Director, Hutchins Center on Fiscal & Monetary Policy, Brookings institution. Contributing correspondent, The Wall Street Journal

How College Has Become a Riskier Investment

blogs.wsj.com — A four-year college degree, we're told repeatedly, is "a good investment." After all, college grads earn about 50% more money than high school grads and are less likely to be unemployed. "[T]he return to college remains high on average, regardless of one's college major," New York Federal Reserve Bank economists say.

What the Demise of Obama’s 529 Plan Says About Tax Reform

brookings.edu — Tax reform means taking tax breaks from someone to finance some broader goal-in some cases lower tax rates or, in this case, to move toward a simpler tax code with fewer different tax breaks for education and to shift federal aid for college tuition away from upper-middle-class families and toward lower-middle-class families.

The Bad News in the CBO Report

brookings.edu — David Wessel finds that the most troubling part of the latest Congressional Budget Office projections is that the CBO is growing steadily gloomier about the U.S. economy's capacity to grow, meaning it would be harder to bring down the historically high ratio of government debt to GDP.

What the Demise of Obama’s 529 Plan Says About Tax Reform

blogs.wsj.com — President Barack Obama's surprise move to drop his proposal to scale back tax breaks for 529 college savings plans illustrates, among other things, why tax reform is so hard.

The ECB’s Stimulus Buys Time. Will Europe Take Advantage of It?

blogs.wsj.com — While moderating a panel at the International Monetary Fund in October 2013, I asked each panelist what question about the Federal Reserve's aggressive policies on quantitative easing we would be able to answer only a decade or so in the future.

Making Sense of the Uproar Over Obama’s 529 Proposal

brookings.edu — President Barack Obama's proposal to scale back tax breaks for college-savings accounts, the 529 plans, provoked an immediate uproar. There's no doubt the proposal would make future contributions to 529s much less attractive. (It doesn't affect money already in 529s.)

The Bad News in the CBO Report

blogs.wsj.com — David Wessel: CBO is growing steadily gloomier about the U.S. economy's capacity to grow. If CBO is right, that means it would be harder to bring down the historically high ratio of government debt to GDP and that living standards in the U.S. will improve more slowly.

Making Sense of the Uproar Over Obama’s 529 Proposal

blogs.wsj.com — President Barack Obama's proposal to scale back tax breaks for college-savings accounts, the 529 plans, provoked an immediate uproar. There's no doubt the proposal would make future contributions to 529s much less attractive. (It doesn't affect money already in 529s.)

Dynamic Scoring: Now What?

brookings.edu — The Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center and the Hutchins Center on Fiscal and Monetary Policy at Brookings take a close look at how dynamic scoring is done, the models that the Joint Committee on Taxation and the Congressional Budget Office use for macroeconomic analysis of tax bills and other major legislation and how to communicate this analysis accurately.

How Does Quantitative Easing Work and What Did It Accomplish?

brookings.edu — The European Central Bank, unable to push short-term interest rates any lower, is on the verge of launching a major round of large-scale asset purchases (LSAP), also known as "quantitative easing" (QE). So now would be a good time to review economic analyses of how this monetary maneuver worked in the U.S., the U.K.
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