Comic Relief In Jackson Hole


Brown Capuchin Monkey

Comedians from the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) have hedge fund traders and financial bloggers snickering, including this must-read example at Mish’s Global Economic Trend Analysis.

Some of their economic positions as committee members at NBER are highlighted in this Bloomberg article and summarized below:

  • In April 2010, issued a statement that it was too soon to conclude the end of the recession that began December 2007 (read: a recovery has yet to occur)
  • This weekend in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, stated there is between 5% and 33% chance of a double dip recession (question: doesn’t a double dip recession necessitate an end of the first recession and a subsequent recovery?)
  • Forecasts 2011 second quarter GDP growth of 1.1% (question: what is their forecast of third quarter and fourth quarter 2010 GDP growth?)
Perhaps the NBER should take note regarding the hot seats on which several financial and economic advisors sit (e.g. Treasury Secretary Geithner; current and outgoing members of the Council of Economic Advisers in the Obama Administration, Summers and Romer, respectively).

Or, better yet, just hire a few brown capuchin monkeys from Associate Professor Laurie Santos, who runs the Comparative Cognition Laboratory at Yale University. 

Just saying.

——————————————————- Further resources:
●  “Laurie R. Santos, Yale Psychology Faculty.” Yale University. July 2010. Web.
●  Laurie Santos: A Monkey Economy as Irrational as Ours | Video on TED: Ideas worth Spreading. July 2010. Web.
●  Markey, Sean. “Monkey Research: Monkeys Show Sense of Justice.” National Geographic News, 17 Sept. 2003. Web.


  1. Does Feldstein convey that kind of logic teaching kids in ec 10 at Harvard? He’s got the intelligence to know better, so it appears he, some peers and NBER are being disingenuous. I suppose it’s a transparent attempt to influence market sentiment in the positive direction.

  2. If 1.1% GDP growth is the forecast for 2nd Q next year then that might indicate an increase in unemployment, because many suggest the breakeven growth to maintain employment levels is 2.5% GDP growth

  3. I’d hire the psychology professor and her monkeys before hiring any of the advisers you mentioned.

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