Verfrühte Tugend

NEW YORK: Das Beharren der Regierung Obama auf Finanzdisziplin ist nicht durch finanzielle Notwendigkeiten, sondern durch politische Überlegungen bestimmt. Die USA sind kein hochverschuldetes europäisches Land, das hohe Aufschläge auf den Preis zahlen muss, zu dem Deutschland Kredite aufnehmen kann. Die Zinsen für US-Schatzanleihen fallen und nähern sich ihren historischen Tiefstständen, was bedeutet, dass die Finanzmärkte eine Deflation und keine Inflation erwarten.

Trotzdem steht Obama politisch unter Druck. Die amerikanische Öffentlichkeit ist über die Anhäufung öffentlicher Schulden zutiefst verstört, und die republikanische Opposition war äußerst erfolgreich dabei, den Crash von 2008 – und die daran anschließende Rezession und hohe Arbeitslosigkeit – auf die Unfähigkeit der Regierung zu schieben und zu behaupten, das Konjunkturpaket sei großenteils Verschwendung gewesen.

Darin steckt ein Quäntchen Wahrheit, doch ist diese Darstellung einseitig. Der Crash von 2008 war primär ein Marktversagen, wobei man den US-Aufsichtsbehörden (und denen anderer Länder) vorwerfen kann, dass sie ihrer Aufsichtsfunktion nicht gerecht geworden sind. Doch ohne eine Rettungsaktion wäre das Finanzsystem weiter paralysiert geblieben, was die anschließende Rezession vertieft und verlängert hätte. Es stimmt schon, das US-Konjunkturpaket war in großen Teilen Verschwendung, aber das liegt daran, dass das Meiste davon zur Stützung des Konsums eingesetzt wurde statt zur Behebung der zugrundeliegenden Ungleichgewichte.

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