If this scenario plays out – that an economy grows as bank credit stagnates or declines – QE will even officially have zero impact on the real economy since the cheap bank credit it is supposed to make available, when short-term interest rates are already near-zero, won’t be used.
That would remove the fig leaf for QE. And it would bare its raison d’être, namely inflating asset prices to enrich those who hold these assets. But asset prices have been inflated for years, and those few who hold these assets have already been enriched far beyond what they can spend. Whatever little economic impact the illusory “wealth effect” might have had, has already dissipated. Hence, Draghi’s confession to the German lawmakers, even if given under duress: QE won’t be happening anytime soon.