Robert Aliber: The (Mis) Management of the Dollar as a Reserve Currency

Thursday, May 12, 2022 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm
Columbia University Faculty House, Garden Room

Robert Aliber joined the faculty of the Graduate School of Business of the University of Chicago in 1965 and left the classroom in 2004 as professor of International Economics and Finance Emeritus. Aliber has been the Houblon-Norman Fellow at the Bank of England, the Bundesbank professor at the Free University of Berlin, the JPMorgan Prize Fellow at the American Academy of Berlin, and a visiting scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars in Washington. He has been a visiting professor at the Amos Tuck School of Dartmouth College, the London Business School, Williams College, and Brandeis University.

Aliber has written extensively about the prices of currencies, international investment flows, banking issues, the multinational firm, international monetary arrangements, and financial crises. His first book The Future of the Dollar as an International Currency was published in 1966 (Praeger). The Management of the Dollar in International Finance (Princeton University Press) was published in 1967, the first edition of The International Money Game (Basic Books) appeared in 1973, and the seventh edition now titled The New International Money Game (Palgrave) was published in 2012. The Multinational Paradigm (MIT Press) appeared in 1992. Aliber inherited Manias, Panics, and Crashes (Palgrave) from Charles Kindleberger, who brought out the first four editions; Aliber brought out the fifth edition in 2005, the sixth edition in 2011, and the seventh edition in 2015. He was the co-editor with George P. Shultz of Guidelines, Informal Controls, and the Market Place (University of Chicago Press) in 1967. Aliber has written extensively about the financial crisis in Iceland and co-edited Prelude to the Icelandic Financial Crisis (Palgrave, 2011) with Gyfli Zoega. In 2019 Aliber and Zoega published The 2008 Global Financial Crisis in Retrospect (Palgrave Macmillan). He has also written two different books on personal finance with the title Your Money and Your Life; the first appeared in 1983 (Basic Books) and the second in 2011 (Stanford University Press).

His current research is on the identification of the shocks that have led to the large variability in the prices of currencies, bonds, stocks, real estate, and commodities since the early 1970s, which have led to more than sixty banking crises; many have been associated with a currency crisis. The Great Recession of 2009 resulted from the banking crisis of 2008, which followed from the implosion of the spike in real estate prices that developed from 2003 to 2006.

This seminar was made possible thanks to the generous support of the DeSouza family.