About the editor

James Grant was born in 1946, the year interest rates put in their mid-20th century lows. He founded Grant’s Interest Rate Observer, a twice-monthly journal of the financial markets, in 1983, two years after interest rates recorded their modern-day highs.

Born in New York City and raised on Long Island, he had thoughts, first, of a career in music, not interest rates—french horn was his love. But he threw it over to enter the Navy. Following enlisted service aboard the U.S.S. Hornet, and, as a newly minted, 20-year-old civilian, on the bond desk of McDonnell & Co., he enrolled at Indiana University. There he studied economics under Scott Gordon and Elmus Wicker and diplomatic history under Robert H. Ferrell. He graduated, Phi Beta Kappa, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics in 1970. Next came two happily unstructured years at Columbia University that produced a master’s degree in something called international affairs but, more importantly, the privilege of studying under the cultural historian, critic and public intellectual Jacques Barzun.

In 1972, at the age of 26, Grant landed his first real job, as a cub reporter at the Baltimore Sun. There he met his future wife, Patricia Kavanagh, and discovered a calling in financial journalism. It seemed that nobody else wanted to work in business news. Grant served an apprenticeship under the longsuffering financial editor, Jesse Glasgow. He moved to Barron’s in 1975.

The late 1970s were years of inflation, monetary disorder and upheaval in the interest-rate markets—in short, of journalistic opportunity. It happened that the job of covering bonds, the Federal Reserve and related topics was vacant. In the mainly placid years of the 1950s and 1960s, those subjects had seemed too dull to care about. But now they were supremely important—even interesting—and the editor of Barron’s, Robert M. Bleiberg, tapped Grant to originate a column devoted to interest rates. This weekly department, called “Current Yield,” he wrote until the time he left to found the eponymous Interest Rate Observer in the summer of 1983.

Grant’s books include three financial histories, a pair of collections of Grant’s articles and three biographies.  The titles are these: “Money of the Mind” (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1992), “The Trouble with Prosperity” (Times Books, 1996) “Minding Mr. Market” (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1993), “Mr. Market Miscalculates” (Axios Press, 2008) and “The Forgotten Depression, 1921: the Crash that Cured Itself” (Simon & Schuster, 2014), which won the 2015 Hayek Prize of the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research.

Also, “Bernard M. Baruch: The Adventures of a Wall Street Legend” (Simon & Schuster, 1983), “John Adams: Party of One” (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2005) and Mr. Speaker! The Life and Times of Thomas B. Reed, the Man Who Broke the Filibuster” (Simon & Schuster, 2011).  
 
Grant’s television appearances include “60 Minutes,” “The Charlie Rose Show,” Deirdre Bolton’s “Money Moves” program on Bloomberg TV and a 10-year stint on "Wall Street Week". His journalism has appeared in a variety of periodicals, including the Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal and Foreign Affairs, and he contributed an essay to the Sixth Edition of Graham and Dodd's “Security Analysis” (McGraw-Hill, 2009).

Grant is a 2013 inductee into the Fixed Income Analysts Society Hall of Fame. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a trustee of the New-York Historical Society.

He and his wife live in Brooklyn. They are the parents of four grown children.
 

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About James Grant

James Grant founded Grant's Interest Rate Observer in 1983 following a stint at Barron's, where he originated the "Current Yield" column.

His books include works of financial history, finance and biography. They are: “Bernard M. Baruch: The Adventures of a Wall Street Legend” (Simon & Schuster, 1983); “Money of the Mind: Borrowing and Lending from the Civil War to Michael Milken” (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1992); “Minding Mr. Market” (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1993); “The Trouble with Prosperity” (Times Books, 1996);  “John Adams: Party of One” (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2005); “Mr. Market Miscalculates” (Axios Press, 2008); and “Mr. Speaker! The Life and Times of Thomas B. Reed, the Man Who Broke the Filibuster” (Simon & Schuster, 2011).

 

Books by James Grant View All

The Forgotten Depression: 1921: The Crash That Cured Itself

By the publisher of the prestigious Grant’s Interest Rate Observer, an account of the deep economic slump of 1920–21 that proposes, with respect to federal intervention, “less is more...

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Mr. Speaker!: The Life and Times of Thomas B Reed, the Man Who Broke the Filibuster

“It is good to have this excellent biography of Thomas Reed, a vastly underappreciated major figure in American political history...

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Mr. Market Miscalculates:The Bubble Years & Beyond

“James Grant’s Mr. Market Miscalculates may well be the most perceptive book on the current financial crisis yet published...

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Bernard Baruch: The Adventures of a Wall Street Legend

The life and times of the renowned investor, venture capitalist and Democratic political operative...

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Price war for Warren Buffett

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Excess lingers long

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‘Yes, but’ they said

Bullishness dominated, though they did not quite monopolize, the day’s proceedings...

$1 billion a day

“Indexing doesn’t need any help. It is growing at an astonishing rate and, for someone who never intended to build a colossus, a kind of frightening rate...

Rejoice, mediocrities!

Where in life can a sub-par performer achieve average results with a light tap on a computer key? Investment indexation, attested a preeminent active investor, is “incredible...

The Age of Trump

The text of your editor’s early-morning remarks: “The Age of Trump will go down as the Age of the Consequences of Radical Monetary Policy...

Whence D. Trump?

A long and a short for a Trump Market where “what has worked so well in investing will fade or stop working...

Four letters unspoken

The word “gold” went unmentioned at the Plaza, except in the context of an unassailable rule for living: “Never stand in line to buy an asset...

Last to first

Yes, buying low and selling high is hard to do, but there are ways...

The great escape

To close the era of extraordinary monetary policy, the Federal Reserve must open its mind...

Narendra Reagan

A pair of stocks in a country poised on the brink of capitalist emergence...

Mentioned at the Plaza

Other investment ideas presented by our speakers at the Spring 2017 Grant’s conference...

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While the S&P 500 is near an all-time high, the much-vaunted wealth effect does not seem to be working its magic...

Undoing Extraordinary Monetary Policy

Remarks of Peter R. Fisher Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth *** Grant’s Interest Rate Observer Spring 2017 Conference New York, New York *** March 15, 2017

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