BPC Blog

Aug. 28, 2014
CBO projects that federal deficits will rise from 2.9 percent of GDP ($506 billion) in 2014 to 3.6 percent of GDP ($960 billion) in 2024

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released an update to its annual Budget and Economic Outlook yesterday. According to CBO’s projections, deficits will continue falling for the next two years but will then begin to grow again near the end of the decade. Federal debt held by the public is expected to rise from 74 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) this year to 77 percent in 2024.

Although consumption in the electric power sector is projected to increase, incentives to expand end-use energy efficiency may result in less growth

On June 2, 2014, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed the Clean Power Plan to cut carbon pollution from the electric power sector. BPC examined the effects of the proposed Clean Power Plan on natural gas consumption in the electric power sector by comparing results from the EPA modeling analysis across regions of the United States.

EPA Modeling Natural Gas 1

Peter Elkowitz

New insights from former FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery will be showcased at the opening session of the 2014 Housing Summit. He will join three other former FHA commissioners and current Commissioner Galate. With three weeks to go, don’t forget to register here.

In a game of musical chairs, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu is set to become the country's new prime minister this week, after the outgoing prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, is sworn in as president on August 28, 2014. The choice may seem odd, given the widespread sense in the West, as well as in many circles in Turkey, that Davutoğlu presided over a failed Turkish foreign policy. But from Erdoğan’s perspective, Davutoğlu was the natural choice.

The federal government should broaden efforts to share most federal health data, with appropriate privacy protections

Access to federal health care data plays a critical role in supporting new delivery system and payment models that deliver better outcomes. It also serves the needs of consumers who want more information to support decision-making, and health care leaders who are taking important steps to improve the population’s health.

If 90 percent of new mothers in the U.S. breastfed exclusively for six months, this change could deliver health care cost savings of $13 billion annually

This month, the CDC released its Breastfeeding Report Card for 2014, coinciding with National Breastfeeding Month in the United States. The results of the report show that 79 percent of mothers initiate breastfeeding, up from 75 percent a year ago.

If you live in Arizona, Florida, or Vermont, your primary election is coming up tomorrow. BPC’s Commission on Political Reform seeks to increase voter awareness and overall voter participation, so to achieve that goal we are providing handy links and tools for voters before they head to the polls.

American officials should not expect the behavior of an ally, in spite of Turkey’s NATO membership

As expected, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was elected Turkey’s president in the first round of elections on August 10. This victory—by his largest margin yet—appears to cement Erdoğan’s dominance of Turkey’s political scene for the foreseeable future. It does not, however, herald an end to the political divisions and dissent that have plagued for years. 

While Members of Congress are home, catch yourself up on all of the top immigration debate issues.

Retirement in America: What’s Working and What’s Not?

Defined Contribution (DC) accounts, such as 401(k)s and Individual Retirement Arrangements (IRAs), make up a large and growing part of retirement security for those employed in the private sector. 

Defined contribution retirement plan

Mexico Opens Energy Sector to Private Investors
By Juan Montes, The Wall Street Journal

“Mexican lawmakers late Wednesday completed an historic opening of the country's energy sector to private investors after 76 years of state monopoly, in a move with far-reaching implications for the sector and the country's economy.

“Completion of the overhaul is a political victory for President Enrique Peña Nieto, who made it the cornerstone of a reformist agenda intended to improve Mexico's competitiveness and stimulate economic growth. The victory seemed unthinkable to many when he took office in December 2012. Over the past quarter century, every Mexican president had tried but failed to secure political support to diminish the state energy monopoly."


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