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Eric Swanson - UC Irvine. Irvine, CA, US

Eric Swanson

Professor of Economics | UC Irvine


Eric Swanson is an expert on inflation, recessions and what changes in interest rates mean for the economy.


Eric Swanson is a macroeconomist who studies unconventional monetary policy and the relationship between financial markets and the macroeconomy. He frequently provides expertise on inflation, recessions and what changes in interest rates mean for the economy.

Areas of Expertise (4)

Monetary Economics



Time Series Econometrics

Accomplishments (5)

Best Paper Prize, Journal of Monetary Economics


Excellence in Refereeing Award, American Economic Review

2014, 2013

National Science Foundation Fellowship, Economics

1993–5, 1997–8

Department of Defense National Science & Engineering Fellowship, Mathematics


Rosenberg Award, Top Graduate in Mathematics, Williams College


Education (3)

Stanford University: Ph.D., Economics 1998

Stanford University: M.S.,, Mathematics 1994

Williams College: B.A., Mathematics 1992

Affiliations (5)

  • Associate Editor, Journal of Monetary Economics, 2017–present
  • Associate Editor, Quantitative Economics, 2017–present
  • Member, Financial Times/Chicago Booth IGM Economic Outlook Panel, 2021–present
  • Member, FiveThirtyEight/Chicago Booth IGM Economic Outlook Panel, 2020
  • Member, Academic Advisory Panel, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, 2020

Media Appearances (9)

The Fed loves a data buffet. What’s on the menu these days?

Marketplace  online


Certain private-sector data can also give the Fed a quicker read on the economy. Eric Swanson, an economics professor at the University of California, Irvine, said that early in the pandemic, when things were changing quickly, the Fed looked at online rent prices, anonymized cellphone location data and credit card transaction data. “Because consumer spending data comes out at the end of the next month, whereas credit card transaction data can come out within a day or two,” he said.

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Inflation is nearly back to 2%. So why isn’t the Federal Reserve ready to cut rates?

Associated Press  online


From Wall Street traders to car dealers to home buyers, Americans are eager for the Federal Reserve to start cutting interest rates and lightening the heavy burden on borrowers. … Some analysts have pointed to signs that the economy is becoming more productive, or efficient, allowing it grow faster without necessarily increasing inflation. Yet productivity data is notoriously hard to measure, and any meaningful improvement wouldn’t necessarily become apparent for years. Still, “maybe the economy can take higher interest rates than we thought in 2019 before the pandemic,” said Eric Swanson, an economist at the University of California, Irvine.

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U.S. Government on Brink of Widespread Shutdown

CNN  online


If it comes to a shutdown, how would the consequences be felt? What impact does this have on the American economy? “So, for the aggregate economy, it is probably not a major effect because all of these workers do not get paid for a week or two – or however long the shutdown lasts. They do get backpay when the agreement and the budget is finally passed. So, there’s a timing shift in terms of when the pay is paid to the workers but it’s not like that money is lost – that money will be spent eventually,” says Eric Swanson, UC Irvine professor of economics.

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The Fed Pauses Rate Hikes Again; No Relief for Housing Market

NerdWallet  online


The Federal Reserve pressed pause on its campaign of interest rate hikes Wednesday …. "There's a lot of monetary policy tightening already in the pipeline, and that is starting to have effects on the labor market and on inflation," says Eric Swanson, an economics professor at the University of California, Irvine. "I think they want to wait and see how that plays out a little more and to get a little more data before they decide whether to raise rates again."

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A debt ceiling breach would be bad bad bad bad bad

Vox  online


Nobody knows exactly what will happen to the economy if the United States breaches the debt ceiling …. The economy is quite unpredictable, but what we can predict is that the fallout would be negative. “It depends a little on what the Treasury decides to do,” said [Professor] Eric Swanson, an economist at the University of California, Irvine. “They would have to basically delay paying bills, and the question is which bills they delay paying, and the effects would depend a little bit on that.”

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State of U.S. economy amid banking failures and debt ceiling debate

CNN  online


The U.S. economy is taking hits from banking failures and the lingering debt ceiling debate. CNN's Rosemary Church interviews UC Irvine Economics Professor Eric Swanson.

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The 5 weirdest things measured by the CPI

The Hill  online


Have you ever wondered what exactly goes into the Consumer Price Index? … Eric Swanson, professor of economics at the University of California, Irvine, told The Hill that the most recent updating of the basket composition and basket weights will be for the January 2023 price index. “There’s a lag between when the basket is measured and when it gets used in the CPI calculation, however,” Swanson said. “For example, the weights they’re using this year are based on consumer patterns from 2021. This does raise some issues that maybe households spending patterns in 2021 were unusual because of the pandemic,” he said.

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On The Money — How a federal debt default could affect you

The Hill  online


With inflation still near 40-year highs and the U.S. economy slowing, the Fed’s aggressive rate hikes have fueled concerns of a central bank-induced recession akin to the one triggered by former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker during the 1980s. While Volcker’s rate shock ended two decades of rising inflation, it did so at the cost of a severe recession. … “Inflation looks like it has already peaked and never got near the 14.5 percent peak reached in 1980, so the Fed will not have to raise rates as high as it did back then,” said Eric Swanson, an economics professor at the University of California, Irvine.

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What the U.S. Hitting the Debt Ceiling Means for You

TIME  online


“It’s Congress’s responsibility,” Eric Swanson, a professor of economics at the University of California, Irvine, tells TIME. “If you’re going to pass a law that the spending is this and the taxes are this, then whatever the difference is, has to be debt. You have to pass the law that authorizes the debt.” Swanson is hopeful that Congress will avoid disaster by reaching an eventual agreement to raise the debt ceiling, but “they might push it really close to the deadline,” he says. “There’s a lot of disagreement these days.”

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Articles (3)

A reassessment of monetary policy surprises and high-frequency identification

National Bureau of Economic Research


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The Federal Funds Market, Pre-and Post-2008

National Bureau of Economic Research


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Measuring the effects of federal reserve forward guidance and asset purchases on financial markets

Journal of Monetary Economics


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