Benn Steil's op-ed for Paul Solman's PBS The Business Desk site looks critically at calls for "a new Bretton Woods." He argues that many of the critical precepts behind the 1944 American Bretton Woods blueprint were overturned by the Truman Administration a mere three years later, and that the operation of the Bretton Woods monetary system was far briefer and more troubled than is typically reckoned.
The prospective challenge of containing inflation, buttressing a collapsed housing market, and normalizing the Federal Reserve's bloated balance sheet has created an "exit strategy" dilemma for Chairman Ben Bernanke. CFR Director of International Economics Benn Steil urges the Federal Reserve to swap mortgage-backed securities with the U.S. Treasury in exchange for Treasury securities, which the Fed can then sell as part of a normal process of monetary tightening.
CFR Director of International Economics Benn Steil urges the Federal Reserve to swap mortgage-backed securities with the U.S. Treasury in exchange for Treasury securities, which the Fed can then sell as part of a normal process of monetary tightening as a solution for the prospective challenge of containing inflation, buttressing a collapsed housing market, and normalizing its bloated balance sheet.
Benn Steil and Dinah Walker explain why the Fed's massive holdings of mortgage-backed securities (MBS) are distorting its thinking about the conduct of monetary policy going forward.They propose a novel plan to rectify this, in which the Fed swaps its MBS with the Treasury in return for Treasury securities, which the Fed can sell as part of a normal "exit" from monetary stimulus.
After more than a decade of war and several years of a deep financial crisis, many Americans are asking whether the country should focus more of its attention—and more of its resources—at home. That said, the impulse to lead is still strong in both political parties and most polls show that Americans still feel both a moral and strategic imperative to remain fully engaged in the world.
The debt crisis that has hammered southern Europe since 2010 will have long-lived economic effects, despite the moderation in Spanish and Italian government borrowing costs since the European Central Bank's "Outright Monetary Transactions" initiative last September.
George Papandreou interviewed by Christopher Alessi
The EU and IMF should loosen the austerity requirements of Greece's bailout package to allow the indebted country to implement needed growth-enhancing policies, says former prime minister George Papandreou.
Federal Reserve Bank Chairman Ben Bernanke presented these prepared remarks to the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs on February 26, 2013. The committee provides a webcast of the whole hearing.
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.