Friday, January 10, 2014

Some Children Left Behind

The following chart shows the number of child day care services employees.

Click to enlarge.

That's some recovery we've got there. It's strong and resilient. Yes, sir.

In my opinion, the Japanese should have patented massive economic busts and ongoing zero interest rate policies as effective birth control medicines. Just think of the royalties!

April 17, 2013
Japan's population suffers biggest fall in history

Japan's rapidly ageing population has suffered its biggest decrease since records began in the 1950s, according to new figures.

January 8, 2014
CDC: U.S. Fertility Rate Hits Record Low for 2nd Straight Year; 40.7% of Babies Born to Unmarried Women

The U.S. fertility rate has dropped from year-to-year for each of the last five years. In 2007, it was 69.3. In 2008, it was 68.1. In 2009, it was 66.2. In 2010, it was 64.1. In 2011, it was 63.2. And, in 2012, it was 63.0.

Source Data:
BLS: Employment


mab said...

As we increased the number of two job households we needed to increase the number of day care workers.

Fewer kids helps too!

I can't believe the Fed is still waiting for households to start borrowing their way back to prosperity.

Stagflationary Mark said...


Darn those child labor laws!

2 parents plus 11 kids makes for a baker's dozen job household (automated Hostess Twinkie jobs and outsourced bakery products notwithstanding).

I can't believe the Fed...

Small world! I can't believe the Fed either, lol. Sigh.

There's no housing bubble to go bust!
Credit is the lifeblood of our economy!
QE will work over the long-term!
Inflation creates jobs!
ZIRP is temporary!
We boost good asset prices (housing, stocks)!
We don't boost bad asset prices (oil, food) though!
We are smarter than free markets!
Price controls (on interest rates) never have unintended consequences!
Who better to fix the bust than those who created the boom?
We're here to help again and again, and so on!
Excess bank reserves will save Sears from the deflationary beast!

mab said...

Nice list! We could add many more, but I'll add just one:

We (the Fed) fixed TBTF banks by making them bigger!

Troy said...

Japan puzzles the heck out of me.

They cut taxes in the 1990s, fat lot of good those tax cuts are going to do for their poor new workforce entrants . . .

(or lack-thereof)

Debt-to-GPD (red is someone's 'projection')

Taxes are going to have to double there, since they don't have the bodies any more to increase exports, and thus far automated production ain't the answer, either.

blue is real Japanese exports in current dollars, red is age 15-64 (right axis)

Stagflationary Mark said...


No list could even hope to be complete without TBTF! Yes!

Your addition would also work when dating, in theory. Just replace fail with another four-letter word that rhymes with luck, lol.

Problem: Too Big To F***!
Solution: Bring in the Overfed!

The Overfed is a mythical overlord who believes an all you can eat buffet will fix everything and that it is vastly superior to an all you should eat buffet. The Overfed also has a technology that can bake cheesecake at essentially no cost, thereby preventing any deflation in the waistline.

You can't blame the Overfed if the solution doesn't work immediately. Just keep eating until it does work! Keep the faith! ;)

Stagflationary Mark said...


Just for the sake of argument...

Let's say Japan doubles the taxes. Let's also say that discretionary spending drops and unemployment rises in response.

How much more would they need to raise taxes to compensate?

Perhaps they've all ready tried this experiment as a baby step and weren't happy with the feedback loop? I ask because...

September 6, 2007
Let Them Eat Cake!

In 2000, then-BOJ Governor Masaru Hayami was widely derided for raising rates from zero to 0.25 percent. Pundits called him Japan's answer to Herbert Hoover. Yet Hayami was trying to force Japan Inc. to implement structural reforms. It didn't work and rates returned to zero in March 2001.

If 0.25% turned him into Herbert Hoover then what would doubling taxes have done?

As a side note, at 0.25% we're lookin' a bit Hoover capable these days too. We can't even seem to say taper without it becoming a hot debate.