Michael Hudson

Distinguished Research Professor of Economics
University of Missouri, Kansas City

Michael Hudson is former balance-of-payments economist for Chase Manhattan Bank and Arthur Andersen, and economic futurist for the Hudson Institute. For Scudder Stevens & Clark in 1990 he established the world’s first Third World sovereign debt fund. It became the second best performing international fund in 1991. (An Australian real estate fund beat it out.)

Prof. Hudson has written cover stories for Harpers and is on the editorial board of Lapham’s Quarterly. He is a regular on NPR’s Marketplace, Bloomberg Radio and numerous Pacifica interview programs, and is a regular contributor to CounterPunch. He has written for the Journal of International Affairs, Commonweal, Bible Review, and International Economy, and New York Times op-eds, and currently publishes editorials in leading Latvian, Polish and Arabic business papers. His trade books are translated into Japanese, Chinese, Spanish and Russian, and his website has over a million hits per year.

He is Distinguished Research Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri (Kansas City). Along with the New School (where he taught previously), UMKC is the main alternative to Chicago School anti-government economics, along with the Berlin School of Economics where Prof. Hudson lectures and publishes at in association with UMKC.

Prof. Hudson served as Chief Economic Advisor for Dennis Kucinich’s 2008 presidential campaign, and holds the same position in Mr. Kucinich’s Congressional campaign. He has been economic advisor to the U.S., Canadian, Mexican and Latvian governments, and to the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), and is president of the Institute for the Study of Long-term Economic Trends (ISLET).

In 1972 his Super Imperialism: The Economic Strategy of American Empire (Holt Rinehart) was the first book to describe the global free ride for America after it went off gold in 1971, putting the world onto a paper Treasury-bill standard. Obliging foreign central banks to keep their monetary reserves in Treasury bonds forced them to finance U.S. military spending abroad, which was responsible for the U.S. balance-of-payments deficit at this time. The book’s 1979 sequel, Global Fracture (Harper & Row), forecast the division of the world into regional trade and currency blocs. The Fictitious Economy is the first to explain to general readers how a corrosive Bubble Economy is replacing industrial capitalism with debt-financed asset-price inflation – that is, by creating a Bubble Economy to increase balance-sheet net worth via debt.

Prof. Hudson’s April 2006 Harpers cover story on “The $4.7 trillion Pyramid: Why Social Security Won’t Be Enough to Save Wall Street” helped defeat the Bush administration’s attempt to privatize Social Security, by showing its aim of steering wage withholding into the stock market to reflate stock market prices – for insiders and speculators to sell to the pension funds. His May 2006 cover story on “The New Road to Serfdom: An illustrated guide to the coming real estate collapse” was the first major article forecasting in precise chart form the bursting of the real estate bubble. The November 2008 “How to Save Capitalism” issue of Harpers includes an article by Dr. Hudson on the inevitability of a large write-off of debts and the savings they back.

In 1984, Prof. Hudson joined Harvard’s archaeology faculty at the Peabody Museum. A decade later he organized an international group of Assyriologists and archaeologists to publish a series of colloquia analyzing the economic origins of civilization. This group has become the successor to Karl Polanyi’s anthropological and historical group a half-century ago. Four volumes co-edited by Hudson have appeared so far, dealing with privatization, urbanization and land use, the origins of money, accounting, debt and clean slates in the Ancient Near East. (A fifth volume, on the evolution of free labor, is in progress.) This new direction of research is now known as the New Economic Archaeology.

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Michael Hudson, Distinguished Research Professor of Economics, University of Missouri, Kansas City at the panel entitled "The Challenge of DeLeveraging and Overhangs of Debt II: The Politics and Economics of Restructuring" at the Institute for New Economic Thinking's (INET) Paradigm Lost Conference in Berlin. April 13, 2012. #inetberlin