The war on cash that is currently being waged in India and other developing countries is the culmination of a "financial inclusion”-campaign originating in the US in the 1990s. The purported goal and the US institutions pushing the agenda are the same as in two earlier financial-inclusion-drives, which have been thoroughly discredited: the subprime mortgage banking frenzy in the US and the microcredit-hype around Muhammad Yunus and his Grameen Bank.
The ECB Shadow Council was founded in 2002 upon an initiative of Handelsblatt, the German business and financial daily. It is an unofficial panel, independent of the ECB/Eurosystem, and comprising fifteen prominent European economists drawn from academia, financial institutions, consultancies, companies and research institutes. The main purpose is to provide the public with a fuller account of the pros and cons of different policy alternatives than the ECB itself is giving, as the ECB
tends to focus solely on the arguments in favor of the alternatives it has chosen.
The Shadow Council usually convenes by telephone conference on a quarterly basis. Its discussions are intended to formulate an opinion as to what monetary policy decision its members believe that the ECB's Governing Council ought to undertake, both at its forthcoming meeting and also on a three month horizon. Shadow Council members are encouraged to submit their own economic projections for euro area activity and inflation on a monthly basis, which constitutes the panel's forecast consensus as published each month.
The discussions and recommendations of the Shadow Council differ from surveys of economists concerning the outlook for ECB interest rates because the Shadow Council recommendation expresses the majority view of its' members opinion about what the ECB should do, rather than what they forecast it to do (and hence the "normative" views as expressed by Shadow Council members on what they consider the ECB ought to do can and often do differ from what they might say they expect the ECB to do). This "normative perspective can, however, give an early indication of shifts in the balance of opinion in the expert community.
With a short interruption, Norbert Haering was non-voting chairman of the Shadow ECB council since its inauguration in 2002.
José Alzola (the Observatory Group), Marco Annunziata (General Electric), Manuel Balmaseda (Cemex), Elga Bartsch (Morgan Stanley), Andrew Bosomworth (Pimco), Sylvain Broyer (Natixis), Julian Callow (Barclays Capital), Jacques Cailloux (Nomura), Eric Chaney (Axa), Janet Henry (HSBC), Merijn Knibbe (Wageningen Universität), Jörg Krämer (Commerzbank), Erik Nielsen (Unicredit), Jean-Michel Six (Standard & Poor’s), Richard Werner (Southampton Universität)
Past members (selection)
Sushil Wadhwani (vormals Bank von England, Wadhwani Asset Management), Jürgen von Hagen (Universität Bonn), Marko Skreb (ehem. Gouverneur der kroatischen Zentralbank), Paul De Grauwe (Universität Leuven), Francesco Giavazzi (Bocconi Universität), Michael Heise (Allianz), Willem Buiter (vormals Bank von England, Citigroup), Daniel Gros (CEPS), Thomas Mayer (Deutsche Bank), Giancarlo Corsetti (European University Institute), Stephen King (HSBC), Charles Wyplosz (Genfer Hochschulinstitut), Gustav Horn (IMK)