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The roaring nineties : a new history of the world's most prosperous decade / Joseph E. Stiglitz

Main Author Stiglitz, Joseph E. Country Estados Unidos. Edition 1st ed Publication New York : W.W. Norton & Company, cop. 2003 Description XXXIV, 379 p. ; 25 cm ISBN 0-393-05852-2 CDU 338(73)
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Monografia Biblioteca Geral da Universidade do Minho
BGUM 338(73) - S Não requisitável | Not for loan 422556
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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

With his best-selling Globalization and Its Discontents, Joseph E. Stiglitz showed how a misplaced faith in free-market ideology led to many of the recent problems suffered by the developing nations. Here he turns the same light on the United States.

The Roaring Nineties offers not only an insider's illuminating view of policymaking but also a compelling case that even the Clinton administration was too closely tied to the financial community--that along with enormous economic success in the nineties came the seeds of the destruction visited on the economy at the end of the decade.

This groundbreaking work by the Nobel Prize-winning economist argues that much of what we understood about the 1990s' prosperity is wrong, that the theories that have been used to guide world leaders and anchor key business decisions were fundamentally outdated. Yes, jobs were created, technology prospered, inflation fell, and poverty was reduced. But at the same time the foundation was laid for the economic problems we face today. Trapped in a near-ideological commitment to free markets, policymakers permitted accounting standards to slip, carried deregulation further than they should have, and pandered to corporate greed. These chickens have now come home to roost.

The paperback includes a new introduction that reviews the continued failure of the Bush administration's policies, which have taken a bad situation and made it worse.

Table of contents provided by Syndetics

  • Preface (p. ix)
  • Acknowledgments (p. xxv)
  • Chapter 1 Boom and Bust: Seeds of Destruction (p. 3)
  • Chapter 2 Miracleworkers, or Lucky Mistakes? (p. 29)
  • Chapter 3 The All-Powerful Fed and Its Role in Inflating the Bubble (p. 56)
  • Chapter 4 Deregulation Run Amok (p. 87)
  • Chapter 5 Creative Accounting (p. 115)
  • Chapter 6 The Banks and the Bubble (p. 140)
  • Chapter 7 Tax Cuts: Feeding the Frenzy (p. 170)
  • Chapter 8 Making Risk a Way of Life (p. 180)
  • Chapter 9 Globalization: Early Forays (p. 202)
  • Chapter 10 Enron (p. 241)
  • Chapter 11 Debunking the Myths (p. 269)
  • Chapter 12 Toward a New Democratic Idealism: Vision and Values (p. 281)
  • Epilogue: Further Lessons on How to Mismanage the Economy (p. 320)
  • Notes (p. 337)
  • Index (p. 359)

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

So why is the economy tanking? A Nobel prize-winning economist points to the Nineties' fanatical commitment to free markets and deregulation. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly Review

As an economic adviser to President Clinton and a World Bank official, Nobel Prize winner Stiglitz (Globalization and Its Discontents) had a front-row seat for the financial boom of the 1990s. He discusses how, contrary to all theory, reducing the national deficit led to the economic upswing, but his interest lies not in how the bubble happened but in those qualities that eventually led to its collapse. One of his chief arguments is that although efficient markets depend upon the free flow of information, deregulation enabled corporations like Enron to present distorted financial data, "stealing money from their unwary shareholders" in the process. Financial analysts also withheld frank assessments from investors to maintain their insider status, and the "conflicts of interest gone out of control" inevitably led to disaster. The book suggests Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan could have slowed things down, but failed to back up tentative public remarks with firm action. The Clinton administration also comes in for some of the blame for pressuring foreign countries to adopt policies it wouldn't apply to its own economy. But the largest portion of the blame is doled out to George W. Bush for mishandling the initial stages of the recession, allowing it to spiral dangerously in the name of free markets. Instead, Stiglitz calls for just enough regulation to promote what he dubs "Democratic Idealism," a fairly standard liberal platform of social justice and economic reform. Whatever one thinks of his long-term goals, the straightforward and well-reasoned summation of the last decade's market trends has a convincing ring of truth. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Adviser to President Clinton, Nobel Prize winner (2001), author of Globalization and Its Discontents (CH, Oct'02), and World Bank official, Stiglitz has fashioned a sprightly and insightful economic analysis of the 1990s, whose ascribed excesses culminated in recession. While prideful of the aspirations of the Clinton administration, he cites as major shortfalls and portents of disaster its excessive reliance on deregulation and so-called markets, which are described as pandering too much to Wall Street; this led to unleashed corporate greed as occurred in Enron and other similar evils. Likewise, the US is said to have led World Bank and IMF policy toward undue reliance on markets in developing countries, with unfortunate consequences. Indeed, much of the book supplies detailed accounts of the resulting country failures; this conclusion has been challenged by IMF officials, including former chief economist and now Harvard professor Kenneth Rogoff. Finally, Stiglitz recommends remedies, which include restoring a greater role for government intervention, without rejecting the admittedly positive contribution of markets to economic growth; eliminating agricultural subsidies; greater regulation to protect consumers and investors; and support of research and education. An accessible contribution toward the more comprehensive studies of the 1990s that can be expected over time. ^BSumming Up: Recommended. Public, academic, and professional library collections. H. I. Liebling emeritus, Lafayette College

Booklist Review

Stiglitz, a Nobel Prize-winning economist and academic who served in the Clinton administration, reflects on his experiences in Washington and what he learned there. Among his many themes, he declares his beliefs that government should play a major (if limited) oversight role in the markets and that it should be an advocate for social justice. He feels that the rule of finance in the 1990s was supreme and government deferred too much to Wall Street; the prosperity and growth of that decade laid the foundation for today's economic problems, including too much deregulation, inadequate accounting standards, and pandering to corporate greed. Issues of globalization concern him greatly, and he analyzes the current situation in America and other developed countries and suggests future action. Although critical of Clinton-era policies, he reserves much harsher analysis for both Bush administrations. Stiglitz believes that citizens must understand the basic issues confronting our society and the way their government works; this book\b is an excellent primer. --Mary Whaley Copyright 2003 Booklist

Kirkus Book Review

A best-of-times, worst-of-times overview of the previous decade by whip-smart economist and presidential advisor Stiglitz (Economics/Columbia Univ.; Globalization and Its Discontents, 2002). Adam Smith's playing field-leveling invisible hand, observes Stiglitz, sometimes can't be seen because it is in fact not there. So it seemed through much of the 1990s, which saw American capitalism claw its way up staggering new heights of inequity and avarice. Take the stock market's ever more pronounced dislike, throughout the decade, of giving the small investor an even break with equal access to intelligence, about which Stiglitz remarks, "Unfettered markets, rampant with conflicts of interest, can lead to inefficiency. We can never eliminate the problems; we can, however, mitigate them. In the nineties, we made them worse." Some of the ways in which the economy was made worse, Stiglitz writes, were political in nature; the Clinton administration, which he served as a member of the Council of Economic Advisors, failed to get a handle on such things as funny corporate accounting practices and the endless corporate appropriation of the public domain. Fault Clinton Stiglitz does, and at many points as he turns from NAFTA to the WTO to the Enron scandal and on. Yet, he warns, it is a mistake to attribute to that administration the collapse of the great bubble and the dive into recession that closed the decade: though Clinton may earn middling marks, Stiglitz slyly notes, as a teacher he grades on a curve, and Clinton positively shines by comparison with what came before and after. That collapse brought with it the evaporation of trillions and a subsequent performance well below the economy's potential--but no real curbing of such matters as executive compensation, merger mania, and unemployment. Contra many of his colleagues, Stiglitz calls for more rather than less regulation, noting that the bursting bubble did bring at least some useful reforms in accounting practices and the public disclosure of information. Likely to cause indigestion among some Wall Streeters, but a thoughtful, accessible survey of a history that's still unfolding. Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Joseph Stiglitz is professor of economics at Columbia University.

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