Ryan Avent

Ryan Avent is The Economist's economics correspondent and the primary contributor to Free Exchange, an economics blog

  • Increase the Money in Circulation

    The Fed needs to buy more Treasury bonds and securities. As money in circulation rises, so too will the value of spending.

  • Trains for America

    Transportation secretary Ray LaHood has been having himself a nice little trip around Europe over the past few days to see what he can learn from…

  • Deja Vu All Over Again

    Today's must-read analysis comes from Tim Duy, who collects various circulating thoughts on the state of the macroeconomy into a remarkably clear…

  • If So-and-so Jumped Off a Bridge, Would You?

    Fun new research:In this paper we investigate whether peers' behavior influences the choice of college major, thus contributing to the mismatch of…

  • Expectation Anchors Aweigh

    Daniel beat me to the punch on Simon Johnson's latest writing, but hopefully he won't mind if I add a few additional thoughts. As Daniel notes,…

  • Working On Our Backwards Walk

    When telling a story, it's important to talk about past events in the past tense and present events in the present tense. Otherwise readers are…

  • Bond. Long Bond.

    It's extremely easy to get very deep in the weeds very quickly when talking about what's happening in the market for government bonds. "Steepening…

  • Why Not a National Sales Tax?

    As Daniel Indiviglio mentions, the idea of a national sales tax -- similar to the value-added tax (VAT) typical in European countries -- has grown…

  • Oil!

    I'm a recovery optimist -- to me, the shoots are always greener -- but when I get nervous about the prospects for a strong return to growth, it's…

  • I Swear, the Last One on Cap-and-Trade

    Really, it is. I'd just like to address a few additional comments from Will Wilkinson. He writes:Ryan evidently believes it is almost obvious that…

  • Out of the Ashes Rises ... Another Bubble

    The Phoenix metropolitan area marks the easternmost edge of the smoking crater that is the epicenter of the housing bust. While nearly every market…

  • Why Health Costs Make American Workers Less Competitive

    Greg Mankiw likes linking to this analysis (PDF) of employer-provided health coverage from CBO's Doug Elmendorf, in which it is said:[T]he costs of…

  • A Few Final Thoughts on Waxman-Markey

    I know, that title promises all the verve of a library's reference room. Apologies, but my entry last week on how to think about the climate bill…

  • How to Think About Waxman-Markey

    Tyler Cowen sent out the call for a cost-benefit analysis of the Waxman-Markey (W-M) climate bill making its way through Congress, and Jim Manzi…

  • Funny Muni

    Megan has been making her case for allowing the perennially fiscally stressed state of California to default on its debt, should it come to that. It…

  • Big (Credit Card) Bills on the Sidewalk

    The New York Times' Andrew Martin has a big story today on how credit card companies are worried that Congress is going to put the kibosh on their…

  • A Few Words About Inflation

    A lot of folks out there seem to be pretty worried about inflation, despite the fact that price levels have been flat for months and there's…

  • Beyond Gas

    A revealing disclosure -- one of the ways I've amused myself in recent months has been by tracking the movement of crude oil futures relative to…

  • Bank, Heal Thyself

    It's hard to get too far into a discussion about what to do with the nation's large and troubled banks without someone bringing up Japan (or Sweden;…


CrossFit Versus Yoga: Choose a Side

How a workout becomes a social identity


Is Technology Making Us Better Storytellers?

The minds behind House of Cards and The Moth weigh in.


A Short Film That Skewers Hollywood

A studio executive concocts an animated blockbuster. Who cares about the story?


In Online Dating, Everyone's a Little Bit Racist

The co-founder of OKCupid shares findings from his analysis of millions of users' data.


What Is a Sandwich?

We're overthinking sandwiches, so you don't have to.


Let's Talk About Not Smoking

Why does smoking maintain its allure? James Hamblin seeks the wisdom of a cool person.