William White

William White joined the Bank for International Settlements in June 1994 as Manager in the Monetary and Economic Department, and was Economic Adviser and Head of the Monetary and Economic Department from May 1995 to June 2008.

Prior to coming to the BIS, Mr. White spent 22 years with the Bank of Canada. His first six years at the Bank of Canada were with the Department of Banking and Financial Analysis, first as an economist and finally as Deputy Chief. In1978 Mr. White became Deputy Chief of the Research Department and was made Chief of the Department in 1979. He was appointed Adviser to the Governor in 1984 and Deputy Governor of the Bank of Canada in September 1988. Mr. White’s early career was spent at the Bank of England, where he was an economist from 1969 to 1972. Born in Kenora, Ontario in 1943, Mr. White was educated at the University of Windsor and the University of Manchester.


By this expert

Reflections on the 15th Anniversary of the Lehman Brothers Failure

Article | Sep 15, 2023

What lessons need to be drawn on this anniversary?

How to Fix Monetary Policy in Advanced Countries

Article | Aug 14, 2023

The monetary policies of major central banks in advanced economies have had negative consequences and thus need to be fixed

Why The Monetary Policy Framework in Advanced Countries Needs Fundamental Reform

Paper Working Paper | | Aug 2023

Monetary policy should be guided much more by financial sector developments and much less by near-term targets for inflation.

The Post-Covid Global Economy: Could Negative Supply Shocks Disrupt Other Fragile Systems?

Article | Jan 26, 2023

Possible repercussions of economic crisis on the stability of democracies that already show significant signs of fragility

Featuring this expert

White’s INET working paper is cited in the Balance

News Apr 28, 2021

“But ultra-low interest rates may be doing more harm than good, economist William White says in a working paper published last month by the Institute for New Economic Thinking. White, a former economic adviser at the Bank for International Settlements, has a number of arguments against this central bank policy. First, while lower borrowing costs do initially accomplish their goal of spurring spending, much of it is on “unproductive purchases” by both households and corporations that only wind up increasing the debt burden. Second, low interest rates can actually destabilize financial markets and the institutions surrounding them, either through inflated prices, encouraging fund managers to take on riskier investments, or hindering how banks and lenders are supposed to do business, White argues. And then there’s the exit problem. Once central banks lower interest rates, it’s very hard to tighten the flow of easy money. “Each cycle of monetary easing contributes to a buildup of undesired side effects that raises the likelihood of future instability,” White writes. “Central banks are then lured into a ‘debt trap’ where they refrain from tightening, to avoid triggering the crisis that they wish to avoid, but that restraint only makes the underlying problems worse.” — Diccon Hyatt, The Balance

Are Central Bankers Trying To Do Too Much?

Video | Aug 19, 2013

William White, chairman of the Economic Development and Review Committee (EDRC) at the OECD in Paris

The Economic Crisis and the Crisis in Economics

New Economic Thinking 2010

Event Plenary | Apr 8–11, 2010

The Institute for New Economic Thinking convened many of the world’s most distinguished economists, academics and thought leaders at its inaugural Conference at King’s College, University of Cambridge.