Rent seeking

Does Wall Street Do “God’s Work”? Or Even Anything Useful?

Bank executives frequently proclaim that Wall Street is vital to the nation’s economy and performs socially valuable services by raising capital, providing liquidity to...

Rents and the High Cost of High Finance: Q&A with Gerald Epstein

New study estimates that the total costs of America’s flawed financial system–rents, misallocation costs, and the costs of the 2008 crisis–will add up to...

Death by Regulation: How Regulations that Once Protected the Taxi Industry Now Threaten its Existence

New study by researchers at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University highlights the need to rethink taxi regulations. “The natural progress of things,” Jefferson...

Political Rents and Profits in Regulated Industries

A new working paper by James Bessen from Boston University finds that much of the rise in corporate profits since 2000 was caused by political...

Market Power and Inequality: How Big Should Antitrust’s Role Be in Reducing Inequality?

Is the rise of wealth inequality in the United States related to a decline in competition? A new paper answers in the affirmative. Is the...

Is More Antitrust the Answer to Rising Wealth Inequality?

University of Michigan professor Daniel Crane: “The story that somehow antitrust law is dead, that it’s been killed, is wrong. It hasn’t. It’s very...

Productivity, Inequality, and Economic Rents

Curbing excessive economic rents might bolster productivity and address rising inequality. Productivity growth—a necessary (though not sufficient) condition for rising incomes in the long run—has...

New Study Finds Evidence That Rents Might Be Higher in the U.S. than in Europe

A new paper by Caroline Freund and Sarah Oliver from the Peterson Institute for International Economics explores the origins of the world’s billionaires, and...

Who are the 30 Worst Brokers in America When Measured By Misconduct?

The ProMarket blog seeks to provide indexes that make markets work better. The data on brokers’ misconduct supplied by FINRA is very detailed, but...

ProMarket Interview: Robert J. Shiller on Competition, Deception and Rent-Seeking

Yale economist and Nobel Prize Laureate Robert J. Shiller explains why competition in itself does not always weed out deception and rent-seeking. “Our free-market system...

Latest news

New Study Warns Antitrust Inaction May Lead To Acceptable Collusion for Public Policy Considerations

The modernization of EU antitrust laws muddied the water with regard to the ways that antitrust authorities and courts should handle situations...

Dark Money Dominates Spending by Special Interest Groups and Sways Elections

New research on undisclosed and unlimited political contributions, or dark money, exposes the increasing role that such funds play in U.S. elections.

The “Conspiracy” of Consumer Welfare Theory

Matt Stoller argues there was a conspiracy. It was more of an association with a singular purpose.

Researchers Find Reduced Competition After Pandemic

The chart of the week comes from a new research paper that documents the increase in small business closures during the Covid...

Voters Still Believe Politics is About the Common Good, Not Just Rent-Seeking

Do voters still believe that politics can be a source for common-good policies and not just partisan bickering and rent-seeking? With political...

How to Design Data Protection Laws That Actually Work 

More and more countries are passing data protection laws, yet empirical studies show that these laws rarely deliver on their promises. A...

Are Monopolists or Cartels the True Source of Anticompetitive US Political Power?

Trade associations are often the biggest obstacles to competitive markets, especially when those organizations use their influence to change public policy in...