A very anecdotal point... I don't think we are. But this is strange. I'm grading the intro micro finals and there was one very open ended question about wheat prices, which increase from 2006 to 2008 and then decrease in 2009. It asks them to elaborate on what could be causing it, what information they'd want to know, etc.
I'm maybe a third through the finals and almost everyone so far has been referencing supply factors like droughts. Others that don't specifically mention supply side stuff are very good discussing substitute goods and ethanol taxes leading to the run up in prices from 2006 to 2008. These are bright kids (it's the honors class) and they've done well responding to the open-endedness of the question, but I think only one of them has mentioned aggregate demand issues.
What gives??? When I read the question about a price drop from 2008 to 2009 I figured there would be all kinds of discussion of changes in demand. Is it that they were just starting high school when the bottom fell out and this is just part of life? Very strange. I was thinking that this wouldn't have happened in the Depression - economist students would be responding to a question like this with all kinds of demand-side answers then. But then I remembered the dustbowl... and maybe that was the more galvanizing "event" to them too because it was more tangible and stark.
Anyway... grading is mostly drudgery, but occasionally it's an interesting exercise.
How Are These Times Different?
1 hour ago