Schreckgespenst Deflation

CAMBRIDGE – Die größten Zentralbanken der Welt sind derzeit von der fixen Idee besessen, ihre jeweiligen Inflationsraten auf das gemeinsame Ziel von etwa 2 Prozent jährlich anzuheben. Das gilt für die Vereinigten Staaten, wo die jährliche Inflationsrate in den letzten 12 Monaten bei  -0,1 Prozent lag, aber auch für Großbritannien, wo die jüngsten Daten ein Preiswachstum von 0,3 Prozent ausweisen, und für die Eurozone, wo die Verbraucherpreise um 0,6 Prozent fielen. Aber ist das wirklich ein Problem?

Der Hauptgrund für den jüngsten Rückgang der Inflationsrate ist der dramatische Verfall der Energiepreise. In den USA betrug die Kerninflationsrate (die schwankende Energie- und Lebensmittelpreise unberücksichtigt lässt) in den letzten 12 Monaten 1,6 Prozent. Außerdem wissen die  US Federal Reserve, die Bank of England und die Europäische Zentralbank, dass selbst im Falle eines ausbleibenden Anstiegs der Energiepreise im kommenden Jahr, auch ein stabiles Preisniveau bei Öl und anderen Energieformen für steigende Inflation sorgen wird.

In den USA wird die Inflation auch durch den im Verhältnis zum Euro und anderen Währungen steigenden Dollarkurs gedämpft, weil dadurch die Importpreise sinken. Dabei handelt es sich ebenfalls um einen „Niveaueffekt“ , der steigende Inflation verheißt, sobald der Dollar nicht mehr aufwertet.

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