Robert P. Murphy

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For other people named Robert Murphy, see Robert Murphy (disambiguation).
Robert P. Murphy
Robert P. Murphy Head Shot 1.jpg
Born (1976-05-23) May 23, 1976 (age 40)
United States
Nationality American
Free Market Institute of Texas Tech University
Fraser Institute
Pacific Research Institute
Hillsdale College
Ludwig Von Mises Institute
Field Financial Economics, Trade
School or
Austrian School
Alma mater New York University (Ph.D.) 2003
Hillsdale College (B.A.) 1998

Robert Patrick Murphy (born 23 May 1976) is an American economist, consultant, author, and podcaster. Murphy is currently the Research Assistant Professor at the Free Market Institute (FMI) at Texas Tech University.[1] He has authored and co-authored numerous books, including his latest from the Independent Institute, Choice: Cooperation, Enterprise, and Human Action.[2] His current research focuses on the economics of climate change as well as the impact of minimum wages.[3] He has also written hundreds of economics articles for the layperson and has given numerous radio and television interviews on such outlets as Fox Business and CNBC.[4] Murphy is a proponent of the Austrian School of Economics, following in the tradition of Ludwig von Mises, Nobel Prize winner Friedrich Hayek, and Murray Rothbard.[5]

Education and affiliations[edit]

Murphy received a BA in economics at Hillsdale College in 1998 and a Ph.D. in economics at New York University in 2003.[6] As explained by the Free Market Institute (FMI) website, "In his role as a research assistant professor with the FMI, Dr. Murphy contributes original research to the Institute's ongoing research program, Research on the Origins of Economic Freedom and Prosperity, and works closely with FMI graduate research assistants on their efforts to develop original research.".[1] Before to his employment at Texas Tech University, he was a visiting Assistant Professor at Hillsdale College, a visiting scholar at New York University, a Research Analyst at Laffer Associates, and a senior Fellow with the Pacific Research Institute.[7] He is an Senior Economist with the Institute for Energy Research (IER) specializing in climate change[6] and a research fellow with the Independent Institute,[8] He is an associated scholar at the Ludwig von Mises Institute,[9] and a Senior Fellow with the Fraser Institute in Canada[4]

He also is the president of Consulting By RPM, where he specializes in economic analysis for a lay audience.[1][9][10] In addition to economic subjects, Murphy writes about and has presented an online video class on an introduction to anarcho-capitalism, made available through Ludwig von Mises Institute website.[10][11] Murphy discussed climate change and energy-related topics, on behalf of IER, in testimony before a US Congressional committee.[12][13][14][15]


Dr. Murphy has written and co-written multiple books. His most recently published book is Choice: Cooperation, Enterprise, and Human Action (Independent Institute, 2015).[1] He also co-authored Primal Prescription with Dough McDuff, MD regarding healthcare in the United States.[16] He wrote a textbook for junior high students titled Lessons for the Young Economist (Mises Institute 2010), which is offered free of charge.[17]

Murphy has also written numerous works for lay audiences, including study guides to works of Ludwig von Mises and Murray Rothbard.[6] Murphy is author of the 2007 book The Politically Incorrect Guide to Capitalism. Murphy's Mises Institute colleague[18] Gene Epstein wrote in Barron's Magazine that "Murphy makes a compelling case for the unfettered free market, or what his intellectual antagonists would call "free-market fundamentalism", but writes Murphy is sometimes too irreverent.[19] Murphy's book, The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Great Depression and the New Deal, published in 2009, blamed the Depression on government policies.[20][neutrality is disputed]

Additionally, Murphy has written for The Washington Times,[21] Forbes[22] and Barron's Magazine.[23] Murphy's writings have also been published in The American Journal of Economics and Sociology, The Review of Austrian Economics,[6] the Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics[24] and the Journal of Private Enterprise.[25] He has written for The Freeman,[26] The American Conservative[27] and[28] He previously wrote a column for[29]

Contra Krugman[edit]

In 2015, Murphy began Contra Krugman, a weekly podcast, with New York Times Best-Selling author and historian Thomas Woods that critiques the New York Times columns of Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman. The podcasts seek to teach economics "by uncovering and dissecting the errors of Krugman."[30][31]

Double-digit inflation predictions[edit]

In 2009, Murphy discussed various economic policies of the Bush and Obama administrations, which he called "incredible assaults on the private sector from the central government". He stated that the policies of Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke and President Obama would lead to double-digit inflation with high unemployment and could facilitate the abandonment of the US Dollar by the end of the Obama Presidency. Murphy warned that soaring prices for gasoline and imported products sold at Wal-Mart might be blamed by Obama Administration officials on "an attack on the Dollar by foreign speculators" and used by them to replace the Dollar with the Amero or some other currency "issued by a supranational organization". Murphy urged investors to purchase an "emergency stockpile" of physical gold and silver, and predicted double-digit inflation.[32] In July 2009, Murphy proclaimed that the economy would be "in the toilet for a decade" and predicted "20+ percent price inflation."[33]

In a series of articles on his personal website, Murphy states that he agreed to a bet that there would be a year/year increase in the seasonally adjusted Consumer Price Index of over 10% by 2013, and notes that he lost the bet.[33]

In a column criticizing economists "who stick with their ideology no matter how badly it performs in practice", Paul Krugman noted that University of California, Berkeley Professor of Economics J. Bradford DeLong had attacked Murphy for "predicting double-digit inflation for years but remain[ing] absolutely committed to his framework" despite the predictions being unfulfilled.[34] In December 2012 Krugman again addressed Murphy's failed inflation predictions, criticizing Murphy's belief that "his failed inflation forecast is OK" because it is attributable to "huge deflationary downdraft that offset the inflationary impact of Fed expansion." Krugman wrote that if that was true, "we should be hailing Ben Bernanke for preventing a catastrophic deflation."[35] Murphy replied on his blog to Krugman and DeLong's criticisms, saying "my price inflation wager has nothing to do with Austrian business cycle theory" and that Krugman was using a "macro model" which does not apply to Austrian theory which relies on "heterogeneous capital goods" and artificially low interest rates distortion of investment flows into various sectors. He admitted he was not sure why his inflation prediction was wrong.[36] In a May 2013 piece published by The American Conservative, Murphy wrote about Krugman's predictions regarding fiscal austerity and the 2013 U.S. government budget sequestration.[37]

In 2013 Murphy challenged Krugman to a debate and unnamed supporters of Murphy promised to donate $100,000 to a charity if Krugman would debate Murphy on economic policy issues.[38] A promotional website was established for the challenge. Krugman called the proposed debate a "public circus" and stated "Why should I dignify that totally-wrong doctrine — that doctrine that's gotten everything wrong — by giving them a platform?"[39][40]

Skepticism of evolution, defense of Biblical literalism[edit]

In two articles entitled "Well, I'll be a Monkey's Nephew" and "More Monkey Business", Murphy expressed skepticism about evolution, asserting that he "can literally prove evolution is false" by pointing out that human beings act altruistically, which (in Murphy's view) cannot be explained by evolutionary motives.[41][42] In another piece which discussed evolution, Murphy discussed the influence of his Christian faith on his views and defended "those who subscribe to a literal interpretation of the Bible".[43] Murphy expressed, for instance, his belief in the Biblical story of Jonah and the Whale, asserting that "I think it's possible that a human being could be swallowed by a whale and live for three days somewhere inside of it, with enough oxygen and without being digested".[43]

Religious views[edit]

Murphy is a Christian, and has stated in his writings that "my ethical beliefs are informed by my Christian faith, and I am a firm believer in natural law."[44]



  1. ^ a b c
  2. ^ "Book: Choice: Cooperation, Enterprise, and Human Action - Robert P. Murphy, Donald J. Boudreaux". Retrieved 2016-09-23. 
  3. ^ "About Contra Krugman | Contra Krugman". Retrieved 2016-09-23. 
  4. ^ a b "Robert P. Murphy". Retrieved 2016-09-23. 
  5. ^ "Robert P. Murphy". Mises Institute. 2014-06-20. Retrieved 2016-09-23. 
  6. ^ a b c d Robert P. Murphy profile, Institute for Energy Research, accessed December 9, 2013,
  7. ^ University, State of Texas and Texas Tech. "Free Market Institute - Our People - Robert Murphy, Ph.D. | Free Market Institute | TTU". Retrieved 2016-09-23. 
  8. ^ Robert P. Murphy profile, Independent Institute, accessed December 5, 2013.
  9. ^ Robert P. Murphy profile at Ludwig von Mises Institute, accessed December 5, 2013.
  10. ^ Robert P. Murphy, Learn Anarcho-Capitalism Online, Mises Daily, July 24, 2012.
  11. ^ Robert P. Murphy, But Wouldn't Warlords Take Over?, Mises Daily, July 7, 2005.
  12. ^ Climate Change: Robert P. Murphy, Congressional Testimony, July 18, 2013, Federal Document Clearing House, Inc., accessed via Highbeam
  13. ^ Oil Prices and the Weak Dollar: Robert P. Murphy, Congressional Testimony, July 24, 2008, Federal Document Clearing House, Inc., accessed via Highbeam
  14. ^ Impact of Federal Reserve Policies on Gas Prices:robert P. Murphy, Congressional Testimony, May 25, 2011, Federal Document Clearing House, Inc., accessed via Highbeam.
  15. ^ Written Testimony of Robert P. Murphy, Senior Economist, Institute for Energy Research, Before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works On the Matter of "The ‘Social Cost of Carbon’: Some Surprising Facts" July 18, 2013; Senate Committee website accessed December 8, 2013.
  16. ^ "The Primal Prescription". 2015-05-21. Retrieved 2016-09-23. 
  17. ^ anne (2014-08-06). "Lessons for the Young Economist". Retrieved 2016-09-23. 
  18. ^ "Senior Fellows, Faculty Members, and Staff."
  19. ^ Epstein, Gene (9 July 2007). "Nine Good Reasons to Hit the Beach". Barron's Magazine. 
  20. ^ Raymond J. Keating, "Book review: The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Great Depression and the New Deal", The Freeman, December 22, 2010.
  21. ^ Robert P. Murphy, Are Real Economists Bears?, The Washington Times, February 19, 2010, accessed via Highbeam.
  22. ^ Robert P. Murphy, Memo To The Fed: Stop Those Rate Cuts, Forbes, March 16, 2008.
  23. ^ Robert P. Murphy, Capitalism is validated by "mechanism-design" theory, Barron's Magazine, May 12, 2008
  24. ^ Resumé/CV, Robert P. Murphy website, accessed December 6, 2013.
  25. ^ Robert P. Murphy, Coordination: A Critique of Daniel Klein, The Journal of Private Enterprise, 25(2), 2010, 117-127, 117.
  26. ^ Robert P. Murphy archives at The Freeman website.
  27. ^ Robert P. Murphy archives at The American Conservative website.
  28. ^ Robert P. Murphy archives at
  29. ^ Robert Murphy columns archive,, accessed December 6, 2013.
  30. ^ {{}}
  31. ^
  32. ^ Robert P. Murphy, "Killing the Currency", The American Conservative, December 10, 2009.
  33. ^ a b Murphy, Robert P. (January 2, 2013). "Learning from Brad DeLong and Paul Krugman."
  34. ^ "Is Our Austerians Learning?". New York Times. December 30, 2012. Retrieved 1 November 2013. 
  35. ^ Paul Krugman, On Not Learning, Continued, New York times, December 31, 2012.
  36. ^ Learning From Brad DeLong and Paul Krugman, Robert P. Murphy blog, January 2, 2013.
  37. ^ Robert P. Murphy, Heads Krugman Wins, Tails ‘Austerity’ Loses, The American Conservative, May 23, 2013.
  38. ^ Carney, John (October 25, 2010). "Will Paul Krugman be Shamed Into Debating an Austrian Economics Wunderkind?". CNBC website. Retrieved 19 April 2013. 
  39. ^ Lehrer, Brian (June 4, 2012). "The Brian Lehrer Show: Paul Krugman Weighs In."
  40. ^
  41. ^ Murphy, Robert P (September 20, 2003). "Well, I'll be a Monkey's Nephew."
  42. ^ Murphy, Robert P (November 24, 2003). "More Monkey Business."
  43. ^ a b Murphy, Robert P. (November 15, 2004). "In Defense of Christian Fundamentalism."
  44. ^ Murphy, Robert P. "The Possibility of Private Law." 3 August 2005.

External links[edit]