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How Big a Problem is Too Big to Fail? A Review of Gary Stern and Ron Feldman's Too Big to Fail: The Hazards of Bank Bailouts

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  • Frederic S. Mishkin

Abstract

This review essay examines whether too-big-to-fail is as serious a problem as Gary Stern and Ron Feldman contend. This essay argues that Stern and Feldman overstate the importance of the too-big-to-fail problem and do not give enough credit to the FDICIA legislation of 1991 for improving bank regulation and supervision. However, this criticism of the Stern and Feldman book does not detract from many of its messages. The policy recommendations in their book have merit even if the too-big-to-fail problem is currently not that serious because these policies make it less likely that a banking crisis will occur even if driven by other factors.

Suggested Citation

  • Frederic S. Mishkin, 2006. "How Big a Problem is Too Big to Fail? A Review of Gary Stern and Ron Feldman's Too Big to Fail: The Hazards of Bank Bailouts," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 44(4), pages 988-1004, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:jeclit:v:44:y:2006:i:4:p:988-1004
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/jel.44.4.988
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kane, Edward J, 1977. "Good Intentions and Unintended Evil: The Case against Selective Credit Allocation," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 9(1), pages 55-69, February.
    2. Ben S. Bernanke & Frederic S. Mishkin, 1997. "Inflation Targeting: A New Framework for Monetary Policy?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 97-116, Spring.
    3. Frederic S. Mishkin & Niklas J. Westelius, 2008. "Inflation Band Targeting and Optimal Inflation Contracts," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(4), pages 557-582, June.
    4. World Bank, 2001. "Finance for Growth : Policy Choices in a Volatile World," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 13895.
    5. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-491, June.
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