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Policy Issues

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  • Medical and health insurance claim form with stethoscope on clipboard May 25 CBO Scores the GOP Healthcare Bill as Labor and Trade Data Released

    The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has completed its summary of the revised GOP healthcare bill and found that it would leave 14 million more Americans uninsured in 2018 and as many as 23 million more without insurance in 2026. This as the Labor Department has found that the market is still strong, with jobless claims at their lowest levels since 1973. Trade data from April was also released, showing a widening deficit.

  •    Penn Wharton PPI Faculty Affiliate, Professor Barbara E. Kahn                   May 24 How Amazon is Doing Retail Differently

    Amazon’s expansion into brick and mortar retail outlets is commented on by Faculty Affiliate Professor Barbara Kahn. She discusses how Amazon’s retail locations are differentiated from their competitors’.

    “What [Amazon wants] to do to be efficient is to have the consumer take control of that last mile,” Kahn said. “If you can make it convenient for the customer to pick up the groceries, then they’re handling the last mile.”

  • Penn Wharton PPI Faculty Affiliate, Professor Howard Kunreuther May 24 Are We Ready for California’s Big Earthquake?

    Faculty Affiliate Howard Kunreuther comments on why we underprepare for natural disasters as California is overdue for an earthquake on the San Andreas Fault.

    “The challenge really is we are myopic,” he says. “We focus on the short run and as a result don’t really think about any kind of long-term decisions … about how we prepare.”

  • Mick Mulvaney, the White House Budget Office Director, addresses the press pool on the recent budget proposal. May 24 Fed Holds Steady as White House Budget Predicts Booming Economy

    The Federal Reserve decided not to raise rates today due to the slowdown in consumer spending that took place earlier in the year. The Fed believes that the economy is still healthy, however, and may decide to raise rates in June. Meanwhile, the President’s budget is being further analyzed. Massive cuts to Medicaid and food assistance programs coupled with increases in spending on Defense and border security define the budget, but it is receiving criticism for overly optimistic economic growth assumptions.

  • Congress will be considering tax reform, infrastructure spending, and health care in the coming months. May 23 Congress Weighs Future Legislation while Experts Gauge Economy’s Health

    The GOP is looking ahead at tax reform cautiously after running into roadblocks with the American Health Care Act. Meanwhile, their colleagues in the Progressive Caucus are planning to release an infrastructure plan with more direct spending than the anticipated White House plan. The White House’s budget proposal is also facing scrutiny from many economists while the Federal Reserve is gauging the health of the economy before its June meeting.

  • Ethan Mollick is the Edward B. and Shirley R. Shils Assistant Professor of Management at the Wharton School of the Univers... May 23 The Ineffectiveness of Crowdfunding Consultants

    Professor Ethan Mollick discusses the unpredictable and complex process of crowdfunding and the consulting companies that have sprung up to service it.

    “Anyone who tells you they know is wrong. I cannot find any factors that predict virality and I’ve got all the data,” said the creator of the Wharton Crowdfunding Survey.