QE or not to QE

6th March, 2009


Just talking to someone about my earlier posting on Quantitative Easing. Was asked if I had made a mistake and whether I meant Qualitative Easing. I know I am really descending to the depths of economic obscurity in this note.

Qualitative Easing is where there is no change in the overall valuation of the Central Bank balance sheet. This would involve shifting money from one asset to another asset. Quantitative Easing is where the value of the overall balance sheet is increased by the printing of new money.

That is what happened yesterday. New money was created by the pressing of a key board. Wonder what that felt like. Who was the financial god/goddess how created €75 billion by pressing a button. Modern alchemy?