James Tobin


James Tobin

Photo from the Nobel Foundation archive.

James Tobin
The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel 1981

Born: 5 March 1918, Champaign, IL, USA

Died: 11 March 2002, New Haven, CT, USA

Affiliation at the time of the award: Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA

Prize motivation: “for his analysis of financial markets and their relations to expenditure decisions, employment, production and prices”

Prize share: 1/1


James Tobin was born in Champaign, Illinois, USA. In 1935, on his father’s advice, Tobin took the entrance exams for Harvard University where he majored in economy and went on to receive his Ph.D. in 1947. During WWII, he enlisted in the US Navy, spending the war as an officer on a destroyer. He resumed his studies after the war. In 1950, Tobin moved to Yale University, where he remained for the rest of his career.


James Tobin’s achievements cover a broad spectrum of economic research. He made substantial contributions in such widely differing areas as econometric methods and strictly formalized game theory, the theory of household and firm behavior, general macro theory and applied analysis of economic policy. His most outstanding and significant research contribution belongs to the theory of financial markets and their relation to consumption and investment decisions, production, employment and prices.

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MLA style: James Tobin – Facts. NobelPrize.org. Nobel Prize Outreach AB 2024. Thu. 13 Jun 2024. <https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/economic-sciences/1981/tobin/facts/>

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