Yesterday Secretary Burwell of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced her intention to spend nearly $1billion ($840 million) over the next four years on the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative. This is notable not for the money — the Obama Administration is the gold standard in spending — but rather its stated objective: "to help clinicians achieve large-scale health transformation.
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services recently began the contracting process; bids to supply it with card stock for work permits and green cards over the next five years. This routine contract bid raised red flags, leading to speculation that President Obama is planning an aggressive executive action on immigration that is massive and unprecedented in scope.
Monday New York Fed President William Dudley laid down the law arguing that large financial institutions have continued ethical problem and remain under public suspicion years after the financial crisis. The bottom line was hard-hitting:
We had a couple of readers suggest tackling how to reform the burdensome regulatory system. It’s a good question, with two possible strategies for an answer. The first imagines rewinding the clock to 1776 and re-imagining the constitutional Legislative-Judicial-Executive mix. That might make a good novel, but I’ll follow the second branch; what could get done in the foreseeable future?
Among the numerous putative causes of last week’s equity market convulsions is the potential for European deflation. Deflation is the persistent widespread decline in prices (as opposed to a drop in the price of a particular product or service).
What Should the Fed Do? The equity and bond market volatility of the past two weeks have caused some to wonder how the Fed will react, or even advocate for the Fed to intervene.
Equity markets swooned yesterday, with the bellwether Dow dropping at the open, quickly losing over 300 points, bottoming out 460 points down, and ultimately recovering to close “only” 173 points down. This raises the natural question: why?
Crude oil prices closed yesterday at the lowest level since June 2012, down 4.6 percent to just under $82 per barrel. The slide is remarkable, especially in light of the ongoing geopolitical strife in the Middle East.
The focus is shifting back to infrastructure spending. In the U.S., the focus is driven by the need to reform and permanently fund the Highway Trust Fund, or perhaps give up on a dedicated funding mechanism and put highways into the regular appropriations process.
Paul Krugman has fanned the flames of the long-standing debate over “dynamic scoring." I didn’t pay much attention to the original column because I have my own “Krugman Scoring,” which is simply to reverse the sign and divide by 10, but there has been vocal pushback in Forbes, by the Tax Foundation’s Scott Hodge, and elsewhere. What is going on?