Die psychologischen Risiken der Weltwirtschaft

TOKIO – Schwankungen in den Ökonomien dieser Welt sind größtenteils auf Geschichten zurückzuführen, die wir hören und über die wir erzählen. Diese weit verbreiteten und emotional relevanten Narrative inspirieren uns, hinauszugehen und Geld auszugeben, Firmen zu gründen, neue Fabriken und Bürogebäude zu bauen und Mitarbeiter einzustellen. Manchmal allerdings pflanzen diese Geschichten auch Angst in unsere Herzen und bringen uns dazu, abzuwarten, mit unseren Ressourcen sparsam umzugehen, unsere Ausgaben zurückzuschrauben und die Risiken zu senken. Unsere „Animal Spirits” werden dadurch also entweder angeregt oder gedämpft.

Ich befinde mich gerade auf einer Vortragsreise in Japan und bin erstaunt, welch positive Wirkung Geschichten über die Wirtschaft auf das Denken und Verhalten der Menschen haben, aber auch darüber, wie zerbrechlich dieser Wandel ist. Seit Ministerpräsident Shinzo Abe im Dezember 2012 das Amt übernahm  und sein Programm der geld- und haushaltspolitischen Impulse sowie der Strukturreformen in Gang setzte, hatte dies profunde Auswirkungen auf das Selbstvertrauen Japans. Angaben des Internationalen Währungsfonds zufolge verringerte sich die Produktionslücke – also die Differenz zwischen realisiertem und potenziellem BIP -  von -3,6 Prozent im Jahr 2011 auf -0,9 Prozent in 2013.

In den meisten Teilen der restlichen Welt fehlt ein derart umfassendes, leicht verständliches Narrativ für den positiven Wandel, wie es in Japans „Abenomics“ zum Ausdruck kommt. Die vom IWF berechnete Produktionslücke in den wichtigsten Industrieländern der Welt betrug im Jahr 2013 enttäuschende -3,2 Prozent. Damit ist seit dem Jahr 2009,  dem schlimmsten Jahr der weltweiten Finanzkrise, als der Wert der Produktionslücke bei -5,3 Prozent lag, weniger als die Hälfte des Weges in Richtung Normalwert zurückgelegt.

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