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John Lipsky

John Lipsky
First Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund
In office
September 1, 2006 – September 1, 2011
Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn
Christine Lagarde
Preceded by Anne Osborn Krueger
Succeeded by David Lipton
Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund
In office
May 15, 2011 – July 5, 2011
Preceded by Dominique Strauss-Kahn
Succeeded by Christine Lagarde
Personal details
Born February 1947 (age 67–68)
Cedar Rapids, Iowa, U.S.
Children 2 daughters
1 son
Alma mater Wesleyan University
Stanford University

John Phillip Lipsky (born February 19, 1947) is an American economist. He was the acting Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund from May to July 2011.[1][2][3] He assumed the post of Acting Managing Director after Dominique Strauss-Kahn was arrested in May 2011 accused of sexual assault.[4][5] After the appointment of Christine Lagarde he returned to his post as the First Deputy Managing Director of the IMF. He retired from the IMF in November 2011 and is currently a Distinguished Visiting Scholar at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).[6]


  • Family, early life and education 1
  • Career 2
    • IMF leadership role 2.1
  • Personal life 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5

Family, early life and education

Lipsky was born into a Jewish family in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.[7] Lipsky's great-grandfather, Henry Smulekoff, was a Ukrainian immigrant who opened a furniture store on Cedar Rapids' May's Island in 1890. Lipsky was the middle child of three[3] born to Abbott and Joan Lipsky.[8] His late father was president of Smulekoff's,[8] and sister Ann Lipsky is president today.[3] His mother still lives in Cedar Rapids and is a retired lawyer, legislator, and chairwoman of the Iowa Council on Human Services.[3][8] Early interest in Latin America was sparked by a family vacation in Mexico which led to a friendship, a summer in Guadalajara with the friend, and a summer for the friend in Iowa.[3][9]

Lipsky attended Wesleyan University, earning a B.A. in economics. He gained his M.A. and Ph.D. in the field from Stanford University.[1][10]


On graduation from Stanford, Lipsky joined the International Monetary Fund, where he helped manage the Fund's exchange rate surveillance procedure. Appointed the IMF's resident representative in Chile from 1978 (during General Augusto Pinochet's military dictatorship), Lipsky returned, in 1980, to the IMF headquarters in Washington D.C. to develop the IMF's analysis of international capital markets.[1][11] He also participated in negotiations with several member countries.[1]

After 10 years at the IMF, in 1984 he joined

Business positions
Preceded by
Anne Osborn Krueger
First Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund
Succeeded by
David Lipton
Preceded by
Dominique Strauss-Kahn
Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund

Succeeded by
Christine Lagarde
  • Biography at the IMF
  • Articles at Roubini economics

External links

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "John Lipsky – Biographical Information".  
  2. ^ McEnery, Thornton (May 17, 2011). "Meet John Lipsky And The 6 Other People Who Could Take Over For DSK".  
  3. ^ a b c d e Belz, Adam (May 17, 2011). "Lipsky 'well-prepared' for IMF leadership".  
  4. ^ a b "IMF Official: Lipsky Acting Managing Director of Fund".  
  5. ^  
  6. ^ "IMF's Lipsky on China's economy".  
  7. ^ The Jewish Chronicle: "If anyone can save us, Strauss-Kahn" By Alex Brummer October 22, 2009
  8. ^ a b c Des Moines register: "Iowa native Lipsky named acting IMF chief in wake of scandal" by William Petroski May 15, 2011
  9. ^ a b c Belz, Adam (May 17, 2011). "Iowan John Lipsky 'well-prepared' for IMF role".  
  10. ^ "Hogendorn Lectures".  
  11. ^ Katz, Ian (May 16, 2011). "IMF Amid Scandal Turns to Lipsky as Greece Talks Persist".  
  12. ^ Fuerbringer, Jonathan (January 7, 1992). "BUSINESS PEOPLE; Economist Post Filled By Salomon Brothers".  
  13. ^ "IMF First Deputy Managing Director John Lipsky Announces Departure" (Press release).  
  14. ^ Rastello, Sandrine (May 12, 2011). "IMF's No. 2 Official Lipsky Will Leave Post on August 31".  
  15. ^ "John Lipsky".  
  16. ^ Rastello, Sandrine (September 28, 2010). "Lipsky Says Global Growth in Second Half Will Fall Short of IMF's Forecast".  
  17. ^ "IMF Managing Director de Rato Proposes Appointment of John Lipsky as First Deputy Managing Director" (Press release).   on 27th Feb it was announced that he was joining the board of HSBC}
  18. ^ Traynor, Ian (16 June 2011). "Hardline IMF forced Germany to guarantee Greek bailout".  
  19. ^ Traynor, Ian (16 June 2011). "How Dominique Strauss-Kahn's arrest in New York worsened Europe's woe".  
  20. ^ Traynor, Ian (17 June 2011). "Hardline IMF forced Germany to guarantee Greek bailout".  
  21. ^


Lipsky lives in Washington, D.C., and Brooklyn, New York. He and his wife have two daughters and a son.[9]

Personal life

Lipsky retired from the IMF in 2011. He now teaches at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).[21]

Lipsky's unplanned accession at the IMF led quickly to his immersion in addressing the European and Greek sovereign debt crises, a high-profile role his predecessor had been playing. At the 37th G8 summit held on 26–27 May 2011 in Deauville, France, Lipsky had to overcome Germany's reluctance to fund another round of bailouts for Greece. He did so by threatening to withhold IMF disbursements, an action that would precipitate a Greek default – an option none was ready to accept at that point.[18] In the "bitter infighting," Lipsky was characterized in The Guardian as "less silky, much blunter" than Strauss-Kahn.[19][20]

IMF leadership role

Lipsky also serves on the Board of Directors of the National Bureau of Economic Research.[15][16] His other professional activities have included serving on the Board of Directors of the American Council on Germany, the Japan Society, the Advisory Board of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, and the Council on Foreign Relations.[17]

"In 2000, he chaired [an IMF] Financial Sector Review Group, established by former Managing Director Horst Köhler, to provide ... an independent perspective on [the Fund's] work on international financial markets."[1] On September 1, 2006 he returned to the IMF as First Deputy Managing Director, succeeding the departing Anne Osborn Krueger.[1] On May 12, 2011, Lipsky announced that he would leave his post at the end of his term on August 31, 2011, declining the option to serve for a second term.[13][14] Three days later, on May 15, 2011, Lipsky was appointed acting Managing Director of the IMF, after Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn's resignation due to being arrested on sexual assault charges.[4]


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