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Thomas A. Garrett

U.S. Income Inequality: It’s Not So Bad

By Thomas A. Garrett

Each year, the U.S. Census Bureau releases data on the income levels of America’s households. A comparison of the annual data over time reveals that the income of wealthier households has been growing faster than the income of poorer households—the real income of the wealthiest 5 percent of households rose by 14 percent between 1996 and 2006, while the income of the poorest 20 percent of households rose by just 6 percent.

 

District Overview: Recession Takes Toll on Eighth District Tax Collections

By Thomas A. Garrett

 

No Ifs, Ands or Butts: Illinois Casinos Lost Revenue after Smoking Banned

By Thomas A. Garrett and Michael R. Pakko

 

District Overview: Annual Revision of Metro Jobs Data Shows Little Change from Earlier Reports

By Thomas A. Garrett and Michael R. Pakko

 

Monthly Business Cycles, Arrest Rates Show Little Effect on Criminal Activity

By Thomas A. Garrett and Lesli S. Ott

 

U.S. Income Inequality: It's Not So Bad

By Thomas A. Garrett

Census data show that the income of the rich is growing faster than the income of the poor. But such common measures exaggerate the degree of income inequality. In addition, income inequality is the result of-and not a detriment to-a well-functioning economy.

 

Bird Flu Pandemic: History Warns of Economic Pain, Though Some Might Gain

By Thomas A. Garrett

If such a pandemic were to be anything like the Spanish Flu of the early 20th century, expect not only tens of millions of deaths worldwide but also a blow to the world economy in the hundreds of billions of dollars. See “Headlines from 1918,” too.

 

The Taking of Prosperity? Kelo vs. New London and the Economics of Eminent Domain

By Thomas A. Garrett and Paul Rothstein

The forced sale of homes for private development usually results in a zero-sum gain and may actually hinder development in the area, economists have found.

 

District Overview: Uneven City Job Trends Weigh on Kentucky’s Recovery

By Thomas A. Garrett and Lesli S. Ott

 

100 Years of Bankruptcy: Why More Americans Than Ever Are Filing

By Thomas A. Garrett

 

District Overview: Job Cuts in Manufacturing, Transportation Slow Recovery

By Thomas A. Garrett and Lesli S. Ott

 

Stop Paying More for Less: Ways to Boost Productivity in Higher Education

By Thomas A. Garrett and William Poole

College tuition has increased dramatically over the past decade, yet few think the quality of graduates has kept up. Decentralizing the administration and privatizing such things as housing and food service would boost productivity, as would ditching tenure and improving teaching.

 

Up, Up and Away: Personal Bankruptcies Soar!

By Thomas A. Garrett and Lesli S. Ott

Over the past 24 years, the U.S. rate of personal bankruptcies jumped nearly 350 percent. The rate varies greatly among states. Tennessee’s rate last year—the highest in the nation—was more than 10 filings per 1,000 people, nearly four times the rate in Massachusetts.

 

District Overview: Neighboring Cities Show Job Trends That Are Far Apart

By Thomas A. Garrett and Lesli S. Ott

 

Entrepreneurs Thrive in America—Federal, State Policies Make a Difference for Those Facing Risk

By Thomas A. Garrett

 

Light Rail: Boon or Boondoggle?

By Molly D. Castelazo and Thomas A. Garrett

Proponents of such mass transit recite a litany of benefits, but the cost to taxpayers is high.

 

The Costs and Benefits of Light Rail

By Thomas A. Garrett

Economist Thomas A. Garrett discusses the costs and benefits of light-rail systems and whether communities should abandon light rail.

 

In the Rubble of Disasters, Politicians Find Economic Incentives

By Molly D. Castelazo and Thomas A. Garrett

Natural disasters can be opportunities for politicians. In deciding who gets what aid, they weigh what they can get back in terms of political support, contributions and votes.

 

Casinos and Economic Development: A Look at the Issues

By Thomas A. Garrett