Archive for the ‘economy’ Category

AUGUST 29, 2011, 11:13 A.M. ET

President Barack Obama has chosen Princeton University’s Alan Krueger to be
chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers.

“As one of this country’s leading economists, Alan has been a key voice on a
vast array of economic issues for more than two decades,” Mr. Obama said Monday
in a statement. He continued, “Alan understands the difficult challenges our
country faces, and I have confidence that he will help us meet those challenges
as one of the leaders on my economic team.”

If confirmed by the Senate, Mr. Krueger, a labor economist, is likely to
provide a voice inside the administration for more-aggressive government action
to bring down unemployment and, particularly, to address long-term

Mr. Krueger, 50 years old, returned to Princeton a year ago after serving as
assistant Treasury secretary for economic policy during the first two years of
the Obama administration—which means he has recently cleared the sometimes
treacherous Senate confirmation process.

He would succeed Austan Goolsbee, who left earlier this month to reclaim his
teaching post at the University of Chicago.

Mr. Krueger has been on Princeton’s faculty since 1987, the year he earned
his Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University. He did a stint as chief
economist at the Labor Department during the Clinton administration.

The work he has done in academia ranges from attempts to explain why job
growth wasn’t stronger during the 2000s, to findings that increases in the
minimum wage don’t depress employment, to a work showing that terrorists often
come from middle-class—and often college-educated—backgrounds.

While at Treasury, Mr. Krueger worked on analyses of a variety of programs,
including tax incentives to encourage employers to hire the employed, the “cash
for clunkers” initiative to jump-start auto purchases and Build America taxable
municipal bonds.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, through a spokeswoman, said that “given
his expertise in labor economics, he is precisely the right choice to lead the
CEA at this moment in history.”

Martin Feldstein, who was CEA chairman in the Reagan White House, praised the
choice. “His experience at the Treasury will give him a running start in his new
job,” he said. “Alan is an expert in labor-market problems, taxation and the
economics of terrorism. I hope the president listens to him.”

The council’s members generally are drawn from academia, and they often serve
for only two years. Their influence has waxed and waned over time, depending on
the internal dynamics of the particular White House economic team, the
relationship between the president and the CEA chairman and the political
agility of the council members.

Like those who previously held the post in the Obama administration, Mr.
Goolsbee and Christina Romer of the University of California at Berkeley, Mr.
Kreuger is likely to be part of the public face of the president’s economic

The other two members of the CEA, both of whom have been confirmed by the
Senate, are labor economist Katharine Abraham and antitrust specialist Carl

Among the other candidates for the CEA chairmanship considered by the White
House were Rebecca Blank, currently acting Commerce secretary, and Alan
Auerbach, a pubic-finance specialist at UC-Berkeley.

The three-member council was created by Congress in 1946 to advise the
president and evaluate government policies. Each member, by law, is to be a
person “who, as a result of his training, experience, and attainments, is
exceptionally qualified to analyze and interpret economic developments, to
appraise programs and activities of the government…and to formulate and
recommend national economic policy to promote employment, production, and
purchasing power under free competitive enterprise.”



Alan Bennett Krueger was born on September 17th, 1960 according to

September 17th, 1960

September 17th

9 + 17 +2+0+1+0 = 29 = his personal year (from September 17th, 2010 to September 16th, 2011) = Being part of Barack Obama’s economic team.

[Numerologically, a person’s life lesson number stands for themself.  Barack Obama was born on August 4th, 1961.  8 + 4 +1+9+6+1 = 29 = Barack Obama’s life lesson number.

That it is Alan’s 29 year indicates that he is significant now to Barack Obama (whose life lesson number is 29).]



29 year + 8 (August) = 37 = his personal month (from August 17th, 2011 to September 16th, 2011) = Wanting what is best for everyone and for the country.


using the number/letter grid:

1      2      3       4       5       6      7      8      9
A      B     C       D       E       F      G      H      I
J      K      L      M      N       O      P      Q      R
S      T      U      V      W      X      Y      Z


A = 1              J = 1              S = 1

B = 2              K = 2             T = 2

C = 3              L = 3             U = 3

D = 4              M = 4            V = 4

E = 5              N = 5            W = 5

F = 6              O = 6             X = 6

G = 7              P = 7             Y = 7

H = 8              Q = 8             Z = 8

I = 9               R = 9



Alan Krueger

1315_2935759      50


his path of destiny = 50 = Dealing with global issues.  Dealing with worldwide economic issues.




find out your own numerology at:


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Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke looks how the market feels. Worries are growing about the global economy and the Fed's pledge to keep rates low until 2013 did little to calm investors.

August 10, 2011: 1:43 PM ET

Is the Federal Reserve waving the white surrender flag? It sure looks that way.

The Fed made the unusual (and unprecedented) move on Tuesday to tell the market in plain English that it intends to keep rates near zero for the next two years!

That is disappointing on many levels. First and foremost, it is a crystal clear sign from Ben Bernanke and other Fed members that they think the economic recovery (if one could still call it that) will remain tepid for a long time.

That is probably one of the reasons that the post-Fed euphoria on Tuesday afternoon on Wall Street quickly gave way to despair again on Wednesday.

This is not good. The Great Recession may have technically ended in June 2009. But for many Americans, this current malaise is just an extension of the problems that first began to surface in 2007. Lost Decade anyone?

Yes, that’s a Japan reference. And it’s sadly apt. The Fed, by pledging to leave short-term rates “exceptionally low” for what will eventually amount to a four-and-a-half-year stretch, is essentially guaranteeing that long-term bond rates will remain persistently low — just like in Japan.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury is at about 2.13%. Yields actually briefly touched the all-time low from December 2008 of 2.03% on Tuesday after the Fed announcement before bouncing back.

Would it be any surprise if the 10-year soon had a 1 handle on it like there is for Japan’s 10-year bonds? That would be extremely troubling. The time to emulate Japan’s economy was in the 1980s. Not now.

Recession 2.0 would hurt worse

It’s even more ironic since Bernanke criticized the Bank of Japan in a paper in 1999 while he still was a professor at Princeton. The title? “Japanese Monetary Policy: A Case of Self-Induced Paralysis?”

I have several more bones to pick with the Fed. Why did the central bank feel that it was a good idea to put a specific time frame on when it will raise rates in the first place? Even if it was mid-2012 that would have been silly.

I’m all for transparency. And the Fed under Bernanke is clearly a lot less opaque than it was under Alan Greenspan. But sometimes the Fed can give the markets, to use teen texting parlance, TMI.

The Fed has now effectively boxed itself in regardless of what the economy does over the next few months and year. Sure, it seems impossible now to think that the economy will pick up dramatically anytime soon. But keep in mind that economists, the market and the Fed are often wrong.

0:00 / 2:32 Fed extends uncertainty until 2013

Things can change quickly. Nobody saw the Arab Spring revolts coming. Ditto for the Japan earthquake.

In the unlikely event that the economy does begin to improve next year, the Fed won’t be able to start raising interest rates without causing another panic because it has promised fickle investors that we’ll be at zero until 2013.

I guess the Fed could backtrack and change its mind. Kurt Karl, chief U.S. economist with Swiss Re in New York, points out that the Fed didn’t technically rule out rate hikes next year. He said that small increases from zero would still technically keep rates “low.”

But the market is clearly interpreting the Fed statement as a sign that it will keep rates on hold. So any interest rate bump could further damage the Fed’s credibility in the eyes of investors, consumers and politicians.

U.S. Treasuries are still safe! Sorta.

Yes, politicians. Try as the Fed might to stay above the political fray, that’s impossible for a Washington-based government organization to do.

Think about it. The Fed conveniently picked mid-2013 as its earliest possible start date to tighten? Really? Is it coincidental that by doing so, the Fed avoids getting dragged into the nasty presidential election cycle? Come on.

I applaud Fed regional presidents Charles Plosser of Philly, Richard Fisher of Dallas and Narayana Kocherlakota of Minneapolis for objecting to putting a firm time table on tightening.

The Fed should react when it’s necessary — not when the calendar tells it is okay to do so. (Earth to Barney Frank. This is why Fed presidents, instead of only Fed governors, need to stay on the FOMC. They actually have a backbone!)

Now to be fair to the Fed, it looks like the central bank is also acknowledging that it probably needs to keep rates low because there is a snowball’s chance in you know where of any other Washington body doing what’s needed to get the economy back on track.

The word “stimulus” is now considered to be more profane than any of the colorful phrases that used to be tossed around on the late, great HBO show “Deadwood.”

“While the rest of the government is obviously incapable of providing stimulus, the Fed is showing that it is willing to do so for the long-term,” said Dr. Robert Shapiro, chairman of Sonceon, an economic advisory firm in Washington.

Shapiro, who served as Under Secretary of Commerce for Economic Affairs in President Clinton’s administration, said the Fed doesn’t need to be fighting inflation now. And he’s right. To a point.

Low rates are a blessing and a curse. Sure, it’s encouraging that investors around the world are still buying U.S. debt (and driving rates down in the process) in spite of Standard and Poor’s downgrade on Friday.

But at the same time, extremely low rates are a symptom of stagnation that is often accompanied by a weak currency. It will be harder to call the dollar the world’s reserve currency with a straight face if it continues to lose ground.

A chronically weaker dollar risks fueling commodity inflation again like it did earlier this year. And the last thing Americans need right now is yet another round of sticker shock at the gas pump and grocery store.

That could also be a reason why the Fed may be reluctant to start a third round of quantitative easing, a program of bond buying that also helps to keep long-term rates low.

“Will the Fed jump in with QE3? There was commodity inflation with QE2. That is clearly a problem,” said Karl.

Yes, it is. Especially when you consider that the Fed seems to be more interested in trying to calm the financial markets with low rates instead of coming up with plans that might actually help “promote effectively the goals of maximum employment and stable prices.”

Last I checked, those were still the Fed’s only two mandates.



Ben Shalom Bernanke was born on December 13th, 1953 according to

December 13th, 1953

12 + 13 +1+9+5+3 = 43 = his life lesson = what he is here to learn = This is no fun.  The party’s over.




find out your own numerology at:

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File:Ben Bernanke official portrait.jpg

April 27, 2011 

Westminster Abbey and the Royal Wedding are so overhyped; the historic story of the week will take place on C Street in Washington, D.C. today.

At 2:15 p.m. ET, Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve, will make waves in the world of economists and Wall Streeters. For the first time in the 98-year history of the nation’s central bank, the chairman will talk to the press after an interest rate decision, fulfilling a promise he made at his first confirmation hearing back in 2005.

At the time he said, “Under Chairman Greenspan, monetary policy has become increasingly transparent to the public and the financial markets, a trend that I strongly support.”

Most Fed watchers don’t expect Bernanke to make any surprising observations about the economy. The Fed almost certainly won’t ratchet up interest rates or change the course of the widely-known QE2 program to boost economic recovery. Instead, Bernanke will likely take the podium to reinforce the post-meeting statement issued earlier in the afternoon and underline the observations the Federal Reserve’s staff economists make in their updated forecast issued as a part of the release.

But the importance of the moment shouldn’t be dismissed.

This event marks a new chapter in the history of U.S. central banking. The new transparency will allow the Federal Reserve to make its case for monetary policy directly to the public. Twenty-first century-style economic Glasnost.

The press conference, “whose ostensible purpose is to add more transparency regarding Fed policy, is really designed to help repair its image with the general public, a process that began when Bernanke first appeared on ’60 Minutes,'” writes Bernie Baumohl, chief economist at The Economic Outlook Group. “The press conference serves multiple purposes. It helps explain the Fed’s role in the economy, improves public trust in the central bank, and can be used discreetly as a platform to place more pressure on Congress to reduce the swelling budget deficits.”

Chairman Bernanke isn’t the first central banker to take the message to the press. His colleagues at the European Central Bank and Bank of England have been doing this for years. He’s likely taken some pointers about handling the press from Jean-Claude Trichet and Mervyn King, his European counterparts. It’s been reported that he’s even done a few practice runs with Fed staffers to prep for the big day.

At a moment when the Federal government’s deficits and debt limits are becoming the central issue of the nation’s political dialog, Bernanke’s press conference debut will give the Fed a more consistent voice and platform in the public sphere.

The lack of transparency during the financial crisis led to criticisms of the Federal Reserve’s role in the economy, with members of the conservative Tea Party movement calling for a dissolution of the Fed or a Congressionally-mandated opening up of the once-secretive central bank. Taking the podium might blunt some of the critics, assuming the public both hears and understands what Bernanke says.

No matter what the questions or answers, tomorrow marks a big day in the history of the Fed. Two decades ago, the Federal Reserve kept its interest rate decisions out of the public eye, not even issuing a press release when the Fed Funds rate target changed. Glasnost, indeed.



Ben Bernanke was born on December 13th, 1953 according to

December 13th, 1953

December 13th

12 + 13 +2+0+1+0 = 28 = his personal year (from December 13th, 2010 to December 12th, 2011) = Bold.  Powerlessness.

28 year + 4 (April) = 32 = his personal month (from April 13th, 2011 to May 12th, 2011) = The United States.  America.  Americans. 

[The United States was born July 4th, 1776.  7 + 4 +1+7+7+6 = 32 = the United States’ life lesson number.  Numerologically a country’s life lesson number stands for itself.  Because it is Ben’s 32 month, he will be talking about the United States of America.]


32 month + 27 (27th of the month on Wednesday April 27th, 2011) = 59 = his personal day = Salvaging what remains.  Picking up the pieces.


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