Marriner Eccles

Marriner S. Eccles was another of the early Keynesians of which there were quite a few. Keynes wrote the book but the ideas were in the air then as they remain today. This is from Wikipedia.

Marriner Stoddard Eccles (September 9, 1890 – December 18, 1977) was an American bankereconomist, and member and chairman of the Federal Reserve Board.Eccles was known during his lifetime chiefly as having been the Chairman of the Federal Reserve under President Franklin D. Roosevelt. He has been remembered for having anticipated and supporting the theories of John Maynard Keynes relative to “inadequate aggregate spending” in the economy which appeared during his tenure. As Eccles wrote in his memoir Beckoning Frontiers (1951):

As mass production has to be accompanied by mass consumption, mass consumption, in turn, implies a distribution of wealth … to provide men with buying power. … Instead of achieving that kind of distribution, a giant suction pump had by 1929-30 drawn into a few hands an increasing portion of currently produced wealth. … The other fellows could stay in the game only by borrowing. When their credit ran out, the game stopped….

Eccles was and is seen as an early proponent of demand stimulus projects to fend off the ravages of the Great Depression. Eccles was famously rebuked by Congresswoman Jessie Sumner (RIL) during a House of Representatives hearing on the increasingly liberal policies of the Roosevelt administration and the Federal Reserve, when she said, you just love socialism.” He became known as a defender of Keynesian ideas, though his ideas predated Keynes’ The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money (1936). In that respect, he is considered by some to have seen monetary policy having secondary importance and that as a result he allowed the Federal Reserve to be sublimated to the interests of the Treasury. In this view, the Federal Reserve after 1935 acquired new instruments to command monetary policy, but it did not change its behavior significantly. Further, his defense of the Federal Reserve-Treasury accord in 1951 is sometimes seen as a reversal of his previous policy stances.

2 thoughts on “Marriner Eccles

  1. Pingback: Marriner Eccles - The Rabbit Hole

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