Oct 072011

The graph above depicts the supply of US dollars from January 1975 through September 2011. The gray bars represent periods recognized by US government statisticians as recessions. Note the swell in the 1990s, during the Clinton Administration, when the supply of US dollars fell. Ah… the good ol’ days!

Now, come over to 2008 or so, and hold onto your hat!

In general, and all other things held constant (or, as we say in the business, ceteris paribus), prices can rise for three reasons: demand increases (e.g., an auction or a popular restaurant), supply decreases (e.g., lower efficiency, war, or natural disaster), or the number of units of currency increases faster than the rate of increase of goods and services (inflation).

Today, we are witnessing a lack of consumer confidence bordering on panic (demand down; prices down), increasing efficiency (supply up; prices down), and a massive increase of the currency base (inflation; prices up). In other words, sagging consumer confidence and increasing productive efficiency are putting a lid on inflationary price increases.

However, efficiency can increase at a high rate for only so long before leveling off (supply stops increasing), and eventually people will go shopping again (demand stops decreasing). When that happens, the downward pressure on prices will weaken. Use your favorite analogy here: a pressure cooker, a plunger, a spring, whatever.

It is reasonable to expect that the downward pressure eventually will be released. Coupled with the inflation depicted in the graph above, this could lead to a period of large and swift price increases.

Invest accordingly.

Prof. Evans

Oct 052011

Please take a few moments to review the New Steam Age Curriculum (NSAC) page at Pecuniology Research.

I am especially interested in working with students, professors, and entrepreneurs in Middle Income Countries, in order to ensure the widest global relevance possible.

Invest accordingly.

Prof. Evans

Oct 032011

The Mail Online, a newspaper, reports, “Mexico City lawmakers want to help newlyweds avoid the hassle of divorce by giving them an easy exit strategy: temporary marriage licenses.”

Mexican wedding

Apparently, about half of marriages in Mexico end in divorce, and this is an attempt to adapt to that reality.

Gay marriage, drug policy, now this.  Keep an eye on Mexico.

Invest accordingly.

Prof. Evans

Oct 012011

Turn images on in your browser!

Academic freedom means different things to different individuals.  Originally, it meant that one was free to express unpopular ideas in a spirit of open debate.  In some corners, it has come to mean “the supremacy of the thinnest-skinned.”

The Huffington Post has a story by Greg Lukianoff, president of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, that describes an intriguing situation at the University of Wisconsin – Stout, in which a professor has been threatened with legal action for criticizing fascism.

Invest accordingly.

Prof. Evans