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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Quantitative Easing Didn't Work

CNBC on  Andrew Huszar, a former Fed official, who apologizes for quantitative easing:

There's a real question as to whether the massive bond-buying program known as quantitative easing was worth the cost, former Federal Reserve official Andrew Huszar said Tuesday.

... Huszar apologized for his role in QE in a Wall Street Journal op-ed published Monday.

"I can only say: I'm sorry, America," he wrote. "The central bank continues to spin QE as a tool for helping Main Street. But I've come to recognize the program for what it really is: the greatest backdoor Wall Street bailout of all time."

Huszar told "Fast Money" that the bond-buying program, which was supposed to increase credit availability to consumers and businesses, didn't do so.

"There was actually a net decrease in mortgage lending," he said. "In fact, until 2012 mortgage lending was at a 15-year low."

QE's de facto support of the stock market left out a sizable portion of the people it was supposed to help, Huszar added.

"Let's be honest, 50 percent of Americans don't own stock," he said. ...

Huszar also said that QE thwarted the idea of reining in banks "too big to fail."

"By virtue of reflating the markets, we've potentially taken the emphasis out of breaking up what is ultimately a banking cartel in the United States," he said, adding that "0.2 percent of banks control 70 percent of assets in this country."
I never thought that it was intended to help "main street." It's only purpose was to prop up government spending and keep stock prices from falling, essentially helping Wall Street and the banks. Money never eased up for the common person--and still haven't. Bank loan requirements are so strict now that I see many businesses (particularly auto businesses) handling their own financing.

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