Economics and Christmas

When you think of it, the Christmas story has a lot to do with economics.

First, Joseph and Mary were on the road because of a new tax regime. Apparently Caesar hadn’t heard of the dead-weight loss that arbitrary tariffs impose on an economy.

And the three kings were one of our first international trade delegations. They brought free samples from outside the Roman Empire to offer to a king-in-waiting.

The shepherds were managing an agricultural commodity. Perhaps energy prices had affected feedstock costs, and night pasturage was more efficient. In any case, the angels knew that they could find them on-the-job.
But at its heart, the Christmas story is about a gift-one that cost everything. Nothing economical about that.

Merry Christmas to everyone.

Douglas R. Tengdin, CFA
Chief Investment Officer
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