Economist, former Obama adviser Alan Krueger dead at 58

Economist Alan Krueger died at the age of 58 over the weekend, his family said. Photo: Faculty portrait photo/Princeton University

March 19 (UPI) — Former White House economist and Princeton University professor Alan Krueger died at the age of 58 over the weekend, the university announced.

Krueger served as chief economist at the Department of Labor for President Bill Clinton, chair of the Council of Economic Advisers for President Barack Obama and was a professor of political economy at Princeton.

Krueger’s family said the cause of death was suicide, according to a statement released by the university.

One of Krueger’s most influential works included a paper he co-authored with economist David Card about the effects of minimum wage, in which they compared employment in fast food restaurants across state lines after New Jersey raised its minimum wage. They found that the number of jobs did not decrease.

While at Princeton he also published work on the wages of Uber drivers, the impact of opioid abuse on labor force participation and the effect on wages caused by franchisers preventing franchisees from poaching each other’s employees.

Krueger’s most recent book, Rockonomics, explored the economics of the music industry.

He worked for the Obama administration from 2011 to 2013 and the former president issued a statement mourning the loss of a “brilliant economist” and a “dear friend.”

“Alan was someone who was deeper than numbers on a screen and charts on a page. He saw economic policy not as a matter of abstract theories, but as a way to make people’s lives better. He believed that facts, reason, and evidence could make government more responsive, and his enthusiasm and curiosity was truly infectious,” Obama said.


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