Last updated on: 4/5/2013 | Author: ProCon.org

Frederic S. Mishkin, PhD Biography

Title:
Alfred Lerner Professor of Banking and Financial Institutions at Columbia Business School
Position:
Con to the question "Should the United States Return to a Gold Standard?"
Reasoning:

“I’m not a big fan of the gold standard…

[W]hen we actually look at the technology of actually producing stable inflation, the idea that in fact we should go back to the horse and buggy and go back to the gold standard, I think doesn’t fly…

[T]he variability of inflation was much higher during the gold standard period than we have now. Now what did happen in that period, and one of the problems here was, that you [were] actually very much affected by acts of God.

So indeed we actually had a deflationary period… from 1880 to about 1896, because they couldn’t find any gold. Then we had the Klondike and South Africa and actually there was inflation, because there were huge amounts of gold found in the ground…

During the gold standard, the price level went up, went down. Now you are right, that over very long rises, over a 40 year period, there was no change in price level. That’s the good news. The bad news is, that horizons are not 40 years. As Keynes said, in the long run, we’re all dead…

During the gold standard era… [w]e had financial crises about every 10 to 20 years…

[T]he period of the classical gold standard… was not a period of high growth.”

Intelligence Squared debate “America Doesn’t Need a Strong Dollar Policy,” intelligencesquaredus.org, Mar. 13, 2012

Theoretical Expertise Ranking:
Experts
Individuals with PhDs or equivalent advanced degrees in fields relevant to the gold standard. Also top-level government officials (such as foreign leaders, US presidents, Founding Fathers, Supreme Court Justices, members of legislative bodies, cabinet members, military leaders, etc.) with positions relevant to the gold standard.
Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Alfred Lerner Professor of Banking and Financial Institutions, Graduate School of Business, Columbia University, 1999-present
  • Member, Conference on Income and Wealth, 1984-present
  • Research Associate, National Bureau of Economic Research, 1980-present
  • Member, Board of Governors, Federal Reserve System, 2006-2008
  • Visiting Research Fellow, The World Bank, Sep. 2000-May 2001
  • Chairman, External Evaluation Committee for Research Activities, International Monetary Fund, Jan. 1999-July 1999
  • Executive Vice President and Director of Research, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, 1994-1997
  • Visiting Scholar, Division of International Finance, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, May 1993
  • Visiting Professor, Department of Economics, Princeton University, 1990-1991
  • Professor, Graduate School of Business, Columbia University, 1983-1991
  • Visiting Associate Professor, Northwestern University, 1982-1983
  • Associate Professor, University of Chicago, 1981-1983
  • Assistant Professor, University of Chicago, 1976-1981
  • Faculty Research Fellow, National Bureau of Economic Research, 1979-1980
  • Panel Member, Brookings Panel on Economic Activity, 1977-1978
  • Economist, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, 1977
  • Teaching Assistant, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1974-1976
Education:
  • PhD, Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1976
  • BA, Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1973
Other:
  • Born in New York, NY, Jan. 11, 1951
  • Member, Editorial Board, Borsa International Review, 2013-present
  • Member, Editorial Board, Review of Development Finance, 2010-present
  • Associate Editor, Emerging Markets, Finance and Trade, 2008-present
  • Member, Editorial Board, Finance India, 1999-present
  • Member, Advisory Board, International Finance, 1997-present
  • Member, Editorial Board, Journal of International Money and Finance, 1992-present
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Should the United States Return to a Gold Standard?