The Connection between Business Investment and Unemployment, Revisited

In my previous post I discussed the very close inverse relationship between business investment and unemployment pointed out by John Taylor in his February 4, 2013 blog entryPaul Krugman pointed out that that investment can be subdivided into residential and nonresidential components and that residential investment shrunk dramatically during the Great Recession.  According to Krugman, this invalidates Taylor’s conclusion that the best way to boost the economy is to boost business investment.

But Taylor has done further analysis which shows that it is the nonresidential component of total fixed investment which has the very close inverse relationship with unemployment, not the residential component.

In other words, the best way to boost the economy, and thereby increase employment, is to stop giving excuses for our slow recovery because of low housing prices and to motivate businesses in general to increase investment.  There are various ways to do this, as pointed out by many commentators including myself and, the important thing, is to increase movement in this direction.

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