The conduct of economic policy

Quarterly Bulletin 1994 Q2
Published on 01 June 1994

This year’s Roy Bridge Memorial Lecture - in memory of Roy Bridge who, as Assistant to the Governors, was responsible for the Bank’s foreign exchange operations during the 1960s - was given by the former Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lord Lawson. In it, Lord Lawson addresses the question of what the main focus of attention should be in the conduct of economic policy. He seeks to show the dangers of a preoccupation with short-term movements in the business cycle. Economic policy cannot abolish these, and the suggestion that it can may result in an increased severity of cycles. And if too much attention is paid to cyclical developments, policy-makers may give too little concern to the areas where they can have an influence over prosperity in the longer term.

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