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Steve H. Hanke
Steve H. Hanke is a Professor of Applied Economics and Co-Director of the Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health, and the Study of Business Enterprise at The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Prof. Hanke is also a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute in Washington, D.C.; a Distinguished Professor at the Universitas Pelita Harapan in Jakarta, Indonesia; a Senior Advisor at the Renmin University of China’s International Monetary Research Institute in Beijing; a Special Counselor to the Center for Financial Stability in New York; a member of the National Bank of Kuwait’s International Advisory Board (chaired by Sir John Major); a member of the Financial Advisory Council of the United Arab Emirates; and a contributing editor at Globe Asia Magazine.

In the past, Prof. Hanke taught economics at the Colorado School of Mines and the University of California, Berkeley. He served as a Member of the Governor’s Council of Economic Advisers in Maryland in 1976-77; as a Senior Economist on President Reagan’s Council of Economic Advisers in 1981-82; and as a Senior Advisor to the Joint Economic Committee of the U.S. Congress in 1984-88. Prof. Hanke also served as a State Counselor to both the Republic of Lithuania in 1994-96 and the Republic of Montenegro in 1999-2003. He was also an Advisor to the Presidents of Bulgaria in 1997-2002, Venezuela in 1995-96, and Indonesia in 1998. He played an important role in establishing new currency regimes in Argentina, Estonia, Bulgaria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Ecuador, Lithuania, and Montenegro. Prof. Hanke has also advised the governments of many other countries, including Albania, Kazakhstan, and Yugoslavia. In 1998, he was named one of the 25 most influential people in the world by World Trade Magazine.

Prof. Hanke is a Distinguished Associate of the International Atlantic Economic Society; a recipient of the degree Doctor of Arts, Honoris Causa from the Universidad San Francisco de Quito; a recipient of the degree Doctor of Economics, Honoris Causa from the Free University of Tbilisi; a recipient of the degree Doctor of Economics, Honoris Causa from Istanbul Kültür University; a recipient of the degree Doctorate, Honoris Causa from the Varna Free University; and a Professor Asociado (the highest honor awarded to international experts of acknowledged competence) at the Universidad del
Azuay in Cuenca, Ecuador.

Prof. Hanke is a well-known currency and commodity trader. Currently, he serves as Chairman of Richmond Optimus, LLC – a global macro hedge fund located in Richmond, Virginia. He is also Chairman Emeritus of the Friedberg Mercantile Group, Inc. in Toronto. During the 1990s, he served as President of Toronto Trust Argentina in Buenos Aires, the world’s best-performing emerging market mutual fund in 1995.

Prof. Hanke’s most recent books are Zimbabwe: Hyperinflation to Growth (2008) and A Blueprint for a Safe, Sound Georgian Lari (2010).
Prof. Hanke and his wife, Liliane, reside in Baltimore and Paris.

Entries by Steve H. Hanke

On an Objective Indicator of the State of Play in Syria

(0) Comments | Posted September 15, 2015 | 6:23 PM

The fog of war has removed any sense of certainty regarding developments on the Syrian battlefield. That said, we know that ISIS has captured several towns, and that waves of Syrian refugees are disembarking upon Europe's shores. But, the picture remains chaotic and hazy.

However, there is one...

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Europe's Anemic Growth: It's the Money Supply, Stupid

(0) Comments | Posted September 15, 2015 | 4:50 PM

Growth in the eurozone has consistently come in under consensus estimates. It missed the mark again in the second quarter of 2015, posting an anemic GDP quarterly growth rate of 0.3%. Europe's "Big Three"--Germany, France, and Italy--all contributed heavily to the second quarter's weak performance.


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Hamilton: A Life Fit for the Stage

(0) Comments | Posted September 10, 2015 | 5:49 PM

From humble beginnings, a new musical has moved onto Broadway this July. Quite fitting, in a way, for the story of an American who was all about moving onward and upward. The play is called Hamilton, the story of our youngest founding father and the man on the 10-dollar bill...

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The IMF's Little Greek Secret

(0) Comments | Posted August 18, 2015 | 8:51 PM

Landon Thomas, Jr. of The New York Times reports that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) might not pony up any cash for the third Greek bailout. To calculate the odds on whether the IMF will, or will not, contribute bailout funds requires knowledge of the IMF's little Greek secret.

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Why China Is in Trouble

(22) Comments | Posted August 13, 2015 | 12:00 AM

The course of an economy is determined by the course of that economy's money supply (broadly determined). The relationship between money growth and nominal GDP growth is presented in the accompanying chart. It is persuasive. Indeed, money, not fiscal policy, dominates.

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Ecuador's Ambassador Misses the Point: Dollarization

(6) Comments | Posted August 10, 2015 | 5:15 PM

Ecuador's ambassador to the U.S., Francisco Borja Cevallos, wrote a letter, "Ecuador's Progress," which was published in the New York Times on August 8th. Ambassador Borja reviews a number of Ecuador's recent economic accomplishments. Fine. After all, by Latin American standards, Ecuador has performed well. Indeed, my Misery...

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Prof. Krugman: Fast and Loose With the Facts

(17) Comments | Posted July 16, 2015 | 12:56 PM

Paul Krugman, "Killing the European Project", NY Times, July 12, 2015: "The European project -- a project I have always praised and supported -- has just been dealt a terrible, perhaps fatal blow. And whatever you think of Syriza, or Greece, it wasn't the Greeks who did it."


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Alexander Hamilton: Defender of Property Rights

(0) Comments | Posted July 15, 2015 | 11:24 AM

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew's proposed degradation of the ten-dollar bill (read: the removal of Alexander Hamilton as the featured figure on the ten-spot) is wrongheaded. In addition to being the first and most distinguished U.S. Treasury Secretary and a renowned journalist, Hamilton also excelled as a lawyer and defender of...

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Hamilton's Good for the Ten-Spot

(0) Comments | Posted July 13, 2015 | 12:26 PM

I recently objected to Treasury Secretary Jack Lew's proposed demotion of Alexander Hamilton on the ten-dollar bill. Hamilton was not only the first and most distinguished Treasury Secretary, but was also an accomplished professional in many other fields outside the...

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Remove Lew, Not Hamilton

(0) Comments | Posted July 9, 2015 | 9:01 PM

On June 17th, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew shocked many, including former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke, when he proclaimed that Alexander Hamilton (1755-1804) - the first and foremost Treasury Secretary - would be demoted and share the ten-dollar bill with a yet unnamed woman. Undaunted by...

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What Greek 'Austerity'?

(0) Comments | Posted July 2, 2015 | 5:37 PM

It's hard to find anything written or spoken about Greece that doesn't contain a great deal of hand wringing about the alleged austerity -- brutal fiscal austerity -- that the Greek government has been forced to endure at the hands of the so-called troika. This is Alice in Wonderland economics....

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Greek Marxists vs. the IMF

(8) Comments | Posted July 1, 2015 | 5:38 PM

With the failure of the Greek government to make a scheduled payment to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), we have moved from high drama to low farce. The Marxists who are running the show in Athens have scored a first: Greece is the first so-called advanced economy to miss an...

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Greece: Central Government Bloat

(0) Comments | Posted June 30, 2015 | 4:06 PM

It's hard to find anything written or spoken about Greece that doesn't contain a great deal of hand wringing about the alleged austerity - brutal fiscal austerity -- that the Greek government has been forced to endure at the hands of the so-called troika. This is Alice in Wonderland economics....

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It's Time to Add More Than a Second

(0) Comments | Posted June 29, 2015 | 5:50 PM

To avoid clock drift, the world's computer clocks will gain an extra second at midnight Greenwich Mean Time, as June turns to July. This adjustment is necessary so that computer clocks can remain synchronized to Universal Time and to the time it takes the earth to rotate around the sun....

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Greece: A Financial Zombie State

(4) Comments | Posted June 28, 2015 | 4:14 PM

Banks in Greece will not open their doors Monday morning. Greece has been moving towards this dramatic final act ever since it was allowed to enter the Eurozone with cooked fiscal accounts in January 2001 -- two years after the euro was launched. One Greek government after another embraced the...

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The Mercantilists Are Marching Onto War

(0) Comments | Posted June 18, 2015 | 5:59 PM

Senator Lindsey Graham likes to march onto war, and off into economic swamps, as well. Recently, Senator Graham mounted a counter attack on fellow Republicans who opposed the reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank. Indeed, the Senator said "...I'm not going to unilaterally disarm." Yes, it is clear that the...

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The Three M's: Milosevic, Mugabe, and Maduro

(0) Comments | Posted June 16, 2015 | 1:58 PM

What do Slobodan Milosevic, Robert Mugabe, and Nicolás Maduro have in common? The Communist Manifesto and inflation.

At 480% per annum, Venezuela's inflation is currently the world's highest. The Bolivarian Revolution is pushing prices up at a rate of 36% per month. Will these punishing inflation numbers spell the...

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Why the IMF is Playing Hardball with Greece

(0) Comments | Posted June 15, 2015 | 1:58 PM

Under normal conditions, the IMF is supposed to be limited to lending up to 200 percent of a country's quota (each country's capital contribution made to the IMF) in a single year and 600 percent in cumulative total. However, under the IMF's "exceptional access" policy there are, in principle,...

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Ukraine: The World's Second-Highest Inflation

(0) Comments | Posted June 12, 2015 | 8:04 PM

I estimate the current annual implied inflation rate in Ukraine to be 92 percent. This is the world's second-highest inflation rate, far lower than Venezuela's 480 percent but slightly higher than Syria's 75 percent.

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Iceland: Hayek Got It Right

(1) Comments | Posted June 9, 2015 | 4:21 PM

According to recent reportage in The Economist, "Many economists point to Iceland as a case study of what should be done during an economic crisis: devalue your currency, impose capital controls and avoid excessive austerity." Not so fast.

Capital controls are for the birds. Nobelist Friedrich Hayek got it...

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