Mario Draghi’s sunset retirement festivities weren’t supposed to have gone off this way. Celebrated for his July 2012 “promise” to save the euro, he instead spent the entirety of his eight years as President of the ECB chasing inflation and recovery, the very things meant to accomplish the euro’s saving, without success. By the end, his final act in September 2019 was to restart QE all over again, putting him like Europe right back at the start.
It’s why, when it comes to “stimulus” like QE, the goalposts must always be moved. Such “massive” monetary “accommodation” in theory produced so little in economic reality it’s judged mostly by the jobs the program allegedly “saves.” This is true everywhereit’s ever been tried, which is pretty much the entire planet. In other words, Economists think it worked, but because it didn’t, they suspiciously carve out a slice just underneath and claim that surely without QE or its ilk, as bad as things are, they would’ve been even worse.
So when the ECB went back to QE in September last year with the whole global economy facing another “unexpected” downturn, it was a ridiculous proposition. Europe as a whole had been shuffled in the recessionary direction the entire time QE had been in place during 2018. What real difference would restarting it make? Read more…..
Chart of the Day
Gas prices have been relatively low compared with the airy peaks they had seen roughly a decade ago; Americans are paying more for premium gasoline than standard gasoline than they have in the past. According to AAA, Americans collectively waste $2 billion a year buying premium gasoline. The critical difference between premium gas from regular is its octane rating—understanding that octane rating and what cars need what gasoline is key to knowing whether it is worth paying for premium.