A Sobering Reminder of Economic Reality

The U.S. Census Bureau recently released data from the 2006 Puerto Rico Community Survey. This survey is the local equivalent of the American Community Survey that is carried out annually to update demographic, economic, housing, and social data at the state and county level in the United States.

The Current State of Industrial Policy in P.R.

Industrial policy is defined as any government initiative that (i) stimulates specific economic activities, (ii) promotes structural change from low productivity to higher productivity activities, and (iii) foments the change from traditional activities to more dynamic activities, regardless of whether those activities are located within industry or manufacturing per se.

Social Tolerance and Economic Growth

In 2005, Washington state considered enacting a bill to ban discrimination against gays and lesbians. Microsoft, one of the largest employers in that state, caved in to pressure from conservative groups and initially decided not to support the measure.

The ‘Puerto Rico Premium’: A Case Study

Local bankers and entrepreneurs have long complained of having to pay a “Puerto Rico premium” to entice U.S. and foreign investors to invest in the island. This premium often takes the form of a slightly higher yield or return on local investments that nonetheless have a risk profile similar to comparable investments in the United States.

Puerto Rico Budget Woes Continue

The data for net revenues received by the commonwealth government’s general fund during the first six months of fiscal year 2007-08 is in. Unfortunately, Puerto Rico’s budget problems remain unabated.

A Close Look at the Celtic Tiger

Academics, economists, politicians and other assorted talking heads usually hold up the Irish economy as a model for Puerto Rico to emulate. In the mid-1980s Ireland was referred to as the “economic basket case of Europe” but by 2001 it was spoken of in reverential tones; it has transformed into the fearsome “Celtic tiger”.

Puerto Rico’s Keynesian Paradox

John Maynard Keynes, the most influential economist of the first half of the 20th century, wrote in his seminal “General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money” (1936) that “practical men, who believe themselves to ve quite exempt from any intellectual influence, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist.”

Caguas: A World Leader in Asset Building

Last week, Mayor William Miranda Marín presented a voucher for opening a bank account to the mother of a newborn child in Caguas. This was the first installment of a city-wide program whereby the parents of all children born after July 1, 2007 to bona fide residents of Caguas will receive a $250 voucher that can be used to open a children savings account at a financial institution.