American flag after storm Tom Gill/Flickr

Amerikas riskante Erholung

CAMBRIDGE – Die US-Volkswirtschaft nähert sich der Vollbeschäftigung oder hat sie vielleicht schon erreicht. Doch Amerikas günstiger Beschäftigungstrend geht einher mit einer deutlichen Zunahme der Risiken im Finanzsektor, bedingt durch die übermäßig lockere Geldpolitik, die Verwendung fand, um den aktuellen Wirtschaftsaufschwung herbeizuführen.

Die Gesamt-Arbeitslosenquote ist auf bloße 5,5% gefallen, und die Arbeitslosenquote unter Akademikern beträgt gerade mal 2,5%. Der Anstieg der Inflation, der normalerweise eintritt, wenn die Wirtschaft ein derartiges Beschäftigungsniveau erreicht, wurde durch den Rückgang der Ölpreise und die 20%ige Aufwertung des Dollars vorübergehend verzögert. Der stärkere Dollar senkt nicht nur die Kosten für die Importe, sondern drückt zugleich auf die Preise einheimischer Produkte, die mit diesen Importen konkurrieren. Ein Anstieg der Inflation ist für das kommende Jahr zu erwarten.

Die Rückkehr zur Vollbeschäftigung spiegelt die Strategie der US-Notenbank wider, eine „unkonventionelle Geldpolitik“ zu verfolgen – eine Kombination aus dem massiven Ankauf von langfristigen Vermögenswerten, der als quantitative Lockerung bezeichnet wird, und dem Versprechen, die kurzfristigen Zinsen in Nullnähe zu halten. Das insgesamt niedrige Zinsniveau, das aus dieser aus dieser Politik resultierte, trieb die Anleger zum Kauf von Aktien und führte zu Preisanstiegen auf dem Eigenheimmarkt. Infolgedessen stieg das Nettovermögen der amerikanischen Haushalte 2013 um zehn Milliarden Dollar, was zu höheren Ausgaben vonseiten der Verbraucher und einem Anstieg der Unternehmensinvestitionen führte.

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