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Anthony P. O'Brien

Department of Economics: Professor

  • University of California, Berkeley, A.B., Ph.D.

Tony O'Brien's research interests include the economic history of African Americans, the international economy during the interwar years, and the historical development of nominal wage rigidity. His research has been published in the American Economic Review, the Quarterly Journal of Economics, the Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking, the Journal of Economic History, and elsewhere. He has received grants from the American Iron and Steel Institute, the Economic History Association, the Government of Canada, and the National Science Foundation. As a graduate student, he was a Flood Fellow. At Lehigh, he has been a Dana Faculty Fellow, Class of 1961 Professor, and was awarded the Lehigh University Award for Distinguished Teaching.

Research Interests
  • Economic history of African Americans
  • International economy during the interwar years
  • Historical development of nominal wage rigidity
Selected Publications and Working Papers
  • "Retreat from Protectionsim: R.B. Bennett and the Movement to Freer Trade in Canada, 1930-1935," (with J.A. McDonald) Journal of Policy History, August 2009, 21, 331-365.
  • Economics, with R. Glenn Hubbard, Prentice-Hall, 2006.
  • "Why is the Standard Error of Regression So Low When Using Historical Data?" Journal of Socio-Economics, November 2004.
  • "One Kind of Freedom Revisited," (with W. Shade), Explorations in Economic History, January 2001, 38, 1-5.
  • "Economic Progress in the Postbellum South? Implications from the Growth of Incomes of African-Americans in the Mississippi Delta, 1879-1913," (with J.R. Irwin), Explorations in Economic History, January 2001, 38, 166-80.
  • "Did the Black-White Income Gap Close During the Late Nineteenth Century?" Advances in Agricultural Economic History, 2000, 1, 73-93.
  • "Were Money Wages Always Rigid?" Industrial Relations, January 2000, 39, 48-61.
  • "Where Have All the Sharecroppers Gone? Black Occupations in Postbellum Mississippi," (with J. R. Irwin), Agricultural History, Spring 1998, 72, 280-97.
  • "Trade Wars: Canada’s Reaction to the Smoot-Hawley Tariff," (with J.A. McDonald and C.M. Callahan), Journal of Economic History, December 1997, 57, 802-26.
  • "The Importance of Adjusting Production to Sales in the Early Automobile Industry," Explorations in Economic History, April 1997, 34, 195-219.
  • "Who Voted for Smoot-Hawley?" (with C.M. Callahan and J.A. McDonald), Journal of Economic History, September 1994, 54, 683-690.
  • "The Failure of the Bank of United States: A Defense of Joseph Lucia," Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking, August 1992, 24, 374-384.
  • "A Behavioral Explanation for Nominal Wage Rigidity during the Great Depression," Quarterly Journal of Economics, November 1989, 104, 719-35.
  • "The ICC, Freight Rates, and the Great Depression,"Explorations in Economic History, January 1989, 26, 73-98. (Reprinted in Robert F. Himmelberg, ed., The New Deal and Corporate Power: Antitrust and Regulatory Policies during the Thirties and World War II, Garland, 1994.)
  • "Factory Size, Economies of Scale, and the Great Merger Wave of 1898-1902," Journal of Economic History, September 1988, 48, 639-49. (Reprinted in Gregory P. Marchildon, ed., Mergers and Acquisitions, Edward Elgar, 1991 and in Robert F. Himmelberg, ed., The Rise of Big Business and the Beginnings of Antitrust and Railroad Regulation, 1870-1900, Garland, 1994.)
  • "The Cyclical Sensitivity of Wages," American Economic Review, December 1985, 75, 1124-32.
Office Information
Office: 460 RBC
Phone: 610-758-3442
Fax: 610-758-4677
Office Hours: MW 1:30-3:00
Courses Taught
  • Eco 129 Money, Banking, and Financial Markets
  • Eco 323 - Evolution of Business Strategy
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