Miller Center

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The 2010 Mortimer Caplin Conference on the World Economy

Banking on Central Banks


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The current economic crisis is the most severe that capitalism has seen since the 1930s. And it has resulted in a fundamental shift in the role that governments play in the economy. No longer are government standing on the sidelines, directing traffic and encouraging or restricting economic activity. In just the last year we experienced governments bailing out banks and other corporate entities while allowing others to fail. We saw governments injecting enormous amounts of liquidity into financial markets. We observed government spending result in monumental deficits. And we witnessed a blurring of the gap between private and public banking. Central Banks have become the focal point of governments’ response, and as a result their role has been altered forever in fundamental ways.

The Third Annual Mortimer Caplin Conference on the World Economy, hosted by the University of Virginia’s Miller Center of Public Affairs, is devoted to an informed and intelligent discussion of these questions. Keeping with our tradition, this conference will bring together current and former Central Bankers from the U.S., Japan, Great Britain, China and the European Union along with the best thinkers from the academy to discuss, deliberate and debate a number of questions related to the role that Central Banks and Central Bankers play in the international economy.

 

Click to watch the CSPAN broadcast of the conference: Session 1 | Session 2.

Official Conference Schedule

Monday, October 11, 2010
National Press Club

 

Downloadable Content

Video: WMV | H.264 MP4 | Audio: MP3

Session 1: Banking on Central Banks: The Form and Function of Modern Central Banking

 

Textbook accounts of the modern open economy treat monetary and fiscal policy in distinct and separate chapters. Yet the world economy, as evidenced by the current financial crisis, rarely adheres to textbook formulations. Governments have become increasingly involved in private markets, debate about the consequences of fiscal policies has reached a fevered pitch, and the distinction between commercial and central banks has been significantly blurred. Is this a desired outcome? If not, how do governments disengage? This panel will address these and related questions.

 

 

Moderator
Alan Murray
Alan Murray

Alan Murray is Deputy Managing Editor and Executive Editor, online, for The Wall Street Journal. He has served on the Governing Council of the Miller Center of Public Affairs since 1994.

Panelists
Charles A.E. Goodhart
Charles A.E. Goodhart

Charles A.E. Goodhart is a member of the Financial Markets Group at the London School of Economics, where he taught from 1985 to 2002. He worked previously as a monetary adviser in the Bank of England, becoming a Chief Adviser in 1980.

Alice M. Rivlin
Alice M. Rivlin

Alice M. Rivlin is Visiting Professor at Georgetown University and Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution. She has served as Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve Board, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, and Director of the Congressional Budget Office.

Christina Romer
Christina Romer

Christina Romer is the Class of 1957-Garff B. Wilson Professor of Economics at the University of California, Berkeley. From January 2009 until September 2010, she served as Chair of President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers.

 John B. Taylor
John B. Taylor

John B. Taylor is a Professor of Economics at Stanford University and a Senior Fellow in Economics at the Hoover Institution. He served as Under Secretary of Treasury for International Affairs from 2001 to 2005.

Downloadable Content

Video: WMV | H.264 MP4 | Audio: MP3

Session 2: The Evolving Role of Central Banks in a Time of Crisis

Traditionally central banks have had three main functions: the provision of price stability, the maintenance of financial stability and the assurance of monetary liquidity. These functions—along with their role as lender of last resort—often shift in response to domestic and international shocks. And sometimes they shift as a result of political manipulation. This panel will discuss and reflect on how the financial crisis has altered the landscape for central banks across the globe.

Moderator
John W. Snow
John W. Snow

John W. Snow was the 73rd Secretary of the United States Treasury, from 2003 to 2006. He was the Newman Visiting Fellow at the Miller Center of Public Affairs from 2008 to 2009.

Panelists
Toshihiko Fukui
Toshihiko Fukui

Toshihiko Fukui served as Governor of the Bank of Japan from 2003 to 2008. He is currently President of The Canon Institute for Global Studies.

Mervyn King
Mervyn King

Mervyn King is Governor of the Bank of England and Chairman of the Monetary Policy Committee. He was previously Deputy Governor from 1998 to 2003, and Chief Economist and Executive Director from 1991.

Jean-Claude Trichet
Jean-Claude Trichet

Jean-Claude Trichet has served as President of the European Central Bank since 2003. From 1993 to 2003, he served two terms as Governor of the Banque de France. He was Chairman of the Group of Ten Governors in 2003.

Paul A. Volcker
Paul A. Volcker

Paul A. Volcker was Chairman of the Board of Governors of the U.S. Federal Reserve System from 1979 to 1987. He serves currently as Chair of the President’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board.

Zhou Xiaochuan
Zhou Xiaochuan

Zhou Xiaochuan has served as Governor of the People’s Bank of China since 2002. In January 2003, he also assumed the role of Chairman of the Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee.

 

 

Acknowledgments

 

The Miller Center is grateful for the generosity of Mortimer Caplin, whose vision and philanthropy have made it possible to launch and sustain the annual Mortimer Caplin Conference on the World Economy.

The Miller Center would also like to acknowledge leadership and generosity of the 2010 Caplin Conference Host Committee:

Mr. H. Eugene Lockhart, Jr., chair
Mr. David A. Beach
Mr. David M. Crowe
Mr. Terrence D. Daniels
Mr. Stewart Darrell
Mr. Charles H. Foster, Jr.

Mr. Landon Hilliard
Mr. Donald A. King, Jr.
Mr. W. Austin Ligon
Mr. John G. Macfarlane III
Mr. B. Wistar Morris, III
Mr. John Sherman, Jr.

The Miller Center is most grateful to Moelis & Company for its support of the Caplin Conference and for underwriting the post-conference reception, and to Caplin & Drysdale for partial underwriting support of the conference.

 

Moelis & Company Caplin & Drysdale