Überlebt die Eurozone die wirtschaftliche Erholung?

CAMBRIDGE – Die wirtschaftliche Erholung, mit der man in der Eurozone im Jahr 2010 rechnet, könnte neue Spannungen mit sich bringen. Im Extremfall könnten manche Länder sogar den Ausstieg aus der Gemeinschaftswährung in Erwägung ziehen.

Obwohl der Euro den Handel vereinfacht, schafft er erhebliche Probleme für die Geldpolitik. Schon vor seiner Geburt fragten manche Ökonomen (einschließlich ich selbst), ob eine Gemeinschaftswährung für eine derart heterogene Gruppe von Ländern überhaupt wünschenswert wäre. Eine einheitliche Währung bedeutet einheitliche Geldpolitik und einen einheitlichen Zinssatz, auch wenn die wirtschaftlichen Bedingungen – vor allem jene zyklischer Natur – in den Mitgliedsländern der Europäischen Wirtschafts- und Währungsunion (WWU) erheblich voneinander abweichen.  

Eine einheitliche Währung bedingt auch einen einheitlichen Wechselkurs gegenüber anderen Währungen. Das nimmt jedem Land der Eurozone die Möglichkeit natürlicher Marktreaktionen auf ein chronisches Handelsbilanzdefizit. Hätte das betreffende Land seine eigene Währung, würde der Wechselkurs nachgeben, wovon Exporte profitieren und Importe erschwert würden. Ohne eigene Währung sind Senkungen der Reallöhne oder relative Produktivitätszuwächse das einzige Mittel gegen ein chronisches Handelsbilanzdefizit.

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