Bernanke’s legacy

Barack Obama recently indicated that he is unlikely to reappoint Ben Bernanke as chairman of the Federal Reserve when his term expires next January. Understandably, the media is focused on who might succeed Bernanke to lead the US central bank. After all, the chairman of the Federal Reserve is often described as the second most … Read moreBernanke’s legacy

Wanted: Central Banker

A couple of weeks ago, the Economist magazine ran an unusual “help wanted” ad.  The Governor of the Bank of England, Sir Mervyn King, will retire in June and the British government is looking for a replacement. On the one hand, it might seem like a great job.  The Governor receives a salary of £300,000, … Read moreWanted: Central Banker

A Blatant Misuse of History

Writing nearly 40 years ago, historian Ernest R. May warned of the dangers of misusing history for policy purposes.  May was primarily concerned that policy makers drew the wrong lessons from the past. In their opinion piece in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, Glenn Hubbard, dean of Columbia Business School and an advisor to Mitt Romney, … Read moreA Blatant Misuse of History

Ben Bernanke is a much better economist than John Taylor

Writing in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal, John Taylor takes the Federal Reserve to task for its “interventionist” behavior. Taylor’s main complaint with the Fed’s conduct of monetary policy is that it is unstable and unpredictable (verging on the whimsical!).  He argues that this stems in part from the Fed’s mandate to pursue low unemployment in … Read moreBen Bernanke is a much better economist than John Taylor

How bad does Edward Lazear need it to be?

Writing in Friday’s Wall Street Journal, Stanford professor Edward Lazear argues that the real danger to the American worker is too much government–in other words: too many taxes and too much spending. Prof. Lazear writes: During the debt-ceiling debate, President Obama characterized his push for higher taxes and less aggressive budget cuts as being helpful … Read moreHow bad does Edward Lazear need it to be?

Alan Greenspan is disappointed in Dodd-Frank

I am devastated. Writing in the Financial Times today, Alan Greenspan, argues that the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act will have–indeed is already having–unintended consequences. He cites five specific cases. 1) Making credit ratings agencies legally liable for their opinions about risk made them unwilling to give Ford Motor Credit a rating … Read moreAlan Greenspan is disappointed in Dodd-Frank