Former Econ Prof. Lindsey Confirmed to Post at the Fed

The Senate Sunday confirmed former Associate Professor of Economics Lawrence B. Lindsey to a post on the Federal Reserve Board of Governors.

Lindsey now serves as one of seven governors on the board, which is charged with regulating the nation's money supply and interest rates. The board is the government's main arm for fighting inflation.

Lindsey, the former head teaching fellow for Social Analysis 10, "Principles of Economics," represents the First Federal District, which covers New England, and part of the southeastern U.S.

Lindsey's associates said they are pleased about the confirmation.

"I am delighted he has been confirmed," said Geoffrey Carliner '65, executive director of the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge.

"I think he has very sensible, mainstream views about monetary policy and will push for policies that will restore growth," Carliner said.

Lindsey, who was nominated in February and confirmed by the Senate Banking Committee in July, had his full Senate confirmation delayed because of opposition from senators from Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

Carliner said he believes the delay was a result of party rivalries. "It is conceivable the Democrats wanted to get back at President Bush for pushing the capital gains tax," he said.

Lindsey is considered conservative on tax policy and favors cutting the capital gains tax, which is levied on incomes from capital investments.

But Assistant Professor of Economics Douglas W. Elmendorf said that although he believes Lindsey's confirmation was held up because of his views on taxes, "this was not a victory for supply side."

Elmendorf said that the Federal Reserve Board has little impact on tax policy. He added that the chair of the board has most of the power.

Instructor in Economics Jonathan J. Morduch said the appointment brings prestige to the University.

"It's exciting that a member of our department has such a high position at such a young age," Morduch said. Lindsey, 37, is the youngest governor to serve on the board.