Why We Need a National Investment Authority

8 Pages Posted: 1 Apr 2020 Last revised: 24 Jun 2020

Date Written: April 1, 2020


This brief memorandum lays out the case for a National Investment Authority (NIA): a permanent federal instrumentality tasked with devising and implementing a long-term national strategy of economic and infrastructural development. The memorandum emphasizes the proposed NIA’s potential to provide an indispensable—and presently lacking—institutional platform for effective coordination of the nation’s response to systemic crises like the COVID-19 pandemic. It outlines how the NIA would:

(1) coordinate nationwide production mobilization efforts,

(2) execute emergency financial relief and corporate bailout measures, and

(3) manage public stakes in bailed-out private firms (through a novel “golden share” regime)—and do so in a transparent, democratically accountable, and distributionally just manner.

Keywords: COVID, Coronavirus, financial crisis, bailout, emergency relief, NIA, RFC, economic mobilization, golden share, public stake, public equity, industrial policy, Green New Deal, public infrastructure finance, crisis response, crisis coordination

JEL Classification: H10, H12, H13, K10, K23, L50, L52, O10, O16, O20, O23, O25

Suggested Citation

Omarova, Saule T., Why We Need a National Investment Authority (April 1, 2020). Cornell Legal Studies Research Paper No. 20-34, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3566462 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3566462

Saule T. Omarova (Contact Author)

Cornell University - Law School ( email )

Myron Taylor Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853-4901
United States

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