Friday, November 28, 2014
20

全球完美风暴

纽约—不管往哪个方向看,金融和经济都是阴云密布:欧元区、美国、中国概莫能外。事实上,到2013年,全球经济可能出现极其困难的情况,没人能独善其身。

首先,欧元区危机正在恶化,由于欧元维持强势,前瞻性财政紧缩将会深化多个成员国的衰退,而外围国信贷动荡和高油价又阻挠了复苏前景。随着跨国及银行间信用的收缩以及希腊可能在未来几个月无序退出欧元区将导致资本外逃演变为外围国银行的完全挤兑,欧元区银行系统正在分崩离析。

此外,随着西班牙和意大利利差回到再次达到不可持续的峰值水平,财政和主权债务紧张正在恶化。事实上,欧元区所需要的可能不仅仅是针对银行(目前是西班牙银行)的国际援助,而是在欧元区和国际防火墙不足以抵御西班牙和意大利事件的情况下进行完全的主权援助。

在更远的西方,美国经济表现也在萎靡,一季度增长率只有区区1.9%,远低于潜在增长率。此外,4月和5月就业增长不振,因此美国可能会在年底陷入停滞。更糟糕的是,明年发生二次探底的风险正在增加:即使看起来令人悚然的美国财政悬崖最终只是次要的拖累因素,税收的增加和转移支付的减少也将削弱可支配收入和消费的增长。

此外,不管是奥巴马还是罗姆尼赢得11月总统大选,关于财政调整的政治僵局都可能会持续下去。因此,关于债务上限的新斗争、政府破产的风险以及信用评级降级将可能进一步抑制消费和商业信心,拖累开支并加快资金涌向安全资产(从而加速股市下跌)。

在东方,中国的增长模式是不可持续的,如果投资不振情况期许而提振消费的改革来的太晚、力度太轻,则可能将于2013年陷入衰退。中国新一届领导人必须加快结构性改革,降低国民储蓄,增加消费占GDP的比重;但领导人之间对改革节奏存在分歧,且政治权力的过渡可能并不平缓,这表明改革步伐可能跟不上需要。

美国、欧元区和中国的经济减速已经对其他新兴市场造成了重大影响,这是由它们与美国和欧盟的贸易和金融联系决定的(也就是说,“脱钩”并没有发生)。与此同时,新兴市场结构性改革的缺位以及向国家资本主义的演进正在妨碍它们的增长、削弱它们的韧性。

最后,在中东,以色列和美国与伊朗关于核浓缩问题的紧张对峙可能在2013年爆发。当前的谈判可能会失败,即使收紧制裁可能也阻止不了伊朗制造核武器。由于美国和以色列不愿意用威慑的方式牵制有核的伊朗,因此2013年可能爆发军事冲突,这将导致油价的暴涨和全球衰退。

这些风险已然对经济减速起到了推波助澜的作用:各国股市都在下跌,导致了消费和资本支出的负财富效应。重债国的借贷成本在声声,信贷配额正在挤压中小企业,而商品价格的下跌正在拖累出口国的收入。风险厌恶度的上升正在导致经济行为人采取静观其变的立场,而这给经济减速带来了某些自我实现的效果。

与2008—2009年相比——当时决策者拥有充足的行动空间——货币和财政当局的手段快要用尽了(或者,更讽刺地说,快要黔驴技穷了)。货币政策已经撞上了零利率和一轮又一轮量化宽松的南墙。事实上,经济和市场所面临的问题早已不再是流动性,而是信用和偿债能力危机。与此同时,大部分发达国家的不可持续的预算赤字和公共债务水平严重掣肘了进一步财政刺激的空间。

在私人和公共去杠杆化侵蚀着经常项目赤字国内需而结构性问题给盈余国带来相同影响的当口,用汇率来提振净出口是一个零和博弈。毕竟,一国货币贬值和贸易平衡的改善必然意味着其他国家货币升值和贸易平衡的恶化。

与此同时,阻挡、隔离和原著银行及其他金融机构的能力也因政治和濒于破产国无力吸收银行系统更多的债务而被束缚住了。结果,主权风险正在演变为银行风险。事实上,不少国家(特别是欧元区)正在把越来越多的公共债务转移到银行的资产负债表上。

为避免欧元区出现无序结果,当下的财政紧缩应该大大放缓,新的欧盟财政契约应该辅之以增长契约,财政联盟应该辅之以债务共同化(欧元债券)。此外,即使希腊脱离欧元区,也应该成立完整的银行联盟(以泛欧元区存款保险为第一步),并考虑进一步的政治一体化。

不幸的是,德国阻挠着所有这些关键性政策措施,因为进一步的经济、财政和银行一体化会让其纳税人暴露于信用风险中。结果,欧元区灾难的发生可能性变大了。

尽管欧元区顶上的阴云最为可怖,但这并不是唯一威胁全球经济的因素。我们还是未雨绸缪为妙。

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    1. CommentedLuke Ho-Hyung Lee

      It’s the job-killing machines in the market. Without first replacing these job-killing machines, no matter how powerful and aggressive economic policies or stimulus plans are adopted, they will not be effective. Rather, they bring the likelihood of causing greater ill effects. Please see: “Job-Killing Machines in the Modern Information Age...” http://savingtheworldeconomy.blogspot.com/2012/07/job-killing-machines-in-modern.html?spref=tw

    2. Commenteddonna jorgo

      hello PROF
      i have much intristing about your analysis in global crisis eco-polit
      i read and my mind go to EUZ more specifice to Merkel she have one long objective to make federal europ ...my question is after communist system go down many country USSR ..REP.FEDER YUGOSLLAVE.CHECOSLAVACIA ALL THIS ARE SAPERATE...SO WHY? (i know ) ..
      to have federalisme in EUROPe for the time we are is unaccepteble ..GER have to do one thing CHANGE the politice ..if not will be first go out because she can not (kalipty)all the moneytary problem for EUZ ..and with printe .... without investiment she will go so deep in inflation .. .and will need other way ..after to fix this problem 1929...
      thank you

    3. CommentedRoman Bleifer

      It's too late to talk about the threat of a new wave of crisis in the future date. It has already started, but did not have time to gain traction. But probably in the fall to pick up this power. This scenario was very predictable and was predicted as the most likely in the last year.( http://crisismir.com/analiticheskie-materialy/ekonomika/54-chto-god-gryadushhij-nam-gotovit-prognoz-na-2012-god-i-ne-tolko.html )
      The author listed the problems of the world economy. And though this list is long known to all, even though it can still add, it is enough for that to make conclusions from it. The crisis is not only a global (which is quite natural in the context of globalization), but it also has a systemic nature. It covers all areas of the world economy. Determination of the global financial crisis as a crisis, it is deeply misleading. To deal with the crisis have been used all the known methods of financing. This gave only a reprieve, but did not solve the problems facing the economy. The problems only worsened the crisis spreading to new areas and new economy.
      It makes no sense to encourage emerging economies to structural reforms, while structural reforms will not happen in the world's leading economies. And without major structural reforms, they will cease to be leading.

    4. Commentedavraam dectis

      .

      The euro zone crisis could be over next week to the complete satisfaction of all parties involved. Nobody needs to cede soverignty or implement any fiscal unions.

      All that is needed is a new mechanism that would have the same effect as interstate aid has in the USA.

      So the question is what mechanism would provide the same effect as a bailout yet work within the eurozone constraints.

      Since these are different countries, this mechanism would have to treat all citizens equally. The only mechanism that meets that constraint is Central Bank Dividends.

      A Central Bank Dividend is a stimulus mechanism that compensates the owner of an asset, which in this case, is citizenship.

      If a 20,000 euro dividend were assigned to each euro area citizen, the bailout would be instantaneous and noninflationary.

      Citizens of countries in financial distress would not receive the money. It would be set aside to pay off bonds as they came due. This would instantaneously take the pressure off those countries, since their borrowing costs would drop and their debt service would temporarily approach zero. It would not be inflationary since the money would slowly enter the economies of depressed countries.

      Countries not in debt could give the money to their citizens if they so chose, possible over a period of time to deal with inflation concerns.

      Some will call this monetizing, and it is. But it gets the job done and is noninflationary. It will be a one time event to give the euro area time to restructure.

      Central Bank Dividends are also a much more fair method of stimulus than tax cuts. Tax cuts mostly put money into the hands of the wealthy while CBD treats all citizens on an equal basis.

      If there is a eurozone smashup, the only reason will be a lack of originality amongst the decision makers.

      .

    5. CommentedMark Pitts

      You can't have monetary union without fiscal union, and as Mr. Booth notes, you can't have fiscal union without political union. Germany recognizes this reality. The Latin countries do not.

        CommentedAndrew Purdy

        Germany should exit the EuroZone and allow the Euro to devalue and become a Drachma. To be sure, the Germans will have to bear some costs of exit, but on the benefit side, Germany's external debt would still be denominated in Euros and would be inflated away.

    6. CommentedBrenda Jones

      It would seem that we are headed for that global perfect storm, but if it can't be averted, then what next? It should be obvious to everyone that the world we live in today is interconnected and interdependent, which means that as much as we might not like it, we somehow have to get along. It's either that or a third World War, which could be an outcome of that perfect storm. Unless, we learn to get along. (So our relationships go, so the economies go.)

      Here's the catch, though: Getting along means that what is good for you is good for me, and what is bad for you is bad for me—on a global scale. This is ultimate integration, as in one big global family that cares for each other.

      Our salvation lies in harmony with the law of nature, the law of homeostasis or interconnection of all parts to serve the greater whole, as cells in a body serve to benefit the whole body. Though such good relations on all levels of society, we can build a new model of connection that brings balance, peace, and prosperity to all.


    7. CommentedAndrew Purdy

      I expect Germany to be the first to exit the Eurozone. That will free the remaining members to print Euros to infinity and beyond. The Euro will be devalued by at least 50%, and this will solve the debt problem.

    8. CommentedZsolt Hermann

      The article describes the present situation accurately although as one of the comments suggests we could add some more worrisome points to the picture.
      It is also interesting to see what the comments are saying, although most of them acknowledge the crisis situation, there still seems some hope that through some "miracle", or the cyclical nature of crisis situations we will simply pull through.
      What is against this optimism is that we are not in a usual cyclical crisis situation repeating itself through our history, but we are in a situation we never faced before, thus we have no historical precedent or experience about it.
      We evolved into a closed, global world where each and every individual or nation is dependent on the other, and we are so interconnected that a seemingly small random event at one part of the globe affects the whole network immediately, we can see daily proof of it through the crisis.
      I agree that it is not all gloom and doom, and we are not necessarily entering a catastrophic scenario, but in order to solve our problems we have to leave our present system, thinking and attitude, because all our methods, experience, tricks and cheats are based on our previous, "loose" system, also we calculated our lifestyle on infinite quantitative growth without restrictions of resources, possibility of expansion all which turned out to be false and illusory.
      As Einstein suggested in order to solve the problem we have to leave the framework within which we created the problem, we have to study our new system, its conditions, and based on our examinations we have to create a totally new human system.
      Simply blaming individuals, groups of people, nations, regions, or waiting for cyclical revival or some miracle growth will not help us but will make our future attempts much more difficult.

        CommentedBrenda Jones

        Agree with a lot you said. Blaming could lead to war. Wouldn't we all much prefer some thinking out-of-the-box, to build a new system where instead of exploiting each other, we learn to live in harmony?

    9. CommentedGary Marshall

      Hello Nouriel,

      Here is a solution to the Greek problem. If anyone can find the flaw, I shall be more than happy to give him or her $50,000. I am just tired of doing this. Its not the end of the world, but a new beginning.

      ####

      The costs of borrowing for a nation to fund public expenditures, if it borrows solely from its resident citizens and in the nation's currency, is nil.

      Why? Because if, in adding a financial debt to a community, one adds an equivalent financial asset, the aggregate finances of the community will not in any way be altered. This is simple reasoning confirmed by
      simple arithmetic.

      The community is the source of the government's funds. The government taxes the community to pay for public services provided by the government.

      Cost of public services is $10 million.

      Scenario 1: The government taxes $10 million.

      Community finances: minus $10 million from community bank accounts for government expenditures.
      No community government debt, no community
      government IOU.

      Scenario 2: The government borrows $10 million from solely community lenders at a certain interest rate.

      Community finances: minus $10 million from community bank accounts for government expenditures.
      Community government debt: $10 million;
      Community government bond: $10 million.

      At x years in the future: the asset held by the community (lenders) will be $10 million + y interest. The deferred liability claimed against the community (taxpayers) will be $10 million + y interest.

      The value of all community government debts when combined with all community government IOUs or bonds is zero for the community. It is the same $0 combined worth whether the community pays its taxes immediately or never pays them at all.

      So if a community borrows from its own citizens to fund worthy public expenditures rather than taxes those citizens, it will not alter the aggregate finances of the community or the wealth of the community any
      more than taxation would have. Adding a financial debt and an equivalent financial asset to a community will cause the elimination of both when summed.

      Whatever financial benefit taxation possesses is nullified by the fact that borrowing instead of taxation places no greater financial burden on the community.

      However, the costs of Taxation are immense. By ridding the nation of Taxation and instituting borrowing to fund public expenditures, the nation will shed all those costs of Taxation for the negligible fee of borrowing in the financial markets and the administration of public
      debt.

      Regards,
      Gary Marshall

    10. CommentedPaul A. Myers

      Excellent delineation of the many stress points and lines of fracture in the global world. But I also think that the modern world has many interconnections and shock absorbers and these have not been given sufficient weight by Roubini. That means a most likely course of muddling through probably has a good chance of success.

      Overall, in Europe there is a backlog of losses that has to be distributed and probably will be. Like in the US, this will probably take longer than it should. The politics in both the US and Europe over the next decade is going to be about who eats these losses through reduced standards of living delivered through lower pensions and other public benefits. And what will be the rewards to those who want to do the work that will be the basis for future growth.

      So, I would say a time of reckoning, not a time of catastrophe.

    11. CommentedSimeon Iliev

      Sadly, no mention of peak oil, overpopulation, loss of biodiversity, global warming, pollution, Islamic fundamentalism, Russian mafia state, immense US war budgets, drug money and organized crime. Nor of the current or possible future synergies between all those problems + many others.
      The economy (or 'markets') is NOT exactly the most serious issue here.

    12. Commenteddonna jorgo

      Professor ROUBINI is right ..is not pessimisem but is real situation and we are to thank'you Roubini because is the only one economist-political looket with righte way and trying to explante with article he write. I think we have to see more seriosly ..P Roubini don't WRite for poor people who don't have to lose nothing but for busineses and al the economic financiar in world ..SO THANK YOU
      PS crisis is not out from the door but inside ...

    13. Commentedsrinivasan gopalan

      In troubled times like this Cassandras of doom and gloom abound. No doubt, Roubini's pessimism is grounded on realities and what we see supervening elsewhere. But history is replete with instances where crises had always been converted into opening new vistas for viable solutions. As poet laureate William Hazel let wisely put it on what basis when we see nothing but improvement behind us are we to expect nothing but disaster before us? Euro crisis is not the only crisis plaguing the world today as crisis is part of existence so long as people exist in the planet. What is required is a statesmanlike vision by political leaders and heightened cooperation to see that no country or continent is left to fend for itself when the chips are down. It is time that the use of technology which united us should also be leveraged to find coordinated and concerted action on the part of countries with surplus to go in for the rescue of countries with deficit. What is required is faith in the essential goodness of people and trust in every one so that a durable way could be found from the current mess that unfortunately plagues not one continent or a country but almost the whole of the world in one form or another.
      G.Srinivasan

    14. CommentedProcyon Mukherjee

      I can hardly try to summarize an entire treatise, ‘This time is different’, by Reinhart & Rogof, in a few sentences, but that is what I intend to do to explain some of the thoughts described by Roubini.

      This seminal paper by the authors, have gone through a number of periods of default over the last few centuries which was preceded by extended periods of lull and the commonality is striking:
      1.Each lull had been followed by a new wave of default

      2.Serial default or external debt- that is repeated sovereign debt default- is the norm throughout every region in the world, including Asia and Europe

      3.Global economic factors, commodity prices and interest rates together with high mobility of capital have influenced debt factors

      4.Domestic debt and long term maturity & its timing has been one of the significant contributing factors in servicing of the government debt obligation at certain periods of time leading to default conditions.

      Roubini’s prescription for Germany for agreeing to a eurozone wide deposit insurance with a debt mutualization program leaves one with a sobering thought that the German banking system with a leverage in the stratosphere whose final backstop is with the German government would be enormously stressed if this is enacted. On the contrary the German banks have systematically reduced their exposure in the Spanish, Greek and Portuguese financial entities in the last couple of years. We are talking two different things, which do not look feasible.


      Procyon Mukherjee

    15. Commentedjames durante

      Topsy turvy. Let's look on the bright side: a collapse in the economy ay be just what is needed to place the focus where it belongs, on adjusting our lives to the reality of ciate change. No civilization has proven sustainable. This one has outlasted the others because of the discovery of carbon energy reserves. Those same energy resources have created for more extensive and complex social and economic relations and a global ecological crisis. The momentum from the former has tended to obscure the latter. "If we can just keep this train running down the track, with more people on it and at higher speed, we won't really have to worry about that cliff up ahead."

      It stands to reason that the train crashing is preferable to the train going over the cliff. Severe economic crisis might allow us to individually and collectively evaluate what is really important: more leisure time, more family time, more time for ceremonies, a focus on repairing and restoring damaged ecosystems might all supplant the frenzied materialism and harried work lives that so many people still experience today as "reality."

    16. CommentedMichael Booth

      Roubini and many others gloss over the political union that must precede or at least accompany the fiscal and banking union. In this essay, Rouobini does not even mention it. But that is the tradeoff Germany is really demanding and properly so.

      This concession of sovereignty has never been Germany's problem, but has always been France's. The French and others what the money, but refuse all oversight and will tolerate no sovereignty loss to Brussels, nor to any other pan-EU authority.

      Therein lies the true barrier to the resolution of the mess: not German refusal to enter financial unions of one sort or another, but French (and Spanish and Italian etc) refusal to give up sovereignty in exchange.

      Without this quid pro quo the Germans are completely correct in refusing all that Rooubini suggests.

        Commentedjimmy rousseau

        I don't know why all the commenters talking about the need for political union assume the germans want this and other countries not. There is no way germans would accept a true federal president with real powers coming maybe from spain or italy or even france. It seems to be a common assumption that a democratically elected president of a strong european federation will be from a germanic state. The problem with the EU is that no country is ready to give up sovereignty to the union, germany included.

    17. CommentedWilliam Wallace

      As a small business owner in Spain, I watched as the bad news last Spring led to poor summer revenues in 2011. This year, with even more dire news, business among locals and tourists alike is strangely up. Good news for me, but I cannot help but wonder if consumers aren't "going Nero" and partying a bit while contemplating he economic conflagration. Strange times.

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