The Bretton Woods Transcripts

The Bretton Woods Transcripts

by Kurt Schuler, Andrew Rosenberg

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Overview

The Bretton Woods Transcripts, edited by Center for Financial Stability (CFS) Senior Fellow Kurt Schuler and CFS Research Associate Andrew Rosenberg, offer a front row seat at the conference that shaped the international monetary system for nearly 70 years. The Bretton Woods transcripts were never intended for publication, and give an inside perspective of what participants at this major international gathering said behind closed doors.

The Bretton Woods Transcripts is the verbatim record of meetings of the conference that established the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. The Bretton Woods conference, named after the New Hampshire town where the conference was held in July 1944, began a new era in international economic cooperation that continues today. Delegates from 44 countries attended the conference. They were a high-powered group: many would later become top officials of the IMF and World Bank, finance ministers, central bank governors, even presidents and prime ministers. Among them, the best known then and now was John Maynard Keynes, the most influential economist of the 20th century, who chaired the meetings that established the World Bank.


Praise for The Bretton Woods Transcripts

“Schuler, along with his coeditor, Andrew Rosenberg, has done a superb job in putting this treasure trove in shape for publication. Even though there have been thousands and thousands of pages written about the Bretton Woods Conference, nothing beats the transcripts for a first-hand feel of what transpired."
From the preface by Jacques de Larosière, Managing Director of the IMF from 1978-1987, and Steve H. Hanke, Professor of Applied Economics, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore

“Kurt Schuler, Andrew Rosenberg and the Center for Financial Stability deserve our thanks and congratulations for having unearthed and then nicely reproduced and edited the original Bretton Woods transcripts. This is truly a treasure trove for historians, showing exactly who said what to whom, when and why at that iconic Conference.”
Charles Goodhart, Financial Markets Group, London School of Economics; former Chief Advisor, Bank of England

“The global economy is stuck with low growth rates and over indebtedness in very many leading countries today. The two issues - growth and fiscal/private debt overhangs - are the classical scopes of work of the International Monetary Fund; and we see that in this epoch the global institution named, has been relegated only to a back seat, while the so called ‘Troika’ does most of the diagnosis and most of the decision-making. Thus, what better than to counter now with a primary testimony of how the founding fathers of the IMF and the World Bank discussed, convened, negotiated and came about to a broad consensus at Mount Washington, New Hampshire, in order to create an institution with a clear technical, financial, and macro mandate?”
Eduardo Aninat, former Deputy Managing Director, IMF; former Finance Minister of Chile; Present, Director General, UNIAPAC Foundation, Paris

“Bretton Woods set the standard for all future international economic conferences. These transcripts are a precious contribution to historical study and more importantly an inspiration for those charged with shaping the future.”
Lawrence H. Summers, former Secretary, US Treasury; Charles W. Eliot University Professor of Harvard University

“A fascinating and useful new e-book, The Bretton Woods Transcripts, has just been published by the Center for Financial Stability. While an 822 page ‘transcript’ might turn off all but the most serious monetary scholars, Kurt Schuler, who discovered the transcripts in the Treasury, and his coeditor Andrew Rosenberg have done a remarkable job of making the book user friendly. Their commentary is fascinating in its own right. Moreover, standard search engines allow one to easily scan through the document looking for topics or participants.

“In reading through various passages, I was most impressed by the foresight of the participants at the conference and their spirit of international cooperation, as they hammered out the agreements.”
John B. Taylor, former Under Secretary, US Treasury; Mary and Robert Raymond Professor of Economics, Stanford University

“Everyone thinks they know what happened at Bretton Woods, but what they know has been filtered by generations of historical accounts. By publishing the Bretton Woods transcripts, Kurt Schuler and Andrew Rosenberg provide the unfiltered version. International monetary history will never be the same.”
Barry Eichengreen, George C. Pardee and Helen N. Pardee Professor of Economics and Political Science, University of California, Berkeley


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Product Details

BN ID: 2940015510126
Publisher: Center for Financial Stability
Publication date: 10/22/2012
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 939,451
File size: 34 MB
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About the Author

Kurt Schuler is an economist in the Office of International Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Treasury in Washington, D.C. In his spare time he is Senior Fellow in Financial History of the Center for Financial Stability. He is the editor of the Center’s Historical Financial Statistics, a free online database. He has written many books and essays on monetary theory, policy, and history. Before joining the Treasury he worked as an economic consultant and as a senior economist at the Joint Economic Committee of the U.S. Congress. His research during that time on currency boards and dollarization influenced successful monetary reforms in Estonia, Lithuania, Bosnia, Bulgaria, and Ecuador.

Andrew Rosenberg is a research associate of the Center for Financial Stability. He has a B.A. in economics from Washington University in St. Louis.

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