Maestro: Greenspan's Fed and the American Boom

Version: Abridged
Author: Bob Woodward
Narrator: James Naughton
Genres: Business & Economics, Biography & Memoir, Business, Biography
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Published In: November 2000
# of Units: 5 CDs
Length: 4 hours, 30 minutes
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Perhaps the last Washington secret is how the Federal Reserve and its enigmatic chairman, Alan Greenspan, operate. What do they do? Why precisely do they do it? Who is Greenspan? How does he think? What is the basis for his decisions? Why is he so powerful? What kind of relationships has he had with Reagan, Bush, and Clinton -- presidents during the 13 years he has been Fed chairman?

The Greenspan years, 1987 to 2000, are presented here as a gripping, intimate narrative, a remarkable portrait of how one man has become the symbol of American economic preeminence.

Maestro reveals a fascinating intellectual journey. Greenspan, and old-school anti-inflation hawk of the traditional economy, was among the first to realize the potential in the modern, high-productivity new economy -- the foundation of the current American boom.

Reappointed by Clinton in 2000 for another four-year term, Greenspan is slated to serve as Fed chairman until 2004. He is not only a major figure in the world's economic past, but is central to its future.

Reviews (9)

Very Procedural

Written by Anonymous from Riverside, CA on October 5th, 2008

  • Book Rating: 3/5

While much of the book seemed to highlight the outcomes of FOMC decision-making ... "the Committee voted unanimously to raise the Fed Funds Rate" ... I found that I gained little insight into the Chairman himself or the challenges he faced. It left me unsatisfied...

Fascinating Reality Check

Written by Listener from Thousand Oaks, CA on September 18th, 2008

  • Book Rating: 4/5

I confess to not being even aware of some significant financial happenings of recent decades chronicled in this book. Though one must take all reporting with a grain, I feel more informed about events of import and associated contexts and details, thanks to this book. The book held my attention, the subject matter was significant to me, and I recommend it.

Maestro: Greenspan's Fed

Written by Nancy Philbrook on January 16th, 2008

  • Book Rating: 2/5

It was hardly "gripping" as I had to struggle to listen to the economic lecture in an almost monotone sound. Maybe it was just the dryness of the econ - which didn't have to be!

Maestro: Greenspan's Fed and the American Economy

Written by Anonymous from Joliet, IL on August 9th, 2005

  • Book Rating: 4/5

While being very repetative, this was an incredibly interesting book following the politics involved at the Fed during Greenspans many terms. Recommended to those interested in the economy and do not have a high understanding behind setting the interest rates.

Maestro: Greenspan's Fed and the American Boom

Written by DAS on March 16th, 2005

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Reasonably good book. I got out of it what I expected - insight into how Greenspan sees the U.S. economy and how much control he has of it. If you want to know a little about how the FED works, how interest rates are set, and how much politics influences the FED, this book will give you a good overview. One note: Woodward chooses to do his own narrative for the last 10 minutes of the book. It was agony! Never have I heard such a poor reader. Do yourself a favor and skip this part - there's no new information in the last 10 minutes anyway. I'd rather listen to 10 minutes of fingernails screeching on a chalkboard.


Written by Anonymous on March 12th, 2005

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Very good behind the scenes account of FOMC deliberations and the politics involved.

Interesting but sometimes boring

Written by Brad Grissom on October 24th, 2004

  • Book Rating: 3/5

Try not to fall asleep during some portions because there is interesting info about Greenspan and the economy.

I recommend this book to all listeners.

Written by Lynn V. from Frazier Park, CA on August 20th, 2004

  • Book Rating: 5/5

What I got out of it was a great understanding of the good economic times under Clinton, and how well it was then managed.This was no accident. I also came to understand where and who made it wrong. I am fascinated by systems. Fundamental to our well being is the economic agreements under which we function. I think it is vital for all Americans to come to understand this system, so that we can come to control and improve it. Minimally we should be able to recognise its weaknesses. This for me was a great beginning. Hats off to Greenspan. The book even made him warm and likeable and human!

Maestro Greenspans fed and the american boom

Written by Anonymous from Los Angeles, CA on August 16th, 2004

  • Book Rating: 3/5

Good but a little dry

Author Details

Author Details

Woodward, Bob

"Bob Woodward is an assistant managing editor of The Washington Post. He has authored or co-authored eight national bestsellers: All the President's Men and The Final Days with Carl Bernstein, The Brethren with Scott Armstrong, Wired, Veil, The Commanders, The Agenda and The Choice. Woodward lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife, Elsa Walsh, a writer for The New Yorker."