Author: CameronDaniels

Paying Down Student Loans Versus Paying Down Other Investments

Tying to an article earlier that my colleague PKamp3 wrote, personal finance seems to have taken a dive in popularity in more recent years. As a writer for a confessedly self-aware personal finance crowd, this assertion may seem irrelevant, surprising, or, at worst, alarming. As a young college graduate, many of my fellow coworkers (as well as I) have student loans as one of their more significant financial obligations on top of car loans and (soon) mortgages. Some plan on paying down their student loans as fast as possible to deleverage themselves and then start saving for a home. I am of a different and not necessarily correct opinion: to hold onto the student loans for as long as possible due to their incredibly low interest rate and tax-deductibility for incomes up to $60,000 (partial deductions up to $75,000).

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Simpson's Paradox: Why Averages Aren't Everything!

In this article, Cameron Daniels explains that the small decrease in poverty levels from 13.3% to 12.8% from 1967 to 2003 (36 years!) is not so bad as it initially seems as Simpson's Paradox rears his ugly head.

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Racial Bias in Foul Rates among NBA Referees

In early May 2007, a study gained publicity that claimed NBA referees altered their habits of calling fouls based on the racial makeup of the offending players. Maria Rainier helped write an article about discrimination in gender, I felt that it would be appropriate to continue the discussion with a look at racial bias.

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Live Blog on 11/2 Midterm Elections

Live blogging for the midterm 2010 elections. Keep refreshing! 5-10 minute updates.

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Fantasy Football Scheduling Luck

It's October and fantasy football is in full swing. Fantasy football, for the neophytes out there, is a game played by fans of the NFL who select players to fill a simulated team and then are awarded points based off of their real life performance. It has left an indelible mark on the viewing patterns and marketing techniques of NFL firms. Over 27 million people play today, leading Jake Plummer to claim that "it has ruined the game".

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Tax Incidence: Who Ultimately Pays the Price?

The incidence of a tax (who truly pays for it) is very significant in welfare analysis. Cameron Daniels analyzes this concept using the real life example of gas prices.

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Substitution vs. Income Effect (and its Implications)

Substitution and Income Effect: These two terms are very familiar to anybody who has taken an intermediate course in macroeconomics. With the recent articles regarding volunteerism and labor statistics, I thought that it was very timely to write on these two very important concepts.

Let's start with a thought experiment: if you were to receive a 10% increase in your hourly wage, would you increase, decrease, or maintain your hours worked? Believe it or not, any answer is correct, despite many assumptions regarding the positive slope of labor supply curves. The reason that any answer is correct lies in an understanding of substitution and income effects.

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Comparing Forms of Entitlement Programs, Part II

In my previous article, I compared some of the advantages and disadvantages of different methods of "welfare".  Near the end, it seemed that the Earned Income Tax Credit was clearly the best option, especially as compared to the only other possible method, that of the Living Wage.  There is one important, and significant, advantage to […]

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Comparing Forms of Entitlement Programs, Part I

One of the most contentious issues of the past couple of decades has regarded policy debates on how to benefit lower-income individuals (colloquially referred to as ‘Welfare’ programs). This article will not deal with the benefits or disadvantages of Welfare programs in general, but instead will compare the various forms of implementing Welfare. Also, I will show (in the next article) a very important unintended consequence that arises from the current preferred Welfare program, the Earned Income Tax Credit.

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On Cigarette Laws and Pigovian Taxes, Part II

This is part two of a two part series discussing cigarette laws and pigovian taxes. Pigovian taxes are excise taxes placed on a market to correct a market income, presumably because a negative externality such as health risk or pollution that is inherent in the good traded.

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