Cover: Stewards of the Market: How the Federal Reserve Made Sense of the Financial Crisis, from Harvard University PressCover: Stewards of the Market in HARDCOVER

Stewards of the Market

How the Federal Reserve Made Sense of the Financial Crisis

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Product Details


$39.95 • £31.95 • €36.00

ISBN 9780674980785

Publication Date: 03/10/2020


224 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches


This riveting book shows, in real time and in great detail, how members of the Federal Reserve tried to make sense of the 2008 financial crisis. Abolafia shows that for all of their immense knowledge, the Fed’s members found themselves relying on culturally-defined scripts and grasping at straws, blinded by an almost religious faith in the self-correcting character of the financial markets. Yet unlike many critics, Abolafia treats his subjects with respect, acknowledging the enormity of the difficulties they faced. This book is essential reading for anyone who hopes to understand the previous crisis, as well as those hoping to prevent the next one.—Mark Mizruchi, author of The Fracturing of the American Corporate Elite

Mitchel Abolafia is known as the pioneer of the modern sociology of finance. In this book, his magnum opus, he uses the protocols from the meetings of the Federal Reserve to analyze how its members thought and deliberated during the financial crisis of 2008. As the reader will find out, by having this single focus, the author is able to provide several new puzzle pieces to what actually happened during this momentous event.—Richard Swedberg, author of The Art of Social Theory

The Federal Open Market Committee is one of the most important decision-making bodies in the world. Its officials must gaze into the uncertain world of the economy and try to predict what might happen next. Stewards of the Market unpacks the black box of their deliberations by focusing on how they came to understand the financial crisis of 2008. This fascinating book should be of interest to anyone who wants to understand how the Federal Reserve missed the crisis but saved the economy.—Neil Fligstein, author of The Transformation of Corporate Control

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