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Zheng Liu, senior research advisor at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, stated his views on the current economy and the outlook as of October 13, 2016.
The increase in U.S. income inequality since 1970 largely reflects gains made by households in the top 20% of the income distribution. Estimates suggest that households outside this group have suffered significant losses from foregone consumption, measured relative to a scenario that holds inequality constant. A substantial mitigating factor for the losses has been the dramatic rise in government redistributive transfers, which have doubled as a share of U.S. output over the same period.
The effects of the European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) and European Union (EU) on trade are separately estimated using an empirical gravity model. Employing a panel approach with both time-varying country and dyadic fixed effects on a large span of data (across both countries and time), it is found that EMU and EU each significantly boosted exports. EMU expanded European trade by 40% for the original members, while the EU increased trade by almost 70%. Newer members have experienced even higher trade as a result of joining the EU, but more time is necessary to see the effects of their joining EMU.
The personal consumption expenditure price index (PCEPI) is one measure of U.S. inflation. The PCEPI measures the percentage change in prices of goods and services purchased by consumers throughout the economy.
The Tech Pulse Index is an index of coincident indicators of activity in the U.S. information technology sector. It can be interpreted as a summary statistic that tracks the health of the tech sector in a timely manner.
This site presents a real-time, quarterly series on total factor productivity (TFP) for the U.S. business sector, adjusted for variations in factor utilization - labor effort and capital's workweek.
The Wage Rigidity Meter offers a closer examination of the annual wage changes of U.S. workers that have not changed jobs over the year.