Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

2 research assistantships at the Nevin economic research institute (NERI)

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Thursday, February 4th, 2016

The Nevin Economic Research Institute is recruiting two Research Assistants for its offices in Dublin and Belfast. The posts will provide the successful applicant with an opportunity to contribute to a dynamic research programme covering a range of economic themes. The work will include analysis of data and preparation of working papers and reports as well as presentations at conferences and seminars.

The candidates must have completed or is expected to complete, in 2016, a post-graduate degree in a discipline relevant to the work of the NERI. Strong quantitative skills are essential.

Applications including full CV should be submitted by email to recruit@NERInstitute.net

Closing date for receipt of applications is 5pm FRIDAY 19TH FEBRUARY 2016.

Full details and job description are available at www.NERInstitute.net/recruitment

 

A Brief Reminder: Macroprudential Conference this Friday, January 29th

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Monday, January 25th, 2016

Details of the macroprudential bank regulation conference this Friday are here. The conference begins at 10 am with an interactive poster session and a chance to meet other attendees.

Upsetting the applecart

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Friday, January 22nd, 2016

The Apple story rumbles on meaning that almost anyone saying the X multiplied by .125 equals Y can make front-page news (provided Y is a big number of course).  In very rough terms there are three possible outcomes to the investigation:

  1. No adverse finding is made,
  2. The 1991 advance pricing agreement, as revised in 2007, is found to be ‘wrong’ and different parameters are used to allocate profit to Apple’s operations in Ireland, or
  3. Some portion, or all, of Apple’s profits (outside of the Americas) are deemed to be taxable in Ireland.

(more…)

Tom Kettle, 1880 – 1916

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Sunday, January 17th, 2016

In 1909 Tom Kettle was appointed the first Professor of the National Economics of Ireland at University College, Dublin.
He was in Belgium running arms for the National Volunteers when the war broke out in 1914. What he perceived as the barbaric Prussian assault on European civilization prompted him to apply for a commission with the Royal Dublin Fusiliers, which he was awarded in 1916.
He was killed in action at Ginchy (Picardy) during the Battle of the Somme on 9th September 1916.
In the spring of 2006 the late Gerry Barry, the RTÉ broadcaster, organized a public meeting (in the former House of Lords chamber at College Green) to mark the 90th anniversary of Kettle’s death. He asked me to contribute a piece on Kettle’s work as an economist.
Ten years on, and a century after Kettle’s death, I thought readers might be interested in the brief essay I wrote for the occasion.

More details of his life are available in the excellent Wikipedia article on him:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Kettle.

Conference on macroprudential regulation

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Wednesday, January 13th, 2016

A conference with the theme Macroprudential regulation: policy dynamics and limitations will be held on Friday January 29th, 2016, at the Institute of Banking, North Wall Quay, Dublin, organized by the Financial Mathematics and Computation Cluster, the Department of Economics, Finance & Accounting at Maynooth University and the UCD School of Business at University College Dublin. The conference schedule appears below.

There are no attendance fees for the conference, but attendees need to register. We are grateful to the Science Foundation of Ireland and the Irish Institute of Banking for their generous support of this conference. The Financial Mathematics Computation Cluster is a collaboration between University College Dublin, Maynooth University, Dublin City University and industry partners, with support from the Science Foundation of Ireland.

10:00 – 10:30  Registration and poster session

10:30 – 10:35  Welcome and introduction

Theme 1: Measuring Macroprudential Policy Needs and Policy Effectiveness

10:35 – 10:55  Marcelo Fernandes (Queen Mary University), “Response to supervisory stress tests”

10:55 – 11:15  John Fell (European Central Bank), “Credit flow restrictions: Implementation and coordination issues”

11:15 – 11:25  Coffee break

11:25– 11:45  Scott Frame (US Federal Reserve), “The failure of supervisory stress testing: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and OFHEO”

11:45 – 12:05  Eugenio Cerruti (International Monetary Fund), “The Use and effectiveness of macroprudential policies: New evidence”

12:05 – 12:25  Panel discussion

12:25 – 13:25  Buffet lunch and poster session

Theme 2: Housing Markets and Macroprudential Policy

13:25 – 13:45  Gabriel Brunneau (Bank of Canada), “Housing market dynamics and macroprudential policy”

13:45 – 14:05  Kieran McQuinn (Economic and Social Research Institute), “Macroprudential policy in a recovering market: Too much too soon”

14:05 – 14:15  Coffee break

14:15 – 14:35  Christoph Basten (Swiss Financial Supervisory Authority), “Countercyclical capital buffers in Switzerland”

14:35 – 14:55  Angus Foulis (Bank of England), “The role of credit in the US housing boom: Insights from tiered housing data”

14:55 – 15:15  Panel discussion

15:15 – 15:20  Closing remarks

Philip Lane interview

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Friday, January 8th, 2016

Today’s Irish Times carries a wide-ranging interview with Central Bank of Ireland governor Philip Lane here.

Lecturer, Below the Bar, Economics (Natural Resource Economics and Policy)

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Friday, December 18th, 2015

The J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway wishes to appoint a person to the post of Lecturer Below the Bar, Economics (Natural Resource Economics and Policy), Contract Type B. The position will commence on 1 September 2016. Candidates should normally hold a PhD in economics or equivalent and demonstrate a record of publishing in peer reviewed journals, the capacity to secure research funding, and the ability to teach and supervise at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Whilst not limited to these areas, we particularly encourage applications from those with interests in agriculture and agri-food, environmental economics, marine economics, and sustainable energy and development.

The J.E. Cairnes School is home to the Whitaker Institute. The successful candidate will contribute to already successful research clusters within the Whitaker Institute, notably the Socioeconomic Marine Research Unit (SEMRU) and the Centre for Environment, Sustainability and Development (CEDS). Through these clusters, the School already has strong links with Teagasc, the Marine Institute, and the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. The successful candidate will be expected to strengthen these relationships and enhance the School’s existing comparative advantage in the area of economic evaluation. The School is already a leader in the economics of evaluation in both the natural resource/environment and health/ageing areas.

Closing date for receipt of applications is 17:00 (GMT) on Thursday, 21st January 2016.  It will not be possible to consider applications received after the closing date.

For more information and Application Form please see website:  http://www.nuigalway.ie/about-us/jobs/ Applications should be submitted online.

Latest edition of Economic and Social Review now available online

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Friday, December 18th, 2015

Here is the list of contents of the latest edition of the Economic and Social Review:

Vol 46, No 4, Winter (2015)

Table of Contents

Articles

The Demand for League of Ireland Football
Barry Reilly 485–509

The Relative Age Effect and Under-21 Irish Association Football: A
Natural Experiment and Policy Recommendations, David Butler, Robert
Butler  511–519

Housing Bubbles and Monetary Policy: A Reassessment
Graeme O’Meara 521–565

To Weight or Not To Weight? A Statistical Analysis of How Weights
Affect the Reliability of the Quarterly National Household Survey for
Immigration Research in Ireland
Nancy Duong Nguyen, Patrick Murphy 567–603

Book Review

EOIN O’LEARY, Irish Economic Development: High-Performing EU State or
Serial Underachiever. London: Routledge; 232 pages; March 2015
Frank Barry  605-611.

All papers can be accessed at www.esr.ie

The Euro Debate and the Abuse of Language

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Monday, November 30th, 2015

Defenders of the Eurozone’s initial design, subsequent management and purported reform invariably refer to the system as a ‘monetary union’. So do academic commentators including the authors of the recent Vox piece on the origins of the crisis. Whether intended or unconscious, this is an abuse of language.

Monetary unions do not experience selective bank closures, the re-introduction of exchange controls or the numerous other manifestations of financial fragmentation that have occurred before and after the Eurozone ‘reforms’. Germany is a monetary union. In 1974 the Herstatt Bank collapsed in Cologne and several banks based in Dusseldorf went down in the recent crisis. Both cities are in Nordrhein Westfalen, but there was no closure of bank branches in the state nor were exchange controls introduced by the state authorities on either occasion. Interest rates in Nordrhein Westfalen did not detach from rates elsewhere in Germany nor did bank deposits flee the state.

When the Continental Illinois Bank went under in 1984, at the time the largest-ever US bank failure, the state of Illinois was not expected to handle the fall-out. In the recent crisis the state of Delaware, home to lehmans, and the state of North Carolina, home to Wachovia, were similarly spared. The USA is also a monetary union and there is federal responsibility for bank supervision, bank resolution and the protection of bank creditors.

The Eurozone in contrast was established in 1999 as no more than a common currency area, with a ‘central bank’ responsible only for monetary policy in the aggregate, in pursuit of an inflation target. To describe it as a ‘monetary union’ is to deny that there is any distinction between a common currency area and a monetary union. If the Eurozone really was a monetary union in 2008 the history of the crisis would have been very different.

Language matters. In his 1946 essay (Politics and the English Language) George Orwell put it like this:

‘The great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one’s real and one’s declared aims, one turns as it were instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish spurting out ink. In our age there is no such thing as “keeping out of politics.” All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred, and schizophrenia. When the general atmosphere is bad, language must suffer.’

The danger is that relentless description of the Eurozone as a monetary union deflects attention from the awkward truth that it is not, and from the political unwillingness to make it so.

It has finally happened

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Sunday, November 29th, 2015

It was way back in April 2009 that Barry Eichengreen and I first compared the world industrial output collapses of 1929 and 2008. The situation looked pretty alarming at that stage, but it turned out that we were a good leading indicator of recovery: the world economy started turning around almost immediately afterwards, thanks to a coordinated reflationary macroeconomic policy response. Then 2010 happened, reflation turned to austerity in Europe, and the global recovery slowed, to the point where at times it seemed to be petering out almost altogether.

And in August of this year, the inevitable happened: measured in terms of industrial output, our current recovery was overtaken by that of the interwar period. Pretty dismal stuff. Let’s hope that we can at least avoid the famous 1937-38 double dip, visible at the end of the interwar series.

 

 

Review of budget oversight by parliament: Ireland

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Sunday, November 15th, 2015

Worth a read by readers of this blog (.pdf).

Key lessons:

Budget oversight by the Irish parliamentary chambers is under-developed by international standards.

Reforms mooted include:

  • Ex ante parliamentary input to medium-term fiscal planning;
  • Ex ante parliamentary input on budget priorities;
  • Early publication of full budgetary information and legislative proposals;
  • Timely consideration of the Estimates of Expenditure;
  • Performance Dialogue with joint committees in early year;
  • Re-introduce “Pre-Budget Estimates” showing “no policy change” expenditure baselines;
  • Establish an Irish Parliamentary Budget Office to support parliamentary engagement and budget scrutiny;
  • Continuing Professional Development of parliamentarians and officials;
  • “Performance hearings” with joint committees in early part of the year (February-March);
  • Power for joint committees to recommend changes to performance information;
  • Systematic review of existing performance metrics;
  • Estimates Performance Reports;
  • Promotion of IrelandStat as an authoritative portal for public performance;
  • Linkages to higher level strategies and articulation of a “National Performance Framework”;
  • Establishment of a “National Performance Quality Panel”;
  • Role for Irish Parliamentary Budget Office in supporting performance scrutiny;
  • Selective Audit of Performance Information by the Office of the Comptroller & Auditor General in reports to the Public Accounts Committee and other committees.

Well worth going through this, it is a wealth of constructive suggestions.

ECONTALKS–UCC School of Economics Public Talks series 2015-16

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Monday, November 9th, 2015

Second event: International and regional competitiveness of the Irish economy

  • Date and Venue: Wed 11th Nov 2015 7.00-8.30pm
  • Venue: West Wing 5 (Main quad)
  • Speakers: Eleanor Doyle and Justin Doran

The School of Economics, UCC is launching a series of public talks in 2015-16. The talks are aimed at the general public. They are non-technical (and non-political), informative, at times provocative and even entertaining. The talks showcase the range of research and expertise in the School of Economics, UCC, and engage the public on issues that are both topical and of widespread interest. In our first year, we highlight issues around the economics of sustainability; from the sustainability of Irish public finances and the economic recovery, to public policy issues in the areas of health insurance, sport, science and innovation, education and climate change.

The talks are free and open to all.  More details here.

Suggested hashtag for these events: #ECONTALKSUCC

A recording of the first event held just before Budget 2016 with contributions from Seamus Coffey and Eoin O’Leary is available here.

8th Annual Economics and Psychology Conference ESRI Dublin

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Wednesday, October 28th, 2015
8th Annual Economics and Psychology Conference ESRI Dublin 

The eight annual one day conference on Economics and Psychology will be held on November 27th at the ESRI in Dublin. The purpose of these sessions is to develop the link between Economics, Psychology and cognate disciplines in Ireland. A special theme of these events is the implications of behavioural economics for public policy. Please sign up here to attend. There is no registration fee. Our keynote speakers are: Alan Sanfey, one of the world’s leading experts on fairness and social decision making; Stefan Hunt, who will speak about behavioural economics and financial regulation; and Pelle Hansen, who will discuss ongoing work on behavioural science and policy in Denmark.

At the last event in November 2014 we agreed to develop a broader network to meet more regularly to discuss work at the intersection of economics, psychology and policy. This has had three meet-ups so far and a fourth will take place on November 9th. Anyone interested in this area is welcome to attend. A website with more details and a mailing list to sign up to is available here. There are currently over 100 people signed up to the network and the events have been, at least in my view, very lively and interesting. There are several more planned for throughout 2016 and we welcome suggestions.

Programme 

830am to 9am: Registration

9.15am to 940am: Cathal Fitzgerald (DCU) “I Groupthink Therefore We Are: Detecting Behavioural Convergence in Leaders Before the Economic Crisis”.

9.40am to 1005am: Michael Daly (Stirling and UCD) “Childhood Self-Control and Smoking Throughout Life”.

1005am to 1030am: Victoria Taranu (Universiteit Hasselt ) “The implications of nudging in reducing residential energy demand and its potential for the EPC”.

1030am to 11am: Coffee

11am to 1125am: Leonhard Lades (Stirling) “Present bias and everyday self-control failures: A Day Reconstruction Study”.

1125am to 1150pm: David Comerford (Stirling). “The role of agency in preferences”.

1150pm to 1215pm: Irene Mosca and Cathal McCRory (TCD): “Personality and Wealth Accumulation Among Older Couples: Do Dispositional Characteristics Pay Dividends?”.

1215pm to 1pm: Alan Sanfey (Radbood). “Social motivations in decision-making: Insights from Decision Neuroscience”.

1pm to 2pm: LUNCH

2pm to 240pm: Pete Lunn (ESRI). “Pricelab: experiments for consumer policy”

240pm to 320pm: Stefan Hunt (FCA). “Applying behavioural insights to regulation: lessons from consumer financial protection”.

320pm to 350pm Coffee

350pm to 430pm: Pelle G Hansen  (Roskilde University). “Applying behavioural science in Denmark: progress and lessons”.

430 to 5pm Discussion

Debating Austerity: Professor Simon Wren-Lewis at the Royal Irish Academy

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Friday, October 23rd, 2015

The Royal Irish Academy Social Sciences Committee in association with the UCD College of Social  Sciences and Law will be holding a conference on the topic Debating Austerity on October 29-30.  The Keynote Lecture and conference will be held at the RIA building at 19 Dawson Street, Dublin 2.

The Keynote Lecture will be given by Professor Simon Wren-Lewis of Oxford University at 6pm, Thursday October 29 (lecture details below).  The lecture will be chaired by Patrick Honohan, Governor, Central Bank of Ireland.

This will be followed on Friday, October 30 by a full day of sessions debating the experience of austerity in Ireland from a variety of perspectives.

Further information on the conference and registration details are available here.   The admission price for the Keynote Lecture on Thursday evening is €5; admission to Friday’s conference is free.

Keynote Lecture: How to Avoid Austerity

Abstract:

Austerity may be defined as a large fiscal contraction that causes a substantial increase in unemployment. If the government has a budget deficit that is unsustainable, or a debt level that is too high, it is sometimes suggested that austerity is inevitable. For an economy with a flexible exchange rate and debt in its own currency, which includes the Eurozone as a whole, this is simply false. Fiscal contraction can always be delayed until monetary policy can offset the deflationary impact of any fiscal contraction. Unfortunately this is not true for a member of a currency union that requires a greater fiscal contraction than the union as a whole. Even in this case, however, a sharp and deep fiscal contraction will be an inefficient waste of resources. As the macroeconomic theory behind these propositions is simple and widely accepted, the interesting question about the current global austerity is why it has happened.

Simon Wren-Lewis is currently Professor of Economic Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government at Oxford University, having previously been a professor in the Economics Department at Oxford.   He is also an Emeritus Fellow of Merton College.   In September 2015 he was appointed to the British Labour Party’s Economic Advisory Committee.

Geary Institute Workshop on Well-Being and Economic Conditions

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Thursday, October 22nd, 2015

The Geary Institute is hosting a half-day workshop to look at changes in well-being in Ireland over the last 10 to 15 years. The specific aim is to consider a wide range of possible outcomes including physical and mental health as well as subjective well-being. Moreover we want to draw on a range of approaches from epidemiology, psychological medicine and the social sciences as well as different types of data. The event will be held in the UCD Geary Institute on Tuesday November 17th from 1130pm to 4pm. A light lunch would be provided.  This is is likely to be a full event so please RSVP to geary@ucd.ie to register attendance (there is no fee) and also let us know if you subsequently cannot make it.

Co-organisers: Kevin Denny (UCD) and Liam Delaney (Stirling University)

Programme:

1130pm to 1150pm: Registration

11.50pm – 1200pm: Introduction and Aims

1200pm – 1230pm: Brendan Walsh (UCD): “Reflections on Economic Conditions and Well-being in Ireland”.

1230pm – 1.00pm: Paul Corcoran (UCC) “Impact of Austerity and Recession on Suicide and Self-Harm in Ireland”.

1.00pm-130pm: Lunch

130pm – 2pm: Kevin Denny (UCD): “Self-reported health in good times and in bad: Ireland in the 21st century”.

2pm – 230pm: Eithne Sexton (TCD) – “Subjective wellbeing at older ages in Ireland 2009-2013: Predictors of change over time”.

230pm – 3pm: Cecily Kelleher (UCD): “Impact of the Economic Climate on Health Status during the first two decades of the 21st Century in the Republic of Ireland: Findings from the Lifeways Cross-Generation Cohort study of a Thousand Families”.

3pm – 330pm: Michael Hogan (NUIG):  “Engaging with Citizens in the Design of Well-being Measures and Policies:  Systems Thinking and the Public Participation Network”.

330 – 4pm: Discussion

Philip Lane named new Central Bank Governor

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Tuesday, October 20th, 2015

Many congratulations to Philip who has been named as the new Governor of the Central Bank.

I assume this means that his blogging activities will be curtailed, and so it seems appropriate that he be publicly thanked for setting up this blog, in December 2008. Whether it made a contribution to public debate during the crisis is for others to judge — I think it did. But it also gave a platform to many Irish academics who otherwise would not have had a public voice, by dramatically lowering the cost of engaging in public debate. It helped bring us out of our academic comfort zones and engage with issues outside our research specialisms. In my case blogging even led to a couple of serious research projects, using history to shed light on the present. Finally, the blog provided a model for other group blogs in Eurozone crisis countries.

So, many thanks Philip and best of luck in the new job.

Philip Lane Appointed Governor of the Central Bank

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Tuesday, October 20th, 2015

Congratulations to Philip, and good luck in his important new role.

http://www.irishtimes.com/business/economy/philip-lane-appointed-governor-of-the-central-bank-1.2398674

Virtual Issue on Financial Crisis: Free collection of articles from Economic Policy

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Tuesday, October 20th, 2015

Free until 31 December to celebrate 30 years of Economic Policy:

 

Virtual Issue: The Financial Crisis

We’ve pulled together a collection of articles reflecting on the range of analysis on the Global Financial and Eurozone crises appearing in Economic Policy over the last 5 years. This virtual issue focuses on one of the most acute contemporary challenges to economic policy and how the journal has contributed to our understanding of the European experience.

Cyprus: from boom to bail-in
Alexander Michaelides (2014) 29 (80): 639-689

The Greek debt restructuring: an autopsy
Jeromin Zettelmeyer, Christoph Trebesch, Mitu Gulati (2013) 28 (75): 513-563

External imbalances in the eurozone
Ruo Chen, Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, Thierry Tressel (2013) 28 (73): 101-142

The eurozone crisis: how banks and sovereigns came to be joined at the hip
Ashoka Mody, Damiano Sandri (2012) 27 (70): 199-230

From Great Depression to Great Credit Crisis: similarities, differences and lessons
Miguel Almunia, Agustín Bénétrix, Barry Eichengreen, Kevin H. O’Rourke, Gisela Rua (2010) 25 (62): 219-265

Lessons from a collapse of a financial system
Sigridur Benediktsdottir, Jon Danielsson, Gylfi Zoega (2011) 26 (66): 183-235

The great retrenchment: international capital flows during the global financial crisis
Gian-Maria Milesi-Ferretti, Cédric Tille (2011) 26 (66): 289-346

Recapitalization, credit and liquidity
Mike Mariathasan, Ouarda Merrouche (2012) 27 (72): 603-646

Systemic risk, sovereign yields and bank exposures in the euro crisis
Niccolò Battistini, Marco Pagano, Saverio Simonelli (2014) 29 (78): 203-251

Financial crises: lessons from history for today
Selin Sayek, Fatma Taskin (2014) 29 (79): 447-493

Banking crisis management in the EU: an early assessment
Jean Pisani-Ferry, André Sapir Econ Policy (2010) 25 (62): 341-373

This virtual issue is part of a broader celebration of Economic Policy’s 30th anniversary, which also includes the publication of Thirty Years of Economic Policy: Inspiration for Debate. Thirty Years of Economic Policy situates the Journal within a long view of its influence on economic-policy thinking, bringing together a selection of highly influential articles from the first 30 years of Economic Policy, which analyse some of the key global economic-policy challenges of our time within five broad areas: monetary and exchange rate policy; fiscal policy; European integration; unemployment and labour markets; and market regulation. Thirty Years of Economic Policy reflects on the major contribution that the Journal has made to economic-policy debate since its launch in 1985, and provides students, researchers and policy professionals a ‘reader’ of the progress we have made in understanding these key issues.

October 19, 1987: “Black Monday”

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Sunday, October 18th, 2015

Tomorrow is the anniversary of the “Black Monday” crash:  summary of that event here.

Economic impossibilities for our grandchildren?: Keynes Lecture by Kevin O’Rourke

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Friday, October 16th, 2015

Kevin’s recent Keynes Lecture at the British Academy can be viewed here.

Angus Deaton wins 2015 Economics Nobel Prize

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Monday, October 12th, 2015

A very good choice in my opinion.  Though in some ways a pity it was not on a joint ticket with Tony Atkinson.

Here is link to his personal web page   http://scholar.princeton.edu/deaton/home.

Deaton has written extensively on consumer demand systems, taxation, health, welfare, poverty, well-being, econometric methodology, the list is very long.

There is a good discussion of his contributions at  http://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2015/10/nobel-prize-winner-is-angus-deaton.html and http://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2015/10/deaton.html.

Note that Deaton is due to speak in Ireland soon, along with our own Cormac O Grada on the topic of “Modern Plagues: Lessons Learned from the Ebola Crisis”.

More details here  http://fungforum.princeton.edu/program/agenda.

Sports Sunday; DEW; Talking Point

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Sunday, October 11th, 2015

It seems that not everyone enjoys the massive media coverage allocated to the rugby and football events.  Lifted from the comments, Sarah Carey writes:

 

I think sports should be on at the end of the news for a minute, and Saturday or Sunday afternoons for all-Irelands and perhaps the semi’s. Instead it has (through marketing – its an economics thing) come to dominate the media to the point where it’s not something men take an interest in after work, but a constant mainstream time and space occupying event. It used to be sufficient to shout for your county during Championship season and your country on the rare occasion we won anything (Ole!) but now it’s CONSTANT and even women ;-) are expected to be able to converse about a wide variety of sports AS IF IT MATTERED. And as if the nobility attached to PLAYING sports is earned simply by watching it, on a telly, on Tuesday nights and Wednesday nights, and all weekend, and all the golf opens, and horse racing (I mean, if you’re not betting on a horse at Cheltenham WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU) and as for F1 PLEASE/ cars going around and around? and I’m sorry. Rugby is a good sport, but you know it’s not a widespread country sport. It’s a posh boy sport. And it’s getting very dangerous with them all going around built like tanks and no son of mine will play it.
Hockey, there’s a grand sport. Gentlemanly and understated and no fuss and grandiosity. And only the odd injury if you put your head in the wrong place.
As for cycling, with ye going around in packs on Sunday blocking up the roads in that ridiculous gear instead of lazing in bed. Or out golfing. What happened to golf? The men could do their bonding and blabbing in awful clothes out of sight of the rest of us.
And all of it, even GAA, which really is noble, all about the money money money.
I’m going to set up a radio station which guarantees NEVER to have sport on it.

Right, got that off my chest!

As for compelling viewing on Sunday afternoons, you really can’t beat Pride and Prejudice. Or a good Agatha Christie. Something soothing to the nerves.

Sarah will be recording the Talking Point show at the DEW on Friday: 1pm in the library room at the Hodson Bay and everyone welcome to pile in and watch. Colm McC, Karl and Lorcan Sirr on panel.

The DEW programme is available here.

Future Funding of Higher Education Conference: Presentations Now Available

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Monday, October 5th, 2015

A conference on the Future Funding of Higher Education in Ireland was held in Maynooth University on Wednesday last. It was a very good day, with excellent speakers and great interaction between the audience and the speakers.

The presentations have now been posted online, and are available here.

Bailed Out! in Dun Laoghaire

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Saturday, October 3rd, 2015

Just been to see Bailed Out!, the new play from Colin Murphy and Fishamble, which ends its run at the Pavilion in Dun Laoghaire on Sunday. It may go around the country later on.

Well worth a visit, and a break from the rugby.

Profile of Olivier Blanchard; More on IMF and Irish Bailout

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Friday, October 2nd, 2015

The Washington Post carries an extensive profile of Olivier Blanchard, now of PIIE after his period as IMF economic counsellor – here.

The section on the Irish bailout is interesting:

 

The one place European leaders were anxious for a bank rescue, however, was in Ireland, where by fall 2008 banks were already reeling from losses after the bursting of a giant real estate bubble. The Irish government had nationalized one big bank and bailed out several others, but the cost proved so high that two years later the government itself was on the verge of defaulting on its own debts and turned to the international community for help.

The IMF had convinced Irish officials that, as part of any rescue package, those who had lent money to the banks should be forced to share in the pain. But Jean-Claude Trichet, head of the European Central Bank and a key player in any rescue plan, was adamant that there be no “haircuts” for bank creditors.

Trichet’s motivation was not surprising. The biggest creditors of the bankrupt Irish banks were French and German banks that themselves could go under if forced to recognize such losses, requiring costly and unpopular bailouts from their own governments. He also feared that any debt restructuring, as it is politely called, might make it difficult and more expensive for other European banks to borrow. Trichet went so far as to threaten to cut all central-bank lending to Irish banks if their debts were restructured, the equivalent of a death sentence for the Irish banking system.

With no other options, Ireland agreed to guarantee all of its banks’ debts, paying for it with a $67 billion international loan package whose harsh terms would drive the Irish economy into a deep recession and saddle a generation of Irish taxpayers with the full cost of repayment.

Strauss-Kahn, desperate for the Fund to play a visible role in the crisis, agreed to go along with the terms of the bailout. In rationalizing its participation, the Fund was forced to issue what Blanchard and his colleagues knew were unrealistically optimistic predictions about the quick recovery of the Irish economy. It would not be the only time the Fund would buckle to political pressure from European governments that are among its largest shareholders.

“We were in a difficult position calling attention to the fact that the European banking system may have been insolvent,” Strauss-Kahn said in an interview from Morocco. “It was not our job to cause bank runs. Olivier’s intellectual authority on that matter was particularly helpful, if not totally successful.”

Garret FitzGerald Lecture and Autumn School

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Thursday, October 1st, 2015

UCD College of Social Sciences and Law will host the Garret FitzGerald Lecture and Autumn School on Monday 19th October, in the UCD Sutherland School of Law. The daytime School (from midday) will focus on the significance of the social sciences. The evening Lecture will be delivered by Professor Cass R Sunstein,Harvard Law School, on the theme ‘Is Behavioural Science Compatible with Democracy?’. More details and bookings here.

‘The Financial Crisis in Ireland and Government Revenues’

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Wednesday, September 30th, 2015

The Miriam Hederman O’Brien Prize on behalf of the Foundation for Fiscal Studies was awarded to Diarmaid Smyth and Rónán Hickey for this paper.

Economic and Social Review: Autumn 2015 Issue

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Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

Vol 46, No 3, Autumn (2015)

Table of Contents

Articles

Blowing the Bubble: The Global Funding of the Irish Credit Boom PDF
Mary M. Everett 339-365
Outsourcing Foreign Services and the Internet: Evidence from Firm Level Data PDF
Holger Görg, Aoife Hanley, Ingrid Ott 367-387
A Reduced-form Equation for the Unemployment Rate Estimated from a Panel of Nineteen OECD Countries PDF
Dimitris Hatzinikolaou, Konstantina Girtzimani, Christos Mousafiris 389-397
Are Classroom Internet Use and Academic Performance Higher after Government Broadband Subsidies to Primary Schools? PDF
Marie Hyland, Richard Layte, Seán Lyons, Selina McCoy, Mary Silles 399-428

Policy Section Articles

Wages and Ireland’s International Competitiveness PDF
Rory O’Farrell 429-458
A Needs and Resources Assessment of Fiscal Equalisation in the Irish Local Government System PDF
Gerard Turley, Darragh Flannery, Stephen McNena 459-484

 

IMF WEO/GFSR Analytical Chapters

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Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

The Autumn 2015 analytical chapters are:

WEO

Chapter 2. Where Are Commodity Exporters Headed? Output Growth in the Aftermath of the Commodity Boom

Chapter 3. Exchange Rates and Trade Flows: Disconnected?

GFSR

Chapter 2: Market Liquidity—Resilient or Fleeting?

Chapter 3: Corporate Leverage in Emerging Markets—A Concern?

 

 

Compositional shifts in the labour market

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Friday, September 25th, 2015

While this is specific to the UK, similar issues may arise in the analysis of the Irish labour market:  speech by Ben Broadbent here.