Archive for January, 2015

Free Markets and Discrimination

January 20, 2015 Leave a comment


Monday was Martin Luther King Day in the U.S. Take a minute to listen to one of the best speeches delivered in the past 100 years.

Next semester, in Intermediate Economics, we will talk more about the labor market. One of the most interesting ideas related to this topic is how free markets may help solve the moral problem of racial (or other kinds) or discrimination against workers.

Here’s a real life example of someone who capitalized on the mistake of others:

In the ensuing years Raveling spent more and more time at Villanova. He realized he had an advantage when it came to recruiting young black players, especially in the South, where local universities were reluctant to sign them.

Want to make money and do something good at the same time? Find a job market where irrational discrimination is unfairly depressing wages of some workers. Take advantage of it to drive those discriminating employers out of business, or at least deflate their profits.

Categories: Microeconomics

Go for the Inexpensive Wedding

January 8, 2015 Leave a comment


It just might improve your chances of a long marriage!

A new study found that couples who spend less on their wedding tend to have longer-lasting marriages than those who splurge. The study, by two economics professors at Emory University, found a similar correlation between less-expensive engagement rings and lower divorce rates.

The study’s authors didn’t examine why, although they floated a few theories.

“It could be that the type of couples who have a … (cheap wedding) are the type that are a perfect match for each other,” said Professor Hugo M. Mialon, who co-authored the study with Andrew M. Francis.

“Or it could be that having an inexpensive wedding relieves young couples of financial burdens that may strain their marriage,” he said.

Great Videos for Next Semester

January 2, 2015 Leave a comment

I really hope to be able to teach International Economics next year. If these videos, together with some from Hans Rosling and Johan Norberg, don’t spark discussion, what will?