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Ben Bernanke quotes

The lesson of history is that you do not get a sustained economic recovery as long as the financial system is in crisis.

The Federal Reserve's job is to do the right thing, to take the long-run interest of the economy to heart, and that sometimes means being unpopular. But we have to do the right thing.

Achieving price stability is not only important in itself, it is also central to attaining the Federal Reserve's other mandate objectives of maximum sustainable employment and moderate long-term interest rates.

A gold standard doesn't imply stability in the prices of the goods and services that people buy every day, it implies a stability in the price of gold itself.

Our mission, as set forth by the Congress is a critical one: to preserve price stability, to foster maximum sustainable growth in output and employment, and to promote a stable and efficient financial system that serves all Americans well and fairly.

Well, the U.S., of course, is the world's largest economy. It's about a quarter of the world's output. It's also home to many of the largest financial institutions and financial markets.

If you want to understand geology, study earthquakes. If you want to understand the economy, study the Depression.

It's the price of success: people start to think you're omnipotent.

The crisis and recession have led to very low interest rates, it is true, but these events have also destroyed jobs, hamstrung economic growth and led to sharp declines in the values of many homes and businesses.

How much would you pay to avoid a second Depression?

I come from Main Street, from a small town that's really depressed.

It takes about two and a half percent growth just to keep unemployment stable.

It's true that the Federal Reserve faces a lot of political pressure and is unpopular in many circles.

The American people are among the most productive in the world. We have the best technologies. We have great universities. We have entrepreneurs.

The benefit of appointing a hawkish central banker is the increased inflation-fighting credibility that such an appointment brings.

Every effort needs to be made to try and offset the costs of Katrina and Rita by reductions in other government programs, especially those that are wasteful, duplicative and ineffective.

I generally leave the details of fiscal programs to the Administration and Congress. That's really their area of authority and responsibility, and I don't think it's appropriate for me to second guess.

I think one of the lessons of the Depression - and this is something that Franklin Roosevelt demonstrated - was that when orthodoxy fails, then you need to try new things. And he was very willing to try unorthodox approaches when the orthodox approach had shown that it was not adequate.

Importantly, in the 1930s, in the Great Depression, the Federal Reserve, despite its mandate, was quite passive and, as a result, financial crisis became very severe, lasted essentially from 1929 to 1933.

Investment banks manage to go bankrupt through their investment-banking activities, commercial banks manage to go bankrupt through their commercial-banking activities.