Decline to Fall: The Making of British Macro-Economic Policy and the 1976 IMF Crisis

Decline to Fall: The Making of British Macro-Economic Policy and the 1976 IMF Crisis

by Douglas Wass
Pub. Date:
Oxford University Press


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Decline to Fall: The Making of British Macro-Economic Policy and the 1976 IMF Crisis

This book provides the first comprehensive and authoritative account of the events leading up to the UK seeking a massive loan from the IMF in 1976 which almost precipitated a financial crisis on a par with those of the 1930's and early post War period. Sir Douglas Wass, who was permanent Secretary to the Treasury at the time, provides a unique first hand account of the events that took place as the crisis unfolded and the decision-making process. Bringing unrivalled experience and knowledge of Whitehall to the narrative, he draws on recently released documents such as official Treasury minutes, memoranda, official statements and reports, IMF documents and blends them with his own assessment of this key period of policy making to provide a fascinating, blow-by-blow account of how the Treasury reacted when faced with a series of inter-locking crises. Decline to Fall will be a must read for anyone interested in the formulation of policy and the workings of government.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780199534746
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 05/15/2008
Pages: 448
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Sir Douglas Wass spent the main working part of his life as a senior civil servant in the Treasury, which he joined in 1946 after War service. His experience ranged over all aspects of the Treasury and he represented the UK in both the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. He was the Private Secretary to two Chancellors and to the Chief Secretary. In 1981 he was appointed Joint Head of the Civil Service. After retirement he gave the Reith Lectures on how the system of representative government works in the UK.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements     viii
Preface     x
Glossary     xx
The Anatomy of Economic Policy Making in the 1970s: 'The Railway Timetables'     1
1974-Marking Time     35
1975-Policy Changes     90
1976 Part 1-The Markets Take Over     164
1976 Part 2-Resolving the Crisis     241
Some Conclusions     307
Sources and Bibliography     359
Index     369

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