Joshua D. Rauh

Senior Fellow

Joshua D. Rauh is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the Ormond Family Professor of Finance at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business. He formerly served at the White House where he was Principal Chief Economist on the President's Council of Economic Advisers, and taught at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business (2004–9) and the Kellogg School of Management (2009–12).

Rauh studies corporate investment, business taxation, government pension liabilities, and investment management. He has published numerous journal articles and was awarded the 2006 Brattle Prize for the outstanding research paper on corporate finance published in the Journal of Finance for his paper "Investment and Financing Constraints: Evidence from the Funding of Corporate Pension Plans." In 2011 he won the Smith Breeden Prize for the outstanding research paper on capital markets, published in the Journal of Finance, for his paper "Public Pension Promises: How Big Are They and What Are they Worth?" coauthored with Robert Novy-Marx. His other writings include "Earnings Manipulation, Pension Assumptions and Managerial Investment Decisions," coauthored with Daniel Bergstresser and Mihir Desai, which won the Barclays Global Investor Best Symposium Paper from the European Finance Association and appeared in the Quarterly Journal of Economics. Other work has appeared in the Review of Financial Studies, the Journal of Financial Economics, and the Journal of Political Economy.

Rauh’s research on state and local pension systems in the United States has received national media coverage in outlets such as the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the Financial Times, and The Economist .

Rauh received a BA degree in economics, magna cum laude with distinction, from Yale University and a PhD in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Recent Commentary


Municipal Bond Investors Have To Share The Burden In State Bailouts

by Joshua D. Rauhvia The Hill
Thursday, September 17, 2020

When Greece had its government debt crisis a decade ago, it received several rounds for bailout funding from the European Commission, the European Central Bank, and the International Monetary Fund.


California’s Tax-The-Rich Folly

by Joshua D. Rauhvia The Orange County Register
Saturday, August 1, 2020

The California Legislature is back from its summer recess and has frantically resumed its quest for new revenue sources.

In the News

NY Democrats’ Insane Bid To Bleed Wealthy — When They’re Already Fleeing State

cited Joshua D. Rauhvia New York Post
Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Albany Dems want to squeeze job-creators now?

Policy InsightsFeatured

A Better Way To Fix Infrastructure

by Joshua D. Rauh, Lee Ohanian, Daniel Heil, Tom Churchvia PolicyEd
Wednesday, June 17, 2020

American infrastructure is need of an overhaul. But, as we learned in the last edition of Policy Insights, government-funded projects often fail to live up to their lofty goals. The problem isn’t that dollars aren’t being spent on infrastructure. Instead, it is that the money is being spent poorly.


Opinion: Muni Bond Investors Could Lose Out As Pension Crisis Cripples Many U.S. Cities

by Robert C. Pozen, Joshua D. Rauhvia Market Watch
Monday, June 8, 2020
Even before COVID-19 wreaked havoc on municipal budgets, many American cities were already in deep financial trouble. Despite a historic economic boom and an extended bull market, many cities still struggled mightily under the financial burden of the pension promises made to public employees over the past few decades.

How To Pay For Stimulus Checks

by Andrew G. Biggs, Joshua D. Rauhvia The Hill
Monday, April 27, 2020

The payments in the response to the coronavirus mark another instance of Congress voting to deliver money directly to households. The checks are poorly targeted to the task at hand, which is not so much to stimulate the economy, impossible when business is shuttered by state mandate, but to provide households in need with the resources to pay their bills and meet essential needs until the crisis passes. 

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Joshua Rauh: COVID-19 and the Government Response

interview with Joshua D. Rauhvia Hoover Podcasts
Tuesday, April 21, 2020


A Hoover Virtual Policy Briefing with Joshua Rauh: COVID-19 and the Government Response 
Tuesday, April 21, 2020 at 11AM PT/ 2PM ET.

Joshua Rauh: COVID-19 and the Government Response

interview with Joshua D. Rauhvia Hoover Virtual Policy Briefings
Tuesday, April 21, 2020

A Hoover Virtual Policy Briefing with Joshua Rauh: COVID-19 and the Government Response 
Tuesday, April 21, 2020 at 11AM PT/ 2PM ET.

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Funding Direct Payments To Americans Through Social Security Deferral

by Andrew G. Biggs, Joshua D. Rauhvia SSRN
Sunday, April 19, 2020

We analyze in this whitepaper a way of addressing both targeting and financing in a direct payment (or “stimulus check”) program to provide households with additional liquidity during the economic downturn associated with the COVID-19 virus: by allowing voluntary loans to individuals in which the proceeds would be paid back through deferral of Social Security retirement benefits at the time when the individual claims Social Security.


Don't Use Coronavirus As Excuse To Bail Out State, Local Governments That Have Mismanaged Finances For Decades

by Joshua D. Rauhvia Fox Business
Monday, April 13, 2020

If Speaker Pelosi gets her way, coronavirus assistance may turn into a federal bailout of states and municipalities that have mismanaged their finances for decades.