Ist die Unabhängigkeit der Zentralbank wirklich das Gelbe vom Ei?

Als Vorsitzender des Federal Reserve Board erreichte Alan Greenspan einen nahezu ikonischen Status. Nun, da seine Amtszeit ihrem Ende naht und sein Mantel der Unfehlbarkeit an seinen Nachfolger übergeht, lohnt es sich daher, zu prüfen, ob sein Vermächtnis diesem Anspruch gerecht wird und was wir vom neuen Chef der Fed, Ben Bernanke, erwarten können.

Nur wenige Zentralbankchefs haben – insbesondere zu Lebzeiten – jene Art von Heiligsprechung erfahren, die Greenspan zuteil wurde. Aber was macht in unserer modernen Gesellschaft einen großen Zentralbankvorsitzenden aus – große Institutionen oder eine große Persönlichkeit?

In der Ökonomie können wir uns selten an einer klar definierten Gegenwirklichkeit orientieren: Wäre die Konjunkturentwicklung noch besser oder kaum anders verlaufen, wenn jemand anders am Ruder gestanden hätte? Wir können es nicht wissen, aber es kann kaum ein Zweifel daran bestehen, dass denjenigen, die unsere Wirtschaft „managen“, mehr Anerkennung als verdient, manchmal jedoch ein zu geringes Maß an Schuld dafür zugewiesen wird.

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