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Did the stimulus work? A review of the nine best studies on the subject

Synthaholic

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Did the stimulus work? A review of the nine best studies on the subject




Here are the nine studies, organized by the conclusion and method used. Click on each one to see my summary of the study, how it reached its conclusions, and potential problems with its approach.




It worked (econometric):
Feyrer and Sacerdote. Chodorow-Reich, Feiveson, Liscow, and Woolston. Wilson.

It worked (modeling):
Congressional Budget Office. Council of Economic Advisors. Zandi and Blinder.

It worked a little bit (modeling):

Oh and Reis.

It didn’t work (econometric):

Conley and Dupor. Taylor.



As the descriptions above make clear, none of the studies are flawless. But while the optimistic studies do, in fact, support the conclusion that the stimulus worked, there is some reason to doubt that the pessimistic studies support the conclusion that it failed. Conley and Dupor found a negative effect on employment and output but, as they concede and critics of the study have emphasized, their results are not statistically significant. Taylor found that the stimulus did not increase government purchases significantly but, as Noah Smith argued, this result could be consistent with the stimulus increasing employment and output. Oh and Reis found a small multiplier for tax transfers of the kind found in the stimulus package, but as they concede, their model produces estimates for key figures that are empirically implausible. Using more plausible figures produces a significantly larger multiplier, meaning the package was more effective than the model initially suggested. Due to these issues, I’m inclined to believe that the preponderance of evidence indicates the stimulus worked.
 

Avorysuds

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Yes, it worked... at not meeting a single benchmark set but Obama and his team.
 
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Problem being that none of that dreck is falsifiable or objectively verifiable in any way.

But it surely did work for filling the coffers of state bureaucrat pension funds and feather the nests of AFSCME union goons.
Wow! You were able to read and analyze all nine studies in only 8 minutes, to come up with your conclusions?



Your opinions are preselected, predetermined, and wingnut approved.

Dismissed.
 

Flopper

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Did the stimulus work? A review of the nine best studies on the subject




Here are the nine studies, organized by the conclusion and method used. Click on each one to see my summary of the study, how it reached its conclusions, and potential problems with its approach.




It worked (econometric):
Feyrer and Sacerdote. Chodorow-Reich, Feiveson, Liscow, and Woolston. Wilson.

It worked (modeling):
Congressional Budget Office. Council of Economic Advisors. Zandi and Blinder.

It worked a little bit (modeling):

Oh and Reis.

It didn’t work (econometric):

Conley and Dupor. Taylor.



As the descriptions above make clear, none of the studies are flawless. But while the optimistic studies do, in fact, support the conclusion that the stimulus worked, there is some reason to doubt that the pessimistic studies support the conclusion that it failed. Conley and Dupor found a negative effect on employment and output but, as they concede and critics of the study have emphasized, their results are not statistically significant. Taylor found that the stimulus did not increase government purchases significantly but, as Noah Smith argued, this result could be consistent with the stimulus increasing employment and output. Oh and Reis found a small multiplier for tax transfers of the kind found in the stimulus package, but as they concede, their model produces estimates for key figures that are empirically implausible. Using more plausible figures produces a significantly larger multiplier, meaning the package was more effective than the model initially suggested. Due to these issues, I’m inclined to believe that the preponderance of evidence indicates the stimulus worked.
Success depends on how you define success. If you are one of the several million who got jobs since the stimulus package became law, then likely you see it as a success. But if you lost your job and remain unemployed, then it was certainly a failure.
 

Ravi

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Problem being that none of that dreck is falsifiable or objectively verifiable in any way.

But it surely did work for filling the coffers of state bureaucrat pension funds and feather the nests of AFSCME union goons.
Wow! You were able to read and analyze all nine studies in only 8 minutes, to come up with your conclusions?



Your opinions are preselected, predetermined, and wingnut approved.

Dismissed.
Certainly you haven't just noticed this?
 

boedicca

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By its own stated objectives (unemployment peaking at 8%), the stimulus was an epic fail.

It's also quite representative of why most government programs fail - they don't meet a measurable objective. In the private sector, such programs would be cancelled due to being Bad Investments.
 

Ravi

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By its own stated objectives (unemployment peaking at 8%), the stimulus was an epic fail.

It's also quite representative of why most government programs fail - they don't meet a measurable objective. In the private sector, such programs would be cancelled due to being Bad Investments.

And the businesses would have gone out of business.

The USA is not a business.
 
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Synthaholic

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By its own stated objectives (unemployment peaking at 8%), the stimulus was an epic fail.

It's also quite representative of why most government programs fail - they don't meet a measurable objective. In the private sector, such programs would be cancelled due to being Bad Investments.


Prove that first sentence.

And while you are failing to do that, maybe you can compile the total amount of state government workers who have been laid off by wingnut governors, and see if that accounts for the other 1-2% of unemployment.
 

Oddball

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You don't understand the concept of falsifiability, do you?
I understand the concept of wingnuts.
I'll score that a big "NO, I DON'T".

I'm sure you also don't understand that a famously politically biased op-ed writer just might cherry pick which studies he determined to be the "nine best".
 

Wiseacre

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By its own stated objectives (unemployment peaking at 8%), the stimulus was an epic fail.

It's also quite representative of why most government programs fail - they don't meet a measurable objective. In the private sector, such programs would be cancelled due to being Bad Investments.


Prove that first sentence.

And while you are failing to do that, maybe you can compile the total amount of state government workers who have been laid off by wingnut governors, and see if that accounts for the other 1-2% of unemployment.


From Wikipedia:

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
Acronym ARRA
Colloquial name(s) The Recovery Act, Stimulus
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, abbreviated ARRA (Pub.L. 111-5) and commonly referred to as the Stimulus or The Recovery Act, is an economic stimulus package enacted by the 111th United States Congress in February 2009 and signed into law on February 17, 2009 by President Barack Obama.

To respond to the late-2000s recession, the primary objective for ARRA was to save and create jobs almost immediately. Secondary objectives were to provide temporary relief programs for those most impacted by the recession and invest in infrastructure, education, health, and ‘green’ energy. The approximate cost of the economic stimulus package was estimated to be $787 Billion at the time of passage. The Act included direct spending in infrastructure, education, health, and energy, federal tax incentives, and expansion of unemployment benefits and other social welfare provisions. The Act also included many items not directly related to economic recovery such as long-term spending projects (e.g. a study of the effectiveness of medical treatments) and other items specifically included by Congress (e.g. a limitation on executive compensation in federally aided banks added by Senator Dodd and Rep. Frank).


Me:
President Obama, speaker Pelosi, Leader Harry Reid, and every other democrat within shouting distance of a microphone told us the stimulus bill would lower unemployment to below 8%. That was the supposed to be the primary objective as stated above. One can argue that many jobs were saved or created, but as you no doubt know the fact is that we have some 2 million fewer people employed now than we did then. Most people would label that as a failure.

Gotta ask, we were supposed to spend money on infrastructure out of this bill, where'd that money go? Why do we need more money on infrastructure?
 
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boedicca

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The only reason why Unemployment is not now well over 11% is because millions of people have given up looking for work. Only in Obamanomics would a Falling Labor Force Participation Rate be considered success.
 
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Synthaholic

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By its own stated objectives (unemployment peaking at 8%), the stimulus was an epic fail.

It's also quite representative of why most government programs fail - they don't meet a measurable objective. In the private sector, such programs would be cancelled due to being Bad Investments.


Prove that first sentence.

And while you are failing to do that, maybe you can compile the total amount of state government workers who have been laid off by wingnut governors, and see if that accounts for the other 1-2% of unemployment.


From Wikipedia:

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
Acronym ARRA
Colloquial name(s) The Recovery Act, Stimulus
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, abbreviated ARRA (Pub.L. 111-5) and commonly referred to as the Stimulus or The Recovery Act, is an economic stimulus package enacted by the 111th United States Congress in February 2009 and signed into law on February 17, 2009 by President Barack Obama.

To respond to the late-2000s recession, the primary objective for ARRA was to save and create jobs almost immediately. Secondary objectives were to provide temporary relief programs for those most impacted by the recession and invest in infrastructure, education, health, and ‘green’ energy. The approximate cost of the economic stimulus package was estimated to be $787 Billion at the time of passage. The Act included direct spending in infrastructure, education, health, and energy, federal tax incentives, and expansion of unemployment benefits and other social welfare provisions. The Act also included many items not directly related to economic recovery such as long-term spending projects (e.g. a study of the effectiveness of medical treatments) and other items specifically included by Congress (e.g. a limitation on executive compensation in federally aided banks added by Senator Dodd and Rep. Frank).


Me:
President Obama, speaker Pelosi, Leader Harry Reid, and every other democrat within shouting distance of a microphone told us the stimulus bill would lower unemployment to below 8%. That was the supposed to be the primary objective as stated above. One can argue that many jobs were saved or created, but as you no doubt know the fact is that we have some 2 million fewer people employed now than we did then. Most people would label that as a failure.

Gotta ask, we were supposed to spend money on infrastructure out of this bill, where'd that money go? Why do we need more money on infrastructure?
Is this your admission that Obama never claimed that it would decrease unemployment to under 8%?
 
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So, being a tad obsessive about fact over opinion, I read the article - mainly to answer my first question, which was:

How did the writer determine "the best". What methodology did he apply in order to establish the baseline of "the best". This is what I noticed:

Of the nine studies I’ve found....

So are they or are they not "the best" or are they just "the found"?
 
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Synthaholic

Synthaholic

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So, being a tad obsessive about fact over opinion, I read the article - mainly to answer my first question, which was:

How did the writer determine "the best". What methodology did he apply in order to establish the baseline of "the best". This is what I noticed:

Of the nine studies I’ve found....

So are they or are they not "the best" or are they just "the found"?
Find some others.
 

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