Die Gefahren von Prophezeiungen

BERKELEY: Diejenigen unter uns Ökonomen, die wir tief in die Wirtschafts- und Finanzgeschichte eingetaucht sind – und die wir uns der Geschichte des ökonomischen Denkens in Bezug auf Finanzkrisen und ihre Auswirkungen bewusst sind –, haben Grund, auf unsere Analysen während der vergangenen fünf Jahre stolz zu sein. Uns war bewusst, in welche Richtung wir unterwegs waren, weil wir wussten, wo wir herkamen.

Insbesondere war uns klar, dass der rasche Anstieg der Häuserpreise, im Verbund mit der zunehmenden Fremdkapitalisierung, gesamtwirtschaftlich gefährlich war. Wir erkannten, dass hohe, durch Blasen bedingte Verluste bei von fremdkapitalisierten Finanzinstituten gehaltenen Vermögenswerten eine panikartige Flucht in sichere Anlagen herbeiführen würde, und dass zur Verhinderung einer tiefen Depression von offizieller Seite eine aktive Intervention als Kreditgeber letzter Instanz erforderlich sein würde.

Tatsächlich war uns klar, dass monetaristische Heilmittel sich aller Wahrscheinlichkeit nach als unzureichend erweisen würden, souveräne Staaten gegenseitig ihre Solvenz würden garantieren müssen und ein vorschneller Entzug der Unterstützung enorme Gefahren bergen würde. Wir wussten, dass verfrühte Versuche, ein langfristiges Haushaltsgleichgewicht herbeizuführen, die kurzfristige Krise verschlimmern und daher langfristig kontraproduktiv sein würden. Und uns war klar, dass ein beschäftigungsloser Aufschwung drohte – und zwar aufgrund zyklischer Faktoren, nicht aufgrund struktureller Veränderungen.

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