February 5-7, 2013 | St. Louis Mo.
February 7, 2013
Breakfast Keynote Address
Introduction: James Bullard (3:30)
Keynote: Governor Jeremy Stein (46:29)
Keynote Q&A (11:22)
Session Four – Household Balance Sheets: Deleveraging and Economic Growth
- What's Driving Deleveraging? Evidence from the 2007-2009 Survey of Consumer Finances
Karen Dynan and Wendy Edelberg (22:08)
Session Four, Part 1 Discussant: John Krainer (20:16)
Session Four, Part 1 Q&A (14:47)
- Household Balance Sheets, Consumption, and the Economic Slump
Atif R. Mian, Kamalesh Rao and Amir Sufi (21:57)
Session Four, Part 2 Discussant: Brian Melzer (18:51)
Session Four, Part 2 Q&A (15:44)
Session Four Moderator: Daniel Davis (2:14)
Closing Plenary – Facilitated Panel Discussion: Household Balance Sheets and Economic Growth
Panelist: David Buchholz (10:24)
Panelist: Steven Fazzari (11:41)
Panelist: Deniz Igan (12:13)
Discussant: Barry Cynamon (20:03)
Panel Discussion Q&A (27:29)
Ray Boshara (2:09)
Ray Boshara: Thank you everybody. I hope lunch was good. And thanks also for the really interesting sessions we had this morning. At this point I have the pleasure of introducing our first keynote speaker, Michael Barr, who I had the pleasure of working with over 20 years ago when Michael served in various leadership roles in the Treasury Department and White House in the Clinton administration, including serving as a Special Assistant to both Secretary Rubin and President Clinton.
Michael was back at Treasury and the White House part of a really small but, an integral part of a small but powerful team in the administration who were transforming a chunk of the Treasury Department into a real fount of innovation. You know, taking things like, you know, things that we kind of take for granted now, but taking the payment system and tax returns and using them as routes to financial inclusion for unbanked and low-income Americans.
I certainly know that prior to Michael and his team nobody really thought about Treasury as a place you go if you wanted to work on low-income issues. You went to HUD. You went HHS. But they really transformed Treasury and the work hasn’t really stopped thanks to Michael and his team.
They also created new institutions and tax credits that many of us now take for granted such as the CDFI Fund and the New Markets Tax Credit. These are part of the social policy framework out there now. And he was the driving force behind President Clinton’s bold proposal for what were called Universal Savings Accounts, matched savings accounts for low- and moderate-income workers geared for retirement.
I have to tell a little story here. President Clinton announced that in the State of the Union in 1999, you know, here we are talking about our little IDAs back then and all of a sudden President Clinton announces a $540 billion proposal based on very preliminary evidence that Michael Sherraden and his team had generated that the poor could in fact save.
Well, the next day a colleague of Michael’s named Cliff Kellogg called me and said, “Okay, Ray, we’ve teed this thing up. You work out the details.” (Laughs)
So, you know, we convened our Growing Wealth Working Group and we all sat around and tried to figure out how to make this thing work. But it was a huge step forward even if politically the proposal was doomed.
Michael was and remains a true friend of the asset-building field and has pushed us to think hard about costs and scale and the reality of cost structures of financial institutions. And he shaped many of our best ideas.
In 2001 Michael joined the faculty of the University of Michigan Law School, until he was called by President Obama back to service as the Assistant Secretary for Financial Institutions from 2009 to 2010, where he was a key architect of both Dodd-Frank and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau which Dodd-Frank created.
Michael is now back on the faculty of the University of Michigan Law School. I think relieved to be back and having a life again. And is a non-resident senior fellow at both The Brookings Institution and Center for American Progress in D.C.
Michael is the author of several books, most recently his important, insightful and timely book, No Slack: The Financial Lives of Low-Income Americans. We’ll hear a little bit about that book today. And he is a graduate of Yale College, Yale Law School and holds a Master’s in philosophy from Oxford University where he was a Rhodes Scholar.
Michael, we’re thrilled that you’re joining us today and we all look forward to your remarks.