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Princeton Prof Angus Deaton wins Nobel in Economics

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Princeton Prof Angus Deaton wins Nobel in Economics

Thereport24.com Desk:

Professor Angus Deaton, a British economist, was awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Science on Monday for improving the accuracy of basic economic gauges, including measures of income, poverty and consumption.

Professor Deaton, 69, of Princeton, is best known for his insight that economic averages such as measures of national income could be misleading, because they concealed important variations among individuals.

“To design economic policy that promotes welfare and reduces poverty, we must first understand individual consumption choices,” the committee that awarded the prize said in a statement. “More than anyone else, Angus Deaton has enhanced this understanding. By linking detailed individual choices and aggregate outcomes, his research has helped transform the fields of microeconomics, macroeconomics and development economics.”

Professor Deaton was born in Scotland, and he is a British and American citizen. Speaking by phone at the news conference held to announce the prize on Monday, Professor Deaton said the message of his work was mostly optimistic.

“My general message is, my measurements tend to show that things are getting better, but there is a lot of work still to be done,” he said.

Professor Deaton said he was “pretty sleepy” when he got the phone call telling him that he had won.

“I was surprised and delighted,” he said. “It was wonderful to hear the voices of my friends on the committee.”

The prize was announced in Stockholm by Goran K. Hansson, permanent secretary of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

The committee in recent years has honored a number of academics for work showing either that markets are inefficient or how to deal with that reality. Last year, the committee picked Jean Tirole, a French economist, for his work on the effective regulation of imperfect markets. In 2013, it honored Eugene F. Fama, Lars Peter Hansen and Robert J. Shiller for their research on the movements of financial markets.

The economics prize is the newest of the Nobels, established in 1968, in Alfred Nobel’s memory, to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the Sweden’s central bank, the world’s first. Professor Deaton joins 75 laureates — including Milton Friedman, Friedrich von Hayek and Amartya Sen — who have been honored since the prize was first awarded, in 1969. The prize is 8 million Swedish kronor (about $976,000).

More than 80 percent of the economics laureates have been American citizens. Only one woman has won: the political scientist Elinor Ostrom, in 2009.

Source: The New York Times

Ends/thereport24.com/HB/Oct 12, 2015