Chicago School

DEFINITION of 'Chicago School'

An economic school of thought that originated at the University of Chicago in the 1940s. The main tenets of the Chicago school are that free markets best allocate resources in an economy, and that minimal government intervention is best. The Chicago school includes monetarist beliefs about the economy, and contends that the money supply should be kept in equilibrium with the demand for money. To this end, macroeconomic variables like output and wages are viewed in aggregate for the entire economy.

BREAKING DOWN 'Chicago School'

The Chicago school traces its roots back to Nobel laureate Milton Friedman, whose theories were drastically different from Keynesian economics, the prevailing school at the time. The Chicago school focuses on reducing regulations on business and believes in a laissez-faire approach to competition.

Former fed Chairman Alan Greenspan was thought to be a moderate follower of the Chicago school, and a monetarist in his thoughts toward the money supply.