Wednesday, May 24, 2006

The Great Paper Clip Experiment

Here's the link to the Red Paperclip site: Just in case you want to follow it along.

If you want to follow your paperclip here on the blog, feel free. :)

Sunday, May 14, 2006

It's done!

Take a deep breath, pat yourself on the back. The test is over!

You have one week to get caught up on re-tests. I'm closing the retest books on Friday 5/19. You can turn your book in at any time.

You'll get your final project by the end of the week. Oh, and the paper clip thing.

Extra credit posts? Let's see where we go for the next few weeks.

Relax - you all worked very hard and did a great job. Now we just need to wait for the grading!

They have posted the FRQ online, but I haven't taken the time to really read through them yet. Our printer here at home is on the fritz and I always do better on paper copies. Go figure.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Some stuff

I sent all the notes to you via email - here are a couple links regarding rent:

And a couple of questions on labor inequalities:

1. Explain the difference between poverty defined absolutely and poverty defined relatively. Which definition is the basis of the poverty line?

2. Suppose each family in the US earned an equal money income. What would be the effect?

3. We have assumed that labor is supplied by individual workers acting competitively. In some markets, however, the supply of labor is determined by a union of workers.
a. Explain why the situation faced by a labor union may resemble the situation faced by a monopoly firm.
b. The goal of a monopoly firm is to maximize profits. Is there an analogous goal for labor unions?
c. Extend the analogy between monopoly firms & unions. How do you suppose that the wage set by a union compares to the wage in a competitive market? How do you suppose employment differs in the two cases?

4. College students sometimes work as summer interns for private firms or the government. Many of these positions pay very little or nothing.
a. What is the opportunity cost of taking such a job?
b. Explain why students are willing to take these jobs.If you were to compare the earnings later in life of workers who had worked as interns and those that had taken summer jobs that paid more, what would you expect to find?

5. Economist June O’Neill argues that “until family roles are more equal, women are not likely to have the same pattern of market work and earnings as men.” What does she mean by the “pattern” of market work? How do these characteristics of jobs and careers affect earnings?

I'll post some more reminders later on the earlier stuff for the national exam next week.


Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Graphs you need to know -

Here's that link for the Micro graphs you need to know for the exam:

Monday, May 01, 2006

Factor Markets

Here are some of the online notes for factor markets: on derived demand

On hiring workers:

1) In 2002, Boeing reduced employment by 33,000 workers. What does this decision reveal about how it viewed its MRP and MRC? Why didn't Boeing reduce employment by more than 33,000 workers? By less than 33,000?

2) Florida citrus growers say that the recent crackdown on illegal immigration is increasing the market wage rates necessary to get their oranges picked. Some are turning to $100,000 to $300,000 mechanical harvesters known as "trunk, shake and catch" pickers, which vigorously shake oranges from the trees. If widely adopted, what will be the effect ont eh demand for human orange pickers? How does a national day of protest, such as today (5/1/06), affect the labor supply and demand?

3) As output rises, which MRP curve declines more quickly - the MRP of the perfect competitor or the MRP of the imperfect competitor? Make sure to explain your answer.

4) In April of 2000, average hourly earnings in manufacturing rose to $13.71, up from $9.80 of ten years earlier. All else equal, such an increase in wages would be expected to reduce the demand for labor, and employment should fall. Instead, the demand for labor has increased dramatically with more than 20 million jobs being created during the decade of the 1990's. How can you explain this seeming discrepancy?

5) Derek Jeter was the highest paid professional baseball player in 2000. Who is the highest paid baseball player today? How much of an increase has there been since Jeter signed his contract? Are baseball players paid too much? Why or why not? Is there an explanation for why salaries have increased so much in recent years? Who sithe highest paid professional basketball player today? Do baseball players make, on average, more or less than basketball players? Why? What does this have to do with the ideas of labor markets that we've talked about since Friday?