Should credit-card interest be capped at 15%?

Democratic presidential primary contender Senator Bernie Sanders and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have unveiled a plan to cap credit-card interest rates at 15%: Under the “Loan Shark Prevention Act,” the annual percentage rate applicable to any extension of credit would not be allowed surpass 15% on “unpaid balances, inclusive of all finance charges” or “the maximum rate permitted by the laws of the State in which the consumer resides.” Consumer debt, and credit card debt in particular, is something many Americans struggle with and both the amount of total debt as well as the interest rates have escalated in recent years: The median credit-card interest rate was 21.36% as of last week, compared with 12.62% a decade ago, according to Creditcards.com. Continue Reading...

Protectionism keeps making Americans poorer

“President Trump’s decision to impose tariffs on imported washing machines has had an odd effect,” notes Jim Tankersley in the New York Times. “It raised prices on washing machines, as expected, but also drove up the cost of clothes dryers, which rose by $92 last year. Continue Reading...

New Interview with Rev. Robert Sirico: ‘Socialism & Venezuela: What Can Catholics Learn?’

Fr. Robert Sirico was recently interviewed by Fr. Robert McTeigue, S.J., on The Catholic Current. Their topic: ‘Socialism & Venezuela: What Can Catholics Learn?’ The conversation was wide ranging. It begins with a consideration of the disastrous socialist commitment to central planning and its present fruit of shortages, starvation, and totalitarianism in Venezuela. Continue Reading...

Elites, markets and cronyism

It’s no great secret that France is facing social upheaval and has some longstanding deep-set economic problems. Nor is it revealing to say that France’s political class is despised across the spectrum as woefully out of touch. Continue Reading...