There was a time when currency was straightforward and central banks were cryptic. While it is always a challenge to recall stuff that merits no nostalgia, its zenith is hard to forget. A consensus among the bewildered would attribute that high-point to Alan Greenspan, who took over as chief of the US Federal Reserve from inflation-slayer Paul Volcker in 1987, held investors and politicians alike in awe for almost two decades at the helm, and shall stay embedded in memory for what he once told a gathering of business-folk: “If I’ve made myself too clear, you must have misunderstood me.” Jaws duly dropped. If few doubted the authenticity of Greenspan’s words, it was not because social media hadn’t yet arrived as much as how distinctly they rang true. As Fed chief, not only was he given to policy utterances that left wide scope for alternate interpretations, an ability to decode them was prized by market players. was seen as an integral part of a central banker’s job back then. Indeed, in a world of trade-offs with no space for ‘one-handed’ economists, it was taken as a good thing.