Stephen Haber, Peter and Helen Bing Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution and the A.A. and Jeanne Welch Milligan Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences at Stanford University, discussed “The Ecological Origins of Economic and Political Systems.”
Analyzing the future of democracy with former prime ministers and presidents. Featuring Nick Clegg, Felipe Calderón, Toomas Henrik Ilves, and Anders Fogh Rasmussen.
Sometimes the Nobel committee seems to make a partly political statement in choosing winners of the prize in economics. Not this year.
Corporate taxes already drive U.S. companies offshore. The administration should think twice before making matters even worse. By Peter Robinson.
Hoover fellow Michael Spence ponders India, China, and the one essential element in economic growth: innovation. An interview with Peter Robinson.
Paul Ryan is a straight shooter, and health care is his target. An interview with Peter Robinson.
Matt Ridley, author of The Rational Optimist, insists that we humans must face the truth about ourselves—no matter how good it might be. An interview with Peter Robinson.
The Nobel economist says the health-care bill will cause serious damage, but that the American people can be trusted to vote for limited government in November. . . .
Hoover fellow Gary S. Becker is convinced that Americans don’t really want to go backwards on economic liberty. By Peter Robinson.
To this day, neither the IMF or other transition scholars have yet proposed any real reform of Russia's banks. Rather, they, as exemplified in this most recent IMF paper, choose to reiterate shopworn cliches, and then wonder why Russia's banks, and its economy in general, remain in need of reform.
Deregulation caused this crisis? In many ways, the markets are more regulated than ever—to our detriment. By David R. Henderson.
Lawrence Summers, President Emeritus and Charles W. Eliot University Professor at Harvard University, and former U.S. treasury secretary, talked about “Responsible Nationalism.”
The accomplishments of Milton Friedman—and why we still miss him. By Stephen Moore.
The Bush administration always insisted that encouraging democracy abroad was critical for international security. Europeans—surprise!—now agree. By Amichai Magen.
In July 1944, delegates from forty-four nations gathered in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, to design a postwar international monetary system that would promote world trade, investment, and economic growth. The framers created the International Monetary Fund (IMF or fund) to supervise the new "Bretton Woods monetary regime" that sought to keep national currencies convertible at stable exchange rates and to provide temporary, low-cost financing of balance-of-payments deficits resulting from misaligned exchange rates.
In reality, the framers of the Bretton Woods regime created an international price-fixing arrangement enforced by the IMF. After joining the fund, each member country declared a value for its currency relative to the U.S. dollar. The U.S. Treasury, in turn, tied the dollar to gold by agreeing to buy and sell gold to other governments at $35 an ounce; the inflation of the 1960s, however, made the U.S. commitment to sell gold at that price unsustainable. To preserve U.S. gold reserves, President Richard Nixon closed the gold window in August 1971, effectively uncoupling the dollar from gold and ending the fund's original mission of supervising a system of pegged exchange rates. Looking for a new mission, the IMF quickly evolved into a financial medic for developing countries. Beginning in the early 1970s, the IMF skillfully used a series of global economic crises to increase its capital base and financing activities.
Has the expansion of IMF financing activities alleviated the balance-of-payments problems of member countries and encouraged prudent, progrowth economic policies? The evidence, much of it supplied by the IMF, demonstrates that the fund does more harm than good. Historical studies as well as recent initiatives in Mexico, East Asia, and Russia reveal that IMF financing programs, which rarely prescribe appropriate economic policies or sufficient institutional reforms, are at best ineffective and at worst incentives for imprudent investment and public policy decisions that reduce economic growth, encourage long-term IMF dependency, and create global financial chaos.
It is time to scrap the IMF and strengthen market-based alternatives that would promote an orderly and efficient international monetary system. Key reforms include floating exchange rates, internationally accepted accounting and disclosure practices, unfettered private financial markets, and fundamental legal, political, and constitutional rules that would allow free markets to emerge and countries to achieve self-sustaining economic growth and development.
China has come to Africa. Can U.S. policy makers find ways to mesh, not clash, with Beijing’s interests? By Christopher C. Starling.
The advantage of moderation