Ann Owen

In an American Public Media Marketplace “Morning Report” titled “Why isn’t the cost of borrowing money included in the consumer price index?,” Ann Owen, the Henry Platt Bristol Professor of Economics, commented on including the cost of money in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). She suggested that doing so would give Fed Chair Jerome Powell a big communication headache. “It would definitely cause complications for explaining monetary policy. And that’s not trivial,” she said.

Owen’s comments were consistent with those of former Harvard President and former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers who was quoted earlier in the segment. The segment was broadcast on more than 800 public radio stations nationwide on May 15.

Owen also just published “Hostile Sexism and the 2016 Presidential Election” in the Eastern Economic Journal with her former student Andrew Wei ’20 who began this research as an independent study during his senior year. Wei is currently a Ph.D. student at Cornell University.

One of their key findings was that Trump rallies are associated with a larger effect of sexism in that they don’t make people more sexist, but they seem to be associated with more people acting on their sexism in the voting booth. Using Google Trends to study sexism and its effect on the 2016 U.S. presidential election, they found that areas with more sexist attitudes were less likely to vote for Hillary Clinton and had lower overall voter turnout for Democrats.

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