Wednesday, January 30, 2008

the age of turbulence

When chairman Greenspan speaks, the world listens

said Bill Clinton back in May 2000, and this statement alone is bold enough for this book to be high on one's reading list. I am not going to comment on whether the actual economic policies during his tenure were right or wrong. Greenspan presents his support for free markets in a persuasive manner and the analysis of the US and world economy's underlying principles and powers both in a historical and recent context is particularly illuminating. I guess the writing, compared to the Fedspeak many people were used to, is unencumbered by such things as, well, the Fed Chairmanship. However, don't hold your breath for any spectacular revelations; the style is rather dry but lucid. Perhaps the most fascinating aspect of this book is his observations on past presidents, from Nixon to Bush II. The analysis of other main economies in Europe and elsewhere is also very interesting, though it appeals more to non-US readers. Definitely worth reading.