Barrie Maguire

Le plan de relance américain: plus de dollars que de bruit…

MILAN – L’excès de levier des secteurs financier et immobilier, qui caractérise l’avant-crise américaine, s’est traduit par une bulle d’actifs, dont l’effondrement s’est soldé par des bilans diversement négatifs. Il a fallu, par contrecoup, rétablir la valeur des actifs, bloquer les leviers et assainir les bilans, et on assiste aujourd’hui à la hausse du taux d’épargne, à un déclin important de la demande intérieure et à une forte augmentation du chômage.

Les Etats-Unis sont maintenant confrontés à la grande question de savoir si le maintien des incitations fiscales et monétaires peut – comme certains le pensent – contribuer à redresser l’économie, ou non. Certes, au pire de la crise, la combinaison des incitations fiscales et d’une détente monétaire d’envergure a eu pour effet d’éviter le gel du crédit et d’enrayer la spirale descendante du prix des actifs et de l’activité de l’économie réelle, mais cette période est révolue.

La période d’avant-crise, une période de consommation des plus-values qui, du moins partiellement, se sont avérées éphémères, a évidemment conduit à une période d’après-crise, caractérisée par la stagnation des dépenses, la baisse de la demande et la hausse du chômage. On peut y remédier par une politique anticyclique , mais on ne peut ni défaire le mal qui a été fait, ni pousser la reprise au-delà de certaines limites.

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