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全球经济的根本弱点

日内瓦—十年前,当雷曼兄弟(Lehman Brothers)宣布破产时,人们一下子弄不清楚谁欠了谁什么,谁无法偿还债务,以及谁会下一个倒下。结果是银行间信用市场冻结,华尔街陷入恐慌,企业遭受冲击,不仅仅美国是如此,全世界亦然。政客们疲于应付危机,经济专家则纠结于20世纪80年代以来的低商业周期波动的“大稳健”是否正演变为另一场大萧条。

事后看来,危机酝酿期的自满显然是不合理的。但危机发生后,这一点并没有多少改变。诚然,我们被告知,金融体系变得更简单、更安全、更公平。但得益于公共资金的银行现在变得比以前更大,不透明的金融工具再一次成为时尚;银行家的奖金池也再一次溢满。与此同时,无监管或欠监管的“影子银行”规模已增长到160万亿美元。这是全球经济规模的两倍。

拜主要央行过去十年向全球经济注入的数万亿美元所赐,资产市场反弹,公司并购狂飙突进,股票回购成为管理智慧的标志。相反,实体经济在乐观和下行风险之间起起落落。决策者告诉自己,高股价和出口会刺激平均收入,但事实是,大部分收益都被金字塔顶端拿走了。

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