WSJ interview with Patrick Honohan

Interview is here.

15 replies on “WSJ interview with Patrick Honohan”

In general it seems not to contain much new. There’s one section I don’t understand, which is this.

“Improving the financial position of the banks has the potential to have a much bigger favorable effect on interest rates [than] the negative for the economy as a whole from an increase in the policy rate,” he said

Does he mean that the soon-to-be recapitalised banks will be able to lend at lower rates than today even if the ECB rate goes up?

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The article is behind some kind of subscriber paywall. Which raises the question: As a public offical, should an ECB Governor be giving interviews to private publishers in this way? Shouldn’t his every uttered word as Governor be accessible to the public?

Also, does he get paid for this?

OMF: you have to pay to buy a newspaper and in many cases you have to pay for online access as well. Does that mean that no public official should ever give an interview, other than to publications which are free on the Web?

As for your question on payment, either a very lame attempt at humour or total naievety.

Headline in the Irish Times:

> Honohan “suicide” comments welcomed <

Has the Governor finally admitted where we are heading?

What is needed is a procedure for the Dail to summon any public official to a ‘meeting’ – in the Dail Chamber (not some farty committee – unless these latter are to be re-constituted) where they answer any and all questions of relevant and significant public interest put to them by the backbenchers. The Gov ministers are kept out of the session. If the person refuses to attend, then they are ‘detained’ and chauffered in. Inside that chamber its absolute privilege and the gloves are off. Its past time that the citizens of this state have to rely on third-party sources, spin and unfortunately – outright deceptions.

Brian Snr


Thanks. The accompanying link to Prof. Krugman is also relevant. Excessive executive dominance, capture by vested interests, group-think by elites, etc. It’s what created the mess globally and we’re still mired.

OMF: you have to pay to buy a newspaper and in many cases you have to pay for online access as well. Does that mean that no public official should ever give an interview, other than to publications which are free on the Web?

Sure why not. They work for the public, so there should be public access to there statements. Why would this be controversial?

We’ve got a state broadcaster.

… at the local level, the comments from the Master of the High Court were more psychologically relevant, and perhaps providing some respite for more than a few ….

On WSJ, well yes …. patience must have its local limits if waiting for imagination from the ECB. Wouldn’t do the wobbly yet – I’d keep it in reserve for the precise moment of action.

Today’s FT suggests that Mario Draghi is almost certain to be appointed to replace J-C Trichet as ECB president – which would imply two Italians on the executive board – unless Ireland’s friend Bini Smaghi could be bought out by moving him to Rome as the governor of Banca d’Italia – which I believe is the best paid central banking post in Europe.
By the way, Bini Smaghi is described as having the ‘reputation as one of the ECB’s best economic minds’. Now you know.

@ Peter

he also worked for Goldman’s back in the day. This excites some people in a negative way. Expect this trend to be even more acute after the upcoming Rolling Stone article on Goldies…

@Bond Eoin Bond

Ta for the tip on upcoming Rolling Stone … will add to my 1929 collection:

Dr Merkel has given Mario her imprimatur; looks like P45 for Lorenzo (had an antepost with


Thanks for the link.

‘Mr. Honohan declined more than one invitation to express his personal confidence that the timetable can be met, saying only that the bailout deal had bought time for the government to “show its determination to adjust the fiscal position.”

“At the end of that period, we are assured by the IMF and the EU that the program will have brought the debt position down to a sustainable level,” Mr. Honohan said. ‘

Now, with the greatest respect and I mean that – to himself and the profession take the following;

If I beat my head off a wall to ‘show my determination’ and a plasterer and a bricklayer tell me that I will bring the wall down ‘all you have to do is keep going’.

Cui Bono?

The Government wants to show it’s determination and the EU,IMF say it will be alright – I’m just sitting here doing my thing.

C***** on the Cross.


Thank god for HTML-fragment links. I could never get anyone to pay attention to Article 123 as long as I was linking to the PDF of the full TFEU. Oddly enough, blockquoting it never seemed to work either.

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