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Photo of Charles I. Plosser

Charles I. Plosser

  • President, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, 2006–2015

Charles I. Plosser served as president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia from 2006 to his retirement in 2015.

Plosser was born in Birmingham, Alabama. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Vanderbilt University in 1970 and master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Chicago, in 1972 and 1976 respectively.

Before coming to Philadelphia, Plosser was the John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics and Public Policy and director of the Bradley Policy Research Center at the William E. Simon Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Rochester, where he also served as dean from 1993 to 2003. He was also a senior research associate at the Rochester Center for Economic Research in the university’s College of Arts and Sciences, and a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In addition, Plosser has been a visiting scholar at the Bank of England and the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Plosser was also the co-editor of the Journal of Monetary Economics for twenty years.

Over the years, Plosser has served as a consultant to numerous corporations on topics such as strategic planning and forecasting, portfolio and pension fund management, capital budgeting, and financial analysis. He was a member of the New York State Board of Economic Advisors and has served on the board of directors of ViaHealth, Inc. and RGS Energy Group, Inc. He has also served on the advisory boards of the New Enterprise Forum and the University Technology Seed Fund LLC.

During his term as president of the Philadelphia Fed, Plosser and his colleagues have faced the challenges of a global financial crisis followed by a severe recession. The Federal Reserve took unprecedented actions, in both monetary policy and in its lending operations that were intended to mitigate the effects of the financial crisis and address deteriorating economic growth. As a member of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) contemplating these actions, Plosser has stressed the need to preserve the Federal Reserve’s independence and structure by drawing a distinct line between fiscal and monetary policy.

In the aftermath of the crisis, as financial regulatory reform is being debated, Plosser has argued that reform must end the notion that any firm is considered too big to fail or risk sowing the seeds of the next financial crisis.

Plosser believes in a systematic approach to monetary policy to promote better economic outcomes and financial stability. He has also been a long-time advocate of the Federal Reserve adopting an explicit inflation target, which the FOMC adopted in January 2012.

Written by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. See disclaimer.