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OpenMarket: March 2018

  • Everything You Need to Know about the Clean Power Plan

    March 10, 2018

    West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, nineteen other state attorneys general, and the head of the Mississippi department of environmental quality recently filed a superb comment letter on the Environmental Protection Agency’s advance notice of proposed rulemaking entitled “State Guidelines for Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Existing Electric Utility Generating Units.” The notice requests information on a potential replacement rule for the so-called Clean Power Plan, which the Environmental Protection Agency plans to repeal...

  • European Food Safety Assessment Proves Nothing about Risks to Bees

    March 9, 2018

    As European Union risk assessments purportedly “confirm” that pesticides threaten honeybees and lawmakers quickly clamor for pesticide bans, the stark reality is that so far in this process, political concerns have been trumping science. In fact, politics has prevented scientists from considering the bigger picture, and, as a result, both bees and the world’s food supply will suffer. 

  • The Supreme Court Case That Would Catch the Law Up to Economic Reality

    March 9, 2018

    As more and more services move into platform business models as the lower transaction costs they facilitate increase consumer welfare, platform firms need assurance that the law understands how they operate, and does not unfairly hinder their development. While much more needs to be done to improve the regulatory environment for these companies, acknowledging the competitive structure of two sided markets is a significant step in the right direction.

  • More Evidence of Growth in February Job Figures

    March 9, 2018

    Today’s jobs numbers shattered expectations—313,000 new jobs in February against an expectation of 200,000. The numbers provide yet more support to the argument that supply side measures such as tax cuts and deregulation are working. Unfortunately, several questions remain as to whether this can continue.

  • Happy Birthday to Adam Smith's 'Wealth of Nations'

    March 9, 2018

    Being able to make voluntary transactions with others while having redress in the case of fraud sets the stage for larger, more complex, and longer-term market interactions which eventually are capable of generating the staggering wealth of a nation like the United States. To the extent that ordinary people are forbidden, threatened, taxed, and regulated to such an extent that they can’t buy and sell to their own advantage, wealth creation is choked off and nations are poorer because of it.

  • Trump's Recent Trade Decisions Could Spell Doom for the Economy

    March 8, 2018

    With President Trump’s announcement on steel and aluminum tariffs and his continued wrong-headed approach to trade policy, there are reasons to be concerned that a shift from free-market policies to more protectionist policies will erase any and all gains this administration has made on the economic front.

  • Tracking Public Opinion on Trump, Tariffs, and Trade

    March 8, 2018

    A Pew study noted that Republicans’ views on free trade shifted in a more negative way during the 2016 presidential campaign, while Democrats’ views largely remained constant. In May 2015, one month before Trump announced his candidacy, more Republican voters believed free trade agreements had been beneficial than harmful for the United States. In 2016, more Republicans believed free trade agreements adversely affected the United States than believed benefited. 

  • Don't Bring Net Neutrality Regulations Back from the Dead

    March 8, 2018

    Republicans on Capitol Hill are looking to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory with their recently introduced net neutrality legislation, Sen. John Kennedy’s (R-LA) Open Internet Preservation Act, a companion to last year’s bill by Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN).

  • The Government Killed Free Checking—Can Amazon Save It? 

    March 7, 2018

    Amazon's move into banking services spells good news for currently under-served consumers, who often rely on relatively expensive financial services such as payday lending or check cashing. While government regulation may have just about killed free checking, a new wave of innovative tech firms may be able to save it.

  • If the Payday Lending Rule Stays, Ability-to-Repay Does, Too

    March 6, 2018

    Many in the financial services industry seem to believe the CFPB's ability to replay rule doesn’t impact them and it’s not worth fighting. That is shortsighted. There is no reason to believe that the agency won’t impose the same burdensome regulations on other institutions in the future. 

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