The Bowtie Economist's Daily Dose of 70-Word Wisdom

Subsidized Transit


The DC Transit system’s (bus and subway) annual budget is $1.56 billion. Half the money comes from fares, half from subsidies. About 675,000 roundtrips are taken daily. That works out to an annual subsidy of $1,100 per rider. Capitalized, that…

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Dem Winners


The Friday File: Since ’09 NFL teams have given big bucks to politicians. The Texans gave the most at 293K, the Chargers were next at 172K and the Jets were 3rd at 148K. They also favored Rs 2 to 1…

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Profit Squeeze


Amazon recently announced earnings. And, while revenues and profit margins always change, ’11 was clearly not a banner year for earning. In Q4 ’11 Amazon had revenue of $17.4 billion but net income of only $177 million, a margin of…

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Rents on the Rise


Good News: Vacancy rates at malls averaged 9.4% in Q4 ’11 down from an 11 year high of 9.6% in Q3 ’11 but way up from the all-time low of 5.5% in ’07. Meanwhile vacancy rates at strip malls held…

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Motor Money


One reason car sales hit an annualized rate of 13.5 million units in December, the best showing in years, is lenders are chasing borrowers who are behind on their mortgages! From Q1 throughQ3 ’11 205K loans were made to buyers…

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Regime Change


Starting today, my emails posts are being sent using new technology. To that end, above this email is a “button” that allows you to opt out of receiving my posts. I hope you elect not to click it! For those…

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Gender Chores


The Friday File: According to a recent Bureau of Labor Statistics study, married full-time working childless women work 8 minutes more a day than their full-time working spouses if you include both office and housework. For similar couples with children…

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Quantitative Uneasy


While Bernanke undoubtedly wanted to do more in the way of monetary stimulus than he did, yesterday’s Fed’s decision to explicitly commit to keeping rates low through late ’14, was the best he could do in place of another round…

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Sluggish Economy


The IMF sees global growth in ’12 slowing to 3.25% from 4% in ’11. It’s because the 17 nation Euro-zone will contract by 0.5% and China’s growth will slow from 9% to 8.2%. Growth here is expected to be 2%;…

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Unintended Consequences


Since the first of the year, planes landing in or departing from Europe must pay a carbon tax based on the length of the flight, even if the flight does not originate or terminate in Europe. To reduce the tax,…

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