“Stupid German Money”

Golden Calf Worship

Dummes Deutsches Geld

As wkipedia tells us “Stupid German Money … ist ein ursprünglich von der US-amerikanischen Filmwirtschaft geprägter Begriff für Gelder aus geschlossenen Medienfonds des deutschlandspezifischen grauen Kapitalmarkts. Diese Fonds wurden wegen hoher Abschreibungsmöglichkeiten als Steuersparmodell genutzt. Die Gelder flossen größtenteils in amerikanische Filmproduktionen.”

Since then it’s been used derogatively and polemically to refer to any poor investments especially of the “greater fool” variety where you end up finding yourself buying into whatever just before it crashes.

As to that particular stupidity of bad timing correlating with a more general stupidity one should ponder the case of Isaac Newton who famously ruined himself buying back into the South Sea Bubble.

As to whether or not Germans are relatively good or bad investors you can take your pick, largely depending on what exactly you are counting – see below (1)

Schwarze Null Anbeter

I also use “Stupid German Money” polemically but mainly to refer to the (obviously not just) German idea of what money is, ie basically a store of value like gold. This subconscious metallism finds expression in the “black zero hawks” worship of commodity money, arguably helping to induce a kind of catatonic coma: The Germans “… are doubling down on ideological certainties, a 20th Century pre-digital model, and the status quo. There is a whiff of the Brezhnev era about the long cautious reign of Angela Merkel …” writes the Tory Telegraph’s Ambrose Evans-Pritchard and seems to be making points similar to those made previously by  Max Planck’s Marxist Wolfgang Streeck ?

Other arguably uniquely German examples of money stupidity can be found in Geoffrey Ingham’s masterpiece, “The Nature of Money”. Like the Reichsbankboss who apologized for not being able to print money fast enough to keep up with demand. So there maybe an argument that historically Germans have moved from one extreme to the other on the inflation spectrum, like from the post WW1 Zimbabwean hyper stupidity to todays’ Metallist fetish stupidity.

(1) Stupid German Money – a perfidious fairy tale?

According to the tellerreport Germans spent nearly ten trillion euros abroad – with miserable returns, as the teller report shows

Wie deutsche Sparer ihr Geld verschwenden : Die Deutschen setzen aufs Sparbuch und scheuen die Börse – obwohl es seit Jahren fast keine Zinsen gibt und Aktien boomten. Die sieben größten Anlagefehler.

„Stupid German Money“ ist ein Märchen

Die Rendite der Auslandsanlagen war dabei „keineswegs schlechter“ als die vergleichbarer Anlagen im Inland, stellen die Bundesbank-Ökonomen in ihrem am Montag veröffentlichten Monatsbericht fest. Dies steht entgegen der Behauptung von „Stupid German Money“ – die Deutschen seien international besonders dumme Geldanleger, heißt es zuweilen polemisch in Finanzkreisen.