美国小业主行会叫NFIB（National Federation of Small Business）信心3月还是不妙，有跌破经济萧条界线的意味：
今年三月《金融时报》有一部中国经济概论的专栏，起了个吓唬人的标题叫做“中国奇迹的尾声（The end of the Chinese miracle）”，描述了中国经济崛起的奇迹，在城乡大移民、城市化这一宏大的背景下以“廉价劳动力”为基础的经济发展模式走到了尽头，除了信贷泛滥，产能过剩的，市场全面通缩（deflation）外，中国经济还进入了经济学家们常说的“路易斯拐点”（Lewis Turning Point），就是说农村能提供的劳动力已经到了尽头，没法再城市化，给经济不停滞的发展提供动力。
China’s labour force is shrinking and the “migrant miracle” that powered its industrial rise is mostly exhausted, removing the factors that propelled the country’s meteoric development, according to leading economists.
The transformation will lead to slower growth, reduced investment and a loss of export competitiveness, they warn, increasing the urgency of implementing ambitious economic reforms aimed at finding new sources of expansion.
Today the Financial Times begins a series of articles on the end of the migrant miracle — the three decades of breakneck economic growth fuelled by the unprecedented migration of labour from the unproductive farm sector to work in factories and on construction sites.
Broad consensus has emerged that China has reached its “Lewis Turning Point” — the point at which the once-inexhaustible pool of surplus rural labour dries up and wages rise rapidly. Nobel-prize winning economist Arthur Lewis argued in the 1950s that a developing country with surplus agricultural labour could develop its industrial sector for years without wage inflation as it absorbed that surplus.
“Now we are at the so-called Lewis inflection point. I made this forecast in 2006, and today there is no need to change it,” said Ha Jiming, chief investment strategist for private wealth management at Goldman Sachs in Hong Kong and formerly chief economist at China International Capital Corp, the country's first Sino-foreign joint venture investment bank.
“The working-age share of China’s population peaks this year at 72 per cent, then it will start to fall rapidly, even more rapidly than what we saw in Japan in the 1990s,” he added.
Cai Fang, vice-president of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, a think-tank that advises the government, estimates that China’s potential gross domestic product growth decreased from 9.8 per cent in 1995-2009 to 7.2 per cent in 2011-15 and 6.1 per cent from 2016-20.
A shrinking labour force is one of the main drivers. Since Deng Xiaoping launched market reforms in 1978, 278m migrant workers from rural villages have moved to work in the cities.
But reallocating labour from farm to factory — resulting in higher overall growth as workers’ productivity soars — is now mostly complete.
“From 2005 to 2010, the growth rate of migrant workers was 4 per cent. Last year it was only 1.3 per cent. Maybe this year it will contract,” said Mr Cai.
China faces the more difficult task of raising productivity within the urban sector through improved capital allocation, technology and management acumen.
The second trend is an ageing population and the effects of the one-child policy, which has started to influence the number of young workers entering the labour force. As in developed countries such as Germany and Japan, the ranks of the elderly are rising. Ma Jiantang, director of China’s National Bureau of Statistics, said the population aged 15 to 60 peaked in 2011.
“The excess rural surplus labour is nearly exhausted — China is reaching its Lewis Turning Point,” the World Bank said last year.
Economists debate the precise date of the turning point based on inconsistent data and contrasting theoretical models. Some say that due to varying regional labour market conditions, it is more precise to speak of a “turning period” rather than a single point. But the basic measure is not in doubt.
“The fact that we have now passed the Lewis Turning Point is 100 per cent,” said Ross Garnaut, an economist at Australian National University and co-editor of a collection of papers on China.
1929 - Arnold Reuben, owner of the legendary Turf Restaurant at 49th and Broadway in New York City, claimed that his family developed the first cream-cheese cake recipe. Other bakeries relied on cottage cheese. According to legend, he was served a cheese pie in a private home, and he fell in love with the dessert. Using his hostess’ recipe and a pie she made with ingredients he provided, he then began to develop his own recipe for the perfect cheesecake. Reuben soon began to serve his new recipe in his Turf Restaurant, and the cheesecake quickly became very popular with the people who frequented Reuben’s Broadway restaurant.
43% of the roughly 22 million Americans with federal student loans weren’t making payments as of Jan. 1
（美国）学生债总数目过1万2千亿，超过了信用卡债，人均35000美元(据此文，“That number jumps to $51,000 for a master’s degree, $71,000 for a Ph.D. and $207,000 for medical school”）。经济学家把学生债居高认作是美国经济的一大障碍，青年人不愿意、没能力成家（生孩子）购房，经济发展就少了个重要的推力。当然了，学生债只是美国社会的一个缩影，据盖勒普调查： Americans Are Buried Under a Mountain of Debt
《路透社》Millennials face debt - and denial
《彭博》Can You Use Student Loans to Go on Spring Break?
"To me, it's not the proper use, but taxpayers aren’t necessarily being ripped off by a small number of students who are mismanaging their money," Draeger said of students who use loans for vacations. "Federal loans and private education loans get repaid. I’m not saying it’s not a problem, but if we overreact to the problem, I’m not sure we create any real solutions. The whole idea of student aid is to get people who would otherwise not have attended into college. If we put too many barriers up, we squeeze out those at-risk, on-the-fringe students."
As a senior, Almon was given a loan check of $1,500. He took a third of it and planned a spring break vacation.
"When I got out of school, those first couple years, working and paying down those student loans...it was kind of painful," he said. "Even though I was making some sacrifices to pay that money back, I do not for one second regret that money I spent to go to Cancún."