Graduation ceremony.

Amerikas Bildungsblase

SAN FRANCISCO – Einer der Grundzwecke des Staates ist die Förderung der Bereitstellung wichtiger öffentlicher Güter. Doch kann die Verfolgung wichtiger gesellschaftlicher Ziele, wenn sie nicht sorgfältig gehandhabt wird, unglückliche wirtschaftliche und finanzielle Konsequenzen haben und manchmal sogar zu systemischen Störungen führen, die mehr als nur diese Ziele selbst untergraben.

So war das zum Beispiel vor einem Jahrzehnt in den USA mit dem Bemühen um Ausweitung des Wohnungseigentums. In jüngerer Zeit passierte es in China im Gefolge einer Initiative zur Ausweitung der Beteiligung am Aktienmarkt. Und es könnte erneut in den USA passieren, diesmal infolge eines Versuchs, die Finanzierung einer höheren Bildung zu erleichtern.

Im erstgenannten Fall unterstützte die US-Regierung bereitwilligst Bemühungen, Hypotheken u. a. durch Schaffung aller möglichen „exotischen“ Kreditmechanismen preiswerter und für breitere Schichten zugänglich zu machen. Dieser Ansatz funktionierte, aber leider etwas zu gut. Der steile Anstieg der kreditgestützten Nachfrage trieb die Immobilienpreise in die Höhe, und die verstärkte Bereitschaft der Banken zur Kreditvergabe führte dazu, dass viele Menschen Häuser erwarben, die sie sich eigentlich nicht leisten konnten. Das Platzen der sich hieraus ergebenden Blase – das erheblich zur globalen Finanzkrise von 2008 beitrug – hätte die Weltwirtschaft beinahe in eine vieljährige Depression gestürzt.

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