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Thomas Ferguson is the Institute for New Economic Thinking’s Director of Research Projects and a member of its Advisory Board. He is Professor Emeritus at the University of Massachusetts, Boston and Senior Fellow at Better Markets. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton University and taught formerly at MIT and the University of Texas, Austin. He is the author or coauthor of several books, including Golden Rule (University of Chicago Press, 1995) and Right Turn (Hill & Wang, 1986). His articles have appeared in many scholarly journals, including the Quarterly Journal of Economics, International Organization, International Studies Quarterly, and the Journal of Economic History. He is a member of the editorial board of the International Journal of Political Economy and a longtime Contributing Editor at The Nation.

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How Money Won Trump the White House

Article | Jan 9, 2018

It wasn’t Comey or the Russians. Trump prevailed because his campaign carefully targeted key states with late infusions of big money from private equity, casinos, and other far right contributors, a remarkable wave of donations from small donors, and substantial infusions from the candidate himself. 

Industrial Structure and Party Competition in an Age of Hunger Games: Donald Trump and the 2016 Presidential Election

Paper Working paper series | | Jan 2018

The U.S. presidential election of 2016 featured frontal challenges to the political establishments of both parties and perhaps the most shocking election upset in American history.

Betting on Hitler – The Value of Political Connections in Nazi Germany

Paper Conference paper | | Oct 2017

This paper examines the value of connections between German industry and the Nazi movement in early 1933. Drawing on previously unused contemporary sources about management and supervisory board composition and stock returns, we find that one out of seven firms, and a large proportion of the biggest companies, had substantive links with the National Socialist German Workers’ Party. Firms supporting the Nazi movement experienced unusually high returns, outperforming unconnected ones by 5% to 8% between January and March 1933. These results are not driven by sectoral composition and are robust to alternative estimators and definitions of affiliation. 

The Hinge of Fate? Economic and Social Populism in the 2016 Presidential Election A Preliminary Exploration

Paper Conference paper | | Oct 2017

Support for populism is often attributed to xenophobia, racism, sexism; to anger and resentment at immigrants, racial or ethnic minorities, or “uppity” non-traditional women. According to these accounts , people who feel socially resentful may reject established politicians as favoring those “others” over people like themselves, and turn to outsider populistic leaders.

Featuring this expert

Two Hundred Years of Politics and High Finance

Video | Oct 16, 2014

These videos cover not only Dr. de Cecco’s seminal research on the international gold standard, but his views on the international monetary system between the wars, the formation of the Bretton Woods system, and its breakdown – all topics on which Dr. de Cecco has written copiously.