4:57pm

Thu June 21, 2012
Planet Money

Anna Schwartz, 1915-2012

"Anna did all of the work, and I got most of the recognition," the Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman once said.

Anna was Anna Schwartz, Friedman's co-author. She died today at age 96.

Friedman and Schwartz wrote A Monetary History of the United States, 1867 -1960. Among other things, the book argued that the Federal Reserve helped to cause the Great Depression by mismanaging the money supply.

Ben Bernanke once told Friedman and Schwartz:

Regarding the Great Depression, you're right: We did it. We're very sorry, but thanks to you, we won't do it again.

Initially, Schwartz praised Bernanke's response to the 2008 financial crisis. But Schwartz eventually became critical of what she saw as overly loose policies.

Today, we scrutinize the actions of our central bank to see where our economy is headed. That's in some measure due to Anna Schwartz's scholarship.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.