What We’re Reading

Minimum wage:

State-level increases of $1 in minimum wage corresponded with a 3.4 percent to 5.9 percent decrease in the suicide rates of people with a high school diploma or less in that age group. Emory University researchers analyzed monthly data from all 50 states and the District of Columbia between 1990 and 2015.

Depression:

So far, we have scientific evidence for nine different causes of depression and anxiety. Two of them are indeed in our biology. Your genes can make you more sensitive to these problems, though they don’t write your destiny. And there are real brain changes that can happen when you become depressed that can make it harder to get out. But most of the factors that have been proven to cause depression and anxiety are not in our biology. They are factors in the way we live. And once you understand them, it opens up a very different set of solutions that should be offered to people alongside the option of chemical antidepressants.

Energy:

Following the Fukashima disaster in 2011, German authorities made the unprecedented decision to: (1) immediately shut down almost half of the country’s nuclear power plants and (2) shut down all of the remaining nuclear power plants by 2022. We quantify the full extent of the economic and environmental costs of this decision. Our analysis indicates that the phase-out of nuclear power comes with an annual cost to Germany of roughly$12 billion per year. Over 70% of this cost is due to the 1,100 excess deaths per year resulting from the local air pollution emitted by the coal-fired power plants operating in place of the shutdown nuclear plants.

Jobs:

Women overtook men to hold the majority of U.S. jobs for the first time in a decade, while employers added positions for a record 10th straight year, pointing to a growing and dynamic economy heading into 2020.

The number of women on nonfarm payrolls exceeded men in December for the first time since mid-2010, the Labor Department said Friday. Women held 50.04% of jobs last month, surpassing men on payrolls by 109,000.

The most popular library books:

  1. The Snowy Day,” by Ezra Jack Keats (485,583 checkouts)

2. “The Cat in the Hat,” by Dr. Seuss (469,650)

3. “1984,” by George Orwell (441,770)

4. “Where the Wild Things Are,” by Maurice Sendak (436,016)

5. “To Kill a Mockingbird,” by Harper Lee (422,912)

Have a good weekend.


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