Economics, Monetary Policy, Pethokoukis

Japan picks dove Kuroda for new central bank boss. Time for the Fed to escalate

Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Haruhiko Kuroda speaks during a news conference on the first day of the ADB's 45th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors in Manila May 2, 2012. REUTERS/Erik De Castro

Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Haruhiko Kuroda speaks during a news conference on the first day of the ADB's 45th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors in Manila May 2, 2012. REUTERS/Erik De Castro

It looks like Tokyo will be getting its own Ben Bernanke to run Japan’s central bank. Asian Development Bank President Haruhiko Kuroda, likely to be nominated for the post by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, is described by the WSJ as an “open critic of the Bank of Japan” who has made clear that as BOJ boss he would “ramp up and diversify the BOJ’s program of buying assets like government bonds from private banks.” What’s more, the even-more-dovish Kikuo Iwata is skedded to be one of Kuroda’s two new deputies.

With a new, easy-money leadership team in place, it seems a good bet the BOJ will a) begin open-ended bond buying sooner than planned and b) increase the amounts of monthly asset purchases. Which is just the kind of medicine — though not the only medicine — the Japanese economy needs after suffering years of slow growth and deflation. The picks are certain to raise concerns about a global currency war. But this view seems more on point (again via the WSJ): “This is not a currency war—it’s a growth war,” David Zervos, a fixed-income strategist at Jefferies & Co., said in a recent note.

If there is to be a global growth war, let the Fed escalate. Let it take the next step in its new approach to monetary policy by targeting the level of nominal GDP and not just inflation and unemployment targets. Again, my anti-stagnation formula: easy money + spending austerity + pro-growth tax and regulatory reform.

3 thoughts on “Japan picks dove Kuroda for new central bank boss. Time for the Fed to escalate

  1. If there is to be a global growth war, let the Fed escalate. Let it take the next step in its new approach to monetary policy by targeting the level of nominal GDP and not just inflation and unemployment targets. Again, my anti-stagnation formula: easy money + spending austerity + pro-growth tax and regulatory reform.

    The Fed has been doing everything wrong and you want them to go even faster? Don’t you understand that the Fed has moved the average maturity of its bond holdings to more than ten years? I am sure that you understand that when yields begin to rise the Fed is looking at an all out rout that will destroy its $3 trillion portfolio. And you want it to bring on that rout even faster?

    How the hell is this supposed to be a responsible position by a fiscal conservative? Weren’t conservatives supposed to argue for a sound currency that regulated investor sentiment through free market prices? The fact that the so-called conservatives are now calling for top down planning shows how far the movement has degenerated from the relatively sound positions of the Old Right and moved towards National Socialism. Ironically, that is the position that conservatives argued Obama was supporting; a system of production where private owners worked hand in hand with the government to attain political goals.

    It is time for liberty Jimmy. Central planning does not work very well. Even the left knows that.

  2. Japan’s policy is money printing to prop up a government which is so big it has suppressed and displaced economic growth. Government in Japan, spending and regulation cost, is more than half of GDP (also in the US). You can perform all the monetary tricks you like, but that does not solve the problem (slow growth and the danger of economic collapse) caused by morbidly obese government.

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