Cover image for The roaring nineties : a new history of the world's most prosperous decade
The roaring nineties : a new history of the world's most prosperous decade
Stiglitz, Joseph E.
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First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : W. W. Norton & Co., [2003]

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xxxiv, 379 pages ; 25 cm
Boom and bust: seeds of destruction -- Miracle workers, or lucky mistakes? -- The all-powerful Fed and its role in inflating the bubble -- Deregulation run amok -- Creative accounting -- The banks and the bubble -- Tax cuts: feeding the frenzy -- Making risk a way of life -- Globalization: early forays -- Enron -- Debunking the myths -- Toward a new democratic idealism: vision and values -- Epilogue: further lessons on how to mismanage the economy.
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HC106.82 .S75 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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With his best-selling Globalization and Its Discontents, Joseph E. Stiglitz showed how a misplaced faith in free-market ideology led to many of the recent problems suffered by the developing nations. Here he turns the same light on the United States.

The Roaring Nineties offers not only an insider's illuminating view of policymaking but also a compelling case that even the Clinton administration was too closely tied to the financial community--that along with enormous economic success in the nineties came the seeds of the destruction visited on the economy at the end of the decade.

This groundbreaking work by the Nobel Prize-winning economist argues that much of what we understood about the 1990s' prosperity is wrong, that the theories that have been used to guide world leaders and anchor key business decisions were fundamentally outdated. Yes, jobs were created, technology prospered, inflation fell, and poverty was reduced. But at the same time the foundation was laid for the economic problems we face today. Trapped in a near-ideological commitment to free markets, policymakers permitted accounting standards to slip, carried deregulation further than they should have, and pandered to corporate greed. These chickens have now come home to roost.

The paperback includes a new introduction that reviews the continued failure of the Bush administration's policies, which have taken a bad situation and made it worse.

Author Notes

Joseph Stiglitz is professor of economics at Columbia University.

Influential economist and Columbia University professor Joseph Eugene Stiglitz was born in Gary, Indiana on February 9, 1943. He received his undergraduate degree from Amherst College and his Ph.D. from MIT in 1967. He was awarded the John Bates Clark Medal in 1979 and the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 2001.

Stiglitz has taught at Yale University, Stanford University, Duke University, Oxford University, and Princeton University. In 2000, he founded the Initiative for Policy Dialogue. Stiglitz worked for the Clinton Administration beginning in 1993 and was the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers from 1995 to 1997. For the next three years he served as the World Bank's Senior Vice President and Chief Economist. Stiglitz chaired the Commission of Experts on Reforms of the International Monetary and Financial System in 2009.

He has written several hundred articles and many books, including Making Globalization Work and Freefall: America, Free Markets, and the Sinking of the World Economy. His title The Price of Inequality made The New York Times Best Seller List for 2012.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 4

Booklist Review

Stiglitz, a Nobel Prize-winning economist and academic who served in the Clinton administration, reflects on his experiences in Washington and what he learned there. Among his many themes, he declares his beliefs that government should play a major (if limited) oversight role in the markets and that it should be an advocate for social justice. He feels that the rule of finance in the 1990s was supreme and government deferred too much to Wall Street; the prosperity and growth of that decade laid the foundation for today's economic problems, including too much deregulation, inadequate accounting standards, and pandering to corporate greed. Issues of globalization concern him greatly, and he analyzes the current situation in America and other developed countries and suggests future action. Although critical of Clinton-era policies, he reserves much harsher analysis for both Bush administrations. Stiglitz believes that citizens must understand the basic issues confronting our society and the way their government works; this book\b is an excellent primer. --Mary Whaley Copyright 2003 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

As an economic adviser to President Clinton and a World Bank official, Nobel Prize winner Stiglitz (Globalization and Its Discontents) had a front-row seat for the financial boom of the 1990s. He discusses how, contrary to all theory, reducing the national deficit led to the economic upswing, but his interest lies not in how the bubble happened but in those qualities that eventually led to its collapse. One of his chief arguments is that although efficient markets depend upon the free flow of information, deregulation enabled corporations like Enron to present distorted financial data, "stealing money from their unwary shareholders" in the process. Financial analysts also withheld frank assessments from investors to maintain their insider status, and the "conflicts of interest gone out of control" inevitably led to disaster. The book suggests Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan could have slowed things down, but failed to back up tentative public remarks with firm action. The Clinton administration also comes in for some of the blame for pressuring foreign countries to adopt policies it wouldn't apply to its own economy. But the largest portion of the blame is doled out to George W. Bush for mishandling the initial stages of the recession, allowing it to spiral dangerously in the name of free markets. Instead, Stiglitz calls for just enough regulation to promote what he dubs "Democratic Idealism," a fairly standard liberal platform of social justice and economic reform. Whatever one thinks of his long-term goals, the straightforward and well-reasoned summation of the last decade's market trends has a convincing ring of truth. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

So why is the economy tanking? A Nobel prize-winning economist points to the Nineties' fanatical commitment to free markets and deregulation. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Adviser to President Clinton, Nobel Prize winner (2001), author of Globalization and Its Discontents (CH, Oct'02), and World Bank official, Stiglitz has fashioned a sprightly and insightful economic analysis of the 1990s, whose ascribed excesses culminated in recession. While prideful of the aspirations of the Clinton administration, he cites as major shortfalls and portents of disaster its excessive reliance on deregulation and so-called markets, which are described as pandering too much to Wall Street; this led to unleashed corporate greed as occurred in Enron and other similar evils. Likewise, the US is said to have led World Bank and IMF policy toward undue reliance on markets in developing countries, with unfortunate consequences. Indeed, much of the book supplies detailed accounts of the resulting country failures; this conclusion has been challenged by IMF officials, including former chief economist and now Harvard professor Kenneth Rogoff. Finally, Stiglitz recommends remedies, which include restoring a greater role for government intervention, without rejecting the admittedly positive contribution of markets to economic growth; eliminating agricultural subsidies; greater regulation to protect consumers and investors; and support of research and education. An accessible contribution toward the more comprehensive studies of the 1990s that can be expected over time. ^BSumming Up: Recommended. Public, academic, and professional library collections. H. I. Liebling emeritus, Lafayette College

Table of Contents

Prefacep. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xxv
Chapter 1 Boom and Bust: Seeds of Destructionp. 3
Chapter 2 Miracleworkers, or Lucky Mistakes?p. 29
Chapter 3 The All-Powerful Fed and Its Role in Inflating the Bubblep. 56
Chapter 4 Deregulation Run Amokp. 87
Chapter 5 Creative Accountingp. 115
Chapter 6 The Banks and the Bubblep. 140
Chapter 7 Tax Cuts: Feeding the Frenzyp. 170
Chapter 8 Making Risk a Way of Lifep. 180
Chapter 9 Globalization: Early Foraysp. 202
Chapter 10 Enronp. 241
Chapter 11 Debunking the Mythsp. 269
Chapter 12 Toward a New Democratic Idealism: Vision and Valuesp. 281
Epilogue: Further Lessons on How to Mismanage the Economyp. 320
Notesp. 337
Indexp. 359