10/13/2021

Given Senators Manchin and Sinema’s efforts to constrain spending under the Build Back Better bill, it seems likely that the $3.5 trillion 10-year price tag may very well be whittled down to something less than $2.5 trillion. At the same time, I’ve heard nothing about making corresponding adjustments on…


10/5/21

From the 30,000 foot level, I support the President’s agenda; and accordingly, I look forward to the passage of what has now become talked about as the Reconciliation Bill. While the specifics are still yet to be ironed out, in broad terms the legislation would do the following:

·…


9/27/21

Under current tax regulations, capital gains on assets are taxed only if they are realized. In other words, unless or until you sell an appreciated asset, you won’t be subject to any taxes on the paper gain. If you never sell the asset — i.e., if you die holding…


9/22/2021

It’s axiomatic that prudent investors should hold diversified portfolios; and while I don’t disagree with this principle, I feel that this objective is too frequently misapplied. Under the guise of seeking diversification, too many people include too much garbage in their holdings.

Modern portfolio theory postulates that investors should…


9/14/21

It’s possible that the world is waking up to the onerous energy demands involved in supporting Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, but perhaps not soon enough.

I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling like this energy aspect of cryptocurrencies developed out of nowhere. When Bitcoin just got started, the associated…


9/6/21

I continue to react to the hype and promotion of cryptocurrencies with horror and disbelief as traditional, seemingly reputable companies enter into crypto-related activities. As an economist, part of me gets it, but the better part of me rues these developments.

The purported rationale for cryptocurrencies is to democratize…


8/26/21

So the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act passed in the House this week by a vote of 219 to 212. That’s 219 Democrats in favor; 212 Republicans against. Hard to understand how this bill could generate such a party-line divide, particularly since the 1965 Voting Act was unanimously…


8/19/21

Headlines this week are about as discouraging as can be. The tragedies that have befallen Afghanistan and Haiti and the worldwide resurgence of Covid-19 stand out; but on the home front, we’re confronted by a series of misdirected state-wide initiatives seeking (a) to inhibit the institution of mask mandates…


8/10/21

As anyone paying any attention knows, an effort is underway to draft what will likely be a second, larger infrastructure bill, projected to come in with a price tag of as much as $3.5 trillion. …


8/3/21

I’ve been trying to understand the rationale underlying people’s decision not to take a Covid-19 vaccination; and I can’t — except possibly for a tiny portion of the population of those eligible. …

Ira Kawaller

Kawaller holds a Ph.D. in economics from Purdue University.

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