Economics Is Easy When You Don’t Have To Try

The real question is why no one says anything. They can continue to make these grossly untrue, often contradictory statements without fear of having to explain themselves. Don’t even think about repercussions. Even in front of politicians ostensibly being there on behalf of the public, pedigree still matters more than results.

It’s actually worse than that since all that I’m talking about means it is these guys who tell the politicians how things are going in the first place. If you are the only person responsible for assessing the situation, there is no need for accountability because everything will always be either awesome or just about to be so. Who wouldn’t want to be handed the power to exclusively judge their own performance?

Haruhiko Kuroda takes all this to a next level, though. The Japanese have for a quarter-century pioneered the art of accomplishing nothing. It is of this track record that central bankers everywhere else have become envious.

Just as Jay Powell and Federal Reserve Chairman have to trek in front of Congress Kuroda has to appear before the Japanese parliament, both houses, as well. He did so yesterday at Japan’s House of Councillors and today at the House of Representatives. The Governor of the Bank of Japan lamented:

On the price front, the year-on-year rate of change in the consumer price index (CPI) has been positive but has continued to show relatively weak developments compared to the economic expansion and the labor market tightening. This is largely attributable to the fact that firms’ cautious wage- and price-setting stance as well as households’ cautiousness toward price rises have been deeply entrenched, due mainly to the experience of prolonged low growth and deflation. [emphasis added]

But then he claimed:

The Bank has been conducting powerful monetary easing under the framework of “Quantitative and Qualitative Monetary Easing (QQE) with Yield Curve Control” introduced in September 2016. [emphasis added]

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Gary Anderson 4 months ago Contributor's comment

Kuroda got inflation up to 1 percent one time. For the Japanese that is worthy of the nickname, Abenomics!