Brooklyn development Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images

特朗普的虚拟围墙

发自剑桥——在许多方面,共和党在美国征收一项“边境调整税”的计划都是特朗普总统计划在美墨边境修建的实体围墙的虚拟补充。虽然该税项并未像特朗普的实体墙一样渗透到公众意识中,但它可能最终会对普通美国人造成影响——而且不一定是以好的方式。

表面上看,该计划的基本思路就是对进口征税,比如征个20%,并对出口提供类似幅度的税收优惠。大多数民粹主义者的直觉反应是,这对美国的就业来说是极好的,因为它会在遏制进口的同时鼓励出口。不幸的是,正如许多人所指出的那样,这个逻辑中有一个掉链子的地方,那就是美国的浮动汇率制度。

如果美元走强——可能是实施边境调整税的结果——美国人购买进口商品的成本就较低(因为1块钱美元可以兑换更多外币);相应的,强势美元使美国出口商品对外国人来说更昂贵。事实上,经典教科书的结论是汇率效应将完全抵消税收作用,使贸易平衡保持不变。如果你因此觉得共和党的提案听起来像是个骗局,你可能是对的,但请让我们先把这个想法放一放。

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