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The IMF appoints a new chief economist

THE International Monetary Fund (IMF) used to be known for its unwavering advocacy of the “Washington consensus”, a set of free-market policies including free capital flows and fiscal consolidation. Nowadays it is a little more introspective—or, perhaps, open-minded. On October 1st the fund announced that Gita Gopinath, a professor at Harvard University, will soon replace Maurice Obstfeld as its top economist. The appointment puts another pillar of orthodoxy—regarding the benefits of flexible exchange rates—on notice.Born in India, Professor Gopinath studied for her doctorate at Princeton under Kenneth Rogoff, a former occupant of her new job, and Ben Bernanke, who later led the Federal Reserve during the financial crisis. From there she moved to the University of Chicago, and on to Harvard, where she has produced prodigious amounts of research.
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