Sad to hear about the death of Michael Mussa, the IMF’s witty and trenchant former chief economist for nearly a decade, who resigned in 2001. He was 67.
Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the IMF, made the following statement.
The Wall Street Journal says the former Chicago University professor did not shy away from controversy. The Washington Post said he helped shape the IMF’s responses to financial crises in the 1990s. Later, as a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute, Mussa was well known for his semiannual forecasts of global economic growth, conveyed with tough assessments, clarity of expression, and biting wit. Paul Krugman said his most influential work was on currency regimes.
The IMF’s Research Department organized a conference in his honor called “MussaFest” to mark his 60th birthday in 2004.
Mussa contributed widely and influentially to economic theory and empirics, and served as the Fund’s Economic Counsellor and Director of the Research Department from 1991 to 2001. He also was a Member of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers from 1986 to 1988. He was a professor at University of Chicago, University of Rochester, the City University of New York, the London School of Economics, and the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva, Switzerland.
During his career, Mussa studied extensively the macroeconomic problems inherent to open economies. Furthermore, he applied his knowledge to the design of economic policy and prevention of crises for developing and developed countries. His contributions inspired many economists in the academic world and at the IMF. Read his interesting address on global integration at Jackson Hole in 2000, and his analysis of the Fund’s approach to macroeconomics here.
Watch a video of his assessment of recent economic conditions from last September.