Today, on Bloomberg, was yet another article on the importance of preservation of the independence of central banks, which is somewhat of a dangerous notion in my opinion. Before clicking on the headline that read “Fed’s Powell Leads Global Call for Central Bank Independence” to read the story, the cynic in me started running sarcastic notions through my head like, “Sure, do NGDPLT and you can be as independent as you like.”

But I have to say that with this particular article, when I actually read it I was treated to a mildly pleasant surprise. Here’s the information from it about Powell who, contrary to the headline, is not actually quoted saying anything about independence:

With Turkey engulfed by a currency crisis partly driven by political efforts to influence interest rates, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell told a conference in Stockholm that he and counterparts shouldn’t take their independence for granted when trust in public institutions is at “historic lows.”

“This is a challenging moment for central banking,” Powell told the gathering organized by the Riksbank to mark its 350th anniversary. It is “critically important to provide transparency and accountability.”

After reading Powell’s emphasis on transparency AND accountability, the cynic vanished, and I was thinking, “Hey, I just might like this guy.”

Of course, the edge was subsequently taken off the good feelings when I read a statement by Benoit Coeure on the ECB Executive Board that seriously need a correction:

“These arguments can be summed up in just a few words: independence leads to better long-term outcomes for society.”

I think my version below is more accurate:

These arguments can be summed up in just a few words: independence accountability leads to better long-term outcomes for society.

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