Kenneth Rogoff on Charlie Rose


this time is differentKenneth Rogoff was on Charlie Rose earlier this week. Below is part of the transcript where Rogoff discusses job creation, followed by a link to the interview. For all readers unfamiliar with Rogoff here is a brief bio:

Kenneth S Rogoff teaches in the Economics Department of Harvard University where he is Thomas D Cabot Professor of Public Policy. During 2001-2003 Rogoff went on public service leave to the Internatonal Monetary Fund, where he served as chief economist and Director of Research. Rogoff’s 1996 treatise with Maurice Obstfeld on the Foundations of International Macroeconomics remains the standard graduate reference in the field. His monthly column on global economic issues is published in over forty countries, in more than half a dozen languages. He is also a frequent commentator in the media, including NPR, BBC, The Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, CNBC and ABC news. His newest book This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly , with Professor Carmen M Reinhart of the University of Maryland, exploits an extensive new database (developed by the authors over many years) to show the remarkable quantative similarities in deep financial crises across time and regions.

And I begin with this question I suggested earlier — that job creation is the most important economic challenge the president faces. Ken?

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KENNETH ROGOFF: Well, absolutely. I mean, the unemployment rate is really unacceptably high, hovering around 10 percent as the president’s noted, and unfortunately it’s not going to come down quickly. And the question is how can we grow jobs to get the unemployment rate falling again? It’s a very grim picture. There are industries that are strong like the health care industry. It has jobs. Industries that are weak, like the auto industry. How do you make that massive switch across the American economy so that we get growth going again and get employment back up?

CHARLIE ROSE: How do you do that?

KENNETH ROGOFF: Well, unfortunately, there are very, very limited tools at the disposal of the government. There are some easy things. I think the states are not able to borrow the way that the federal government can. The local governments can’t borrow the same way. So certainly continuing transfers to the states and local government system so they don’t have to rein in their jobs too fast, that’s, I think, a no brainer. We also probably need to do at the margins things like trying to help with adult education, jobs programs for youth in the summer. But really, this is a typical post financial crisis problem, and there is no magic bullet. There is no overnight cure. It’s a slow healing process. The link to the video is here-

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