© 2016

A Century of Monetary Policy at the Fed

Ben Bernanke, Janet Yellen, and the Financial Crisis of 2008

  • Authors

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Introducing the Book

    1. David E. Lindsey
      Pages 1-15
  3. The Broad Sweep of Federal Reserve History: December 1913–December 2013

  4. Monetary Policy in Chairman Bernanke’s Era: Taking a Closer Look at Monetary Policymaking and Communication, February 2006–January 2014

  5. Related Developments in Chairman Bernanke’s Era: February 2006–January 2014

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 155-155
    2. David E. Lindsey
      Pages 179-197
    3. David E. Lindsey
      Pages 233-248
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 249-331

About this book


In this narrative history, David E. Lindsey gives the reader a ringside seat to a century of policies at the US Federal Reserve. Alternating between broad historical strokes and deep dives into the significance of monetary issues and developments, Lindsey offers a fascinating look into monetary policymaking from the Fed's inception in 1913 to today.

Lindsey's three decades of service on the Federal Reserve Board staff allow him to combine the heft of scholarship with an insider's perspective on how the recent chairmen's and current chairwoman's personalities and singular visions have shaped policy choices with far-reaching consequences. He critiques the performances of Chairman Ben Bernanke and Vice Chair Janet Yellen during the prelude, outbreak, and aftermath of the financial crisis of 2008, situating them in the context of the Fed's century-long history. He also quantitatively explores an alternative to the conventional New-Keynesian theory of inflation, replacing so-called "rational expectations" with the Fed's inflation objective.

This unique volume is a piece of living history that has much to offer economists and monetary policy and finance professionals.


Federal Reserve Bank Federal Reserve Central Banking Federal Open Market Committee Financial Crisis Macroeconomics Monetary Policy crisis Deflation depression economics fiscal policy history Inflation macroeconomics monetary policy regions recession

About the authors

David E. Lindsey was a 29-year veteran of the Federal Reserve Board's senior staff when he retired in 2003. He became Associate Economist of the policymaking Federal Open Market Committee in 1984 and Deputy Director of the Division of Monetary Affairs in 1987. Lindsey received his PhD from the University of Chicago in 1970, writing his thesis under Nobel Laureate Milton Friedman.

Bibliographic information


“How the Federal Reserve handled the 2008 financial crisis continues to be hotly debated. Here is an outstanding insider’s view of the crisis, targeting advanced students of economics. … Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty.” (J. J. Janney, Choice, Vol. 54 (4), December, 2016)