Raghuram Rajan is the Katherine Dusak Miller Distinguished Service Professor of Finance at Chicago Booth. He was the 23rd Governor of the Reserve Bank of India between September 2013 and September 2016. Between 2003 and 2006, Dr. Rajan was the Chief Economist and Director of Research at the International Monetary Fund.
Dr. Rajan’s research interests are in banking, corporate finance, and economic development, especially the role finance plays in it. He co-authored Saving Capitalism from the Capitalists with Luigi Zingales in 2003. He then wrote Fault Lines: How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy, for which he was awarded the Financial Times-Goldman Sachs prize for best business book in 2010.
Dr. Rajan is a member of the Group of Thirty. He was the President of the American Finance Association in 2011 and is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In January 2003, the American Finance Association awarded Dr. Rajan the inaugural Fischer Black Prize for the best finance researcher under the age of 40. The other awards he has received include the Infosys prize for the Economic Sciences in 2012, the Deutsche Bank Prize for Financial Economics in 2013, Euromoney Central Banker Governor of the Year 2014, and Banker Magazine (FT Group) Central Bank Governor of the Year 2016.
Even while overall growth seems tepid, tremendous financial opportunities still exist for both states and corporations. But with those opportunities, challenges are building. Dr. Raghuram Rajan knows this from firsthand experience—as governor of the Reserve Bank of India, he played a central role in the third-largest (and growing) economy in the world. In this discussion, he analyzes the economic impact of specific, targeted “global players”—large countries and common global forces—as opposed to a general overview of the world.
Easy money is having diminishing effect after years of accommodating policies. Dr. Raghuram Rajan weighs the significant risks incorporated by doing much more, with the difficulties of exiting from easy money. Not only will the first central bank that moves face significant costs, they could also be accused of failing their domestic mandate of maintaining inflation at reasonable levels. Dr. Rajan discusses possible ways policy could evolve, as well as the consequences to global asset prices, inflation and risk.
Democracy and capitalism tend to strengthen each other, across countries and over time, but not always. Dr. Raghuram Rajan describes the peculiar confluence of forces that are causing a wedge between democratic forces and markets today and why this is being expressed in the political movements we see. He argues that to preserve what is good in the global system of trade and finance, we need countries, especially large emerging markets, to step up and take leadership to move the dialogue forward. At the same time, industrial countries have to pay attention to domestic political demands to slow, or reverse, globalization and find ways to make angry citizens less anxious about the future. Dr. Rajan will discuss some policy options that could address these wide-ranging and impactful issues.