The television program House Hunters on HGTV follows first-time homebuyers in their quest to find the perfect home. Host Mary Walden asks her husband NC State economist Mike Walden, “Besides being entertaining, are there some good economic lessons in this show?”
Raising children is probably the most important thing that parents do. But, anyone who has done it knows it is costly, both in terms of time and money. Every year the federal government publishes numbers estimating the money costs. Host Mary Walden asks her husband NC State economist Mike Walden, “What are the latest amounts?”
The recession crushed the wealth of many households. But numbers show that these losses have at least stopped in recent years. Host Mary Walden poses this question to her husband, NC State Economist Dr. Mike Walden: I suspect that like income, changes in wealth vary per different groups of households. Am I correct?
Some argue that one of the reasons for the relative slow economic recovery is that banks and other lenders still have very high standards that simply prohibit many from getting a loan. Since our economy revolves around credit, if borrowing is limited so will be economic improvement. Is this a valid issue? Host Mary Walden asks her husband, NC State Economist Dr. Mike Walden.
There is considerable optimism today about U.S. energy production. More oil wells are being drilled, and domestic oil production is skyrocketing. But we know oil is a limited resource. Won’t the production from new wells eventually run dry? Host Mary Walden asks her husband, NC State Economist Dr. Mike Walden.
The ability to borrow money for investments is crucial for the economy. Clearly borrowing can be overdone, but if consumers don’t borrow, the economy usually struggles. Host Mary Walden asks her husband NC State Economist Dr. Mike Walden, “Lending virtually stopped during the recession, so where are we now?”
Air travel has become common today, and in fact many businesses couldn’t survive without the ability to reach customers quickly through air flights. Host Mary Walden asks her husband, NC State economist Dr. Mike Walden, “Does this mean access to air transportation has become a major factor in a community’s economic development?”
As we enter the second half of 2014, economists like to update their forecast. Host Mary Walden asks her husband, NC State economist Dr. Mike Walden, about his bi-annual North Carolina economic outlook. “What does your crystal ball show for the economy over the next six months?” she says.
There appears to be heightened concerns about inflation today, according to host Mary Walden. Some point to the tremendous quantity of new money the Federal Reserve has engineered as the source of their fears, but others say, ‘not so fast.’ There may be a lingering break on inflation. She asks her husband, NC State economist Mike Walden, “What is this break?”
Host Mary Walden recently spent time in New York City with her husband, NC State economist Mike Walden. “We did a fascinating tour of Brooklyn and learned how some of that burrows neighborhoods have experienced a dramatic economic renewal How did they do it?” she asks.