Japan Joins the 'QE' Bandwagon—But Will it Work?

Japan, the U.K., the U.S., and the European Union all have problematic quantitative easing schemes.

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Japan's central bank is focusing on short-term assets that will mature quickly.

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But then, this latest twist on monetary policy is by its nature a blunt-edged tool—it's unconventional and still relatively new. Perfecting the art of injecting large amounts of liquidity into an economy is going to be hard for any country, not to mention understanding exactly how well that easing worked.

"Whether it's the Bank of Japan, the Fed, the ECB, or the Bank of England, the question is, would things have been worse if they hadn't tried it?," says Brian Jacobsen, chief portfolio strategist at Wells Fargo Advantage Funds. "We know what did happen, but what we don't know is what would have happened had they not done this."

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