Alan Greenspan initiated two big experiments as chair of the United States Federal Reserve; one made his reputation, the other ruined it.
These days, Greenspan, who ran the Fed from mid-1987 to early 2006, is remembered for how his policies contributed to the 2008 financial crisis. He deprioritized regulation, believing that no rational executive would tempt an existential crisis by taking on more risk than their firm could handle.
“Yes, I’ve found a flaw,” Greenspan told a congressional committee in October 2008, when asked if he felt his ideology had caused him to make mistakes. “I don’t know how significant or permanent it is. But I’ve been very distressed by that fact.”
Greenspan’s intuition wasn’t always faulty.
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