Home In Their Own Words – Economic Quotes

In Their Own Words – Economic Quotes

user profile picture Chris Martenson May 16, 2009
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One of my favorite internet articles of all time, entitled "Pompous Prognosticators," placed quotes of various politicians and other authority figures across a chart of the Dow Jones, spanning the years 1925 to 1933. A portion of that article is located here.

Here’s an image from the original article to jog your memory, in case you can’t recall which article I am referring to:

I loved that article when it came out, and still love it today, because it reveals that nothing has changed through the decades and that believing the self-interested pronouncements of "green shoots" can be hazardous to your wealth.

So I decided to recreate that effort but update it for our modern times. Let’s continue to update this chart over time and see where it goes.  The people at Lowesville will recognize the work below, because I presented it there, along with a lot of other new information, inlcuding the Crash Course Toolbox, which is a main feature of my in-person seminars.

If you see a great, defining-moment sort of a quote, please send it along to me, preferably with a working link to the primary source. Okay – here goes:


"At this juncture . . . the impact on the broader economy and financial markets of the problems in the subprime markets seems likely to be contained," 

Ben Bernanke, March 28, 2007
in a statement to Congress’ joint economic committee


"It is not the responsibility of the Federal Reserve – nor would it be appropriate – to protect lenders and investors from the consequences of their financial decisions.“  

Ben Bernanke, October 15th, 2007


"[The U.S. economy] has a strong labor force, excellent productivity and technology, and a deep and liquid financial market that is in the process of repairing itself.”

Ben Bernanke, January 18, 2008


“The long-term fundamentals of our economy are strong," but "[w]e believe the economy is going to continue to grow slowly here. This is not an emergency.“   

Hank Paulson January 18, 2008


"[The economy] is fundamentally strong, diverse and resilient.“

Hank Paulson, February 14th, 2008


‘The worst is likely to be behind us . . . . ”  

Hank Paulson, May 7, 2008


On Freddie and Fannie: “They will make it through the storm”, "… in no danger of failing.","…adequately capitalized“ (two months later they were nationalized)

Ben Bernanke, July 16th, 2008


"I think all of our efforts, so far, have produced results. … And I think as those green shoots begin to appear in different markets and as some confidence begins to come back that will begin the positive dynamic that brings our economy back. … I do see green shoots"

Ben Bernanke, March 15, 2009


“What you’re starting to see is glimmers of hope across the economy.” 

President Obama, April 10, 2009


"I think the sense of a ball falling off the table — which is what the economy has felt like since the middle of last fall — I think we can be reasonably confident that that’s going to end within the next few months and you will no longer have that sense of free-fall,"   

Lawrence Summers, April 8, 2009


“We are hopeful that the very sharp decline we saw beginning last fall through early this year will moderate considerably in the near term and we will see positive growth by the end of the year,"

Ben Bernanke, May 5, 2009
to the Joint Economic Committee


"The recent data … suggest that the pace of contraction may be slowing, and they include some tentative signs that final demand, especially demand by households, may be stabilizing,“ 

Ben Bernanke, May 5, 2009
to the Joint Economic Committee

More to follow as time goes on…..