Daily Digest

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Daily Digest 10/9 - The Future Of Food, The Great Wage Slowdown of the 21st Century

Thursday, October 9, 2014, 9:42 AM


Incomes and Outcomes: The Great Wage Slowdown of the 21st Century (jdargis)

You can think of Mr. Obama’s argument as falling into two categories (even if he didn’t say so): the reasons that overall economic growth may accelerate, and the reasons that middle- and low-income workers may benefit more from that growth than they have lately. Both factors have contributed to the wage slowdown. The size of the pie hasn’t been growing very fast, and most of the increases have gone to a small share of already well-fed families.

Everyone Agrees: CEOs Should Be Paid Less (jdargis)

Harvard Business School professor Michael Norton provided the data for that surprising video through his research on the perception of inequality. Norton continues his study with a new paper (co-written with Sorapop Kiatpongsan) focusing specifically on the salaries of CEOs, the business leaders who have become a byword for the one percent as a whole. Norton measured how much citizens of 50 different countries thought CEOs earned as well as how much they thought CEOs should earn.

This illustration shows just how precious gold is (thc0655)

The image above shows how much gold is produced in year, providing a visualization of how that volume of gold would look on a street corner in Paris.

They have a whole slideshow with similar visualizations of commodities from oil to plutonium.

David Morgan's Secret to Being Grateful, Even at $17 Silver (Kevin J.)

“First, people need to keep in mind that prices go up and down in all markets. Second, know that the fundamentals of owning precious metals have not changed. Third, remember why they bought the metal in the first place. And lastly, ensure that they are diversified properly, meaning they need to own the right amount of physical metal for their age and objectives.”

Robin Bromby in The Australian: Shanghai gold surprise in store (thc0655)

Why Shanghai? Simple, says Goode: It is because Shanghai was once the gold trading centre of the world. Until the fall of the Qing dynasty in 1912, Shanghai accounted for about 60 per cent of all gold traded around the world. Gold trading was revived there in 1921 and lasted until Japan captured the city. Now the Shanghai Gold Exchange is the third largest in the world, after New York and London.

Last Monday was the first anniversary of Shanghai's FTZ, where gold trading is backed by the contents of a 1,000-tonne vault. Goode then quotes one Chinese presenter at the congress making the point that his country was the world's leading gold producer (428 tonnes last year), consumed the most (1,100 tonnes), and traded the most Asian gold futures -- then adding: "But yet we have little control over the gold price."

Microdocumentary: 4 Major Boom And Bust Cycles Explained (Taki T.)

Austrian Business Cycle Theory argues that credit inflation is a distortion of what is actually available to support current production and consumption levels. That is why a correction is inevitable. Austrian economist Mises warned that the longer malinvestments continue, the more aggressive the correction becomes. A recession arrives when the economy readjusts as consumers come to reestablish their desired allocation of saving at prevailing interest rates. That is when consumers decide to save more and consume less. In such a market correction, everything goes down. It is a reversal of the inflationary pick up during the boom.

Charts Reveal U.S. Economy Undergoing a Massive Structural Change (pinecarr)

Let's look at the same statistic for the core workforce, ages 25-54. This cohort leaves out the employment volatility of the college years, the lower employment of the retirement years and also the age 55-64 decade when many in the workforce begin transitioning to retirement. In September this indicator rose to 4.9% — a new post-recession low. Today's age 25-54 labor force would require the additional employment of 1.5 million age 25-54 to match its interim low in 2006 and 2.0 million to match the lowest rate in 2000.

IEA Reverses Its Stance On Rebound Effects (James S.)

A reversal in the International Energy Agency’s views on energy efficiency suggests that as much as 2,176 million tons of oil equivalent worth of extra clean energy consumption will be required by 2035 to meet the organization’s aggressive climate targets. That’s the equivalent of 19 Australias’ energy consumption. This finding is the result of a Breakthrough analysis of a new IEA report, which showcased a new position for the agency on what energy experts call “rebound effects” – a hotly contested phenomenon in energy consumption growth.

Alaskan Natives' Company Found Defrauded (Dana T.)

The Sealaska concern, based here and owned by thousands of Thlinget and Haida Indian shareholders, was formed under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971. The act granted to natives 40 million acres of land and nearly $1 billion and mandated a plan for making all the natives shareholders in 13 regional organzations.

Earlier this year, Sealaska, with assets valued at nearly a quarter of a billion dollars, announced a 1982 loss of $28 million and attributed it to the general economic decline.

Energy, Diminishing Returns and the Future of Food (Eric G.)

This game of investing energy towards the procurement of food is one that Homo sapiens – and all living organisms – have played for millennia. From our days as hunter-gatherers to today’s dependence on a global, industrialized food system, we’ve always invested energy in the process of food production. The goal of this essay is to explore the energetics of food systems in greater detail, but perhaps more importantly to point out that, due to the emergence of diminishing returns, the future of food production might not follow the same process of intensification and industrialization that we’ve grown accustomed to. These diminishing returns will define our experience throughout the 21st century, and hopefully this essay will bring them to light in a way that prompts broader discussion.

Acid damage to coral reefs could cost $1 trillion (jdargis)

Coral reefs are particularly at risk. Acidification reduces the concentration of carbonate ions in the upper layers of the ocean, and when carbonate levels get too low, the calcium carbonate skeletons of the corals themselves will start to dissolve.

But simply pointing out that marine biodiversity will suffer may not be enough to encourage governments to take action, which is why some researchers have begun to put a price on the problem.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 10/8/14

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."


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