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In recent decades, two Fed chairmen have garnered more attention than arguably any previous central bankers in U.S. history. Alan Greenspan became the second-longest serving Fed Chairman after heading the bank from 1987 to 2006. He presided over a period of economic expansion, but became controversial in his final term and beyond, after the financial crisis hit in 2007. His successor, Benjamin Bernanke was by necessity a central figure by virtue of grappling with the crisis. Both men were appointed by Republican presidents, inflation hawks, neoliberal monetarists willing to infuse massive amounts of liquidity into the system during times of emergency, and unlikely celebrities. And both, for all their accomplishments, remained rather tone deaf to structural changes in financial markets and how those affected monetary policy.
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Bernanke, Ben S., ed. 2000. Essays on the Great Depression. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Bernanke, Ben S. 2015. The Courage to Act: A Memoir of a Crisis and Its Aftermath. New York: W.W. Norton & Company.
Conti-Brown, Peter. 2016. The Power and Independence of the Federal Reserve. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission. The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, January 2011.
Posen, Adam S. “Big Ben: Bernanke, the Fed, and the Real Lessons of the Crisis.” Foreign Affairs 91:1, January/February 2016, pp. 154–159.
U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. “Hearings on the Financial Crisis and the Role of Federal Regulator.” Washington, D.C., October 23, 2008.
- The Fed and Financial Markets: Greenspan, Bernanke, and Yellen
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