October: “Financial Crisis Month”

Professor of Economics Richard Grossman writes in The Boston Globe that October should be dubbed “Financial Crisis Month.” Over the past two centuries in the U.S. and Europe, October—and, more generally, the autumn months—have seen a string of serious financial crises. Grossman explains the historical reasons behind this trend, from the timing of the harvest to the bursting of asset bubbles. Today, he writes, politicians returning from their summer vacations and doing “stupid things” is most likely to blame for the continued popularity of financial crises in October.

Grossman also recently published an op-ed in USA Today calling upon policy makers to regularly conduct “autopsies” of economic policy—particularly when things go wrong, as with the recent government shut-down and near-breach of the debt ceiling.

Grossman’s new book, Wrong: Nine Economic Policy Disasters and What We Can Learn From Themhas been the subject of significant media attention recently, including a review in the Oct. 28 issue of The New Yorker, and an interview on WOR Radio 710.