Introduction by Leo Melamed of Dr. Ben Bernanke, recipient of the 2014 CME Group Melamed-Arditti Innovation Award


The CME Competitive Markets Advisory Council, (CMAC) composed of U of C Professor, John P. Gould as chairman, international economist, David D. Hale, MIT Professor, Andrew Lo, former President of the FRB of Chicago, Michael H. Moskow, and Nobel Laureates in economics, Robert C. Merton, Myron S. Scholes, and Robert J. Shiller, have unanimously nominated Ben Shalom Bernanke as winner of the 2014 CME Innovation Award.

On June 21, 2005, Dr. Bernanke was nominated by President George W. Bush as chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.  Less than a year later, beginning on February 1, 2006, President Bush nominated him to succeed Alan Greenspan as chairman of the United States Federal Reserve Board.  He was re-nominated by President Barak Obama, on August 25, 2009, to a second term.  His second term ended February 1, 2014 when he was succeeded by Janet Yellen.

It is almost as if Dr. Ben Bernanke prepared his entire life to be Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System at a moment in time when the global financial system was on the brink of an unmitigated meltdown.  

Being a student of financial disasters and, in particular, of the great Depression of 1929, Ben Bernanke developed models to address severe crises.  As chairman of the Fed in 2008, Dr. Bernanke quickly applied his deep and extended research on the effects of monetary policy on the economy to face the unfolding financial calamity.  His academic scholarship, theory, and extended governmental service gave him the knowledge and courage to innovate in order to address the failure of many financial institutions and the resulting extreme risks faced by the US as well as the global economy.

He unwaveringly believed that extending liquidity to the market was crucial to provide time for it to heal and provide anchors to foster economic growth.  These measures necessitated the development and aggressive implementation (not in baby steps) of innovative techniques such as special lending programs, credit easing (often referred to as quantitative easing), and other forms of assertive monetary policy that had never been tried before in the United States.  

As chairman of the Federal Reserve, he implemented these policies with great skill and determination when others might have flinched under pressure from dissenting academics, market commentators, and government officials.  

Many countries have since then followed his innovations.

 

CME Group Global Financial Leadership Conference
Naples, Florida
November 18, 2014


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