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Employment booms and busts, in a single chart

9 Sep

Employment Booms and busts, in a single chart.



Source: BLS, Eurostat, own calculations

With some surprises:

  • USA and Eurozone overall labor market performances are not that different – so far. You would not have guessed, France is actually looking better on this chart than US as a whole. Italy is also better than what we would have guessed
  • Nevada and Spain both had property booms, but the former dealt with the bust better (see previous blog-post).
  • North Dakota and Texas employment have been boosted by the energy boom recently
  • Portugal missed out on the pre-crisis boom, but still managed to participate in the bust, hinting at some serious structural issues

Europe’s Great Depression: a tale of (at least) two economies

5 Sep

The European periphery is replaying the Great Depression in slow motion. This means that eventually the Euro may fall apart, despite the recent loosening by the ECB. […]

Three reasons why oil prices are falling

13 Aug

Or rather two: supply and demand. This is why oil prices are coming down, despite all the turbulence in the Middle East and the Ukraine-Russia conflict. […]

The Meaning of Life: 42 (degree north?) – Life expectancy in EU regions

8 Aug

The economic crisis may have dented the increase in life expectancy a bit, but it is still the crisis-ridden Mediterranean regions of the EU that fare the best… […]

Borders they are a-changin’

1 Jul

It’s the season to redraw maps. […]

How will the “Age of Oil” end?

2 Apr

With a whimper, not a bang. But the beginning of the end may not be that far away…


The political venture capitalists of Ukraine

28 Feb

Imagine that you are a political entrepreneur in a poor country with a population that is internally divided and has a high discount rate (is very short-sighted). What is your optimal strategy? We deliberately did not say “politician”, because that may give the wrong idea. Serving the country and all that shit. We are not talking about Nelson Mandelas here. Think rather “Prince” – not the artist formerly called, but as in Machiavelli. Or think of Ukraine. […]

Why Russians may soon travel visa-free to the USA

12 Feb

In today’s world, anyone can easily go online and get a US, Australia or New Zealand ETA without having ever to leave the comfort of their home. But what if there was a way to travel visa-free? What would then determine whether you can travel visa-free to rich countries? It seems it is mainly economics.


Will China become a democracy in a decade?

7 Jan

China is entering a crucial period: in 2014, its per capita GDP will surpass $10,000. Historic episodes show that autocracies reaching this income level became much more democratic over the next decade.     […]

8 wild predictions for 2014

20 Dec

Starring: the Pope, Dennis Rodman, Kim Jong Un, the billionaire guru of Tesla and a lone Japanese terrorist. We also take a look back at how the predictions we made a year ago have fared.