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November 20, 2018

United States
The Fed Is Tightening More Than It Realizes

Before the 2008 collapse of Lehman Brothers, the Fed’s balance sheet stood at $925 billion—mostly U.S. Treasury securities. After 59 months of asset purchases to push down longer-term interest ra…

The Fed Is Tightening More Than It Realizes

June 28, 2018

United States
What’s Worth Reading This Summer?

CFR.org editor Bob McMahon and I recorded our annual summer reading episode of CFR’s “The World Next Week” podcast. Carlos Lozada, the nonfiction book critic at the Washington Post, joined us for the…

summer reading 2018

December 1, 2017

Political History and Theory
Ten Historical Anniversaries of Note in 2018

Anniversaries mark the passage of time, recall our triumphs, and honor our losses. Two thousand seventeen witnessed many significant historical anniversaries: the centennial of the U.S. entry into Wo…

British soldiers marking the anniversary of the armistice that ended WW1.

December 9, 2011

Defense and Security
TWE on Camera: Janet Napolitano on International Cooperation for Homeland Security

U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. (Kevin Lamarque/courtesy Reuters) When the topic comes up of which federal agencies are responsible for keeping Americans safe from foreign threats…

U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Jan Napolitano speaks about heightened passenger vigilance and airport security ahead of the holiday travel season at Reagan National Airport in Washington November 15, 2010. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

November 9, 2016

United States
The President’s (Economic) Inbox

The election of Donald Trump creates extraordinary uncertainty about the future course of U.S. economic policy. Markets don’t like extreme unknowns, and there are valid reasons to fear that Trump’s p…

March 9, 2016

Monetary Policy
Is a Little Turbulence a Threat to Growth?

The minutes of the FOMC’s January 26-27 meeting mention financial “market turbulence” five times, and report that members discussed its potential to “restrain U.S. economic activity.” Chair Janet …

Is a Little Turbulence a Threat to Growth?

April 2, 2015

Monetary Policy
Is the Fed Gonna Tighten Like It’s 1994? Or 2004?

How will the Fed raise rates once it starts?  Gradually, in small steps?  Faster, with larger steps? In 2012, before becoming Fed chair, Janet Yellen argued for a later first rate-hike than would…

Is the Fed Gonna Tighten Like It’s 1994? Or 2004?

December 16, 2014

Monetary Policy
What Did the Greenspan Fed Do with Its “Considerable Time” Pledge in ’04?

The big question for the December 16-17 FOMC meeting is whether to drop the pledge to keep rates at near-zero for a “considerable time.” Prior to the last meeting in October, two-thirds of primary…

What Did the Greenspan Fed Do with Its “Considerable Time” Pledge in ’04?

August 18, 2014

Monetary Policy
Bullard Has Fed History on His Side in Rate-Hike Debate with Yellen

St. Louis Fed President James Bullard has moved decisively and vocally from the dove to hawk camp over the past year, and is now predicting a rate hike in the first quarter of next year – in contr…

Bullard Has Fed History on His Side in Rate-Hike Debate with Yellen

July 10, 2014

Monetary Policy
Yellen vs. Bullard on Wages and Inflation: Who Is Right?

Wage growth is “not a threat to inflation,” Fed Chair Janet Yellen said on June 18.  “[With] our 2 percent inflation objective, we could see wages growing at a more rapid rate” before having to wo…

Yellen vs. Bullard on Wages and Inflation: Who Is Right?