Alternative Candidate Nominated: Aurélie Trouvé

A civil society organization has nominated a very alternative candidate for IMF Managing Director. ATTAC France has nominated its co-president, Aurélie Trouvé, an economist who specializes in agricultural markets.

ATTAC France is best known for its longtime advocacy for financial transaction taxes as a way to control excessive speculation and raise funds for global public goods. Indeed, part of Trouvé’s platform is to eliminate austerity plans and instead introduce FTTs (if my rusty French is not deceiving me).

Continue reading “Alternative Candidate Nominated: Aurélie Trouvé”

Candidate assessment: Christine Lagarde blindly defends financial interests by Thomas Coutrout

imfboss has invited candidate assessments from civil society voices in the home countries of the candidates to head the IMF. Throughout the process we will be posting these here for your benefit.

La version français de cet article est la suivante.

By Thomas Coutrout, co-president ATTAC France, Paris, France

Christine Lagarde was a minister without any capacity for initiative or innovation. She strictly applied the instructions coming from the French President, especially during the 2008 financial crisis and the European debt crisis of 2010-2011.

Similarly, in the case of the rising scandal Credit Lyonnais vs. Tapie, she executed the orders of the French Presidency. It is widely suspected that the presidential office wanted to reward the support of Bernard Tapie, a friend of President Nicolas Sarkozy, by using a private arbitration tribunal instead of the ordinary court that was about to reject Tapie’s enormous financial claims. Tapie ended up receiving an unexpected €210 millions premium from the French Treasury.

At her 25 May press conference when she announced her candidacy for the IMF, a German journalist asked Lagarde in what occasions she had proven personal leadership since she was minister of Nicolas Sarkozy’s government. After some stuttering she could only cite the law for the protection of bank customers – yet this law has been criticized as seriously inadequate by consumer associations.

Continue reading “Candidate assessment: Christine Lagarde blindly defends financial interests by Thomas Coutrout”

Candidate assessment: Chicago boy Agustín Carstens can’t understand the financial crisis by Noemi Levy

imfboss has invited candidate assessments from civil society voices in the home countries of the candidates to head the IMF. Throughout the process we will be posting these here for your benefit.

La versión en español de este artículo está disponible abajo.

By Professor Noemi Levy, Faculty of Economics, UNAM, Mexico City, Mexico

The academic and professional life of Agustín Carstens, is linked with the theoretical current of monetarism, led by Milton Friedman, and his successors Thomas Sargent and Robert Lucas, the initiators of the ‘rational expectations’ school.  Carstens started his studies at a private Mexican university (ITAM, Instituto Tecnologico Autonomo de Monterrey), and continued on to do his masters and doctoral work at the University of Chicago. In Mexico, he is known as a ‘Chicago Boy’. His working life has been linked with the central bank, the ministry of finance and the IMF.

As a result, Carstens has never been exposed to alternative economic theories, and during the most critical moments in contemporary Mexican history (crises in 1994 and 2008) he has been a central bank bureaucrat. All of his publications concern exchange rate issues; he is a strong advocate of price stability (see selected publications below and his speeches as governor of the Bank of Mexico). Dr. Carstens has little imagination or creativity.

Continue reading “Candidate assessment: Chicago boy Agustín Carstens can’t understand the financial crisis by Noemi Levy”