Co-Director at Center for Economic and Policy Research

Dean Baker co-founded CEPR in 1999. His areas of research include housing and macroeconomics, intellectual property, Social Security, Medicare and European labor markets. He is the author of several books, including Getting Back to Full Employment: A ... more

ALL CONTRIBUTIONS

The United States Is Not As Low Tax As It Seems
The actual amount the federal government pulls in as tax revenue is only a part of the way that it directs resources in the economy. Other countries employ these other devices as well, but not to the same extent as the U.S. government.
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Imagining Tax Debate Was In The Real World: Suppose Productivity Growth Is Already Up
The main claim of proponents of the Republican tax bill is that lowering corporate taxes will lead to a surge in corporate investment. This is supposed to lead to more rapid productivity growth and therefore higher wages.
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Yes, Wages Are Growing
The jobs report for October showed the unemployment rate falling to 4.1 percent, the lowest rate in almost 17 years.
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How Will Reducing U.S. Taxes On Foreign Operations To Zero "Lure" Companies To Bring Jobs Back To The U.S.?
While there is no plan at the moment, the reports to date have said the Republicans want to shift to a territorial tax under which companies don't pay U.S. tax on their foreign profits.
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Folks Who Believe In Secular Stagnation Don't Think The Trade Deficit Is Determined By The National Savings-Investment Balance
The idea of "secular stagnation," which means that the economy is suffering from a shortfall in demand, has been endorsed by numerous prominent economists, like Paul Krugman, Larry Summers, and Ben Bernanke.
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Inventories And Robots: Missing Story In Third Quarter GDP
One potentially very important item that seems to have been missed in the coverage of third quarter GDP was the pick-up in productivity growth implied by the GDP data.
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Latest Posts
WaPo Columnist Discovers That Blue States Have Higher Income Taxes
The current deduction means that the federal government effectively subsidizes 40 cents of every dollar that high income people in blue states pay in state income taxes. This makes it easier for them to raise taxes.

Work Experience

Co-Founder and Co-Director
Center for Economic and Policy Research
1999 - Present (19 years 2 months)
Co-Director
Economic Policy Institute
1999 - Present (19 years 2 months)

Education

Swarthmore College
History
1976 / 1981
BA

Publications

Getting Back to Full Employment: A Better Bargain for Working People
Jared Bernstein and Dean Baker
Center for Economic & Policy Research
11/14/2013

This book is a follow-up to a book written a decade ago by the authors, The Benefits of Full Employment (Economic Policy Institute, 2003). It builds on the evidence presented in that book, showing that real wage growth for workers in the bottom half of the income scale is highly dependent on the overall rate of unemployment. The book also documents another critical yet often overlooked side effect of full employment: improved fiscal conditions (without mindless budget policies like the current sequestration). Finally, the authors present a broad set of policies designed to boost growth and get the unemployment rate down to a level where far more workers have a fighting chance of getting ahead.

The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive
Dean Baker
Center for Economic and Policy Research
09/19/2011

Progressives need a fundamentally new approach to politics. They have been losing not just because conservatives have so much more money and power, but also because they have accepted the conservatives' framing of political debates. They have accepted a framing where conservatives want market outcomes whereas liberals want the government to intervene to bring about outcomes that they consider fair. This puts liberals in the position of seeming to want to tax the winners to help the losers. This "loser liberalism" is bad policy and horrible politics. Progressives would be better off fighting battles over the structure of markets so that they don't redistribute income upward. This book describes some of the key areas where progressives can focus their efforts in restructuring the market so that more income flows to the bulk of the working population rather than just a small elite.

Taking Economics Seriously
Dean Baker
The MIT Press
04/02/2010

There is nothing wrong with economics, Dean Baker contends, but economists routinely ignore their own principles when it comes to economic policy. What would policy look like if we took basic principles of mainstream economics seriously and applied them consistently?

Taking Economics Seriously offers an alternative Econ 101. It introduces economic principles and thinks through what we might gain if we free ourselves from ideological blinders and get back to basics in the most troubled parts of our economy.

False Profits: Recovering from the Bubble Economy
Dean Baker
Berrett-Koehler Publishers
01/15/2010

Despite reports that the recession may be over, the unemployment rate is more than ten percent and home foreclosures are at a record high. It’s no secret that the U.S. economy is in shambles because of the recent housing bubble. However, according to Dean Baker, Co-Director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, the people who looked the other way as the eight trillion dollar housing bubble grew unchecked are trying to rewrite history by downplaying the impact of the bubble. In Baker’s new book, False Profits: Recovering from the Bubble Economy, he recounts the strategies used by the country’s top economic policymakers to keep the American public unaware of their failure to recognize the housing bubble and to take steps to rein it in before it grew to unprecedented levels, resulting in the loss of millions of jobs, homes, and the life savings for tens of millions of people.

Plunder and Blunder: The Rise and Fall of the Bubble Economy
Dean Baker
Berrett-Koehler Publishers
01/01/2009

For the second time this decade, the US economy is sinking into a recession due to the collapse of a financial bubble. The most recent calamity is likely to produce a downturn deeper and longer than the stock market crash of 2001. Dean Baker argues not only that competent economists should have recognized the developing housing bubble, but also that policy makers and the media cheerfully neglected those economists who did predict danger. Baker doesnt engage in 20-20 hindsight, but documents the fundamental policy changes since 1980 that destabilized the economy and eroded the broad prosperity of the post-war period. His expert analysis explains the outcomes clearly so we can prevent similar financial disasters in the future.

The United States Since 1980
Dean Baker
Cambridge University Press
03/05/2007

This provocative book describes the sharp right turn the United States has taken following the election of Ronald Reagan as president in 1980. The treatment details how the policies pursued by the Reagan administration were a break from both the policies pursued by prior administrations and those pursued in other wealthy countries. The Reagan administration policies had the effect of redistributing both before- and after-tax income upward, creating a situation in which the bulk of the economic gains over the last quarter century were directed to a small segment of the population. The analysis explains how both political parties have come largely to accept the main tenets of Reaganism, putting the United States on a path that is at odds with most of the rest of the world and is not sustainable.

The Conservative Nanny State: How the Wealthy Use the Government to Stay Rich and Get Richer
Dean Baker
LULU
07/18/2006

Economist Dean Baker debunks the myth that conservatives favor the market over government intervention. In fact, conservatives rely on a range of “nanny state” policies that ensure the rich get richer while leaving most Americans worse off. It’s time for the rules to change. Sound economic policy should harness the market in ways that produce desirable social outcomes – decent wages, good jobs and affordable health care.

The Benefits of Full Employment: When Markets Work for People
Jared Bernstein and Dean Baker
Economic Policy Institute
06/07/2003

When the 1990s business cycle ended, so did full employment. In a very short time millions lost their jobs, and the unemployment rate shot back up. Many economists and policy makers will try to argue that the latter 1990s was an aberration and that we cannot realistically aspire to get back to the tight labor markets that prevailed during that time. But the lessons learned leave us with no justification for not pursuing a true full employment policy.

Social Security: The Phony Crisis
Dean Baker
University Of Chicago Press
01/03/2000

Is it true that the Social Security system is in serious trouble and must be repaired? As baby boomers begin to retire, will they inevitably, by force of their sheer numbers, bankrupt the system? Is Social Security a big Ponzi scheme that will leave future generations with little to show for their lifetime of contributions? Is the only way to solve the Social Security crisis through radical changes like privatization or bolstering it with massive new taxes?

According to the authors of this important new study, the answer to these questions is a resounding no. In Social Security: The Phony Crisis, economists Dean Baker and Mark Weisbrot argue that there is no economic, demographic, or actuarial basis for the widespread belief that the program needs to be fixed.