Maybe you've never heard of MMT (Modern Monetary Theory). But no doubt, as the 2020 election nears, you will. It's the latest contentious buzzword to hit Washington, D.C.
The idea, despite its name, is not new or "modern." But it has set off a heated political and economic debate, with Fed Chairman Jerome Powell telling Congress last week that Modern Monetary Policy is "just wrong."
Does Modern Monetary Theory, or MMT, represent a brave new future of ever-expanding government spending to meet Americans' vital needs? Or is it a dangerous idea that could lead to runaway inflation, financial disaster and, ultimately, collapse?
The theory, in a nutshell, says that because the U.S. can borrow in its own currency, it can simply print more money when it needs to pay off its debts. All the Fed has to do is keep interest rates low. Simple. It's an increasingly popular idea among left-leaning economists.