Economics 101, Section 008, Professor Salemi
Principles of Economics

Fall Semester, 2009
Cost Benefit Principle
Most recent posting: December 21, 2009

Final Posting. Merry Christmas.
Final Grades Have Been Submitted.
A Report on Final Grades.


Class Lectures:   Tuesday and Thursday,  12:30-1:45, CA 111 (Carroll Hall)

Class Recitations:  Times and places of recitations will appear here.

Michael K. Salemi
204 Gardner Hall, 966-5391 (office), 929-9504 (home),

Course Information (Links will be activated as the documents for Fall 2009 become available.
The course Fact Sheet and Syllabus explains the goals and rules of the course, organizes its by topics, and provides an expanded reading list..
The Lecture Calendar provides a class-by-class list of topics and reading assignments. 

The Recitation Calendar provides a week-by-week schedule of recitation sessions.
The List of Recitations provides times, places, and teaching assistants of each recitation section.
TA Contact Information reports teaching assistant office locations, office hourse, and contact  information.

Revision of Course Policies Due to Outbreak of H1N1 Flu

Peer Tutoring 
Professor Byrns has organized help sessions that use undergraduate Teaching Assistants and
are available to students in all sections of Econ 101.  Please follow the link to see a schedule of opportunities.

Final Grades
The Participantion Point Memo explains how recitation points and clicker points were computed and gives grade thresholds for each.
The Participation Point Report reports clicker points and recitation points for students as a function of their course clicker numbers.

In this course, students are required to have a student response pad and to enroll it for use the pad in this course.  Students will use the pad in lectures to answer questions, complete surveys, and participate in class activities.  Students are required to have their response pad with them for every lecture.  No make up opportunites are offered for points missed because students did not have their reponse pads.  The clicker enrollment memo explains how students may link their response pads to our course. Please use your proper first and last names and enter your UNC PID (without hyphen) as your CPS Online student ID.  Thanks.

A student's eInstruction ID should be their UNC PID (without the dash). Students who do not have a correct eInstruction ID
will not receive clicker points for the course.


Midterm Examination One, In Class, Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Midterm One Practice Questions   Midterm One Form A (1201, White & Yellow)   Midterm One Form B (1200, Blue and Green)
Midterm Exam Appeals Policy

Midterm Examination Two, In Class, Tuesday November 3
Midterm Two Practice Questions   Midterm Two Form A (6222, Blue Yellow)  Midterm Two Form B (6221, White Green)
Midterm Exam Appeals Policy

Final Examination, Friday, December 18, noon-3:00 p.m. in Carroll 111
Final Exam Practice Questions.

Final Exam Help Sessions

will be held between 5:00-6:30 PM in Gardner 307 on the following days.
While one member of our TA team will conduct each session, all students are welcome at all sessions.

December 13   Dimitris
December 14   Umut
December 15  Serkan
December 16  Ezequiel
December 17  Matt

Salemi Final Exam Period Office Hours
December 14-16, 4:00-5:00 PM, 204 Gardner

Required Supplemental Readings  (Discussion questions are posted below each reading)
        The Wealth of Nations, Chapters 1-4, Adam Smith
          Discussion Questions for Smith

       "The Economic Organization of a P.O.W. Camp," R. A. Radford
          Discussion Questions for Radford

       "Emissions Trading versus CO2 Taxes," by Parry and Pizer
       "The Trouble with Markets for Carbon," by James Kanter

       "U.S. Monetary Policy: An Introduction," Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco
Selection of Newspaper Articles Student Suggestions are Encouraged
    "The Opportunity Cost of Economic Education,"  Robert Frank, New York Times, September 1, 2005
    "Man Trades Paper Clip into a House,"  Suggested by Naveed Hassan  
    "To Reduce the Cost of Teenage Temptation, Why Not Just Raise the Price of Sin?", NYT, July 25, 2005
    "Cigarette Sales Fall after Tax Kicks In," Raleigh N&O, November 22, 2006.  Suggested by Andrew Dunn.
    "Mackerel Economy in Prison Leads to Appreciation for Oily Filelts," Wall Street Journal, October 2, 2008 Suggested by Kumara Sundar
    "U.S. Adds Tariffs on Chinese Tires," New York Times, September 12, 2009, Suggested by Tony Wu
    "U.S. Cost-Saving Policy Forces New Kidney Transplant," New York Times, September 14, 2009, Suggested by Allison Cummings
    "Fixed Textbook Prices Trap Student Stores," Daily Tar Heel,  September 14, 2009, Suggested by Frank Ferro.
    "Finally a Business that is Too Busy," New York Times, September 14, 2009, suggested by Erin Sturgess.
    "Chewy Chicken Feet May Quash a Trade War," New York Times, September 16, 2009, suggested by Marvin House.
    "The Great Wallop," New York Times, November 16, 2009 Suggested by Ashley Wilkes

Ask the Prof
In these web log postings, Professor Salemi will answer a selection of questions that students have asked during the semester.
September 1   Opportunity Cost
     September 3    Repetitive Tasks and Limits to Comparative Advantage
     September 16  Chicken Feed Problem

Notable Student Work


Class by Class Slides and News Articles

Class 1     Scarcity and Choice                            "A Hidden Cost of Health Care: Patient Waiting Time" by Alan Krueger 
Class 2     Thinking Like an Economist                "Unpaid Work but They Pay for the Privilege," NYTimes, February 9, 2009
Class 3     Comparative Advantage
Class 4     Comparative Advantage and Trade      "Pipe Made in India Incenses Illinois Town," NYTimes, April 16, 2009
Class 5     Introduction to Demand and Supply      "Students Protest UNC Sweatshop Involvement," DTH, Aprill 11, 2008
Class 6     Demand and Supply Examples             "A Month Free? Rents Are Falling Fast", New York Times, February 1, 2009
Class 7    What's Behind Demand?                      "As Gas Costs Soar, Buyers Flock to Small Cars," New York Times, May 8, 2008
Class 8     What's Behind Supply?
Class 9     Demand and Supply Examples
Class 10   A Practical Approach to Elasticity        "Proposed Tax on Sugary Beverages," New York Times, September 17, 2009
                                                                            "Plenty of Cows but Little Profit," New York Times, September 29, 2009 (Suggested by Sarah Peck)
Class 11   Midterm Examination
Class 12   Price Taking Behavior and Efficiency     "Ticket Distribution Policy Unveiled," Daily Tar Heel, September 24, 2007
                                                             "Comments on Ticket Distribution Policy," Daily Tar Heel, September 25, 2007
Class 13  Economic Efficiency Examples               
"To Reduce the Cost of Teenage Temptation, Why Not Just Raise the Price of Sin?", NYT, July 25, 2005
Class 14   Economic Profit
Class 15   International Trade                                 "Solar Panel Tariff May Further Strain U.S.-China Trade," NYT, October 1, 2009 
                                                                              "As Americans Stop Buying, Trade Deficit Declines," NYT, October 10, 2009           
Class 16   Market Power                                       "Selling Sickness: How Drug Ads Changed Helath Care," NPR, October 13, 2009
                                                                                        Suggested by Elizabeth Merritt
Class 17   Externalities and Property Rights            "Fossil Fuel's Hidden Cost Is in Billions, Study Says," NYT, October 20, 2009
Class 18
  Externalities  Exzamples                        
"Emissions Trading versus CO2 Taxes" Parry and Pizer
                                                                             "The Trouble with Markets for Carbon" NYT, June 20, 2008
Class 19   Spending, Income and GDP                   "US Economy Started to Grow Again in Third Quarter," NYT October 30, 2009
Class 20   Midterm Examination
Class 21   Price Indexes and Inflation                     "Consumer Prices Edged Up Last Month," NYT, October 16, 2009
Class 22   Wages, Labor, and Unemployment         "US Unemployment Rate Hits 10.2%," NYT, November 7, 2009
Class 23   Economic Growth and Productivity         "Worker Productivity Surges," NYT, November 6, 2009
Class 24   The Real Rate of Interest                        "Fed Trims Rates Sharply," NYT, March 19, 2008
Class 25   Real Rate of Interest Examples
Class 26   Distance Learning Exercise
Class 27   A Macroeconomic Model                     "
Shoppers Showed Up but Spent on Bargains," New York Times, November 30, 2009
                                                                              "Black Friday Web Shopping Up 11 Percent," New York Times, November 29, 2009
Class 28   How Monetary Policy Works                 "Europe Hints that it May Raise Rates," New York Times, February 3, 2006
                                                               "Under Attack, Fed Chief Studies Politics," New York Times, November 11, 2009
"Bernanke Under Fire at Confirmation Hearning," CNN, December 3, 2009 (suggested by Chase Jenkins)

Class 29 Macro Policy Redux                                 "The Jobless Rate May Have Hit Its Peak," New York Times, December 5, 2009

Questions Asked  via CPS
Class 2
Class 3
Class 4
Class 5
Class 6
Class 7
Class 8
Class 9
Class 10
Class 12
Class 13
Class 14
Class 15
Class 16
Class 17
Class 18
Class 19
Class 21
Class 22
Class 23
Class 24
Class 25
Class 27
Class 28
Class 29

Recitation Plan
Week One, August 27-28
Week Two, September 2-3
Week Three, September 9-10
Week Four, September 16-17
Week Five, September 23-24
Week Six, September 30-October 1  "Ticket Distribution Policy Revealed," DTH, September 24, 2007 
                                                          "Comments of Tciket Distribution Policy," DTH, Septmber 25, 2007
Week Seven, October 7-8
Week Eight, October 14-15
Week Ten, October 28-29
Week Eleven, November 4-5
Week Twelve, November 11-12      Excel Spread Sheet with Date for Week 12 Recitation Assignment
Week Thirteen, November 18-19
Week Fifteen, December 2-3
Week Sixteen, December 9-10  All recitations will meet this week including those that fall on the reading day.

Class Journal--Required Entries
As explained in the course syllabus, each student is required to make periodic postings to a course
journal.  The purpose of the journal is for students to use their understanding of economics to
interpret news and editorial writings like they will encounter throughout their lives.

The journal should be spiral bound.  Students may hand write their journal entries if their
handwriting is legible. Otherwise, they should use a word processor and tape their entries into their
journals.  We will collect the journals and grade them toward the end of the semester.  Credit for
the journal is part of the recitation credit as explained in the syllabus.

Journals will be collected at the beginning of recitations on December 2 and 3, 2009.
    Assignment 1 (Due at Week One Recitations on August 27 and 28).
       Find a news article that deals with scarce resources.  Use "opportunity cost"
       and the "benefit-cost principle" to interpret the article.  Enter a copy of the
       article and your analysis (100 words or so) in your journal.  Bring your
       journal with the completed assignment to your first recitiation.

    Assignment 2 (Due at Week Four Recitations on September 16 and 17).
       Find a news article that concerns a market allocation issue.  Put a copy of the article in your journal. 
       Write 200 words explain how demand and supply analysis can be used to interpret the article. 
       Include your analysis in your journal.

    Assignment 3 (Due at Week Eight Recitations on October 14 and 15).
      Find and reproduce a news article that describes a comparative advantage of the United States
      in international trade. Paste a copy of the article in your journal and write a 200 word analysis
      that explains how exploiting this comparative advantage will lead to the creation of jobs and wealth.

    Assignment 4 (Due at Week Twelve Recitations on November 11 and 12).
       Find and reproduce a news article that describes a macroeconomic or monetary policy issue.
       Write 100-200 words explaining what the issue is and why it is important.

    Assignment 5 (Due at Week Fifteen Recitation on December 2-3). 
       Find and reproduce a news article that discusses the current state of monetary policy. Include
       the article in your journal an write a 150 word analysis explaining whether you believe the Fed
       is more likely to raise or lower interest rates in the next three months.  Explain your reasoning.

    Other Resources
The Concise Encyclopedia of Economics
    GAO Report on the Byrd Amendment
    Frank and Bernanke Chapter Problems
    There are some mistakes in these solutions.  If you find one,
        please report it to Michael Salemi.

     Chapter Problems Frank and Bernanke Chapters 1,2,3,5,6
        Thanks to Ben Atkinson for correcting an error.
        Thanks to Mohammed Hajee for correcting an error.
          Thanks to Jingyi Yang for correcting an error.

    Chapter Problems Frank and Bernanke Chapters 4, 7, 8, 28, 9, 11
         Thanks to Jingyi Yang for correcting an error.
        Here is an explanation of the Kubak crystal caves problem.
     Chapter Problems Frank and Bernanke, Chapter 13
    Chapter Problems Frank and Bernanke Chapters 17-20, 22
         Corrected on November 11, 2008. Thanks to Shaila Rajamani for pointing out an error.