Economic Growth, Inflation, Central Banks

Adam Brandon and John Tamny:

“At this point, a couple more interest rate increases are necessary to stabilize growth at a sustainable pace and stabilize the labor market so it doesn’t overheat.” Those are the words of former Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen. Interviewed at a recent investor conference in Washington, D.C., Ms. Yellen’s rather explicit point was that economic growth has to be restrained so that inflation can remain in check. And central bankers wonder why they’re so unpopular.

While the Fed’s ability to regulate the price of credit through its funds rate is well overstated, it’s passing strange that influential people would make putting people out of work a policy goal. Yet that’s exactly what the retired central banker is proposing.

Read the whole thing.


Google engineer fired for writing memo about gender roles


The Google engineer who wrote a highly controversial internal memo about gender differences that’s sparked an uproar in the tech industry says he’s been fired — and that he’s not going to take it lying down.

James Damore’s memo, which claims biological factors contribute to gender inequality in the tech sector, sparked a quick rebuttal from Google after it circulated widely online.

The federal government forces firms who do business with it to obtain gender, ethnicity/race (combined), military veteran status, disability. Disability can be an ailment you currently have or had but are fully recovered. And it is not always visible, i.e. does not display physical attributes.

The applicant is given the option of refusing provide the accurate answer and can choose to not provide the information. But does that affect the applicant’s chances of being hired? Who really knows. These questions are ostensibly used to assess a firm’s outreach and recruitment efforts. But so what. Why does that have to be known? It may not be used now, but it might later.

Worse, this screening prevents some people from being hired because they amount to a quota. If the firm has enough of a certain class of individual, it may look for others to fill positions.

The problem with all of this is that it make the labor market less fluid and dynamic. Look at the mess Google is in now and has to expend its resources hiring people to implement these policies and now it has to defend itself in public. How about building great products and services with great people! And deliver high ROI to the owners, i.e. shareholders!