New South Wales

NSW Lunchtime Seminar Series


From: Monday August 26, 2013, 12:15 pm

To: Monday August 26, 2013, 1:30 pm

Presenter: Professor Scott Sumner

Topic:          Monetary Policy and the Great Recession

Time:           12:15 pm for 12.30 pm, Monday 26th August 2013. Presentations usually conclude by 1.15 pm to 1.30 pm

Venue:        Ground Floor East Seminar Room, Reserve Bank of Australia, 65 Martin Place, Sydney

Cost:             Free, light refreshments provided

RSVP:           Please respond to

Abstract: According to the standard view, a severe financial crisis in 2008 triggered the Great Recession. Although US monetary policy was considered to be expansionary, it could not prevent a severe decline in aggregate demand, partly because interest rates were at the zero bound. In this presentation, Scott Sumner will argue that monetary policy was in fact highly contractionary in 2008, especially if judged by the metrics preferred by macroeconomists such as Ben Bernanke and Frederic Mishkin. In particular, Scott suggests such policy caused the Great Recession and intensified the subsequent financial crisis. He proposes that nominal GDP level targeting would have moderated the recession and the financial crisis, especially in Europe, and that Australia was the only major developed economy to follow sound monetary policy after 2008. Scott Sumner has taught economics at Bentley University for the past 31 years. He earned a BA in economics at the University of Wisconsin and a PhD in economics at the University of Chicago. His research has focused on monetary economics; the effectiveness of monetary policy in liquidity traps; and the importance of expectations. He was drawn into the public policy debate after the crisis of 2008 and since early 2009 has been writing at He has been hailed as ‘the blogger who saved the economy’ and in 2012 he was ranked 15th on Foreign Policy’s list of Top 100 Global Thinkers.



65 Martin Place , Sydney NSW

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