July Question of the Month: An irregular series

The reference librarians at Seattle Public Library are pretty darn amazing. They don’t know everything, instead they know where to find everything. As part of an irregular series of posts we salute the talented and dedicated reference staff at your local library. Names and other identifying information have been removed from the questions we showcase. Got a stumper? Click on Ask a Librarian. It’s what we do.

How would I find out whether the “Incentive” rebates from the IRS are actually stimulating the economy?

Thank you for your question. I don’t know if there is a definitive answer to your question, but people are definitely writing about it and economists are talking about it. However, it may be too early to tell (I just got my check in the mail yesterday.)  One way to find out about it is to read what analysts are saying about the economy, or listen to American Public Media’s program Marketplace (carried on many National Public Radio stations.) I searched our General Onefile database and am sending you the following list of articles as well as two more articles from our Proquest National Newspapers database.

1. Stimulus Checks May Help Nation’s Economy Avert A Recession. Michael Bartlett.
Credit Union Journal 12.21 (May 26, 2008): p3. (459 words)

2. Stimulus Package? Americans Need to Save.: The stimulus package won’t heal the ailing economy. Policymakers could take a more novel approach to fixing the problem: Require banks to lend responsibly and encourage Americans to save more. Joseph Rosta.
US Banker 118.3 (March 2008): p56. (733 words)

3. Survey Shows Economic Stimulus Package May Not Stimulate. (use of checks) (Brief article). Matthew Bandyk.
U.S. News & World Report (March 13, 2008) (122 words)

4. Consumer sentiment doesn’t point to major spending.
Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA) (April 25, 2008) (818 words)

I searched these databases using the keywords “economic stimulus” and “effect” in articles published within the last four months. To monitor what economists and analysts are saying about this issue, you can search our Proquest Database and General Onefile database as the months go by. From the Seattle Public Library homepage go to the greeen box in the middle of the page that says BROWSE Databases and Websites. Then click on Databases A-Z on the left side and choose General Onefile or National Newspapers (A ProQuest database that includes Christian Science Monitor 1988 – current; Los Angeles Times from 1985 – current; New York Times Late Edition 1999 – current; Wall Street Journal Eastern Edition 1984 – current; and Washington Post 1987 – current.) Then you can use the search terms that I used to search for new articles on the topic.

Have Fun!

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