Home > Uncategorized > Joerg Asmussen and other people’s money

Joerg Asmussen and other people’s money

The news is already all over the place: total building costs of the new ECB buildings in Frankfurt won’t be about 850 million but about 1,2 billion (or about 700.000,– per employee, according to my data).

1. Oops. That’s about the same amount of money as in the original 2008 budget…
2. But the really interesting thing: Joerg Asmussen is the board member who’s responsible. Yes, the same Joerg Asmussen who, according to the speeches published by the ECB, is the board member most eager to cut other people’s wages, most scornful about over-optimistic government budgets and most enthusiastic about the blessings of austerity. Outside Frankfurt.

But at least the ECB is honest about it.

  1. Stefan L. Eichner
    September 21, 2012 at 11:22 am

    That´s indeed quite interesting. Thank you for that little piece of information.


  2. Alice
    September 21, 2012 at 11:45 am

    Isnt that the case just so often?
    Whats good enough for the goose just isnt good enough for the grander.

  3. Alice
    September 21, 2012 at 11:52 am

    Nice – the ECB preaches the most austere of austerity measures for european nations but houses itself in luxury befitting traditional deficit hawks (who in IMHO should be shot out of the sky as traitors to most nations and most people just now.).
    In thevery same way that neoclassical economists refuse to take repsonsibility for impoverishing nations, these members of the ECB can apparently applaud themselves for creating unnecessarily grandiose accommodation for themselves whilst preaching welfare cuts for the poor.
    Maybe its really time to see who Central banks work for. Private baning institutions, not the people or the economy.
    Central banks are a farce.

  4. ezra abrams
    September 21, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    is 700,000 euros per employee a lot or a little ?
    a la Kahneman, et al, you need the base rate and to avoid framing
    I think the base rate or ref class would be, What is the cost of new office space, per employee, built recently in similar cities ?
    without this info, we have no idea if 1.2 is a lot or a little

    of course, this would require real work, as opposed to dashing off a quick blog post with some links

    Also, for the last 2,000 years or so, gov’t buildings ahve been a symbol of gov’t strength and prosperity, as are Church buildings, that is, gov’t buildings in general cost more

    • merijnknibbe
      September 21, 2012 at 2:35 pm

      P.S. – the 1200 mentioned in my earlier reply is full time units, the calculation in the blog is based upon about 1800 people. And yes, 1,2 billion is a lot. Anyway – “the hubris, the hubris…”.

  5. merijnknibbe
    September 21, 2012 at 2:19 pm

    Dear Ezra, thank you for putting me to work. It turned out that the building is slightly oversized:

    “The new building will also contain space for at least 2,500 employees — nearly double the 1,300 who currently work at the bank (at this moment according to my information— as the ECB anticipates the day when the euro’s reach has expanded to Eastern Europe, all of Scandinavia and perhaps even Britain.”


    At this moment, there seem to be about 1.200 full time staff.


  6. Podargus
    September 21, 2012 at 6:57 pm

    I wonder what will be done with the building when the EMU folds – squatter housing?

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