A Term at the Fed: An Insider's View by Laurence H. Meyer

By Laurence H. Meyer

As a governor of the Federal Reserve Board from 1996 to 2002, Laurence H. Meyer helped make the industrial rules that advised the us via the various wildest and such a lot tumultuous instances in its fresh heritage. Now, in A time period on the Fed, Governor Meyer offers an insider's view of the Fed, the selections that affected either the U.S. and global economies, and the demanding situations inherent in utilizing financial coverage to lead the economy.

When Governor Meyer used to be appointed via President Clinton to serve at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in 1996, the us was once getting into probably the most filthy rich sessions in its historical past. It used to be the time of ''irrational exuberance'' and the fabled New economic system. quickly, even though, the economic system used to be established by means of the Asian monetary drawback, the Russian default and devaluation, the cave in of long term Capital administration, the bursting of America's inventory bubble, and the terrorist assaults of 9/11.

In what quantities to a definitive playbook of economic coverage, Meyer now relives the Fed's closed-door debates -- debates that puzzled how financial coverage should still adapt to the potential for a brand new financial system, how the Fed should still reply to hovering fairness costs, and no matter if the Fed may still dealer the arguable inner most region bailout of LTCM, between different matters. Meyer deftly weaves those concerns with firsthand tales concerning the personalities concerned, from Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan to a number of the staffers, governors, politicians, and journalists that populate the area of the Fed.

Since the tip of his time period, Meyer has persisted to observe the Fed and the area economic system. He believes that we're witnessing a repetition of a few of the occasions of the impressive Nineties -- together with one other acceleration in productiveness and maybe one other bull industry. background doesn't repeat itself, but Meyer indicates us how the teachings realized the previous day may also help the Fed form coverage today.

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She suggested that I not rush away too fast but rather sit in the First Lady’s office for a while (she was away on a trip) and see what the day would bring. A meeting was set up for me with the White House counsel, in which we discussed the disclosure forms that I would have to fill out if I was nominated. This included disclosing whether I had paid Social Security for cleaning help. Oops, I thought. So close, but so . . Not to worry, I was told. This was no longer an obstacle, but I should, upon returning to St.

Gene and I had a falling-out with each other in the early days of the Clinton administration. For that reason, I had significantly discounted my chances of any political appointment by the administration. 16 L A U R E N C E H. M E Y E R This problem arose just before the Clinton administration’s first budget was to be voted on by Congress. The administration had been arguing that a tax increase was needed to stimulate the economy. Although a tax increase would diminish the federal budget deficit and lower bond rates, it was still unlikely to stimulate the economy in the short term.

This discussion turned out to be one of the most interesting ones I participated in during my time on the FOMC. Janet Yellen, who had taught economics at Harvard, the London School of Economics, and most recently at Berkeley, was the first to address this question. She was very much respected by the members of the Committee, the staff, and the Chairman. I soon became her biggest fan on the Committee. There is no doubt that low inflation is advantageous, Governor Yellen began. But, she argued, there are also significant costs to very low inflation.

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