Sunday, October 10, 2010

Appetizer for my second GES Session blogging: Interview with Jurgen Stark

I will be posting soon on the second GES session I attended: Reassessing Central Banking. In the meantime, I am providing the following interview I did with Jurgen Stark, Member of the Executive Board of the European Central Bank and one of participants of that session.
You have to excuse my inexperience with interviewing, as this was my first interview ever. Although I am often confused for a journalist, I am just your friendly neighborhood economist. But despite my clumsiness, a couple of vital points emerged:

First, Mr. Stark firmly states that it is not the job of the ECB to save individual countries, ECB's monetary policy is for the Euro Area as a whole. So, he probably does not accept that Greece was bailed out by the ECB, but as you'll see Prof. Uwe Wagschal, my second interviewee, disagrees. But Mr. Stark does see Euro Area policy accommodative...

Second, Mr. Stark is critical of inflation targeting. It is noteworthy that he sees one of the lessons of the crisis as proof it does not work. He is a strong proponent of the ECB's two-pillar strategy of money and inflation.

When you listen to the interview, please bear in mind that I will not be able to divulge any names when I write about the session Mr. Stark was in. Nevertheless, knowing his angle would help you understand who is saying what...

Finally, I am sorry if you live in Turkey, home of the GES, as you'll have to live with my notes only. As you might (or might not) know, youtube has been banned in Turkey for a while. Simple tricks like proxy servers and changing your DNS used to work, but it seems the regulators have grown some brain cells. Those tricks have not been working of late.

Having said that, a very important footnote about Turkey is in order. This youtube incidence is just another example of the dichotomy of the Turkish economy and society. On one hand, you have a vibrant middle class, an entrepreneurial society and the fastest-growing economy in Europe. But on the other hand, you see outdated institutions, laws & regulations and even mindsets holding this dynamism back. That's why many economists, like your friendly neighborhood economist, argue for structural reforms.

Anyway, coming back to the link, while I am embedding it, I cannot watch it myself. But maybe God has intervened: Now that I check, youtube is working now! Has the ban been lifted or have the censorers messed something up? I suspect it is the latter, in which case we should see the familiar ban page return soon:(...

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