September 29, 2017

What extraordinary things since the crisis have central banks achieved? Having kicked the can down the road?

Sir, Alan Beattie writes: “By being prepared to embrace the radical in the face of ill-informed criticism… — central banks have achieved extraordinary things since the global financial crisis. It would be most peculiar if now, when the pressure on them has abated, they mistakenly returned to a model of monetary policy rooted in the pre-crisis era.” “Central banks have a duty to come clean about inflation” September 23.

Sir, since the global financial crisis have really central banks achieved extraordinary things for most? I am not so sure. In many ways it seems they have only dangerously kicked the crisis can forward, while leaving in place the regulatory distortions that caused the crisis

But indeed let’s come clean about inflation. What would the inflation be if:

Most stimuli had not gone to increase the value of what is not on the Consumer Price Index

If there had not been so much credit overhang resulting from anticipating demand for such a long time.

If there had not been an ongoing reduction in the costs of retailing much of what is recorded on CPI.

If non-taxed robots and other automations had not put a squeeze on costs

Then the inflation could have been huge… so what are central bankers so fixated on the CPI?

PS. What would the inflation be, if the I-phone was in the CPI? J