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***European Employment: Some Good News

by TGeraghty Fri Sep 22nd, 2006 at 07:21:09 AM EST

This won't come as a surprise to those who follow the economic debates here, but a new policy brief from the Center for Economic and Policy Research provides some good news about those allegedly rigid European labor markets (figures exclusive to ET):

***from the front page, with a paragraph put below the fold. - Jérôme


Old Europe Goes to Work: Rising Employment Rates in the European Union by John Schmitt and Dean Baker

Europe has made remarkable progress closing the employment gap over the 2000s. In 2000, the overall employment rate in the United States was five full percentage points higher than the corresponding rate in Europe. By 2005, the combined effect of a fall in the U.S. employment rate and a rise in the European employment rate reduced the gap to just 1.1 percentage points. . . . Europe made particular progress closing the employment gap for women . . .

Here's some more country-specific information from the brief:

Even France has a higher proportion of its prime-age labor force working than does the United States right now.

Although much of the remaining employment gap between the US and Europe is due to lower employment to population ratios for women (especially in conservative, Mediterranean Italy and Spain), many European economies have seen big increases in female labor force participation:

The brief also acknowledges the wonders of "flexisecurity":

. . . by far the best performers have been . . . three small economies . . . Denmark, the Netherlands, and Sweden. Compared to the United States, these three economies have much more established welfare-state institutions, including substantial taxation, generous unemployment benefits and other income supports, employment protection legislation, and strong unions. All three countries also have substantially stronger welfare-state features than Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom, and arguably stronger than France and Germany.

Those three best performers have also gone further with labor market deregulation than France, Germany, or Spain:

OECD Employment Protection Index       

                    1998  2003
Sweden           55     55
Denmark          35     35
Netherlands      55     55
UK                  18     19
France            70     73
United States    5       5   
Germany          65     63
Spain              70     72
Italy               75     58

100 = "highly regulated"

Italy has enjoyed substantial employment growth along with labor market deregulation. Nobody else is anywhere near the US and UK, however, in terms of deregulated labor markets. France, Germany, and Spain could probably do with more reforms (leavened, of course, by measures like, say, more spending on direct public sector job creation or active labor market policies to ease any increased worker insecurity).

At the risk of becoming repetitive, though, the general lesson is reaffirmed: it is quite possible to combine substantial levels of labor market protections and generous welfare states with good employment performance.

PS -- the data cited in the brief do not include the young (age 15 to 25) and the old (age 55 to 64), groups that often are said to bear the brunt of rigid labor markets. On his website, Baker points out that low employment rates for students and older workers represent explicit policy choices (low college tuition and stipends, lower retirement ages. etc) as much as labor market failures.

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The OECD protection index seems chosen to make the US and UK look good, last I looked.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 02:21:26 AM EST
Maybe, if the idea is "lower=better."

IMHO the real message, when you look at the index along with the employment data, is that the US and UK have plenty of scope to increase labor force protections while still preserving job growth.

by TGeraghty on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 02:44:55 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I'd agree with you on that.

I presume you've looked at the way the protections are calculated: there are a lot of judgement calls in there - multipliers and so on  - that reflect the philosophy of the people who created the system rather than anything objective.

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 02:47:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I think it's a useful measure of the cost to firms of firing workers across countries. That's about it.

And it's great for us that the correlation between their measure of what they think is important for a well-functioning labor market is not really all that well correlated with more objective measures like employment rates, unemployment rates, labor productivity, and so on. It really helps to nail our case. If their theories were right then the US and UK should dominate everybody else in terms of employment and productivity, and they don't.

That's why I refer to it so much.

by TGeraghty on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 02:59:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Good point.

Just like using data from the Economist or the Financial Times? ;-)

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 03:55:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Note that in France case, the measures works both way, you have to wait to fire a worker, but this also means you don't learn friday at 6pm that a worker won't be there monday anymore to work for you.
by Laurent GUERBY on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 04:41:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
As I mentionned in a comment on Dean Baker "Beat The Press" blog, I didn't realize up to know that OECD employment/population ratio was not dividing by population but some junk stuff where they remove inmates for example.

Incredible ideology again...

by Laurent GUERBY on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 04:43:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There is a justification for it, since people in jail aren't available to work and neither are those in the military, who also don't count. That it happens to make EU figures look bad is, of course, a coincidence.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 04:50:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]

people in jail aren't available to work

Which is not even true, in practice. Someone is making profits from their "non-work".

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:08:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Huh?
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:12:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Prison labour.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:16:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Is that widespread?
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:19:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:26:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Didn't work out you meant in the US rather than Europe. I thought for a moment there was something I was missing about the European prison systems.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:40:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In Sweden you work or study when you are in prison. How can you redeem yourself without a solid dose of Lutheran work ethic?

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se
by A swedish kind of death on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 08:08:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Not that it matters for these comparisons, but there are estimates of enormous prison labour effects on the Chinese economy.

Prison labour isn't common in the UK, we prefer to turn our prisoners into either drug addicts or more skilled criminals.

I've seen estimates for the US prison labour population as being around 100,000. I don't know if that could be said to represent a an impact on the accuracy of the "employment rate" figures.

by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:31:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I believe 1.3% of all males 25-54 are in jail in the US, this makes a noticeable difference.

Plus I see no reason whatsoever to not use the real population number as denominator here.

by Laurent GUERBY on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:38:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Because they don't count people who aren't available for work.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:39:13 AM EST
[ Parent ]
RIght, but is the fact that 100,000 of those 1.3% are actually working a significant distortion of the figures?

Or to ask bluntly, 1.3% = how many men?

by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:42:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It's the 1.3% reduction in the denominator that matters.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:47:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Sure, up to a point. But in terms of prison labour as an issue, the 100,000 matters too.
by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:49:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
1.3% of the US male population should be 1M [to one significant figure ;-P ]

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:52:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No, if you don't count the unavailable that's the definition of "active population" (which includes unemployed) and which is of course unreliable as discussed many times here.

I still see no reason not to stick with the real population numbers.

by Laurent GUERBY on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:29:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Can't say for Europe, but in the US, it's expected that inmates will have some sort of job, and that hopefully, they'll learn useful skills from it.

For many years, this was how states mades their car license plates, and in the Southern states, there is a whole culture of prison farms and small entreprises.  Since many US prisions are now managed by the private sector, they really want to make prisoners work, and find ways to boost the profits of the prison corporation.

For more about the privitization of American prisions, see Observer article.  Back in the late 1990's companies that had assumed contracts to run prisons tried to do so on the cheap, and lost control of prisions.  There was quite a bit of what can only be called sadism, and eventually in New Mexico, the state police had to be called in to retake  one of the prisions that this private company lost control of.  Talk about a market failure.

Private companies have absolutely no business running prisions or any other function that involves lending them the legitimate lethal power of the state.

And I'll give my consent to any government that does not deny a man a living wage-Billy Bragg

by ManfromMiddletown (manfrommiddletown at lycos dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:38:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The state has legitimate lethal power?

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:40:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes.

That should be obvious.  It's the only entity that can kill without justification.   It's a basic definition of state power in political science.

And I'll give my consent to any government that does not deny a man a living wage-Billy Bragg

by ManfromMiddletown (manfrommiddletown at lycos dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:46:03 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No, the definition is a monopoly on violence.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:49:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
That's another way of stating it.

Recent history should teach us that states will pretty much do as they damn well please, and where private individuals have to ask permission the state does not.

There's a growing divide beween the US and EU on this.  My country has the august company of nations like China, Mynamar, and Saudi Arabia in continuing to execute prisoners.  And the application of that penalty is applied disproportionately to people of color, so that a black man has is much more likely to be sent to his death for a crime that in many cases is no worse than comparable acts by white criminals.

I disagree entirely with the death penalty, and think that the power of the state to kill its own needs to be limited, and must never be loaned out to private individuals (look at the history of mercenaries in Iraq, they basically act as though they have sovereign immunity.) The Bush Administration and a large section of the US military is adamant that because they exercise power in the name of state, their actions can by definition not be criminal.  It's the reason that the US Congress passed a bill authorizing the invasion of the Netherlands if a US soldier is brought before the International Criminal Court. And it's the reason the US will never sign the ICC.

You know what the problem with standing militaries is?   These soldiers get all dressed up and then have nowhere to go, if you don't kill somebody somewhere after a while people begin to question why they're paying for all these bombs when that money could be used to provide healthcare for all or allow all students to go to college at no cost to them.  Clearly if you have an interests in keeping a large military, you have to have something for them to do. And as a practical matter, the ability to kill your adversary is a fairly effective bargaining tool.

There's also an argument, that the principal US export is security.  That other nations hold US dollars as a way to allow the US to spend beyond its means, because the US provides a collective good, security, that no other nation can provide at such low cost.  It's one of the implications presented in a book called "The Pentagon's New Map", and it's really intriguing when you think about it.  

The current level of globalization and the emerging mulipolarity and China and other countries come to the point that they can challenge the US hasn't really existed since the spring of 1914, and we all know how that story ended.  When I had to select my areas of study for my masters, I choose comparative and American.  American because that means I can find a job  once I have a PhD and comparitive because I beleive that in 10 years the neoliberl framework of the current globalization will have collapsed.  Hopefully around rather than on us.

If you really think that as an empirical matter the power of the state is limited, wait until Bush bombs Iran.  Imagine the world's suprise when America drops a tactial nuclear weapon to eliminate fortified underground facilities.  There will be a lot of bitching, outrage, and then nothing will happen.  And the only way that's going to change is when the seams in the global economy begin to unravel.  Eventually the trade imbalance between the US and China will have to be corrected, and that correction will mean the collapse of the American dollar, and the collapse of the Chinese economy when they lose their comparative advantage.  And that could easily plunge China into divison and warlordism.

And do you seriously think that anyone is going to challenge Bush?  The United States?  Right or wrong, the current administration has no near peer, there is no country that can successfully challenge US military power, and has the power projection to pose a serious threat to the American mainland. Economics though is another matter.  As an empirical matter, the US government and most other governments reserve the right to kill people when they challenge the established order. And no one can bring them to justice and that's why they do it. Without a countervailing power, that can't be changed.  The only change that can come is from within.  

Which is why international relations is largely meaningless, because the real game is in the nation's internal politics.  2006 looks to be a landslide year that will remove Bush's majority in Congress.  However, so long as the imperial view of the presidency prevails change will not be forthcoming, and I'm not sure there is anyone in American politics willing to lead the charge to reinstall legislative checks on insane behavior by the American president (like attacking countries without provocation, without justification.)  And the poison that has been laid abroad is coming back home.  

This post and everything else on the internet is being reviewed for national security threats by computers in the US, and the US government is holding more than 14,000 people worldwide without charges for years.  Some of them American citizens. And the power to restore what's been lost requires more than a change of the government of the day.  It requires serious efforts to reinstall controls on the power of the state, which is much harder.

I've rambled enough I think, this is what you get for catching me nursing a hangover and unable to sleep.

And I'll give my consent to any government that does not deny a man a living wage-Billy Bragg

by ManfromMiddletown (manfrommiddletown at lycos dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 06:46:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You should post this as a diary.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 06:47:55 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I totally second that.

Truth unfolds in time through a communal process.
by marco on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:07:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I hate to be a "me too", but this I'd like to read again, so, me too.

-----
sapere aude
by Number 6 on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:53:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It's the reason that the US Congress passed a bill authorizing the invasion of the Netherlands if a US soldier is brought before the International Criminal Court.

Say what?

Truth unfolds in time through a communal process.

by marco on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:09:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
American Servicemembers' Protection Act, better known as the Hague Invasion Act.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:11:16 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Sounds like an interesting diary for us non-political-scientists. "Without justification" doesn't sound right.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:49:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
See wikipedia.

It is actually interesting to consider the flip side, which is the theories of coercion put forward by anarchists (on the left and on the right). Anarchocapitalists seem to advocate a free market for coercive power.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:51:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Bradford Plumer: The Joys of Prison Labor

The prison-industrial complex, now employs some 80,000 prisoners, and the number's rapidly growing. A large number of those workers earn less than minimum wage . . . ne might reasonably wonder whether this captive, ultra-cheap labor force might be pulling down wages and standards for everyone else.

by TGeraghty on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 09:52:47 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:21:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Just to quote a source that will not be suspect of anti-American or liberal bias:

USA Today: Inmates vs. outsourcing (7/7/2004)

David Day has a bounce in his step and a glint in his eye unexpected in someone who makes nearly 400 telemarketing calls a day for less than $200 a month. That's because he has a coveted job where few exist: behind bars.

...

About a dozen states -- Oregon, Arizona, California and Iowa, among others -- have call centers in state and federal prisons, underscoring a push to employ inmates in telemarketing jobs that might otherwise go to low-wage countries such as India and the Philippines. Arizona prisoners make business calls, as do inmates in Oklahoma. A call center for the DMV is run out of an all-female prison in Oregon. Other companies are keeping manufacturing jobs in the USA. More than 150 inmates in a Virginia federal prison build car parts for Delco Remy International. Previously, some of those jobs were overseas.

...

Market conditions seem to favor prisons. After declining for years, call-center jobs in the USA increased several hundred, to about 360,000, last year. At the same time, more white-collar jobs are going offshore than researchers originally thought. About 830,000 U.S. service-sector jobs, from telemarketers to software engineers, will move abroad by the end of 2005, up 41% from previous predictions, says Forrester Research.

And that's nice jobs, making phone calls. But there is also what we would identify with forced labour.

Wikipedia: Reintroduction  and criticism of chain gangs

Some states, such as Alabama and Arizona, have re-introduced the chain gang. In recent years, Maricopa County, Arizona, which is the county that covers Phoenix, Arizona, has drawn attention from human rights groups for its harsh treatment of prisoners, and in particular, its creation of chain gangs for women. Arizona's modern chain gangs, rather than chipping rocks or other non-productive tasks, often do real work of economic benefit to a correctional department. One of the major issues is that the gangs are forced to live and work outside in oppressive desert heat.

Prisoners are given only two meals a day, must every day work in the harsh Arizona desert, and are not afforded any coffee, cigarettes, salt, pepper, ketchup, or organized recreation. If they suffer from heatstroke or dehydration in the extreme desert conditions, they have to pay $10 to receive basic medical attention. To write their families, they must use special postcards with the sheriff's menacing picture on them, and the corrections department spends more money per dog than per prisoner on food. Most of the inmates facing these conditions were convicted of minor offences since they are in county jail as opposed to state prison.

A year after reintroducing the chain gang in 1995, Alabama was forced to again abandon the practice pending a lawsuit from, among other organizations, the Southern Poverty Law Center. "They realized that chaining them together was inefficient; that it was unsafe," said attorney Richard Cohen of the organization. However, as late as 2000, Alabama Prison Commissioner, Ron Jones has again proposed reintroducing the chain gang. Like historical chain gangs, their reintroduced cousins have been compared to slavery in academic circles.



Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:25:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
work stopped.

In many cases, these inmate were taking orders including gathering credit card info, the risk therein should have been obvious, but the idea that the marginal reduction in the cost of labor might be offset by customers refusing to buy your product after they hear on the news about indentity theft by prisoners working in call centers never dawned on them.

And I'll give my consent to any government that does not deny a man a living wage-Billy Bragg

by ManfromMiddletown (manfrommiddletown at lycos dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:43:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Cyclical. </oblig>

More seriously this reminds me of how careful we have to be with the comparisons between the US and even the EU-15 (let alone EU-25). Greece, Spain, Portugal and more recently East Germany have all been "added to the union" in relatively recent history (certainly in "geological economic time"). Isn't this year the 20th anniversary for Spain

On another tangent, it's very interesting to look at these figures, particularly the breakdown for Sweden (87% employment rate in this group!) alongside the reports around the Swedish election citing discontent at a sluggish economy that is not providing enough jobs.

Now some of that is about disenfranchisement of 18-25 year olds, but there was also some indication of a large number on "disability benefits."

The fun thing about "flexisecurity" is that it riles up economists on the grounds of "moral hazard." Fundamentally it runs into the narrative of the "feckless poor" and causes a mess.

by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:20:23 AM EST
It certainly seems to me that the employment issues in the election were to some extent fabricated. I guess the man-on-the-street feels that employment is not as strong as it ought to be.
Now for some graphs. All data is from Statistiska Centralbyrån(SCB) (Central Statistics Bureau, Swedish official statistics agency), or OECD(labeled as such). Employment statistics by SCB are collected once a month by phone interviews asking people if they have worked atleast one hour in the past week, and if not, why not. I divided all numbers by the total population in the agegroups, not by the active population. Note the difference in the lower age group: SCB do work stats only from age 16, while OECD do 15-24.
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There is quite a difference between those counted as employed and those who actually worked the past week when asked. The OECD numbers are close to the "employed" with the difference possibly made up for by the total vs. active population? Difference is quite small except in the 16-24 (15-24) group.
Why do employed persons not work? (All age groups)
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Vacation, sickness, and care of child are most common. Man, Swedes must have a lot of vacation!
I am wondering where this large number on disability benefits is hiding. Are they counted as employed? Surely they are not counted as working? I can't find stats refering to these people specifically. How about those people in various governmental worker education programs? Are they employed or not, statistics wise? If not, are there really so many? The Swedish employment question is quite puzzling. I can't seem to find numbers to suggest that this "employment crisis" that was discussed before the election actually exist.
Last graph. Work and education/military service:
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Well, look at that! Seems like for the 16-24 group the two curves are closly related. The numbers in military service have gone down since 1978, so the increase is in education. These numbers come from the "people not in workforce" stats. In "education" quite a lot might be included, perhaps even "silly governmental non-education worker education programs". But if so, if one looks at the 25-54 group where a lot of such persons might hide out, we still end up with only a few percent.
by someone (s0me1smail(a)gmail(d)com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 09:14:39 AM EST
[ Parent ]
As a Swede, may I say regarding those 87%, that we are second to few in massaging unemployment statistics.

(Someone I know who works in education once received a memo from his boss. This was late summer, mid-nineties. The wording was to the effect that "This is all we currently have lined up for autumn. However, please be prepared for sudden goverment funding in case we are called upon to hide some unemployment".)

I like "geological economic time". (What would be "geological IT time" - Two years?)


-----
sapere aude

by Number 6 on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 09:27:28 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It's harder to massage employment statistics than unemployment statistics.

Maybe people are paid to do little or are counted as employed when they aren't really, which improves employment, but they are still paid, and they activity or lack thereof is then reflected in productivity numbers. Employment is counted relative to total population, which is a pretty well known number.

Unemployment is counted relative to "active population", an altogether fuzzier concept (and the easiest way to cheat on unemployment statistics is to move the active unemployed to the inactive - it's just a labelling trick and it costs nothing, as opposed to payign them to pretend to be working)

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 09:49:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]

click for larger

via http://www.eurofound.eu.int (check most recent report)

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:52:25 AM EST



In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:54:21 AM EST
¡Ándale España!

Truth unfolds in time through a communal process.
by marco on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:04:16 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No, not ándale.

Pinche huey!

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:12:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
And go, Ireland, too!

Truth unfolds in time through a communal process.
by marco on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:05:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Must be the shared Celtic genes.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. — Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:13:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]



In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 05:57:41 AM EST
Great article, great comments, Super great charts!! (for us dummies who rely on charts mostly...)

"Once in awhile we get shown the light, in the strangest of places, if we look at it right" - Hunter/Garcia
by whataboutbob on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 07:34:08 AM EST
As a metter of interest, where do the legions of self-employed fit into these statistics?

"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson
by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 08:23:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Just a note - ECB monetary policy has been accomodative the past year or so. And it was about damn time, though too late for me, alas.

Give it a little more time and you'll see robust labor markets again. Labor rigidities had nothing to do with the problem, it was two decades of overtight monetary policy in the Euro zone that put many of us out of work and looking for jobs elsewhere, or scaling back on our outlook (like a friend of mine who went to work out of HEC managing a Elf station for lack of any other perspectives, or me stuck here in the US with a wife who won't move back to France).


The Hun is always either at your throat or at your feet. Winston Churchill

by r------ on Wed Sep 20th, 2006 at 11:35:48 AM EST


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