Final Word from Friday, September 12, 2003

Czechs are getting very mixed signals about what to do with their money. The Czech National Bank is busy warning them against excessive debt and spending sprees. Commercial bankers and retailers, who profit handsomely from the current binge, are encouraging them to continue living the good life. Some commentators, such as Pavel Páral of Euro, are arguing that GDP growth is fragile and that too much of the good life could bring on a 1997-like currency crisis. Bank analysts, strangely enough, announced this week that companies and individuals should sell their excess foreign currency because the crown has hit bottom and will jump sharply if public-finance reform passes. What to do? The rules of sound financial management haven't changed: Make hay while the sun shines, save for a rainy day, and don't put all your eggs in one basket.


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