WP: The Federal Reserve’s Response to the COVID-19 Contraction: An Initial Appraisal

Nuevo working paper junto a Bryan Cutsinger, Thomas Hogan, Alex Salter, y Will Luther. En esta ocasión estudiamos la respuesta de la Reserva Federal a la pandemia del Covid-19. En particular, llamamos la atención sobre la Reserva Federal haciendo política fiscal en lugar de política monetaria. Tendencia que se inicia al menos con la crisis sub-prime.

We provide an initial assessment of the Federal Reserve’s policy response to the COVID-19 contraction. We briefly review the historical episode and consider the standard textbook treatment of a pandemic on the macroeconomy. Then, we summarize the monetary and emergency lending policies pursued by the Fed. Finally, we consider the extent to which the Fed might be said to have promoted monetary stability over the period; whether its emergency lending facilities were warranted; and what, if any, consequences are likely to follow from these facilities. In brief, we credit the Fed with promoting monetary stability while maintaining that it could have (and should have) done more. It could have achieved something approximating monetary stability without employing its emergency lending facilities, but some of its facilities were intended to promote general liquidity and likely helped to that end. Other facilities were primarily intended to allocate credit and, thus, blur the line between monetary and fiscal policy. These credit allocation facilities were unwarranted and unwise.

Download paper from SSRN.

Interview with Bob Muprhy

Check my interview with Bob Murphy. We talked about my work with Peter Lewin financial applications to capital theory and its implications for the austrian business cycle theory, fractional reserve banking, and how the Fed «broke» the usual way to perform monetary policy.

Access the interview here.

SMP: Two Tales of Unintended Consequences -Tale 1

Primera parte de un comentario sobre las consecuencias no intencionadas de dos bancos centrales desde las crisis del 2008. En la primera parte, junto a Andreas Hoffmann (Twitter: @Andhoflei) analizamos al caso de la Reserva Federal. En la segunda parte (aún por publicar), analizaremos el caso del Banco Central Europeo.

Estos análisis son co-blogueados en Sound Money Project y Think Markets

Even when a policy is successful in achieving its desired ends, we have to consider its unintended and unforeseen consequences, resulting from cumulative market adjustments to policy changes that make it hard to judge the overall outcome of a policy in our complex economy. The Federal Reserve and European Central Bank’s monetary policy responses to the 2008 financial crisis offer two tales of major unintended consequences. This post discusses the unintended outcomes of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s crisis policies. In our next post, we will address ECB policies.


One of the major challenges the Fed faced during the 2008 financial crisis, after Lehman was allowed to fail, was the loss of confidence in the financial markets and the resulting increase in money demand that led to a decline in the money multiplier. The scenario was even more delicate from the Fed’s perspective due to the presence of a number of financial institutions that the Fed considered too big to fail.

Seguir leyendo en SMP.

Seguir leyendo en Think Markets.

Some thoughts on policy normalization and the Fed – Por Jaime Narbón

November is an interesting month in Washington, D.C. for Economists, Researchers, Policy Analysts and overall, for those interested in the world of ideas. For example, during the month of November, one can attend interesting academic events and listen to prominent scholars at the Annual Dinner of the National Economists Club, or attend several events at think thanks in the area. This year, Washington, DC had the exceptional experience of being the official site of the Southern Economic Association‘s Annual meetings as well as the Annual meeting of the Society for the development of Austrian Economics, where some of the most talented scholars and students gather to present and discuss relevant research on different fields within the science of economics.

Continue reading here.