Ben Casselman on Muck Rack

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Chief Economics Writer, FiveThirtyEight
As seen in:  Yahoo, Wall Street Journal

Chief economics writer for @fivethirtyeight. Formerly with the Wall Street Journal. Links/RTs are not endorsements.

Where Your State Gets Its Money — Vermont and New Hampshire are similar in a lot of ways - they're both small, heavily rural New England states that root for the Red Sox. But when it comes to taxes, they could hardly be more different. Vermont is one of the nation's highest-tax states on a per capita basis; New Hampshire is the lowest.

Don’t Be So Happy About That Tax Refund — Americans hate filing tax returns, but they love getting refunds. More than three in four taxpayers get refunds, and the average amount they get back is close to $3,000, according to IRS data. That means that for many Americans, their annual refund is the biggest single check they'll get all year.

Be Nervous (But Not Panicked) About The March Jobs Report — The job market slowed down sharply in March. The question is whether it was a temporary blip or a sign of deeper trouble. Employers added 126,000 jobs in last month, breaking a 12-month streak of growth over 200,000 jobs, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Friday .

The Tax Deductions Economists Hate — If you've already filed your tax return, chances are you spent time (or paid someone else to spend it) poring over the forms looking for deductions and credits. Have a mortgage? Deduction. Pay state income tax? Deduction. Move for a job? Deduction.

Wal-Mart Is Growing In Same-Sex Marriage Territory — Wal-Mart's decision to speak out against Arkansas's proposed religious freedom law might have seemed surprising. After all, the retail giant has a decidedly conservative reputation. But Wal-Mart is changing. The company is increasingly shifting away from its rural roots and expanding in areas where same-sex marriage is much more popular.

McDonald’s Vacation Plan Is A Bigger Deal Than Its Pay Raise — Forget McDonald's paltry raise. The real news is that the fast food giant is going to start offering its workers paid vacation time. According to The Wall Street Journal, McDonald's will raise pay and offer paid vacation for about 90,000 workers at its 1,500 company-owned U.S. stores.

Middle Class Jobs Are Still Lagging — The U.S. economy is starting to create more good-paying jobs. But the middle class is still lagging behind in both job growth and wages. New data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Wednesday showed that a wide range of jobs grew quickly in 2014.

Male CEOs Get Bonuses; Female CEOs Get Blame — When companies do well, male executives reap the rewards at a far greater rate than their female counterparts. But when business turns bad, it's women who suffer the greatest financial consequences. That's the conclusion of new research from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Tax Cuts, Home Prices and Bankruptcy — Every Monday, the National Bureau of Economic Research, a nonprofit organization made up of some of North America's most respected economists, releases its latest batch of working papers. The papers aren't peer-reviewed, so their conclusions are preliminary (and occasionally flat-out wrong).

Think Millennials Prefer The City? Think Again. — Here's the usual media narrative: Millennials prefer cities to suburbs. They love renting lofts and disdain single-family homes; they ride the subway (or take an Uber) because they barely know how to drive. Where their parents wanted green lawns and cul-de-sacs, today's young Americans want walkable neighborhoods and local bars with plenty of craft beers on draft.
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Apr 17, 2015

RT @dynarski: .@bencasselman @hemdash Federalization of postsecondary finance led to that decline. The free CC proposal an effort to get state $ back in.

Apr 17, 2015

Obama wants to make community college free. CC presidents doubt their states will support him.

Apr 17, 2015

RT @NotDan_Lebatard: @bencasselman all these tax articles after April 15th. Just admit all you care about is your click bonus #ClicksOverContent

Apr 17, 2015

New Hampshire & Vermont are similar in many ways, but not in taxes. Ditto Oregon & Washington.

Apr 17, 2015

North Dakota collected most taxes per capita of any state in '14 (but mostly from oil cos.)

Apr 17, 2015

Did you enjoy your raise last month? Inflation-adjusted hourly earnings up a penny (0.1%). Over the year, up 2.2%.…

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