Top Quotes by Alan Greenspan

Corruption, embezzlement, fraud, these are all characteristics which exist everywhere. It is regrettably the way human nature functions, whether we like it or not. What successful economies do is keep it to a minimum. No one has ever eliminated any of that stuff.

Alan Greenspan

I have found no greater satisfaction than achieving success through honest dealing and strict adherence to the view that, for you to gain, those you deal with should gain as well.

Alan Greenspan

In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation. There is no safe store of value.

Alan Greenspan

Any informed borrower is simply less vulnerable to fraud and abuse.

Alan Greenspan

To succeed, you will soon learn, as I did, the importance of a solid foundation in the basics of education – literacy, both verbal and numerical, and communication skills.

Alan Greenspan

You have to really stretch your imagination to infer what the intrinsic value of Bitcoin is. I haven’t been able to do it. Maybe somebody else can.

Alan Greenspan

The true measure of a career is to be able to be content, even proud, that you succeeded through your own endeavors without leaving a trail of casualties in your wake.

Alan Greenspan

If I turn out to be particularly clear, you’ve probably misunderstood what I’ve said.

Alan Greenspan

We really can’t forecast all that well, and yet we pretend that we can, but we really can’t.

Alan Greenspan

Unless you are willing to compromise, society cannot live together.

Alan Greenspan

Unless you are willing to compromise, society cannot live together.

Alan Greenspan

The very nature of finance is that it cannot be profitable unless it is significantly leveraged… and as long as there is debt, there can be failure and contagion.

Alan Greenspan

An almost hysterical antagonism toward the gold standard is one issue which unites statists of all persuasions. They seem to sense… that gold and economic freedom are inseparable.

Alan Greenspan

I’m not denying that monopolies are terrible things, but I am denying that it is readily easy to resolve them through legislation of that nature.

Alan Greenspan

Fear and euphoria are dominant forces, and fear is many multiples the size of euphoria. Bubbles go up very slowly as euphoria builds. Then fear hits, and it comes down very sharply. When I started to look at that, I was sort of intellectually shocked. Contagion is the critical phenomenon which causes the thing to fall apart.

Alan Greenspan

Markets do very weird things because it reacts to how people behave, and sometimes people are a little screwy.

Alan Greenspan

One of the major problems with China is that its innovation is largely borrowed technology.

Alan Greenspan

Forecasting our futures is built into our psyches because we will soon have to manage that future. We have no choice. No matter how often we fail, we can never stop trying.

Alan Greenspan

It is very difficult to predict when a bond crisis could happen.

Alan Greenspan

I’m a free-market economist from years and years back, and I’ve never veered from that.

Alan Greenspan

Fear is a far more dominant force in human behaviour than euphoria – I would never have expected that or given it a moment’s thought before, but it shows up in the data in so many ways.

Alan Greenspan

I don’t know where the stock market is going, but I will say this, that if it continues higher, this will do more to stimulate the economy than anything we’ve been talking about today or anything anybody else was talking about.

Alan Greenspan

I was a good amateur but only an average professional. I soon realized that there was a limit to how far I could rise in the music business, so I left the band and enrolled at New York University.

Alan Greenspan

The United States can pay any debt it has because we can always print money to do that. So there is zero probability of default.

Alan Greenspan

I always believed in animal spirits. It’s not their existence that is new. It’s the fact that they are not random events, but actually replicate in-bred qualities of human nature which create those animal spirits.

Alan Greenspan

We need, in effect, to make the phantom ‘lock-boxes’ around the trust fund real.

Alan Greenspan

Look, I’m very much in favor of tax cuts, but not with borrowed money. And the problem that we’ve gotten into in recent years is spending programs with borrowed money, tax cuts with borrowed money, and at the end of the day that proves disastrous. And my view is I don’t think we can play subtle policy here.

Alan Greenspan

The only thing that was economic, I might say, about my music career, aside from the fact that I did everybody’s tax returns in the band, was the decision I made to leave the music business on economic grounds.

Alan Greenspan

Chinese productivity is the highest in the world but the way they do it is by borrowing the technology from abroad, either by joint ventures or other means.

Alan Greenspan

There are winners and there are losers. And as much as we would like to help the losers, if we do it in the way that directs the limited capital of the society to support the low-productivity parts of the economy, it means that the rest of the economy – our overall standard of living – will not rise as much as it could.

Alan Greenspan

At the outset of the creation of the euro in 1999, it was expected that the southern eurozone economies would behave like those in the north; the Italians would behave like Germans. They didn’t. Instead, northern Europe fell into subsidizing southern Europe’s excess consumption, that is, its current account deficits.

Alan Greenspan

Increased jobs are the consequence of increased trade. Increasing jobs more than output implies a fall in productivity and standards of living. That surely cannot be our goal.

Alan Greenspan

Protectionism will do little to create jobs and if foreigners retaliate, we will surely lose jobs.

Alan Greenspan

I stated that I’m a libertarian Republican, which means I believe in a series of issues, such as smaller government, constraint on budget deficits, free markets, globalization, and a whole series of other things, including welfare reform.

Alan Greenspan

I guess I should warn you, if I turn out to be particularly clear, you’ve probably misunderstood what I’ve said.

Alan Greenspan

I do not understand where the backing of Bitcoin is coming from. There is no fundamental issue of capabilities of repaying it in anything which is universally acceptable, which is either intrinsic value of the currency or the credit or trust of the individual who is issuing the money, whether it’s a government or an individual.

Alan Greenspan

Most high-income people in our country do not realize that their incomes are being subsidized by their protection from competition from highly skilled people who are prevented from immigrating to the United States. But we need such skills in order to staff our productive economy, so that the standard of living for Americans as a whole can grow.

Alan Greenspan

Anything that we can do to raise personal savings is very much in the interest of this country.

Alan Greenspan

Whatever you tax, you get less of.

Alan Greenspan

History has not dealt kindly with the aftermath of protracted periods of low risk premiums.

Alan Greenspan

I’ve been in and out of Wall Street since 1949, and I’ve never seen the type of animosity between government and Wall Street. And I’m not sure where it comes from, but I suspect it’s got to do with a general schism in this society which is really becoming ever more destructive.

Alan Greenspan

I was a fairly good amateur musician, and I was an average professional. But the one thing I saw was that the big band business was fading.

Alan Greenspan

Revolutions are something you see only in retrospect.

Alan Greenspan

Before I met Ayn Rand, I was a logical positivist, and accordingly, I didn’t believe in absolutes, moral or otherwise. If I couldn’t prove a proposition with facts and figures, it was without merit.

Alan Greenspan

I get so engaged when I have a problem you cannot solve that I just cannot break away from what I am doing – I keep thinking and thinking and cannot stop.

Alan Greenspan

Finance is wholly different from the rest the economy.

Alan Greenspan

The only way you get economic progress, real standards of living moving higher, is to have the savings of the society continuously invested in the cutting-edge technologies. And those technologies which are obsolescent get dropped out.

Alan Greenspan

I’ve always considered myself more of a mathematician than a psychologist.

Alan Greenspan

I was a fairly good amateur musician, and I was an average professional. But the one thing I saw was that the big band business was fading. So I made an economic decision, and it turned out the best judgment I ever made in my life.

Alan Greenspan

People don’t realize that we cannot forecast the future. What we can do is have probabilities of what causes what, but that’s as far as we go. And I’ve had a very successful career as a forecaster, starting in 1948 forward. The number of mistakes I have made are just awesome. There is no number large enough to account for that.

Alan Greenspan

We’re a democratic society. Shutting down the government should not be on the agenda.

Alan Greenspan

I wasn’t able to do much reading when I was chairman of the Reserve Board. The workload was too large, and the luxury of reading was not available to me. So I caught up a good deal when I left office.

Alan Greenspan

When you go back and look at American history, it’s not terribly different from Canadian history. If you weren’t self-reliant on the prairie, you wouldn’t survive.

Alan Greenspan