All posts by R.T. Young

R.T. Young, Ph.D. Business Economics R.T. is a business economist and angel investor. R.T. spends his days doing advanced statistical analysis and writing for businesses and elected officials across the United States, Europe and Asia. In his off-time, R.T. enjoys basketball, football, baseball and most any other sport. R.T. holds a Ph.D. in business economics and a bachelor’s degree in physics.

Fed Policy and its Effect on MSAs

R.T. Young

R.T. Young, Ph.D. Business Economics

The Federal Reserve (the “Fed”) is rife with criticism of its policy missteps.  From the “inflation fighter” Paul Volker in the late 70s and early 80s to the “kept interest rates too low for too long” Alan Greenspan, many Fed observers see the mistakes of the U.S. central bank as an indication that the Fed is too limited in foresight to provide reliable policy guidance.

Presuming Fed managers actually do lack much foresight, as the argument goes, then why allow the Fed’s “money bureaucrats” to manipulate financial asset prices?

Among the effects of manipulated financial prices, observers of the Fed point to the distributional effects of the institution’s policies.

What’s implied by distributional effects?

In a nutshell, Fed policy hurts some in order to benefit others.

Of the many distributional effects, one of the most commonly mentioned is the benefits to owners of stocks versus the reduced income to holders of bonds and other interest-bearing securities.

This article looks at what interest income has done by state since the Fed began lowering interest rates in August 2007.

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What Has the Minimum Wage Done Across Time, and What Does it Have to do With Employment?

R.T. Young

R.T. Young, Ph.D. Business Economics

With minimum wage laws becoming more of a topic in 2013 (and in 2014 as well), here is a review of what the minimum wage has been across states throughout the years since 1938.

First, some background. The minimum wage was first introduced in the United States at the federal level in 1938 at $0.25 per hour. Since then, the minimum wage has increased 2,800 percent to $7.25 per hour. Interestingly, the 2,800 percent growth rate comes out to a 4.6 percent average annual growth rate, or about one percent faster than average wages have grown over the same period.

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Venture Capital: Where Will the Money Move to Next and Where Has It Been?

R.T. Young

R.T. Young, Ph.D. Business Economics

Venture capital is a world of very risky investments. In a nutshell, the venture capital world consists of a very few well-connected financial investors looking to invest in early- to late-stage startup companies and small businesses needing cash. The hope — for both the venture capitalist and the entrepreneur — is that the given startup will succeed in achieving often amazing growth rates. If the company succeeds, both the entrepreneur and the early-stage investors, which in most cases includes venture capitalists, usually make a ton of money.

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Unemployment Across Time and Space: Will the State Differences Stay Around Forever?

R.T. Young

R.T. Young, Ph.D. Business Economics

It is an often-heard discussion point: why do states such as California or New York have such high unemployment rates?

Observers have pointed to various causes, including high tax rates, generous welfare programs and high regulation. How big of an effect these factors have on state unemployment rates is not the point of discussion here. Rather, the discussion point is whether high unemployment rate states today will be low unemployment rate states five years from now (i.e., is there a reversion to the mean?).

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What matters more when it comes to moving between states: weather or taxes?

R.T. Young

R.T. Young, Ph.D. Business Economics

Have you ever heard someone say, “So and so is moving to Florida for the beautiful weather,” or “So and so wants to live in California so he can go to the beach every day.”?

These statements indicate that some individuals move because of the weather.

Of course, the weather isn’t the only reason individuals might move to Florida or California.

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Where Have People Gotten Richer and Where Have People Gotten Poorer?

R.T. Young

R.T. Young, Ph.D. Business Economics

One of the many things America does well is create wealth.  Since 1960, the total wealth created in the U.S. has grown from around $2 trillion to around $75 trillion today.

The topic here is relatively straightforward: over the past 50 years, where have people gotten richer quicker than other areas, and how has that changed over time?

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Are Individuals Moving to States With Little to No Income Tax?

R.T. Young

R.T. Young, Ph.D. Business Economics

Are individuals moving from higher tax states to lower tax states?

The hotly-debated issue has two components.

First, how big is the movement of individuals between states? Is the shift something worth worrying about?

Second, could taxes be a possible explanation for the movement of individuals from one state to another? In particular, is income tax a major culprit?

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