Excel Graphing/Writing Assignments for EC215-Princip, Microeconomics

1. Go to the website for MarginalRevolution. http://www.marginalrevolution.com
two posts that related to microeconomic topics that we are covering and write about one half to three fourths of a page on each post explaining the topic. You can also click on the links to other blogs on the left-hand side of the MarginalRevolution website and choose something from those blogs. Your writing should be about blog posts that are dated since August 20, 2012 to the present date.

2. Find an article from either The Economist, or, The Wall Street Journal that addresses some aspect of supply/demand and explain it. For instance, the article might explain that the price of some good or service is rising (or falling). Why? Is the price changing because of a change in demand, or, a change in supply? Both The Economist and The Wall Street Journal are available via Kent Library. The article should be dated since August 20, 2012.

3. In this problem we want to answer the question “Which country manufactures more good? China (Peoples Republic of), India, Japan, Germany, or the US?

Click on the United Nations link: http://unstats.un.org/unsd/snaama/dnllist.asp

“GDP and Its Breakdown at constant 2005 prices in US Dollars” and click on “All Countries for all years-sorted alphabetically”. The data are for 1970 to 2010. It will probably be easiest to Sort the data by the column “Indicator Name.” Scroll down the spreadsheet until you come to “Manufacturing (ISIC D)”. Copy the lines for the five countries into a new spreadsheet and then make a line graph of the countries. Put all 5 countries on the same graph. Identify each country (if you don’t have a color printer you need to use different markers such as * and ¦ and ?etc., and identify the year on the horizontal axis. Which country manufactures the most? Does your answer meet your intuition?

I give an example for the United Kingdom up to 2009. You should put all the countries on the same graph.

4. There are three parts to this assignment. First, follow the link to the Case-Shiller House Price Index (click on the “Economic” tab to find the index). Click on the most recent month available (June 2011) and use the “not-seasonally adjusted” data. The data download into an Excel spreadsheet. The house price index for the entire US is given in the column labeled "Composite-10 CSXR".

A. Make a line graph of this index for the period January 1987 to the most recent month. Make sure you provide a title to your figure and label the horizontal axis using the dates.

B. Choose two cities and repeat part A. Note: For some cities, such as Phoenix or Atlanta, the data begin at a later date than January 1987. (I give an example for San Francisco.)

C. Choose the latest date and make a bar chart of all the cities. The cities are all indexed to 100 in January 2000. Therefore, the bar chart will give the percent of house prices in February 2011 relative to January 2000. For instance, Los Angeles has an index of 168.25 which means that house prices are 68.25% higher in February 2011 than they were in January of 2000. Make sure you label the axis to identify each and every city in your bar chart.
(I give an example of a bar Chart for Phoenix, LA, San Diego, and San Francisco.)

D. Given your chart in part C., why do you think Detroit and Washington, DC. Are moving in opposite directions?

5. In this problem you will find out about what has been happening in the restaurant industry and to several corporations in the restaurant industry.

a. Go the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank website:

“Categories”, then choose “Production and Business Activity”, then choose “Retail Sales”, then choose “Real Retail and Food Service Sales”. Make a line graph in Excel (you have to download the data-don’t copy and paste the graph from the Federal Reserve Website into your paper.) Make a line graph of the data from 1992 to the present. Give your graph an appropriate title and put the dates on the horizontal axis.

b. Go to http://finance.yahoo.com In the window for “Symbol lookup”

Choose the following 3 corporations that are in the food service business. For each corporation click on “historical prices” and then download the data for the particular corporation for the period 2004-January to the present. Make a line graph of the adjusted closing price. (Note: you have to sort your EXCEL file by the date, since at the top of the file is the present date and at the bottom is January 1, 2004.
` i. Dine Equity, Inc. This company owns Applebee’s and other similar restaurants. Ticker symbol: DIN
ii. Buffalo Wildwings Ticker symbol: BWLD
iii. Dominos Pizza, Ticker symbol: DPZ

c. Write one typed page describing the market structure of the restaurant industry. Given your graph from part a., how is the industry doing? How are the three corporations doing in the last couple of years?

6. In this problem we want to learn something about “Who pays the taxes?”

Go to the Tax Foundation website

the years 1980, 1990, 2000, and 2009 complete the following table: (find the data in Table 5, 6, and 8. (Type the data-you can copy and paste this table into a WORD document)

Adjusted gross income share
Year Top 1% Top 5% Between 5-10% Between 10-25% Between 25-50% Bottom 50%
% of taxes paid
Average tax rate

Write about one typed page explaining who pays the taxes and earns the income, whether the tax system is progressive, regressive, or proportional, and whether or not you think the tax system is equitable (is it okay as is, or should it be more progressive or regressive?).

Posted Date: 11/27/2012 12:30:31 PM | Location : United States

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