About the Author

Beth Tallman

Beth Tallman entered the working world armed with an MBA in finance and thoroughly enjoyed her first career working in manufacturing and telecommunications, including a stint overseas. She took advantage of an involuntary separation to try teaching high school math, something she had always dreamed of doing. When fate stepped in once again, Beth jumped on the opportunity to combine her passion for numbers, money, and education to develop curriculum and teach personal finance at Oberlin College. Beth now spends her time writing on personal finance and financial education, conducts student workshops, and develops finance curricula and educational content. She is also the Treasurer of Ohio Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy.

Author: Beth Tallman

EconExtra: Headline Statistics are Often Misleading--Dig Deeper and Question

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Jun 12, 2021
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Economics
As a former statistics teacher, I know how easy it is to lie or mislead with statistics. There were a couple of articles making headlines this week that give us the chance to make the point that we must look behind the headline statistics to get a clearer picture of what is going on.   In terms of May inflation at 5% year-over-year, we must discuss the “base effect.” The graph below from the New York Times article on the CPI illustrates this phenomenon. If you look at 2020,...

Reading List for June 11-13

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Jun 11, 2021
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Investing, Economics, Employment, Paying for College, Taxes, Advocacy
Investing “The Mystery of the $113 million Deli” provides insight into the mechanics of SPACs while resolving this mystery. (NYT-Sunday) Here is the CNBC article on adding I-Bonds to your portfolio (following one from the Wall Street Journal in last week’s list.) Inflation figures haven’t spooked the market as the S&P 500 hit a new record yesterday. (CNBC) Have you heard of the banking app “Dave?” It is backed by Mark Cuban and will go public via a SPAC....

Reading List for June 4-6

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Jun 04, 2021
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Economics, Investing, Student Loans, Retirement
Economics Ed Yardeni, president of Yardeni Research, seems to agree with economists previously cited in reading lists and EconExtras that inflation may go up temporarily as economy starts back up, but demand and therefore prices will cool down soon. (CNBC) This New York Times presents lots of economic indicators (graphs) to evaluate the recovery so far. Unemployment claims dropped to under 400,000 last week. (Reuters) May jobs report showed payroll increase of 559,000 and unemployment at 5.8%....

EconExtra: Do Vaccine Lotteries Make Economic Sense?

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May 29, 2021
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Economics
EconExtra is a series of posts that go beyond the textbook, relating current events and recent developments in economics to content standards, and providing resource suggestions to help you incorporate the current events into your lessons.   The Headlines From Vax-a-Million to Vax and Scratch to Take Your Shot, vaccine-based lotteries and other incentive programs are popping up across the country. Ohio came up with its Vax-a-Million lottery in mid-May to bring up the vaccine numbers. It was...

Reading List for MDW 2021

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May 28, 2021
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Financial Literacy, Economics, Investing, Paying for College
Economics Personal Consumption Expenditures Index jumped 3.6% in April (core up 3.1%) year-over-year. (CNBC) For more on the PCE and why it is important (this is the metric the Fed relies on as an inflation measure), check out this MarketPlace article. And for even more fine-tuning, check out this Cleveland Fed post on their measure: Median PCE. Initial jobless claims dropped for the fourth week in a row to 406,000. (Yahoo Finance) Of Dollars and Data takes a closer look at the financial...

EconExtra: Oh my! Look at April’s CPI!

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May 22, 2021
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Economics
EconExtra is a series of posts that go beyond the textbook, relating current events and recent developments in economics to content standards, and providing resource suggestions to help you incorporate the current events into your lessons.   The Headline   “Inflation speeds up in April as consumer prices leap 4.2%, fastest since 2008” CNBC Does this mean that we are now experiencing inflation to a degree that is cause for concern, or is this a temporary phenomenon as the...

Reading List for May 21-23

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May 21, 2021
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Current Events, Cryptocurrencies, Investing, Economics
  100th Anniversary of the Tulsa Massacre Next weekend marks the 100th anniversary of the destruction of Tulsa. Morning Brew takes a look at “Black Wall Street” today, 100 years later, with a series of five excellent articles. (List titles) Black Investors Trade Their Way Through the Pandemic In Finance, 'People of Color are Shut Out Before They Ever Get In' Why Banking With Greenwood Is About More Than the Money 8 Charts that Explore Racial Disparities in the Banking Industry...

EconExtra: Why Was The April Job's Report So Disappointing?

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May 15, 2021
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Economics
The Headlines After significant gains in jobs reported in March, April’s increase of 266,000 was a caught many who predicted the figure to be a million by surprise.   With the economy appearing to be making a strong recovery, vaccinations hitting a critical mass, and everyone ready to get back to life more like it once was, the April number was confounding. Furthermore, the March gain was revised down from 916,000 to 770,000. Many (Fed and White House) urge caution in jumping to...

Reading List for May 14-16

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May 14, 2021
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Taxes, Economics, Investing, Cryptocurrencies, Budgeting
The delayed tax deadline is Monday. So let’s start this week’s list with one on Taxes. 5 tax tasks to take care of by May 17 (Don't Mess With Taxes)   Economics Here are several articles discussing the Consumer Price Index jump in April. CNBC covers the basics and the NYT (I highly recommend reading anything by Jeanna Smialek) provides a bit more analysis. The WSJ discusses Fed Governor Waller’s comments on the number, and also discusses which components of the CPI may...

Reading List for May 7-9

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May 07, 2021
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Investing, Economics, Financial Literacy, Identity Theft
Financial Literacy Market Watch covers the research explaining the gender gap in financial literacy (confidence).     Investing It’s the season of annual shareholder meetings. Here are the highlights from this year’s address by Buffet and his team. (Yahoo) The market is still going gangbusters. Here is a trio of posts on the growth: Reuters discusses the midweek bounce and economic data. The NYT explains why the proposed tax increase isn’t dampening enthusiasm....

Reading List for April 30-May 2

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Apr 30, 2021
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Financial Literacy, Economics, Investing
Financial Literacy Month This story from Hawaii explains how parents are using apps to teach their kids about money when schools don’t. (KITV) This Atlanta Fed article highlights research that concludes children form money habits by the age of seven and describes a few resources that can be used with younger kids.   Economics First quarter GDP figures came out at 6.4%, leaving the economy just 1% below it’s pre-pandemic high. (AP) (NYT-graph below from this article)  ...

EconExtra: Building a Pipeline for Future Economists

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Apr 23, 2021
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Economics, Career
Education has been an important initiative across the entire Federal Reserve System (the Board of Governors and the twelve district Banks). I’m sure you have all know your way around federalreserveeducation.org for resources for your students, have used econlowdown®, or perhaps attended Fed-sponsored professional development or tuned in to a Fed webinar. And while most Federal Reserve banks contribute educational resources and programming for students and in support of teachers, this...

Reading List for April 23-25

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Apr 23, 2021
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Financial Literacy, Cryptocurrencies, Economics, Investing
Financial Literacy More experts weigh in on the importance of teaching personal finance to students before they leave high school. (CNBC)   Cryptocurrency What is Coinbase, and how do you use it? (CNBC) Cryptocurrencies took a beating this week. Find out why. (USAToday)(Yahoo Finance) What is the deal with Dodgecoin? (Yahoo Finance)   Economics The newest Federal Reserve Governor makes his economic outlook public. (CNBC) Speaking of the Fed, some are criticizing the politically...

Reading List for April 16-18

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Apr 16, 2021
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Financial Literacy, Investing, Economics
Financial Literacy Month According to a new survey from Step, 97% of GenZ think financial literacy is important. (Yahoo Finance) The American Banker is suggesting to its bank and credit union constituents that financial literacy is the key to attracting a broader base of customers.   Investing CoinBase had a successful IPO this week (AP News), as did online betting company Esports (Seeking Alpha). What does the Coinbase listing means for the price of bitcoin and other...

EconExtra: "I want to be an Economist when I grow up" said no 5-year old ever.

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Apr 10, 2021
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Economics, Career
The Issue While there is no particular group of headlines inspiring this post on the economics profession, the continuing pandemic showcases economists and their models. Even the models used to predict cases and deaths use econometric methods. (Read about those models here.) Think of all the disruptions to the economy caused by the pandemic and the forecasts of their impact that have been in the news since the start.  Economists are doing that work too.   Studying economics in high...