In the NYT, Greg Mankiw presents an eight-point platform that presidential candidates should use to attract a majority of economists' votes. Here are the highlights:
- Support free trade;
- Oppose farm subsidies;
- Leave oil companies and speculators alone;
- Tax the use of energy;
- Raise the retirement age;
- Invite more skilled immigrants;
- Liberalize drug policy; and
- Raise funds for economic research.
The declining liquidity of the physical base of the reference crudes and the narrowness of the spot market has caused many oil-exporting and oil-consuming countries to look for an alternative market to derive the price of the reference crude. The alternative was found in the futures market.Easing up on speculators might win the votes of most economists, but that doesn't necessarily mean that those economists have any clue what they're talking about.