Letter: Monetary policy and an independent central bank

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Sir: The argument presented by Sir Bryan Hopkin (Letters, 7 December) against the notion of an independent central bank makes many valid points. Not least among them is that low inflation in Germany has more to do with an abhorrence of inflation within the general population than the work of the Bundesbank. The same hostility towards even moderate inflation does not exist within the British population. Therefore the proposal to set up an independent central bank here is 'a gimmick and a distraction'.

Given the lamentable record of successive governments in Britain in managing the economy over the past 30 years, Sir Bryan's argument has to be suspect. Of course, at the end of the day, the politicians have to have the final say. But that is true in Germany, as has been shown by the economic assimilation of its eastern provinces.

Surely a similar arrangement here would at least curb the wilder excesses of the dash for growth for short-term political advantage that has bedevilled our economic performance for so long.

Successive British governments have been uniquely poor at managing the economy. Can't we learn anything from elsewhere in this respect?

Yours etc,


Mardy, Gwent

7 December