Paul Lachine

好赤字和坏赤字

伦敦—“凡赤字皆是坏事。”这是财政鹰派振聋发聩的声音。并非如此,战略投资分析师胡德·布洛克(H. Wood Brock)在其颇有意思的新书《美国僵局》(The American Gridlock)中反驳道。布洛克指出,对赤字的合理评估取决于“政府支出的构成和质量”。

因经常性服务和转移支出引起的政府赤字是坏赤字,因为它们不能产生收入流,而且会导致国民债务增加。反之,因资本支出引起的赤字是——或者可以是——好赤字。只要管理合理,这类支出可以产生收入流,从而维持并最终消灭债务;更重要的是,这类支出提高了生产率,从而提升了一国的长期增长潜力。

根据这一区分,可以得到一条重要的财政规则:政府的经常性支出一般应该用税收来平衡。从这个角度说,如今各国动手削减经常性支出水平不无道理,但必须将节省下来的支出用于资本支出项目才行。事实上,削减经常性支出并增加资本支出必须双管齐下。

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