Chairman and CEO, DFC Associates, LLC; Former Minister of Economy, Argentina
Domingo Cavallo is currently a Partner in Global Source Partners LLC and the Chairman and CEO of DFC Associates LLC. He is a member of The Group of Thirty. He is also honorary President of Fundación Mediterránea, the research institute in applied economics he created in 1977 and presided between 1977 and 1987.
He was born in San Francisco, in the Province of Cordoba, Argentina in 1946. He received his primary, secondary and undergraduate education from Argentine public schools and universities. After graduating with degrees in public accounting from the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba (UNC), at the age of 21 he earned a Doctorate in Economics from the same university and was awarded a gold medal for best academic performance. At age 24 he was named Director of the Bank of Cordoba. In 1977 he received his PhD in Economics from Harvard University.
Upon graduation from Harvard, he returned to Argentina and founded the Economic Research Institute (IERAL) of "Fundación Mediterránea", an economic policy think tank to which he devoted the next ten years of his career. This think tank was very influential in the 1980's. During his time as Executive Director of IERAL, he taught at the university level, wrote several books and published various professional articles in journals and press. In 1982, he served briefly as President of the Argentine Central Bank. In 1987 he was elected to the National Congress as an independent candidate.
In 1989 he was appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs (1989-1991). During his tenure, he is credited with reestablishing relations with Great Britain after a decade-long break. In addition, he worked actively to reinsert Argentina in the international community after decades of isolation. He was key player in the first round of negotiations establishing Mercosur, the regional integration agreement, among Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay.
In 1991, when Argentina was suffering its most brutal hyperinflations in history, he was named Minister of Economy. He quickly moved on several broad fronts: reducing trade barriers, introducing reforms to encourage competition, carrying out one of the most far reaching privatization of state-owned companies in Latin America and most importantly, implanting the "Convertibility Plan"-which gave Argentines a dollar-backed currency. This last reform was of overwhelming importance in bringing down inflation and reactivating the economy. Convertibility lead brought over 8% annual growths from 1991 to 1994-achieving the highest GDP growth in recent Argentine history. He never hesitated to take tough decisions and defend the rule of law. He resigned in 1996 after denouncing corruption, judicial manipulation and mafia control within the government.
Upon leaving office, Cavallo advised foreign governments at times of economic crisis. From 1998 to 1999, he served as Founding Publisher of Forbes Global. He also served on several international advisory boards. Determined to finish the reforms he had begun implementing, he created his own political party, "Acción por la República", and was elected to Congress in 1997. In 1999 he obtained almost 2 million votes coming in third as a presidential candidate. From 1999 to 2001, "Acción por la República" was the third largest party in the Argentine Congress.
In 2001, he was called by his former presidential opponent, President Fernando De la Rua, to join a "National Unity" government to take the country out of recession. Cavallo became Minister of Economy and launched a series of ambitious reforms in an effort to prevent the terrible consequences of a devaluation and default. The political leaders of several provinces, particularly those of Province of Buenos Aires, opposed his fiscal restraint measures and openly promoted devaluation. At the same time, in November of 2001, the IMF withdrew its support from Argentina, in the middle of a successful restructuring of the domestic public debt. In December 2001, Cavallo and De la Rua were forced out of office by a coalition of political opponents.
Since leaving office in 2001, Cavallo has undertaken a number of academic and business activities. He was a Visiting Professor in International Business and Economics at the Stern School of Business at New York University from 2002 to 2003 and Robert F. Kennedy Professor of Latin American Studies in the Department of Economics at Harvard University from 2003 to 2005 and Senior Fellow in Global Affairs at the Jackson Institute on International Relations of Yale University during the academic years 2011-2012 and 2012-2013. He founded his investment consulting firm in 2002 and gave conferences in many universities and institutions, including the University of Michigan, Columbia, Princeton, Georgetown, Stanford, Colorado, Boston, Boston College, Amherst College, Clark, NYU and Harvard.
Dr. Cavallo has received honors and recognitions from governments of more than 20 countries and has been a recipient of numerous honorary degrees from universities such as: the University of Bologna, the Université Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne, the University of Turin, Ben Gurion University and the University of Genoa. He is a Correspondent Member of the Royal Academy of Moral and Political Sciences of Spain and a member of the Group of Thirty.
He wrote several books, including: "Volver a Crecer", "Economía en Tiempos de Crisis", "La Argentina Que Pudo Ser", "El Desafío Federal", “El Peso de la Verdad", "Pasión por Crear", “Estanflación” and “”Camino a la Estabilidad”.The latest was published by Sudamericana in May 2014.
Domingo Cavallo is married to Sonia Abrazian. They have three children and six grandchildren.