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Weekend Reading Roundup, 6/3/11: The economy, taxes, LinkedIn & Groupon

|Includes: Microsoft Corporation (MSFT)
Taken from the iShares Blog

This week, economists have been busy. Chicago economist Robert Lucas explained the recession with slides, while Nobel-winning economist Michael Spence explains how Asia can grow differently—and maybe better—than some of its Western predecessors. (Spence was also interviewed by CNN about his new book, The Next Convergence.)

In the Wall Street Journal, Stephen Moore warned that if Democrats’ tax plans take effect, the top income tax rate could rise to 62%—but in the Columbia Journalism review, Ryan Chittum warns that Mr. Moore’s math is fuzzy at best.

Speaking of politics, in the Times, David Leonhardt reported on the work of economists Brian Knight and Nathan Schiff, who examined presidential primaries in early voting states affected presidential elections and federal economic policy.  But The Economist quickly rushed to the defense of Iowa and New Hampshire, pointing to research showing that citizens of those states tend to be smarter than those of others and that smart people tend to support economic policies that economists like. (Got that?)

Following LinkedIn’s path, Groupon announced plans for an IPO. But unlike with LinkedIn—or maybe because of that stock’s rapid rise—some commentators are looking skeptically at Groupon’s numbers. Is it really worth $20 billion? And what the heck is adjusted CSOI?

Finally, there’s been a lot of buzz about this New York Times story on the SEC’s case against Goldman’s Fabrice Tourre—some about the import of the story, and some about the strange tale of the missing laptop.