Working Papers

Nouriel Roubini’s Secret IMF Speech

Eric Falkenstein goes in search of Nouriel Roubini’s 2006 speech to the IMF:

In Michiko Kakutani’s NYT book review of Nouriel Roubini’s Crisis Economics, and in the book’s foreward, a September 7, 2006 IMF speech is highlighted as containing specific warnings about US housing, and how this would lead to a financial contagion. This would seem to be highly prophetic. So I went to his website looking for this speech. It linked to something from 2009. To get to this point I had to register at his site, and they sent me a an email message, asking what I wanted to know (they seem to sell different levels of access at the Roubini Global Economics—a sort of CNBC with only negative spin). I asked to see the 2006 speech mentioned in the NYT book review, and they pointed me towards a different speech in 2006 that was rather vague. So I asked again for the rather prominent September 7 2006 speech, and they did not answer.

I bet the speech mentions not merely the housing problems, but a bunch of things that could go wrong that did not, which would suggest indiscriminate crisis prediction that is not so impressive.

Here is an IMF account of the speech. Oliver Hartwich and I also referenced the speech in our profile of Roubini for Juedische Allgemeine (English version here), for which we had to rely on second-hand accounts.

posted on 18 May 2010 by skirchner in Economics, Financial Markets

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