Charles I. Plosser

Visiting Fellow

Charles I. Plosser served as the President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia from 2006 until his retirement in 2015.

In his position he served as a member of the Federal Open Market Committee, which is responsible for U.S. monetary policy. During this period the world experienced a global financial crisis and a severe recession, requiring extraordinary action by monetary policymakers. He also served during a time of dramatic change in the activities of the Federal Reserve Banks including their role in financial services and the payments system as well as bank supervision. Among many other duties, he chaired the Committee on Investment Performance, which was responsible for oversight of the entire Federal Reserve System’s employee pension and thrift funds.

Prior to joining the Federal Reserve, Plosser was the John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics and Public Policy and director of the Bradley Policy Research Center at the University of Rochester’s William E. Simon Graduate School of Business Administration where he served as Dean from 1993 to 2003. In 2004 he was a visiting scholar at the Bank of England. He is also a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Over the years, Plosser has lectured to academic and business audiences worldwide on topics ranging from management education to economics and public policy issues. Prior to his public service at the Federal Reserve he also served as a consultant to numerous corporations on topics ranging from strategic planning and forecasting to portfolio and pension fund management, capital budgeting, and financial analysis. He was a member of the New York State Board of Economic Advisors and has served on the board of directors of ViaHealth, Inc. and RGS Energy Group, Inc. He has also served on the Advisory Board of the University Technology Seed Fund, LLC. In addition, he served as a director of the Graduate Management Admission Council from 1997 to 2003 and served as chairman of the board from 2002 to 2003.

Since January 2016, Plosser has served as a Public Governor for FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, where he serves on the Investment Committee and the Finance, Operations and Technology Committee.

Plosser earned his Ph.D. and M.B.A. degrees from the University of Chicago in 1976 and 1972 respectively. He is a 1970 graduate of Vanderbilt University where he earned a bachelor of engineering degree (cum laude with honors) and a member of Tau Beta Pi (National Scholastic Honor Society for Engineers). 

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Recent Commentary


Powell’s Communication Has Been ‘Erratic,’ Former Fed Official Charles Plosser Says

interview with Charles I. Plosservia CNBC
Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Charles Plosser discusses the Fed's “erratic” messages over the last few meetings, and the uncertainty the erratic messages have caused for the markets and investors.


Charles Plosser: Fed's Communication Has Been Very Poor

interview with Charles I. Plosservia Yahoo Finance
Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Charles Plosser talks about the Fed reducing the interest rates by a quarter-percentage point for the third time this year as well as the Fed signaling a pause in further cuts unless the economic outlook changes materially.


Reflections On Allan H. Meltzer’s Contributions To Monetary Economics And Public Policy

by Allan H. Meltzer, Michael D. Bordo, Charles I. Plosser, John B. Taylorvia Hoover Institution Press
Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Allan H. Meltzer (1928–2017), a twentieth-century macroeconomist, was an innovator in the field of monetary economics and public policy, showing how central banking could influence economic disasters. Meltzer was also a valued consultant both in the United States and overseas, championing rules-based monetary policy and free markets. Eleven prominent economists reflect on his contributions in this volume edited by David Beckworth.

In the News

Fed Should Avoid Undermining Itself, Plosser Tells Shadow Committee

featuring Charles I. Plosservia The Bond Buyer
Monday, September 30, 2019

Not all of the threats and challenges to the Federal Reserve’s independence and credibility are external, according to former Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia President Charles Plosser.


Charles Plosser: Fed May Be Unable To Sustain Expansion Amid Trade War

interview with Charles I. Plosservia CNBC
Friday, August 23, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Charles Plosser discusses Fed Chair Jerome Powell's speech in Jackson Hole.


Charles Plosser: Fed Has Talked Themselves Into A Corner

interview with Charles I. Plosservia Fox Business
Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Charles Plosser discusses the outlook for Federal Reserve policy and the US economy.


Charles Plosser On Fed: Don't Find There's A Compelling Case For Rate Cuts At This Point

interview with Charles I. Plosservia Fox Business
Thursday, July 11, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Charles Plosser discusses the economy, the potential for a Federal Reserve interest rate cut, the impact of China trade tensions, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell's testimony on Capitol Hill, the Fed's inflation target, and USMCA.


We Must Break Up Fed Groupthink, Says Former Philly Fed President Charles Plosser

interview with Charles I. Plosservia CNBC
Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Charles Plosser discusses whether a trade war between the US and China could force the central bank to step in as well as his thoughts on the path the Fed is taking and the problems with groupthink.


Charles Plosser: Fed Faces Skepticism Over Proposals To Improve Monetary Strategy

interview with Charles I. Plosservia Bloomberg
Sunday, May 5, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Charles Plosser discusses the need for the Fed to sync their strategy with communications, and whether the central bankers have the will or the way to implement the fresh strategies they outlined.

Federal Reserve building
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A Cautionary Note On Price-Level Targeting

by Charles I. Plosservia Defining Ideas
Wednesday, May 1, 2019

A brief meditation on some strategies for the Fed