31st Annual Monetary Conference

WAS THE FED A GOOD IDEA?


Thursday, November 14, 2013
9:00 a.m. — 6:15 p.m.

Cato Institute, 1000 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C.

About the Conference | Conference Schedule

CATO’S 31ST ANNUAL MONETARY CONFERENCE — WAS THE FED A GOOD IDEA? — will bring together some of the world’s leading scholars and policymakers to consider the record of the Federal Reserve since its establishment in December 1913. The Great Depression left a black mark on the nation’s central bank and the Great Recession has vastly expanded the bank’s powers. In 1913, the dollar was defined in terms of gold. Today we have a pure fiat money and the Fed is the largest buyer of U.S. public debt, enabling the federal government to live beyond its means. Would we have been better off adhering to the rules of a gold standard? This conference will address that issue by examining the regulatory record of the Fed, discussing the constitutional basis for adhering to a convertibility principle, and by making the case for a National Monetary Commission to consider alternatives to the current regime.

Join leading experts to discuss
  • Lessons from a century of U.S. central banking
  • The risks posed by fiat money, ultra-low interest rates, and credit allocation
  • Why using monetary policy to fund government spending thwarts fiscal responsibility
  • Financial fragility and the problem of “too big to fail”
  • The case for a National Monetary Commission and fundamental reform

Please join our distinguished speakers on Thursday, November 14, to discuss these and related issues.

Featured Speakers


Charles Plosser
Charles Plosser
President and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia

Athanasios Orphanides
Athanasios Orphanides
Professor of the Practice of Global Economics and Management, MIT Sloan School of Management
Leszek Balcerowicz
Leszek Balcerowicz
Former Chairman, National Bank of Poland


Rep. Kevin P. Brady
Rep. Kevin P. Brady
Chairman, Joint Economic Committee


Rep. Jeb Hensarling
Rep. Jeb Hensarling
Chairman, House Financial Services Committee


Lewis E. Lehrman
Lewis E. Lehrman
Chairman, The Lehrman Institute