L’économie globale sur un seul moteur

TOKYO – L’économie mondiale est comme un avion de ligne qui a besoin que tous ses moteurs soient opérationnels pour pouvoir décoller et affronter les intempéries. Malheureusement, un seul de ses quatre moteurs fonctionne actuellement correctement : le moteur anglo-saxon.

Son deuxième moteur – la zone euro – est aujourd’hui au point mort, à l’issue d’un semblant de reprise après 2008. Un seul choc supplémentaire suffirait à faire plonger l’Europe dans la déflation pure et simple, qui s’accompagnerait à nouveau d’une récession. De même, le troisième moteur de l’économie mondiale, à savoir le Japon, arrive à court de carburant, après une année de relance budgétaire et monétaire. Quant aux marchés émergents (son quatrième moteur), ils sont confronté à un net ralentissement, à mesure que les vents planétaires, favorables depuis une dizaine d’années – croissance chinoise rapide, taux directeurs zéro, et assouplissement quantitatif mené par la Réserve fédérale américaine – se sont transformés en vents contraires.

La question se pose par conséquent de savoir si – et pour combien de temps – l’économie globale pourra continuer de voler sur un seul moteur. La fébrilité observée dans le reste du monde est synonyme d’un dollar plus faible, ce qui est voué à fragiliser la croissance américaine. Plus le ralentissement s’accentuera au sein des autres pays, plus la hausse du dollar sera conséquente, et plus les États-Unis auront du mal à se dissocier des difficultés d’ailleurs, bien que la demande intérieure semble solide.

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