That a counter-cyclical monetary policy of low interest rates can raise the yields of certain financial assets, whose property tends to be biased towards families with higher assets and this encourage inequality, is an argument that I believe may be valid. There is some evidence of this, so we could include this explanation in the long list of possible candidates. But there are other explanations that can also lead us to find that these same policies can have an opposite effect on inequality. For example, because they improve access to credit, because they reduce unemployment, because they reduce financial costs to those who have a net debit position, and so on. In addition, and assuming that the effect of monetary policies can be very ambiguous, this would be one of many other explanations that it is not reasonable to discard, when these also have much greater empirical relevance. I think Daron Acemoglu, David Author, Kevin M. Murphy, David Card, John E. DiNardo, Brooks Pierce, Stephen Machin, J. van Reenen, David Dorn, Nicole Fortin, Thomas Lemieux, Matthias Cortés, Lawrence Katz, Goldin, Eli Berman, John Bound, Enmanuel Saez, Thomas Piketty, Anthony Atkinson, Nicholas Bloom, Thomas Phillipon, Branko Milanovic, Stefanie Stantcheva, Per Krusell, Oded Galor, Omer Moav, Tony Smith, Gustavo Ventura, Martin Gervais, Facundo Alvaredo, Peter Gottschalk, Sergio Firpo, Dirk Krueger, Fabrizio Perri, Amin Sufi, Kurt Minam, Greg Kaplan, Benjamín Moll, Makoto Nakajima, Antonia Díaz, Javier Díaz Giménez, Josep Pijoan, Laura Hospido, Jorge Onrubia, Olimpia Bover, Lee E. Ohanian, José- Víctor Ríos-Rull, Giovanni L. Violantel, Luis Ayala, Nacho González, Clara Martínez-Toledano, Miguel Artola or Enrico Moretti, among others, are not going to be, all wrong, right?
Free Higher Ed wouldn't enhance equity: students are disproportionately from high-income households, write Ghazala Azmat and Stefania Simion.
Article by Giuseppe Berlingieri, Holger Breinlich and Swati Dhingra: There has been a surge in the number of trade agreements over the past two decades. This column investigates the impact of trade agreements implemented by the EU between 1993 and 2013 and asks how consumers benefit from such agreements. The evidence shows that trade agreements increased quality by 7% on average but did not affect prices or variety. This translates into a cumulative reduction in consumer prices of 0.24%, equivalent to savings of €24 billion per year for EU consumers. Higher-income EU countries enjoyed much stronger quality increases and larger overall consumer benefits.
Following the Grenfell Tower fire in June 2017, LSE Housing and Communities were grant funded to bring together residents from multi-storey estates around the country to share their views on living in blocks of flats, document their experiences and the lessons learnt. There are many positive reasons why high-rise blocks were built and many people make secure, welcoming homes in those communities.
But the Grenfell fire disaster changed everything. It highlighted the lack of careful on-site management of high rise blocks, the poor standard of repair and upgrading, the inadequate checks and misapplied fire safety measures, the lack of clear information and guidance to tenants, the conflicting advice, and the barriers to tenants getting their worries, fears and experiences heard or acted on. The disaster also highlighted the lack of control over private lettings from Right to Buy owners converting to profitable private renting.
By gathering residents’ experiences, developing plans for estate upgrading, and collecting messages for landlords, professional bodies and government, we have been able to make an input into policy development among professionals and in government. Everyone recognises that the way social housing is run has to change and that tenants’ concerns need airing and acting upon.
A second Think Tank for professionals, landlords, policy making and residents added weight to the early findings. In all, 100 people attended. Many follow-on actions are already happening: some tower blocks have had their gas supply turned off for safety reasons; some have been evacuated; some are being stripped of expensive cladding; and tenants’ heating bills are inevitably rising as a result of insulation removal.
Launched today a summary of the overview report from this research programme is available here (pdf), the full report is now available: Child poverty and multidimensional disadvantage: Tackling “data exclusion” and extending the evidence base on “missing” and “invisible” children (pdf) by Polly Vizard, Tania Burchardt, Polina Obolenskaya, Isabel Shutes and Mario Battaglini.
An additional discussion paper focusing on Children from the Roma, Gypsy and Traveller ethnic minority group is also available: Experience of multiple disadvantage among Roma, Gypsy and Traveller children in England and Wales (pdf) by Tania Burchardt, Polina Obolenskaya, Polly Vizard and Mario Battaglini.