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Alan Greenspan Timeline

March 6, 1926: Alan Greenspan is born in New York City.

1948: Greenspan graduates with a bachelor's degree in economics (summa cum laude) from New York University. (He earns a master's in 1950 and a Ph.D. in 1977, also from NYU.)

1954-1974: Serves as chairman and president of Townsend-Greenspan & Co. Inc., an economic consulting firm in New York City. He returns to the posts in 1977-87.

1974: President Ford names Greenspan chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers.

1975: Greenspan is the principle architect behind a $2.3-billion short-term federal loan designed to keep New York City from declaring municipal bankruptcy.

June 2, 1987: President Reagan nominates Greenspan to replace departing Fed Chairman Paul Volcker. Following the announcement, the dollar drops against foreign currencies and the Dow falls 22 points.

Aug. 11, 1987: Greenspan takes office as Fed chairman.

Sept. 4, 1987: The Fed raises the discount rate 0.5 percentage point, a move seen as an effort to continue the inflation-fighting policies of his predecessor, Paul Volcker.

Oct. 19, 1987 (Black Monday): The Dow drops 508 points and 22% -- only 69 days into Greenspan's tenure.

Oct. 20, 1987: Greenspan signals the Fed's commitment to keep financial institutions afloat following the crash, pledging "to serve as a source of liquidity to support the economic and financial system." Following the crash, the Fed injects roughly $6 billion dollars a day into the economy

Aug. 2, 1990: Iraq invades Kuwait, sending global oil prices sharply higher and sparking a recession which would end in March 1991.

July 10, 1991: President George H.W. Bush nominates Greenspan to a second term as Fed chairman.

Feb. 4, 1994: The Fed, for the first time, publicly announces an interest-rate change, raising the federal funds rate a quarter of a percent. The announcement is one of several steps Greenspan would take to increase transparency at the Fed.

Feb. 22, 1996: President Clinton nominates Greenspan for a third term as Fed chairman.

Dec. 5, 1996: Greenspan, while at a reception in his honor, suggests that investors might be suffering from "irrational exuberance." By questioning the value of the stock market, Greenspan sends ripples through financial markets around the world.

Sept. 29, 1998: The Fed cuts interest rates by 0.25 percentage points, a move repeated again on Oct. 15 and Nov. 17 to stave off the financial crisis created by collapsing currencies in Russia and South East Asia and the failure of hedge fund LTCM.

Jan. 4, 2000: Clinton nominates Greenspan to a fourth term as chairman.

Jan. 14, 2000: The Dow closes at an all-time high of 11,722.98. The NASDAQ follows March 10, closing at 5048.62, while the S&P 500 peaks at 1527.46 on March 24.

March 2001: The U.S. economy falls into recession, ending the longest expansion on record at 120 months.

2001: Responding to the recession and the blow of the Sept. 11 attacks, the Fed, in a series of steps, lowers the key federal funds rate to a 40-year low 1.75 percent during the 2001 calendar year. Greenspan is credited with pulling the economy quickly out of recession. The Fed continues to cut rates, reaching 1.25 percent in November 2002 and 1 percent in June 2003.

May 18, 2004: President Bush nominates Greenspan for a fifth term as Fed chairman.

June 30, 2004: The Fed beings raising interest rates, the first of a series of increases.

Oct. 24, 2005: President Bush nominates White House economic adviser and former Fed Gov. Ben Bernanke to succeed Greenspan.

Timeline compiled by Benjamin Brudevold Newman.

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