome or more like a regressand.

        1. AS

          Hi Moses,

          Thanks for your thoughts. What confuses me is the seemingly lessening effect of Covid cases on applications for unemployment insurance. Why the change? I am not questioning loss of productivity due to the disease. Do working folks have sick leave benefits that cover them now? Did they have sick leave benefits that would have covered them during the lock-down? When I was referring to working folks, I meant the group that are associated with work and would be associated with applications for unemployment insurance. Perhaps a dummy variable for the lock-down may help with the explanation. Perhaps the vaccines have altered the incidence of claims for unemployment. Surely during the lockdown, healthy folks as well as those with Covid lost jobs and applied for unemployment insurance. Without Covid we would not have had a lock down, but Covid cases by themselves may not have been the reason for mass applications for unemployment insurance.

          1. Moses Herzog

            It’s a very good question that I don’t have the answer to. I guess to be honest I hadn’t kept close track of the claims numbers. I just know Republicans were working real hard to cut off the amount of time people could make those claims~~is it possible they just hit the cut off point and when they hit the time limits the claims numbers dramatically dropped?? I think that’s possible. You have to look at the amount of people kind of “chopped off” and how that related to the time most people were disallowed from making UI claims.

            One thing that shocked me, I was reading one of those bank or credit agency reports recently that high income households savings were up $2.6 Trillion over what they would have been when Covid hit, and they’re expecting that saving to go down to $2.2 Trillion at the end of the year. But those are almost all high income households obviously, not the people “scraping by”.

          2. Moses Herzog

            @ AS
            Here is also something you might take an interest in. Moody’s has something they call an “Employment Cost Index” (I’m assuming it has been updated by at least 1 quarter since the time of the data in the link I give just below). They say this “ECI” is something that Powell looks closely at, because nominal wage growth effects inflation, and therefor if Powell is seeing that nominal wage growth rise a little on the fast side, he’s going to be more apt to pull the trigger on raising rates.

            BLS also may have a similar metric.

          3. pgl

            Moses clued us on the Employment Cost Index, which has been provided by BLS for over 20 years. BLS breaks this out by wages v. fringe benefits and even provides this by broad sectors. FRED’s reporting on the overall ECI:

            FRED provides a lot of the BLS details too. A very useful set of statistics!

          4. Moses Herzog

            @ pgl
            Shouldn’t you be watching Trae Young right now?? These are exciting times for the barn-burning Atlanta Hawks with Trae Young at the helm. They’ve won less than 41% of their games, are on a 5 game losing streak, and are 4th worst in the eastern conference. Your favorite commentator Stephen “Women Bring Violence Upon Themselves” Smith sure has his finger on the pulse. Kudos to the both of you. Trae has managed to keep his small toe healthy this year, and no paper cuts to take him out of commission two weeks that I know of. Like Stephen said, these days for Trae and the Hawks are “indelible”.

          5. pgl

            Moses Herzog
            January 16, 2022 at 1:16 pm

            Look – I have admitted that the Hawks have forgotten about defense. But you have a weird hatred of Trae Young. Oh that’s right the only decent players OKC ever had are now playing for either the Lakers or the Nets. And you dumb enough to think that guy on the Lakers looks like Trae. After all – all blacks are the same to you!

            So the NBA sucks in your little state which you are too cheap to move from. Which is all fine since you still remain the worst analysis the game has ever seen.

    2. Rick Stryker

      Hi AS,

      I don’t think your results are surprising. Using the 2/2/20 – present sample, you are including the effects of a very sharp downturn that was highly correlated with the first covid wave. Unemployment and new claims skyrocketed during that period. In the 12/10/20 sample, you are excluding the business cycle but including the recovery, a period over which the unemployment rate along with new claims fell while covid cases went up and down.

      You could try to augment your model to include some measure of business cycle effects, such as changes in industrial production or something like that. Alternatively, I’d suggest thinking carefully about why or why not there would be the relationship and model accordingly. A priori, I would think you wouldn’t find a relationship between changes in claims and changes in infections lagged a week since 1) many workers are covered by sick leave and wouldn’t lose their jobs if they got severe covid; 2) 1 week isn’t enough time to develop the severe covid which would precipitate a job loss; and 3) the risk of hospitalization and death roughly triples each decade, and so the brunt of severe covid does not fall on prime age workers. There are also potential economic effects in which a run up in cases causes certain kinds of businesses to temporarily shut, such as in the leisure and hospitality sector. So, another alternative would be to look at the effect of increasing covid cases on new claims in particularly industry or sectors.

      Why are you interested in this question? Anyway, glad to see that you are still busy and interested in empirical economics.

        1. Barkley Rosser


          At least in contrast to Econned he is actually making a substantive comment on a substantive post, with no personal attacks on anybody. Would that Econned would follow his example.

      1. AS

        Hi Rick,
        Thanks for the comments.
        I guess this project is beyond my pay grade, so thanks for the tutoring. Based upon your comments, the proposed model seems like a term paper effort in an econometrics class.

        I was trying to see if Covid cases helped to forecast new claims for unemployment insurance. I am currently using an MA(1) model which works reasonably well. It would also be interesting to know what the claims would have been without a shutdown, again beyond my pay grade.

        1. Rick Stryker

          Hi AS,

          I’m sorry my comments discouraged you. That was not my intention at all. I think it’s great that you are working to learn econometrics and are attempting to build some real models. I hope you will continue. These models often don’t work out and you shouldn’t see it as a sign that you are working “above your pay grade” if they don’t. The models don’t work out for most people most of the time, even for very experienced economists. It’s really difficult to establish anything compelling in economics.

    1. Moses Herzog

      @ rjs
      “Karen” (lifelong Republican and lover of MAGA) says: “You can’t tell me to wear a mask.” “That’s taking away my freedom and it’s unconstitutional.”

      “Karen” does not give a [ fill in your choice of obscene vulgarity here ] if she kills her grandma, her mother in-law, her elderly Wal Mart cashier, or the 8 year old next door neighbor with an immune deficiency. “Karen” has her “rights” not to wear a mask or get vaccinated, and if that means those people Karen knows will die—then so be it. And we’re not even going to get into who those 4 people “Karen” gave the virus to gave it to others they know outside of Karen’s social circle, also then died…and so on….and so on…. and so on….. which is why it spreads exponentially. Real “complex” aye??

      A small part of this is also because America keeps better death/health statistics. But only a small portion I think

    2. T. Shaw

      Dr. Fauci had one job [for which he gets paid far more than President Biden] – stop or mitigate the PANDEMIC.

      Evidently, he failed.

      1. pgl

        Are you in a competition with Bruce Hall for the most asinine commenter ever? He is paid for his excellent analysis. He can’t help MAGA hat wearers are too stupid to follow it.

      2. Barkley Rosser

        T. Shaw,

        Are you aware that this variant has hit many nations in the world and has followed a very similar pattern, highly transmissable while not as deadly as earlier variants. Just how was Dr. Fauci supposed to single handedly stop or even mitigate this variant more than is being done in other nations, especially when in countrast to other nations we have this Yug chunk of people self-righteiously running around not getting vaxxed or wearing maska? Would you care ro indform of this, or so you just want to repeat bad Fox News and Rand Paul slogans and slimes? Are you aware that he and his family are facing death threats for all this?

          1. Barkley Rosser

            T. Shaw,

            Unfortunately for all his efforts he has been unable to convince a lot of people to get vaxxed and use maskes, and, gosh, they seem to have much higher rates of hospitalization and deaths. So, sure, he did not succeed, for which all those people smearing him falsely at Fox News should be proud, even as former Pres. Trump advocates that people get vaxxed.

      3. 2slugbaits

        T. Shaw
        Speaking of people not doing their jobs, did you do your job and get vaccinated and boosted?

  10. Anonymous

    1. On the market impact, we’ll see. This hasn’t played out yet.

    The charts you gave for restaurants and mobility were fascinating (just the tools, hadn’t ever seen them). But we’re pretty early in the new year and the initial data is a little wiggly. It will be interesting to see them in retrospect. Very cool tools.

    Anecdotally, I do see higher mask wearing in the grocery store and church nowadays. Nobody in the bars bothers any more (including servers) and they haven’t gone back to the forehead temp taking or any of that stuff. But yeah, less traffic sure. Has been cold also. But I’m sure they’re losing some business from people not coming in. I guess we will see if the country tips into a big response or not.

    I sense a sort of tension between moving on and between Covid concern. Individuals will do different things, but at the end what matters economically, will be how the majority react. And govt/business actions, agreed. I don’t get the impression the Fed is leaning that way. If anything recent CDC remarks and guidance seem more in the learn to live with it mode and saying states can have different policies.

    But again, we’ll see. I didn’t think we’d still be doing this stuff two years later. I thought we’d have a few weeks of “flatten the curve” and then go back to business as usual. So, I don’t have a great record.

    I see oil demand up, travel returning, etc. Especially overseas, but here too. Lots of people traveled for Christmas. And I see more business traveling going on (I traveled during summer 2020, but I was a real outlier). And the oil price is up. (Not just the volume, but at a higher price, i.e. the demand curve moved.)

    Seeking Alpha had an article on the Corona stocks being down. (God help us, someone actually invests this way.) But it was just 5% down. And stocks bounce all over the place. And so does oil. So hard to make a big judgment on wiggles in the data. So…meh.

    2. On the heath statistics.

    A. I haven’t studied it in depth, but I as I said few posts ago, I suspec you’re seeing mostly Delta in the December deaths and ICUs. The Keyser Permanent study (pretty large sample, well described data gathering, reasonably consistent methods, etc.) has the following results for DEC, SOCAL:

    cases (i.e. includes some asymptomatic positive tested)
    omicron 52,297 75%
    delta 16,982 25%
    Total 69,279 100%

    ICU admissions
    omicron 7 23%
    delta 23 77%
    Total 30 100%

    omicron 0 0%
    delta 11 100%
    Total 11 100%

    omicron 1 7%
    delta 14 93%
    total 15 100%

    [So at least in this case, not only were per infection outcomes milder, total impact was actually less omicron.]


    B. The South African data showed weekly deaths of ~1/4 during Omicron as opposed to during Delta (and I think a faster wave). So, in this case, even given greater exposure, they still had less impact. That’s not per infection data, it’s overall.

    C. The SA and UK waves showed very rapid rise and fall in cases. Of course, sicknesses and deaths may linger, but still the rapid rise and fall of infections is promising in terms of getting past the experience. I believe CDC (and many others) have said, most of the population will be exposed to Omicron. It’s going to sweep through and then, have happened. (So, good chance the economy can get back to normal afterwards.)

    D. I don’t understand the massively higher hospitalization rates in the US versus Europe (or Asia). It’s a puzzle that needs to be explained. I don’t know if it’s some difference in the populations (are we that much fatter!?) Or differences in the admission criteria? Or differences in the data gathering/counting (undercounting there or overcounting here).

  11. David S

    I can only offer some anecdotes to this rather lively discussion thread.

    -My wife and I just recovered from Omicron (we’re fine, thanks for asking, and we give full credit to the vaccines and boosters for not having had more severe symptoms)—the main economic impact in our household was that I made fewer trips to the liquor store while I we were isolating. We also refrained from going to our local restaurants. There’s a good chance we’ll overcompensate for those missed spending opportunities in the coming weeks–especially liquor purchases.
    -At my most recent trip to one of our local grocery stores the shelves were nearly empty of chicken, flour, and sugar. Annoying, but I didn’t feel desperate, because I found those items at another grocery store the next day.
    -My wife has a minor medical procedure scheduled a few weeks from now. We’re taking odds that it will be canceled because of the pressure on local hospitals. It was a procedure that she didn’t bother scheduling in 2020, and by the time she scheduled it in 2021 there was a long wait.

    So, in terms of personal impacts, Omicron is not a dud, and so far it’s not a disaster on the scale of being intubated or dead. I am concerned that the hospitalization/death wave is going to hit production centers in the red states a bit hard in the next few weeks. I am very grateful to see that vaccination rates in the meatpacking industry are above 90%–in spite of people like Ron DeSantis, Kristi Noem, Alex Berenson, etc….

    1. pgl

      Glad you and your wife are doing better. I have not eaten out in almost two years. The good news is that there is plenty of beer, wine, and my favorite groceries. One dear friend even bought me a Grub Hub gift card. Hope you treat your lovely wife to a really nice dinner out soon.

    2. Anonymous

      david s

      your vax failed you got the bug.

      i do the zelenko protocol and it has not failed, and i get out.

      unless you have a serious health condition your experience with omicron is ‘average’.

      i commend your compliance

      1. rjs

        Anonymous @1:45 pm i was curious about the zelenko protocol and find that Google has censored many of the documents

  12. Anonymous

    Professor Chinn

    i would have shown the cdc excess death charts….

    scary enough for me, and the data is not good until 6-8 weeks after the dates.

  13. ltr


    January 16, 2022

    Chinese mainland reports 119 new COVID-19 cases

    The Chinese mainland recorded 119 confirmed COVID-19 cases on Saturday, with 65 linked to local transmissions and 54 from overseas, data from the National Health Commission showed on Sunday.

    A total of 52 new asymptomatic cases were also recorded, and 753 asymptomatic patients remain under medical observation.

    Confirmed cases on the Chinese mainland now total 104,864, with the death toll remaining unchanged at 4,636 since January last year.

    Chinese mainland new locally transmitted cases


    Chinese mainland new imported cases


    Chinese mainland new asymptomatic cases


  14. Steven Kopits

    Anonymous writes: “And it’s really not unusual to have very wide CIs for future price. I’ve been following the STEO for years. Really, it’s normal. And omicron is a dud. All the data’s coming in mild, mild, mild. But in any case, you can hedge the future price if you need to (many companies don’t, have sufficient liquidity to weather the storm).”

    It’s not entirely clear that omicron is in fact a dud. It certainly has not had the deep impact of covid now two years ago, but many of the relevant economic indicators are down over the last month or so. Omicron is affecting airline travel and deterring people from going back to offices, and appears to be taking a dent out of the restaurant business. But it’s fair to say that it has not closed down the economy to date, by and large.

    Omicron is typically mild and mortality is low, particularly if one is vaccinated. However, given that it is extremely contagious and cases are running at record highs, daily deaths are running near 1800, high by the metrics we have used for the pandemic. So, on an individual basis, one could say that omicron is, on average ‘mild’. On a societal basis, the numbers would be better characterized as severe in terms of hospitalizations and death.


    1. pgl

      I appreciate anything from Bill McBride. His last chart came with this:

      ‘This graph shows how much MTA traffic has recovered in each borough (Graph starts at first week in January 2020 and 100 = 2019 average). Manhattan is at about 27% of normal (impacted by holidays too).’

      A lot of people moved to Manhattan when the landlords started giving deep discounts from the 2019 rents. It turns out rents in 2022 are now higher than they were in 2019 – sometimes considerably. I bet a lot of people will be moving to Brooklyn and use the MTA even more. After all – Manhattan is ruled by the landlords. Always has been – always will be.

      1. Econned

        I’ve decided to correct your comment…
        “After all – Manhattan is ruled by supply and demand. Always has been – always will be. Just like anywhere else in the world but oh sh*t I’m ignoring that the city has rent control and rent stabilization in many buildings. Geez I didn’t think through this comment at all. I’m a total clown. Always have been – always will be.”

    2. Anonymous

      excess deaths in usa remain troubling….

      might be observing collateral damage from biden actions.

      1. Barkley Rosser

        “biden actions”? He has made every effort to convince people to get vaxxed and to make vaccines available. He can be criticized for not having had more test kits available, but while you seem to be ignoring it, vaxxing really does seem to substantially reduce getting hospitalized and worse for omicron, with those hospitalizations the source of most of the collateral damage on non-Covid sick people. So what “biden actions” have led all these immoral idiots not to get vaxxed? Please, do tell us.

    1. pgl

      Anything from MLK is normally welcomed but I really hate to see his name dragged into any conversation by a troll like you. Now go watch the I Have a Dream Speech without interruption.

  15. Econned

    Menzie STILL hasn’t asked “Anonymous” what they meant but the only thing the Menzie fanboys are worried about is some commenter named “Econned” making their deity look bad. Booohooo

    1. pgl

      You have the ego of Donald Trump and your IQ is probably on par with his. I generally excuse smart people with big egos because at least they are smart. And dumb people with humility are also decent people. But big egos with no brains has a special place in hell – which of course is where you reside.

    2. Barkley Rosser


      Actually, Anonymous has now sort of commented on this matter, although he did not provide a precisely clearcut definition.

      Hey, that is what you are here for, Econned. You can do something useful for once, maybe. Since you are so worked up with egg falling off your face, how about you provide us with The Answer. Maybe you can go to a dictionary and find one. Why I shall not even mock you if you use your fave, the Cambridge Dictionary. I am sure it will resolve this matter, so you can STFU and stop hounding Menzie and Anonymous and the rest of this with this silly demand of yours.

      1. Econned

        The old fool is back with worthless commentary.
        Anonymous has “sort of”… okay but they didn’t.
        “provide us with The Answer” (let’s ignore the senility- and Trump-like random capitalization)… it’s not my comment so why would I provide an answer???
        “mock you if you use your fave, the Cambridge Dictionary”… your ego (admitted In another post) and application of logic is so pathetic that you think it’s funny to question a respected dictionary. I’m awaiting lexicographer to be added to your CV. Right beside Econbrowser.com most senile commenter.
        “ so you can STFU and stop hounding Menzie and Anonymous and the rest of this with this silly demand of yours”… no. The silly demand was actually why this who silly post (and now two) was created by Menzie. It’s an absolute clown show. First, Menzie never asked the question then Menzie makes a post to ‘question’ the meaning. Then Menzie makes another post. And now the MenzieFanBoys are bent out of shape because I’m only bringing up the obvious.

        You’re literally an old fool. It is sad… but it is quite entertaining.

        1. Barkley Rosser


          Oh hilarious. You are asked to provide an answer to the question you have been demanding that Menzie ask Anonymous. But, of course, you do not do so, totally typical of your entire performance here.

          I mocked the Cambridge Dictionary because (due to a single two letter word) it provided a definition out of line with those provided by other dictionaries, including the most respected one of them all, the Oxford dictionary, which is also out of line with the understanding of most people here as well. Merriam-Webster is also more respected than the Cambridge one, but in any case, you did not provide us with any definition from any dictionary, respected or not.

          So, I am in one of my offices where I do not have my copy of the OED, which is at home. But in this office I do happen to have Webster’s Ninth Collegiate one. It provides two sets of definitions.

          The first set is 1. clothing, 2. personal belonging 3. failure (the movie proved a box-office dud), 4. a bomb or missile that fails to explode.

          The second set is just one: dating from 1903 supposedly: of little or no worth, valueless.

          There, I did your work for you, since you are so unwilling to do something asked of you that you have been demanding Menzie ask Anonymous to provide for us, although, I grant, you did not ask Menzie to ask him for a dictionary definition, just what he meant by it (which now seems to have indeed focused mostly on the impact on the oil market).

          1. Econned

            You can’t be this stupid. There’s no way. Be honest that you do see the issue but merely enjoy the mindless banter. Be honest with yourself and those who are laughing at your senility.
            Seriously, why on earth do you think I give a literal f*ck what you have asked of me? I couldn’t care less about anything you request of me. Whenever you do so I ALWAYS will ignore. You aren’t on my radar other than to show how ridiculous your lack of logic and/or how pathetic your honesty is.

            I only “demanded” Menzie to do something that would’ve prevented his stupid attack-post. Why on earth you think I should provided something and that Menzie shouldn’t have asked someone what they meant BEFORE creating multiple posts to ‘ponder’ what they meant is unexplainable. Menzie created the posts not to understand ‘Anonymous’ (because he could’ve simply replied “what do you mean”) but to sh*t post on one of his guests that he does not like. It’s a trend. I see it. You see it. We all se it.
            You. Are. An. Idiot.

          2. Barkley Rosser


            Oh, this is a waste of time, but I doubt a single person reading this agrees with anything you have written in this last comment, and aside from you I doubt anybody is laughing at what I said.

            Just to see: anybody out there laughing along with Econned, please let us know. If nobody answers this request, then you should assume you are the only one laughing, all by yourself yet again.

            Even now you are completely out of it in terms of how you approached this whole thing. You assume that Menzie was engaging in a “stupid attack.” It was neither stupid and it was not an attack. And he did not need to get an answer out of Anonymous to make his post.

            As was explained by me in my first comment on this thread after you made YOUR stupid attack on Menzie highllighted by your stupid demand, he took this vague comment by Anonymous and considered several possible answers to what “dud” meant and then investigated data to see what things looked like and then reported them here. He showed that indeed there were noiceable impacts on both public health and economics, but left it in the air as to whether or not all this amounted to a “dud” precisely because, as I pointed out in another long comment, the term is vague, so it is essentially arbitrary whether or not any particular outcome is or is not a dud. There are no definite criteria, and it did not and does not seem that Anonymous had any in mind.

            And Menzie simply presented the data. There is zero “attack” of any sort there, nothing. You are the idiot seeing something absolutely not there. And this nothing triggered you to make this utterly ridiculous demand, not to mention the long series of personal insults against all sorts of people here.

            Here is the bottom line, aside from the fact that you are lying about not caring what I have to say bcause like usual you have to keep coming back with another ever more nasty personalistic attack reply, not a single person on this long thread has supported you for one second, not even Anonymous, the person you were supposedly protecting and defending. You are all alone in your utterly inappropriate trollish irrelevance.

          3. Barkley Rosser

            Oh, and this will be it for me on this whole thread. So, as you always like to have it, Econned, you can have the final trollish slam nobody will take seriously.

          4. Econned

            Oh ffs, yet another Barkley Rosser sighting to pronounce it’s his last comment. But no one cares. Hilarious. Senile old man cant see the idiocy in regularly replying to my comments and then proclaiming my comments are ones that “nobody will take seriously”. Idiot. Please give us an update when you stop your senile rants altogether.

  16. ltr


    December 22, 2021

    Defense spending was 58.3% of federal government consumption and investment in July through September 2021. *

    $910.9 / $1,562.0 = 58.3%

    Defense spending was 22.3% of all government consumption and investment in July through September 2021.

    $910.9 / $4,084.9 = 22.3%

    Defense spending was 3.9% of GDP in July through September 2021.

    $910.9 / $23,202.3 = 3.9%

  17. joseph

    Bruce Hall: “It’s time for the government and medical establishment to quit hedging and come right out and say, “COVID is the new flu.”

    It was just about 2 years ago that Bruce Hall was claiming that Covid was no more deadly than seasonal flu. At least he has been consistent.

  18. ltr


    January 17, 2021

    China’s GDP grows at 8.1% in 2021, the fastest in nearly a decade
    By Li Xuanmin

    China’s GDP has expanded at 8.1 percent in 2021, growing the fastest in nearly a decade and landing well above the government’s annual target of achieving a growth rate above 6 percent.

    The robust expansion, which beats the market expectation and eclipses most of other major economies in two-year terms, spells out a steady economic recovery path – building upon the country’s zero-tolerance epidemic strategy – that Beijing has been unswervingly staging on despite Western slandering and headwinds throughout the year, which ranged from sporadic coronavirus outbreaks, woes in the property sector, bulk commodity price hikes to a power crunch.

    The country’s total GDP in 2021 reached 114.37 trillion yuan ($18 trillion), according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Monday.

    https://www.globaltimes.cn/Portals/0/attachment/2022/2022-01-17/262a15da-4846-4b39-afac-e67bd8262ecc.jpeg ….

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