Last week, Federal Reserve Board Chairman Janet Yellen was awarded the Radcliffe Medal at Harvard’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. At a lunch in Yellen’s honor, Lizabeth Cohen, dean of the institute, praised the Fed chair’s “steadfast commitment to robust growth” and the way the she “steers our economy,” guided by the philosophy of her Yale mentor, Keynesian economist James Tobin.
If advocates of freedom were to make up a list of New Year’s resolutions for 2016, one of the most important items should be ending government’s monopoly control over money. In a free society, people in the marketplace should decide what they wish to use as money, not the government.
There is no way to describe current Federal Reserve policy other than as monetary confusion and misdirection. In a nutshell, Janet Yellen and the other members of the Fed’s Board of Governors have no idea what to do. Do they raise certain interest rates over which they have some direct influence? Do they keep them at their current rock bottom levels, as they have for the last six years?
In today’s episode of The Heartland Daily Podcast, managing editor Jesse Hathaway talks with Mercatus Center monetary policy program director and Bentley University economics professor Scott Sumner about the American stock market’s recent up-and-down volatility, the increasing threat of an international economic recession, and how our country’s centralized banking policies make the problem worse.
Its current form is the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), which critics of varied stripes widely regard as a colossal flop. Yet, few in Washington, DC dare talk of repeal. Even with both houses now under Republican control, Congress continues to haggle into an eighth year over the particulars of reauthorization.
Financial markets in the United States and around the world are all waiting with “bated breath” for when the Federal Reserve modifies its “easy money” policy and starts to raise interest rates. No one, however, asks a simple question: Why is the American central bank in the interest rate setting business?
For more than a decade, now, Federal Reserve policy has been guided by the fear of one economic bogyman: the presumed danger of “price deflation.” The fear is unfounded and the inflationary “solution” only leads to disaster.