Can Banks Disrupt the Payday Lending Business?

Since its inception in the 1990s, the payday lending industry has grown at an astonishing pace. Currently, there are about 22,000 payday lending locations — more than two for every Starbucks — that originate an estimated $27 billion in annual loan volume. Continue Reading...

New Issue of the Journal of Markets & Morality (19.1)

Our most recent issue of the Journal of Markets & Morality, vol. 19, no. 1, has now been published online and print issues are in the mail. In addition to our regular slate of articles examining the intersections between faith, freedom, markets, and morality, this issue contains a new entry in our Scholia special feature section: “Advice to a Desolate France” by Sebastian Castellio. Continue Reading...

Why Christians Care About Economics

“Economic activity is one of the most common and basic forms of human interaction and the Bible has much to say about it,” says Dale Arand. “However, it takes time to understand the complexities of our modern economy so that we can better apply God’s principles to our everyday activity.” Arand offer five reasons it’s worthwhile to understand economics, including: Continue Reading...

David Bentley Hart and the ‘Pelagian Criticism of Wealth’

Following up on yesterday’s post “Samuel Gregg on David Bentley Hart and Murderous Markets,” Rev. Gregory Jensen, author of the Acton book The Cure for Consumerism, observes that “Hart’s assertion that ‘the New Testament treats such wealth not merely as a spiritual danger, and not merely as a blessing that should not be misused, but as an intrinsic evil’ is simply wrong.” Writing at his Palamas Institute site, Jensen, an Orthodox Christian priest, added that “it is a gross overstatement to assert the Scriptures treat wealth as such as morally evil.” More from Jensen: Whatever might be the contemporary roots of Hart’s moral reasoning on economics, his argument that wealth is evil is more in keeping with the thought of the early Christian heretic Pelagius than with, such as, Ambrose, Augustine, Basil the Great and John Chrysostom. Continue Reading...

5 Ways Obama’s New Overtime Rule Will Harm Workers

In announcing the Obama administration’s new overtime rule (for more on this news, see this explainer), Vice President Joe Biden says companies will “face a choice” to either pay their workers for the overtime that they work, or cap the hours that their salaried workers making below $47,500 at 40 hours each work week. Continue Reading...

Samuel Gregg on David Bentley Hart and Murderous Markets

Is the dominant economic system we have today, the market economy or capitalism, compatible with Christianity? Orthodox Christian theologian David Bentley Hart in a June 2016 First Things article titled,”Mammon Ascendant: Why global capitalism is inimical to Christianity,” is skeptical. Continue Reading...