Category: Economics

The politics of nostalgia

I have spent more time reading in the past week or so than I have in a while. As I once wrote for Fast Company, making time to read is about supply and demand. You need time available for reading (the supply side) and demand to use those hours for reading. That's a function of having stuff you want to read. If you have stuff you want to read, you turn time that could be sp… read more »

Smart Mom Rich Mom (book review)

In our culture, we have a lot of sayings about money. For instance, "more money, more problems." The idea is that money just invites more woe into one's life, which may be a comforting thing to believe on some level. However, I'm not sure it's true. While more income invites some problems (you are unlikely to be audited if you don't have a lot of taxable income!),… read more »

Is this a happy money story?

There are many great reasons to choose to stay home with your kids. Achieving better personal finances, however, is generally not one of them. Economist Sylvia Ann Hewlett has calculated that professional women lose 37 percent of their earning power, on average, by taking 3 or more years out of the workforce. To put some numbers on it: a 37 percent haircut on $… read more »

Personal finance for writers, or how to avoid winding up too broke to find $400

Financial insecurity is a reality for many people. Various survey questions over the years have tried to gauge its prevalence. The Federal Reserve began asking a question not long ago: how would you find $400 in an emergency? It turns out that 47 percent of Americans would have to take out a loan or sell something, or else do not think they could find $400 at all.… read more »

Do kids make you more productive?

Several alert readers sent me KJ Dell’Antonia’s Motherlode post on a study finding that academic economists with 2+ children were more productive than those without kids. There was a productivity hit when the kids were little, but overall productivity, as measured in journal publications, stayed elevated despite those dips. Women with kids, incid… read more »