(DCvision2006)

Will AirBNB And Etsy Destroy The Economy, Or Save Us All?

Sites like AirBNB and Sidecar let people obtain services in a peer-to-peer way that was impossible before the Internet, but are those services disrupting or supplementing the industries they’re in? Is a traveler staying in a spare bedroom through AirBNB hurting a city by not paying hotel taxes, or is their longer stay just as beneficial to the city and its whole economy? [More]

(Spidra Webster)

Why Does Anyone Ever Buy Brand-Name Painkillers?

For everyday over-the-counter drugs like painkillers or allergy medicine, do you pick up the brand name, or a generic? Even if the inactive ingredients and binders are slightly different, the brand-name and store-brand meds that sit side-by-side on the shelf should have the same effects. One costs a lot less. So why does anyone buy name-brand over-the-counter drugs? [More]

The Closer Your Last Name Is To Z, The Faster You Buy

The Closer Your Last Name Is To Z, The Faster You Buy

A study finds that the closer your last name is to the end of the alphabet, the faster you make purchasing decisions. And yes, the behavior is ingrained in us based on how we all used to line up in school. [More]

Delta Auctions Off Flight Bumps To Lowest Bidders

Delta Auctions Off Flight Bumps To Lowest Bidders

A reader over at Marginal Revolution spotted Delta’s new system where when you check in at the kiosk it asks you to bid on what it would cost to get you to volunteer your seat. Below the entry box it says, “Delta accepts lower bids first.” Genius! [More]

Study: Higher Minimum Wage Doesn't Increase Unemployment

Study: Higher Minimum Wage Doesn't Increase Unemployment

A new study shows that increased minimum wage does not increase unemployment. [More]

Um, Just What The Heck Is Quantitative Easing And Why Are We Doing It?

Um, Just What The Heck Is Quantitative Easing And Why Are We Doing It?

There’s been a lot of talk over the last few days about “quantitative easing,” but if you’re wondering what it is and why it matters — you’re not alone. Long story short — it’s a way for the Fed to create money out of thin air. [More]

Fancy Math Says Book 8 Weeks In Advance For Cheapest Flights

Fancy Math Says Book 8 Weeks In Advance For Cheapest Flights

The cheapest time to get your airline tickets is 8 weeks in advance, says an economist who came up with a fancy formula, ∏A = gUG + min(k-g, (1-g)(1-r)), to figure it out. [More]

More Than 40 Experts Issue Call For More Government Stimulus And Tax Credits

More Than 40 Experts Issue Call For More Government Stimulus And Tax Credits

Online news site The Daily Beast is apparently tired of this whole “floundering economy” thing, so it got more than a dozen economists and historians to come together and issue a manifesto yesterday calling on the U.S. government to “reboot America.” By the end of the day, the number of experts supporting the manifesto increased to more than 40. They argue that the government has to help return lost purchasing power to the unemployed and must use tax cuts and stimulus to boost overall demand, or we’ll never make it out of this slump. [More]

Savings Rate Goes Up, But Spending Doesn't

Savings Rate Goes Up, But Spending Doesn't

As a nation, we saved more of our paychecks last month than any time since last September–nearly 4% of income went unspent. That worries economists, because it means we’re not spending at a high enough rate to support an economic recovery. But as the Washington Post notes, since unemployment remains high and most of the recent wage growth came from the government, consumers aren’t exactly comfortable with buying something shiny and new just because it’s on sale. [More]

Are We Entering The Third Depression?

Are We Entering The Third Depression?

Paul Krugman, economist and NYT columnist thinks so, and suggests that now is not the time to radically cut back in spending. He says that recent speeches coming out of Europe seem to be taken from the Hoover playbook, and he’s worried. [More]

If The Economy Added 290,000 New Jobs, Why Did The Unemployment Rate Go Up?

If The Economy Added 290,000 New Jobs, Why Did The Unemployment Rate Go Up?

You might have noticed a few headlines this morning about the good jobs news — 290,000 new jobs were added in March — coupled with the rather grim realization that the unemployment rate climbed to 9.9%. What’s up with that? [More]

Study Finds Grocery Store Shoppers Are Honest Folk

Study Finds Grocery Store Shoppers Are Honest Folk

The people on that People of Walmart website may wear some ugly t-shirts, but at least they’re honest when it comes to dealing with strangers. According to a new study that looked at how markets, religion, and the size of a community impact concepts of fairness and punishment, Walmart grocery shoppers in Missouri came out on top in terms of treating the other side fairly and punishing selfishness. [More]

As The Economy Improves, Shoppers Ditch Walmart

As The Economy Improves, Shoppers Ditch Walmart

The NY Post says that they’ve found a correlation between economic growth and same store sales at Walmart. Their theory is that as the economy improves, people run away from the big blue box. [More]

2 Dead Economists In An Epic Rap Battle

2 Dead Economists In An Epic Rap Battle

An oddly high-produced music video rap battle between economists John Maynard Keynes and F. A. Hayek. It crystallizes and communicates the differences between macroeconomic and classic liberal free-market capitalism through the magic of hiphop. It seems weighted towards Hayek but it’s entertaining nonetheless, even though I’m sure Tea Party folks probably email it to their friends with lots of dancing emoticons and angel gifs. What side do you fall on, Keynes or Hayek? [More]

After 3 Months, Only 35 Paying Customers For Newspaper's Web Site

After 3 Months, Only 35 Paying Customers For Newspaper's Web Site

Newsday is a Long Island newspaper. Some people bought it for $650 million and put it behind a pay wall. Three months later, they’ve got 35 subscribers. Yes, 35. [More]

Sign The Slip Or Enter Your PIN? The Difference Is Fees

Sign The Slip Or Enter Your PIN? The Difference Is Fees

The NYT has an interesting article about what does on behind the scenes when you make a purchase at a retailer with your VISA debit card. You typically have two choices — you can enter your PIN or choose to sign. When you sign the retailer has to pay higher fees to VISA. [More]

Tiger Woods' Off-Road Adventure Cost Shareholders $12B

Tiger Woods' Off-Road Adventure Cost Shareholders $12B

A new study says that Tiger Woods spectacular fall from grace has cost shareholders of the firms that used him as a spokesperson to lose $12 billion in value. [More]

Unemployment Hits A 26-Year High Of 10.2%

Unemployment Hits A 26-Year High Of 10.2%

The pace of job losses has slowed significantly, but the economy still divested itself of 190,000 jobs in October, sending the national unemployment rate to 10.2%, says the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It should be noted that the unemployment rate only tracks people actively seeking work.