La politique du ralentissement chinois

SINGAPOUR – La crise financière récente en Chine, propulsant les taux de prêts interbancaires à des valeurs à deux chiffres en l’espace de quelques jours, fournit une confirmation supplémentaire que la deuxième économie du monde se dirige vers un atterrissage brutal. Alimentée par une croissance massive du crédit (équivalente à 30% du PIB entre 2008 et 2012), l'économie chinoise a opté pour un niveau de levier financier qui est le plus élevé parmi les marchés émergents. Ca ne se terminera pas bien.

En effet, une étude récente par Nomura Securities montre que le profil de risque financier actuel de la Chine ressemble à s'y méprendre à ceux de la Thaïlande, du Japon, de l'Espagne et des Etats-Unis à la veille de leur crise financière respective. Chaque économie en crise avait augmenté son levier financier – le ratio du crédit intérieur par rapport au PIB – de 30 points de pourcentage en cinq ans, peu avant leurs bulles du crédit n’éclate.

Les économistes qui continuent à penser que le levier financier de la Chine n'est pas trop élevé sont une minorité en diminution. Assurément, la Banque populaire de Chine, qui a conçu un resserrement du crédit en juin pour tenter de décourager la croissance des prêts, semble estimer que le levier financier a augmenté à des niveaux dangereux. Les seules réponses qu’il reste maintenant à trouver concernent la question de savoir quand et comment le désendettement va se produire.

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