货币前线,大家闭嘴

美国剑桥—“货币战争”一词是“竞争性贬值”吸引眼球的说法。最近,日本为了启动经济而实施了一系列措施,其中的货币措施让日元猛烈贬值,这也使货币战争问题成为即将到来的北爱尔兰G8峰会的主要问题。但理应如此吗?

据IMF的说法,竞争性贬值发生于多国“操纵汇率……以获得较之其他成员国的不公平的竞争性优势……”。但在“货币战争”一词用于美联储、日本银行和其他央行最近几年的扩张政策时,往往会漏掉一个关键点。货币刺激对一国贸易余额、进而对贸易伙伴国商品需求的影响是模棱两可的:汇率产生反应时的支出转换效应会被支出扩张的增加效应抵消。重塑的收入增长意味着更多地从他国进口。

 “货币战争”更适于描述各国有意地采取干预以贬值本币从而提振贸易余额。但国家当局会、也应该追求首先满足本国利益的经济政策。国际合作可能会带来丰硕成果;但若溢出效应的性质并非对所有各方都相对清晰,没有理由采取合作态度。比如,所有人都同意,污染和关税的溢出效应是消极而不是积极的外部性。但对货币政策来说就不那么一目了然了。

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