Hardy, Charles Oscar (1884–1948)
Financial economist; born Island City, Missouri, 2 May 1884, died 30 November 1948. Hardy held posts at the University of Kansas and between 1918 and 1922 was a lecturer at the University of Chicago, where he had received the PhD in 1916. Hardy was also vice-president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and was long associated with the Brookings Institution and with monetary policy debates of his time. As a Brookings scholar Hardy authored a number of books dealing with currency problems, focusing especially on the functioning of the gold standard. Hardy argued (1936) that the increase in the world’s monetary gold stock (since 1929) led to undesirable expansions in floating credit and the potential for monetary instability. Further he thought that balance of trade shifts along with changes in long-term investments created havoc in the central bank’s ability to have an impact upon domestic stability. He therefore argued for large-scale modifications in the gold standard as it was then practised. Hardy later advocated an activist fiscal policy, coordinated with monetary policy, to promote economic stabilization.