Who will history remember as the best Fed chairman?
It's an interesting question, especially as the Federal Reserve Bank marked its 100th anniversary Monday with speeches from two former chairmen, Paul Volcker and Alan Greenspan, and from current Chairman Ben Bernanke.
"Paul Volcker is the greatest chairman in the history of the Federal Reserve Board," said Larry Kudlow, host of "The Kudlow Report" during an appearance on CNBC's "Power Lunch." "He faced 15 to 20 percent inflation ... which was destroying our economy and the rest of the world's economy. I believe that was the greatest crisis of all. He conquered it."
Kudlow, who was associate director for economics and planning during President Ronald Reagan's first term, got to watch Volcker work firsthand. The Fed chairman reduced inflation by removing money supply and raising interest rates—all in the face of sharp opposition—which set the tone for 25 years of prosperity, Kudlow said.
"The level of public outcry during the time that he was pursuing his policies is something that was certainly a challenge and something that he had to remain resolute in the face of," Ylan Q. Mui, a financial reporter at The Washington Post, said of Volcker.