Congress must act to raise the debt limit by Thursday or risk putting the federal government into default. The international community continues to ring the alarm over a U.S. default. Simon Johnson, the former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, explains what a default would mean for the world economy.
As the United States teeters on the edge of the fiscal cliff, Simon Johnson, professor at MIT’s Sloan School of Management and former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, explores America's love affair with debt, our longstanding hatred of taxes, and what lessons we should take from history.
Simon Johnson explains the national debt—where it came from and what it means to you and to future generations. In White House Burning: The Founding Fathers, Our National Debt, and Why It Matters to You he and co-author James Kwak argue that if we persist on our current course, the national debt will reduce the number of jobs, lower living standards, increase inequality, and force a reduction in government services.
In an effort to help alleviate the symptoms of Europe's debt crisis, the Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank, and other international banks funneled U.S. dollars into European financial systems on Wednesday. The move helped markets by making American dollars more easily available outside the U.S. Stocks shot up in reaction to the news. The increased liquidity had the immediate effect of boosting the Dow Jones industrial average by 484 points. It was the biggest single day gain since March 2009. Some wondered, however, whether the move was a smart long-term investment, or just a temporary fix.
Economists Simon Johnson and James Kwak discuss their article “Debt and Dumb,” in the November issue of Vanity Fair. They argue that today’s Tea Party is a betrayal of the foundation of American fiscal policy as established by Alexander Hamilton and has nothing in common with the Boston uprising it claims to honor. Alexander Hamilton, the first secretary of the Treasury, believed that good credit, based on the power to tax, is essential to a nation’s security.
Nicole Gelinas, contributing editor of the Manhattan Institute's City Journal and author of After the Fall: Saving Capitalism from Wall Street and Washington, and Simon Johnson, former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund and co-founder of the blog The Baseline Scenario, discuss some of the big economic stories in today's news. The Fed's program known as QE2 is coming to an end -- did it work? Bank of America is planning to pay $14 billion back to investors who lost money on mortgage deals gone bad -- is it enough? And what's going on in Greece, exactly?
The hunt is on for a new head of the International Monetary Fund as the organization still tries to manage both global economic troubles and sovereign debt crises. On today’s first Backstory segment, we’ll take a look at the history of the IMF, criticisms of it, and its difficult tasks in today’s economic climate. We’ll be joined by Simon Johnson, Professor of Entrepreneurship at MIT and former Chief Economist for the IMF.
[S&P doesn't] have a lot of credibility left after totally blowing all major calls of the past decade...The chance that the United States would not pay its debts after more than 200 years of being the best creditor in the world, that chance exists. It is quite remote in my assessment. But there's no question that S&P is trying to swing the other way and trying to get some attention from the left and right, and it's obviously working.
— Simon Johnson, former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund and professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, on The Brian Lehrer Show.
Simon Johnson, former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund and professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, talks about why Standard & Poor's downgraded the outlook for U.S. debt to "negative" and how that factors into the ongoing battle over the national debt. Washington Post Economic Policy Reporter reporter Lori Montgomery joins the conversation to talk about how the S&P rating might change the political landscape of debt in Washington.
The world leaders of the G20 are meeting later this week, and there are a lot of ideas afloat on how to reorganize world currency (gold standard, anyone?). Simon Johnson, former chief economist for the International Monetary Fund, helps us examine the notion that the U.S. dollar may not remain at the top of the heap forever.
Standing before a crowd of union members and leaders at the Milwaukee Laborfest yesterday, President Barack Obama called on Congress to pass a $50 billion public works plan that would rebuild and modernize the country's transportation systems; it's a move designed to create jobs and help jump-start the economy.
The president's critics, particularly Republicans, are calling his actions too little, too late.
Stock markets around the world seemed jittery yesterday: The Dow Jones industrials dropped briefly below 10,000 before making up most of their loss. Since a recent high in April, the Dow has dropped nearly 12 percent. What does this number indicate about our economy? Is the market the end-all-be-all measurement of how our economy is doing?
Some organizations are calling for the government to break up the big banks. If that were to happen, what would it look like? Simon Johnson, the former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund, a professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management and a co-founder of The Baseline Scenario blog, weighs in. His new book is 13 Bankers: The Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown.