News & Events

Energy Economics Weekly Briefings

From August 2017 until August 2019 a series of weekly briefings by Ellen Hughes-Cromwick, former UMEI associate director for economics and policy, offered an economist’s look at the national energy and environmental landscape.

Hughes-Cromwick was previously a Chief Economist of the U.S. Department of Commerce during the Obama Administration, where she worked on initiatives to improve data quality, measure the digital economy, and expand manufacturing, trade and investment.  She assisted Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker on global macroeconomic matters in support of her commercial diplomacy, trade, and foreign direct investment initiatives. Hughes-Cromwick also supported the development of the Obama Administration’s economic forecast.

Prior to joining the U.S. Department of Commerce, Hughes-Cromwick was chief global economist at Ford Motor Company and an Adjunct Professor at U-M’s Ross School of Business. She led Ford’s global corporate economics group with major responsibility for the Company’s global economic, financial, and automotive industry forecasts used to support business strategy, finance, and planning.

  • 08/09/19

    Germany: The Fiscal Flexibility to Enact Climate Protection

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    The German economy has begun to slow down, as has the overall global growth backdrop.  Last year, Germany’s GDP grew by 1.4% as compared to the prior year after two relatively strong growth years in 2016-2017 of 2 – 2.25%.  The chart below shows the year-over-year % change in quarterly…

  • 08/01/19

    Over 200 Pages and Counting: U.S. Government’s Monthly Energy Review

    Written by: Katie Parrish

    The Energy Information Administration (EIA), the independent statistical arm of the U.S. Department of Energy, releases a Monthly Energy Review. The July issue released earlier this week is data rich and provides historical measures of all domestic energy-related activities in over 200 pages of charts and tables. This timely summary…

  • 07/19/19

    U.S. Consumer Spending on Energy A Big Ticket

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Americans are now spending over $500 billion on energy goods and services, according to statistics produced by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) at the U.S. Department of Commerce.  These purchases range from gasoline in the car to electricity, natural gas or oil for the furnace, and propane for the…

  • 07/12/19

    New Study Pegs Economic Losses From Climate Change at $69 Trillion

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Many studies of climate change impacts on the global economy emphasize the significant uncertainty it presents to the growth and prosperity of the people on this planet. Economists have worked diligently to examine risks and uncertainty. What may be surprising to noneconomists is that most studies on the topic find…

  • 06/06/19

    Looking Back: How Lobbying Impacted U.S. Climate Legislation

    Written by: Katie Parrish

    As presidential campaigns and our climate heat up, many candidates are thinking through their legislative approach to the principles laid out in the Green New Deal. Several presidential candidates have recently rolled out climate plans, including this week’s announcements from Senator Warren and former Vice President Biden. A forthcoming Weekly…

  • 05/31/19

    2030 Global Electrified Vehicle Outlook

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Electrified vehicle (plug-in electric and battery electric) sales continue to grow at a rapid rate. In the U.S., EV sales hit 361,000, up 81% from the prior year. Global EV sales were over 2 million units last year, with nearly one-half of this in China. Last week, the International Energy…

  • 05/24/19

    You Are What You Measure: Business Growth in Canada’s Clean Energy Sector

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Recently I co-authored an article which appeared in the Journal of Economic Perspectives entitled, “The Value of U.S. Government Data to U.S. Business Decisions.” One of the key points in the article was that firms use low-cost U.S. government data to help them optimize business decisions and to help them…

  • 04/12/19

    EV Tax Credits Are a Go But CAFE Past The Sell By Date

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Climate change is real and it is vital that we embrace solutions which mitigate its severe consequences on human activity.  Evidence based policy making would be ideal.  A commission with clout could break the gridlock.  This past week at the University of Michigan, partnering with Third Way, a group of…

  • 03/20/19

    2019 U.S. Energy Employment Report: “New Energy” Jobs Growing Faster Than National Average

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    The National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO) and Energy Futures Initiative (EFI) just released the 2019 U.S. Energy & Employment Report (USEER).   The report include five sectors of the U.S. economy that have energy-related activity: Fuels Electric Power Generation (EPG) Transmission, Distribution and Storage (TDS) Energy Efficiency Motor Vehicles…

  • 03/11/19

    Crude Oil Storage In China: Implications for Growth

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Orbital Insight uses satellite images of crude oil storage tanks worldwide to estimate volumes on a daily basis. Using these daily data may help to gain insight on whether this is a leading economic indicator for economic activity. There is ample reason to suspect that these data may provide advance…