Were Mauricio Macris mainstream policies doomed from the start?

WHENEVER I VISIT a country they always sayhere it is different, Rudiger Dornbusch, a legendary economist, once told his students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Well, it never is. For most countries, his words are a warning. For Argentina, they are a comfort. The country has lurched from one economic crisis to another, culminating in the recent reimposition of currency controls and rescheduling of debts. Its voters, who also lurch from populists to liberals and back, look poised to oust Mauricio Macris liberal government in October in favour of a populist duo, Alberto Fernandez and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, the former president. It is therefore easy to believe that Argentina is different. Just not in a good way.Dornbuschs words provide the epigraph for a new paper* by Federico Sturzenegger, a former MIT student and Mr Macris central-bank governor from when he took office in 2015 to mid-2018. It makes a contrarian defence of Mr Macris fiscal gradualism and inflation targeting. These policies worked elsewhere and could have worked in Argentina, he argues, had they been faithfully followed.
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