American Economic Policy in the 1990s
The 1990s saw the best economic performance in the United States in three decades. Strong economic growth and falling unemployment were accompanied by low inflation and rising budget surpluses. Although personal bankruptcies climbed, the personal saving rate fell, and the trade deficit expanded, overall, U.S. economic performance during the 1990s was outstanding.
This book is a unique attempt to write the first history of the making of American economic policy during the 1990s. One way to view it is as a "debriefing" of those who made the decisions. Each chapter is devoted to a particular area of economic policy and consists of a background paper written by leading academic economists together with short essays by prominent policymakers, many of whom served in the Clinton administration or previous administrations, and by independent observers. The questions asked about each policy area include: What were the pros and cons of alternative options under consideration? What decision was made? What were the relevant economic arguments for that decision, and what political interests were served? Were other options missing from consideration? Is it possible to judge whether the decision was the right one? Are there lessons for the future?
About the Editors
Jeffrey A. Frankel is James W. Harpel Professor of Capital Formation and Economic Growth at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Peter R. Orszag is a Senior Fellow in Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution.
—Joseph E. Stiglitz, Nobel Laureate in Economics (2001), former Chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers (1995-97), and former Chief Economist of the World Bank
—Michael J. Boskin, T. M. Friedman Professor of Economics and Hoover Institution Senior Fellow, Stanford University, and former Chairman of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers (1989-93)
—Leon E. Panetta, former Director of the Office of Management and Budget and Chief of Staff in the Clinton Administration
—Stuart E. Eizenstat, former Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of the Treasury
CHOICE Outstanding Academic Book for 2002.