Greenspan, Alan (1926–)
Was Chair of the US central bank, the Federal Reserve (the Fed), from 1987 until 2006. This gave him overall responsibility for all monetary policy decisions. He trained as an economist and then worked for a number of big businesses. From 1974 onwards he became an adviser to the US government. He was in charge during the long period of strong economic growth in the US, which lasted right through most of the 1990s and up to 2007. But he also presided over the huge increase in debt that led in time to the 2007–09 financial crisis. He enjoyed the confidence of all the US presidents during his term of office but recently admitted that he had made serious mistakes. His successor as chair of the Fed is Ben Bernanke.