Meet Raghuram Rajan, the new RBI governor

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • |
  • Updated: Sep 19, 2013 19:06 IST

At 50, economist Raghuram Govind Rajan will become one of the youngest governors of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), when he takes charge on September 5.

But the man who famously predicted the 2008 global financial crisis takes over from D Subbarao at a time when the economy is beset with spiralling inflation and a falling rupee.

We take a look at Rajan's career and the tasks that lie ahead of him.

Date of birth: February 3, 1963

Place of birth: Bhopal


1985: BTech in electrical engineering (gold medallist), IIT Delhi

1987: Postgraduate diploma in business administration (gold medallist), IIM Ahmedabad

1991: PhD in management, MIT


Joined the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business after graduation.

2003: Appointed youngest ever chief economist (official designation: Economic Counselor and Director of Research) at IMF. Served till December 2006.

Read more -- Raghuram Rajan: the new man at the helm of RBI

2005: In a paper titled ‘Has Financial Development Made the World Riskier?’, Rajan warned of a looming disaster in the financial services sector. US treasury secretary Lawrence Summers called the comments “misguided” and Rajan a “Luddite”.

Raghuram Rajan at his office in New Delhi after he was appointed as the next governor of the RBI. PTI Photo

Rajan was proved right when the US sub-prime crisis snowballed into a global economic slowdown.

2008: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh appointed Rajan honorary economic adviser.
2012: Rajan appointed chief economic advisor to the ministry of finance.

Awards and recognition

2003: First winner of the Fischer Black Prize awarded by the American Finance Association for contributions to the theory and practice of finance by an under-40 economist.

2010: Foreign Policy magazine listed him among the Top 100 Global Thinkers.

2011: A poll by The Economist ranked Rajan as the economist with “the most important ideas for a post-crisis world”.

Rajan's views:

On growth: “If we hit the bottom and start growing. 6-6.5% when the rest of the world is growing at 1-1.5%, we will create a positive dynamic that will serve us well.”

On the politician-industralist nexus: “There is a danger that if we let the nexus between the politician and businessmen get too strong, we could shut down competition.”

Read more: India Inc hails Rajan's appointment as RBI governor

On governance: “What we need to do is improve the level of governance to the level of the economy that we have and that process in underway.”

Tough tasks ahead

Arrest the rupee's slide that has hit record lows.

Aid investment and spur growth by keeping interest rates low.

Cool inflation while trying to boost demand by keeping interest rates low.


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Our take

Raghuram Rajan has a demanding checklist

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