Michael J. Boskin

Wohlford Family Senior Fellow
Biography: 

Michael J. Boskin is the Wohlford Family Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and the Tully M. Friedman Professor of Economics at Stanford.  He is also Research Associate, National Bureau of Economic Research.  In addition, he advises governments and businesses globally.

He served as Chairman of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) from 1989 to 1993, when he helped resolve the Third World Debt and Saving and Loan financial crises, and place the first effective controls on government spending while protecting the defense budget.  His CEA was rated by the Council for Excellence in Government as one of the five most respected agencies in the federal government.  Earlier, on Presidential Candidate Reagan’s Tax Policy Task Force, he helped develop the policies that substantially lowered marginal tax rates, indexed tax brackets for inflation, accelerated depreciation, and created IRAs and 401ks, the economic rationale for which was predicated on his research on the effects of taxes on saving.  He later chaired the highly influential blue-ribbon Commission on the Consumer Price Index, whose report has transformed the way government statistical agencies around the world measure inflation, GDP and productivity. 

Boskin serves on several corporate and philanthropic boards of directors, including Exxon Mobil Corporation and Oracle Corporation.

In addition to Stanford and the University of California, Boskin has taught at Harvard and Yale. He is the author of more than one hundred and fifty books and articles. He is internationally recognized for his research on world economic growth, tax and budget theory and policy, US saving and consumption patterns, and the implications of changing technology and demography on capital, labor, and product markets. His op-eds appear regularly in the Wall Street Journal and other leading newspapers. He also writes a bimonthly column on global economics syndicated in 145 countries.

Boskin has received numerous professional awards and citations, including Stanford's Distinguished Teaching Award in 1988, the National Association of Business Economists' Abramson Award for outstanding research and its Distinguished Fellow Award, the Medal of the President of the Italian Republic in 1991 for his contributions to global economic understanding, and the 1998 Adam Smith Prize for outstanding contributions to economics.

Boskin received his BA with highest honors and the Chancellor's Award as outstanding undergraduate in 1967 from the University of California at Berkeley, where he also received his MA in 1968 and his PhD in 1971.

His research papers are available at the Hoover Institution Archives or his personal website.

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Recent Commentary

Healthcare Costs
Analysis and Commentary

ObamaCare's Troubles Are Only Beginning

by Michael J. Boskinvia Wall Street Journal
Sunday, December 15, 2013

The White House is claiming that the Healthcare.gov website is mostly fixed, that the millions of Americans whose health plans were canceled thanks to government rules may be able to keep them for another year, and that in any event these people will get better plans through O

Analysis and Commentary

Chile versus Argentina

by Michael J. Boskinvia Project Syndicate
Friday, November 22, 2013

BUENOS AIRES/SANTIAGO – Economists often compare similar economies to isolate the impact of a particular difference. This approach provides a compelling picture of the role of specific factors in driving or undermining an economy’s success.

Deflate the Disability Bubble

by Michael J. Boskinvia Hoover Digest
Friday, October 18, 2013

Inflated by broad eligibility and chronic unemployment, this troubled program is due to pop.

Debt Is a Millstone

by Michael J. Boskinvia Hoover Digest
Friday, October 18, 2013

Economists may make their errors, but there's no mistake about federal debt. It's bad.

Analysis and Commentary

How to Stop Lurching From One Budget Crisis to the Next

by Michael J. Boskinvia Wall Street Journal
Monday, October 14, 2013

Regardless of how the government shutdown and debt-ceiling fight plays out, our political leaders will eventually have to negotiate meaningful spending cuts and entitlement reforms. Otherwise, the country will lurch from one stalemate-and-crisis to another.

Analysis and Commentary

The Global Stake in China’s Anti-Corruption Reform

by Michael J. Boskinvia Project Syndicate
Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Analysis and Commentary

Transatlantic Trade Goes Global

by Michael J. Boskinvia Project Syndicate
Tuesday, July 16, 2013
Analysis and Commentary

The 2016 Disability Insurance Time Bomb

by Michael J. Boskinvia Wall Street Journal
Sunday, July 14, 2013

Social Security for retirement and Medicare are the best known of the major entitlement programs with looming financial disasters.

Analysis and Commentary

An Investment in Growth

by Michael J. Boskinvia Room for Debate (New York Times)
Friday, July 12, 2013

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Please note:

Michael Boskin has been the subject of recent attempted identity theft and hacking.  If you receive an email communication from him that seems unusual or unexpected, please verify the correspondence by contacting his office officeofmichaelboskin [at] gmail.com (subject: Hoover.org%20Boskin%20Profile%20Request) (here).