Richard Koo popped by our office a few weeks ago to discuss his most recent book The Escape from Balance Sheet recession and the QE Trap. You can see the interview here. We asked who was the Japanese prime minister in 1997 who oversaw arguably Japan’s biggest policy error post the collapse of Japan’s debt fuelled bubble, and the answer was Ryutaro Hashimoto.
It is perhaps a little harsh to imply that Mr Hashimoto was primarily to blame for Japan’s errors, given that Japan was only implementing policies in accordance with the so-called ‘Washington consensus’ prevalent at the time. It took the subsequent Asian and Russian crises for this market-based neoliberalist approach to be seriously questioned, and then questioned further still post 2008. But as described in the Economist’s typically excellent obituary in 2006, whatever Mr Hashimoto’s shortcomings, he was not someone to be messed with.
We had over 60 correct answers, the books are in the post, and the ten people drawn at random are below. I hope you enjoy it.
- Pau Morilla-Giner — London & Capital
- Jan Leroy — Buysse & Partners Asset Management
- Eoghan Sheehan — Bank of Ireland Global Markets
- Pedro Alves
- Peter Biggin — Merlin Financial Consultants
- David Le Cornu — Brooks Macdonald International, Jersey
- Ben Conway — Hawksmoor Investment Management
- Eric Li
- Frank Markey — Wells Fargo
- George Chung