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George Selgin

Senior Fellow and Director, Center for Monetary and Financial Alternatives
Blog

Catch‐​11

Chapter 11 bankruptcy may be many firms’ best hope for surviving the present crisis. But to take advantage of it, they need credit—the cheaper the better. Firms can get cheap credit through either the Small Business Administration’s (SBA’s) Paycheck Protection Plan or the Fed’s Main Street Lending Programs. But there’s a catch: to qualify for these loans, they mustn’t file for Chapter 11.

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Main Street Memories, Yet Again

The Fed’s current business lending plan is actually its second try at business lending. Alas, the first attempt went badly, and a look at what went wrong suggests that history may soon be repeating itself.

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Return of the Inflation Mongers

Let’s face it: despite a quadrupling of the size of Fed’s balance sheet by 2015, and persistently low interest rates, Krugman was right, and the inflation mongers were wrong.

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My 1500 Characters on the Fed’s Main Street Programs

Had I had 1500 words rather than 1500 characters to play with, I would have argued for keeping the Fed out of the non‐​bank lending business altogether, so as to not involve it in politically‐​charged decisions regarding which businesses get thrown a lifeline, and which ones are left to drown.

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Ralph Nader Flips Out

Criticism can be just or unjust, and it’s hard to imagine anything more unjust than Mr. Nader’s criticism of Fed Chair Jay Powell.

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That Darn Coin

They say that a bad penny always turns up. But when it comes to crises these days, it seems that what keeps turning up is a bad idea—namely, the idea of having the U.S. Mint strike one or more trillion‐​dollar platinum coins.

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The Treasury’s Helicopter Cop‐​Out

Predictably, the depths of the present economic crisis, including the remarkable flattening of interest rates since it began, have led to several calls by economists for the Fed and other central banks to ready their money choppers for a major money‐​financed spending‐​spree.

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Robert Murphy on Market Monetarism

Market Monetarism is more consistent with both old‐​fashioned Monetarism and Austrian economics than Murphy allows, and that, to the extent that it differs from versions of either, it does so in ways that improve upon them.