Business Stefan Karlsson

  • Bank of England adopts unemployment target

    The Bank of England has practically abandoned its target of moving inflation down to 2 percent, saying it won't consider raising interest rates until unemployment falls below 7 percent, Karlsson writes. The move isn't likely to change much policy, but it is an explicit reminder that inflation rates have been above 3 percent since 2005.

  • Japanese bond yields inch up. Are 'Abenomics' to blame?

    Japanese bond yields have started to move up again, rising above the pre-'Abenomics' level to 0.91 percent, Karlsson writes, something that worries many Japanese officials. Private demand has collapsed as investors have increasingly started to believe that the Bank of Japan through its purchases will actually achieve its new stated inflation target of 2 percent, a slump in demand that some have called a "bond buyer's strike."

  • US sees GDP go up, but it isn't any richer

    Last week's GDP report showed that the US' first quarter GDP was 3.5 percent higher than previously reported. Still, America is not any richer, Karlsson says.

  • Europe: Slowly pulling out of crisis?

    Although experts predicted that European countries would not be able to eliminate their deficits while Germany kept up its surplus, Karlsson notes that exactly that has happened: several countries, including Spain, Portugal, and Italy, are all back to reporting budget surpluses.

  • The farm bill survived. Who supports it?

    Although farmers only make up a tiny percentage of the US population, the farm bill has survived politics in part because of Americans' attitudes toward food producers, Karlsson says.

January 29, 2015

Photos of the day 01/29

Snow falls on a flock of flamingos at a wildlife zoo in Hefei, Anhui province, China, Thursday.

More Stefan Karlsson
  • Germany's declining population gets sudden immigration boost

    Immigration to low unemployment Germany surged to 369,000 last year, with the influx from southern European nations on the rise. 

  • Do high stock prices mean economic inequality?

    Any change in stock prices isn't intrinsically good or bad for everyone, Karlsson writes. Higher stock prices tend to be good for those who hold stocks, which typically benefits the wealthiest 'one percent.'

  • Jobs report: why the economy isn't as strong as you think

    Friday's jobs report shows the US economy added 165,000 jobs in April. There is no doubt that the US economy is recovering, Karlsson writes, but the jobs report confirms that the pace of economic recovery remains very slow.

  • How art will raise GDP by 3 percent

    This summer, the US will start to include intellectual property as part of capital expenditure, rather than as input cost. The relevance of this is that it will raise GDP (likely by about 3%) as input costs are subtracted from GDP while capital investment is included, Karlsson writes.

  • David Stockman NYT piece rankles liberal pundits

    David Stockman has really upset leading liberal pundits through an article he published in the New York Times, Karlsson writes. A breakdown of responses to the David Stockman piece.

  • Euro countries take deficit limits with grain of salt

    When governments pledge to meet certain deficit limits, it is worth nothing if the people who enforce the rules are the politicians themselves, Karlsson writes.

  • Cyprus is running out of options

    Losses for depositors in Cyprus seem almost inevitable, Karlsson writes. The only remaining possible solution would be if Russia, out of a desire to bail out its oligarchs, steps in with money for Cyprus.

  • Cyprus tax opponents get an unlikely ally: Vladimir Putin

    Cyprus tax opponents got a less-than-desirable endorsement from Vladimir Putin, patron of the oligarchs, Karlsson writes. The last thing opponents of the Cyprus tax needs is anything that creates the perception that opposition to the tax is based on a desire to protect the oligarchs, he adds.

  • Will Latvia join the Euro?

    Latvia remains determined to join the Euro in 2014, Karlsson writes, despite some countries aiming to exit the Euro.

  • US savings rate falls to housing bubble lows

    The US savings rate fell from 6.4 percent to 2.4 percent in January, and it will take a few months to see if it recovers to normal levels.