Handicapping the 2012 Nobel

This article mentions Alvin Roth, Bob Shiller, Richard Thaler, Robert Barro, Lars Hansen, Anthony Atkinson, Angus Deaton, Jean Tirole, Stephen Ross, and William Nordhaus.

I’ll predict a triple prize to Shiller, Thaler, and Eugene Fama.  Fama clearly deserves it, can’t win it solo (too strongly EMH in an age of financial crisis), but can be bundled with two people from behavioral finance and irrational exuberance theories.

Barro will get it, but not in an election year.  Hansen and Ross are good picks but I don’t see them getting it before Fama does.  Paul Romer deserves mention but this is probably not his year because of politics in Honduras.

William Baumol cannot be ruled out.  A neat idea — but unlikely — is Martin Feldstein and Joseph Newhouse for their pioneering work in health care economics, plus for Feldstein there is public finance too.

Tirole and Nordhaus are deserving perennials, with various bundlings (e.g., Oliver Hart, or for Nordhaus other names in environmental).  I hope the Krueger-Tullock idea is not dead but I would bet against it, same with Armen Alchian and Albert Hirschman.  Dale Jorgensen has a shot.

I believe Duflo and Banerjee (and possibly Michael Kremer too, maybe even Robert Townsend) will get it sooner than people are expecting, though not this year as they just presented in Stockholm.  Next year I think.

Not once in the past have I been right about this.

Addendum: Here is the talk from Northwestern.


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