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洪平凡:金融市场与实体经济仍不合拍

2013-03-25 10:17 | 作者: 洪平凡来源:新浪博客 洪平凡 金融 经济 市场

(摘自笔者在国际货币基金组织24国集团工作组会议上的发言,英文原文附后)

感谢24国集团秘书处的邀请。

根据联合国今年1月初发布的《2013年世界经济形势与展望》准备了一些图表,已发给大家。从目前的形势来看,没有必要对我们年初的预测数据作修改。

从2012年12月到目前为止,世界金融市场形势有所改善。全球大部分股市有显著上升。特别是美国,几大股指都已经恢复,甚至超过了全球金融危机发生之前的历史峰值。其他国家的股指也有上升,但还明显低于金融危机前的水平。债券市场的风险溢价也有所回落。特别是欧洲一些面临主权债务压力很大的国家,如西班牙、意大利,其融资成本明显下降,葡萄牙也在发生债务危机之后重新能够在债务市场发行新债。同时,美国信贷继续增长,欧洲一些银行提前偿还了欧洲央行的部分长期贷款。当然,也不是所有金融市场指标都趋于平稳:汇率波动明显增大,主要是日元大幅度贬值给全球汇率市场带来了冲击。此外,最近发生的塞浦路斯与欧盟在如何解决其银行危机方面存在的分歧给全球金融市场带来了不小的震动,也同时提醒市场一些欧元区国家的银行脆弱性还没有根本解决。

实体经济指标并没有像股市和债市那样发生明显改观。欧美日主要发达国家经济仍然低迷,新兴经济体增长下滑趋势在有些国家得到控制,开始企稳,如中国,但活力仍然不足。

刚才国际货币基金和世界银行的两位同事对全球金融市场和世界经济趋势的分析与我们的预测差别不大,我没有必要再去重复一些详细的图表。我想着重阐述几个他们没有提及,或没有充分讨论的问题。

一. 发达国家通过量化宽松从发达国家征收了大量铸币税

发达国家在过去几年中推出了大规模量化宽松政策之后,发展中国家纷纷抱怨量化宽松带来的负面溢出效应,包括加剧了资本流动、大宗商品价格和发展中国家汇率的大幅度波动。而发达国家决策者们则认为他们的量化宽松政策对发展中国家也有好处。

一些实证研究至今还没有能够提供确凿的研究结果来肯定或否定这些负面溢出效应。但是,有一点不可否认的事实(往往被大家忽略):发达国家通过其量化宽松政策从发展中国家征收了大量的铸币税。

主要发达经济体的四大中央银行,即,美联储,欧洲央行,日本和英国央行,通过大规模的量化宽松政策大幅度增加他们的持有资产, 从5年前的4.5万亿美元增加到目前的9.5万亿美元,净增5万亿美元。同时,他们资产负责表中负债项目的基础货币也以同样规模的幅度上升,为这些国家政府征收了大量铸币税,

由于这些主要发达经济体的货币是国际储备货币,因此,他们征收的铸币税不仅仅是来自本国居民和企业,也来自其他国家的居民和企业,特别是外汇储备很高的发展中国家。

发展中国家在过去5年外汇储备的变动可以证明这一点。发展中国家外汇储备从5年前的5万亿美元增加到目前的8.5万亿美元,净增3.5万亿美元。

比较一下5万亿和3.5万亿,可以说,发达国家通过量化宽松征收的铸币税大部分来自发展中国家。从这个意义上讲,主要发达国家将他们用于应对金融危机政策所带来的成本中一大部分转嫁到发展中国家。

二.新兴经济国家陷入硬着陆的风险

 联合国的报告指出全球经济在2013年面临三大经济风险:(1)欧元区债务和经济危机可能继续恶化,(2)美国可能会陷入“财政悬崖”,(3)一些新兴经济的增长可能会继续放缓,有可能“硬着陆”。

从目前来看,欧元区持续衰退的风险仍然很高。美国虽然成功地避免一场全面爆发的财政悬崖,但自动削减支出法案已经生效。美国决策者们能否在短期内达成新的协议,以终止自动削减支出的继续执行仍然无法预料。债务上限也悬而未决。

我想详细解释一下新兴经济体硬着陆的风险。

新兴经济体,特别是中国和印度,在全球金融危机前的持续强劲增长,在金融危机之后能够迅速恢复高速增长。然而,自2011年以来,这些经济体的增长显著放缓。

例如,巴西增长从2010年的7.5%下降到2012年的1%,这已经可以算是硬着陆。印度增长从9.6%下降到5%,是10年来最慢的步伐。中国增长已经减弱至7.8%,为13年来最低。

全球需求疲软肯定是这些新兴经济体增长放缓的一个重要因素,但他们也面临着一些国内问题。例如,巴西的低储蓄率和低投资率(18%)不可能支持强劲的增长。印度经济下滑反映了国内消费和投资不足。同时,持续高企的通胀,庞大的双赤字都是印度增长面临的制约。中国也面临着许多周期性和结构性问题。

在基准预测方案中,我们假设这些新兴经济能够企稳,但在悲观预测方案中,我们用中国作为例子来演示一些新兴经济体硬着陆的可能性。

中国在经历了30多年奇迹般的高速增长之后,很多人,包括中国人和中国当局,都希望中国经济能够降低到一个比过去30年缓慢一些,但更加平衡和更可持续的增长轨道。目前的问题是,中国是否能平缓地实现这种转变。

要做到这一点,中国需要应对一些风险。例如,房地产已经成为一个棘手的问题。中国房价明显超出了正常和可持续的范围内。

为了防止高房价对社会和经济稳定可能带来的影响,政策当局在过去几年采取了一系列的措施,试图控制房价。然而,其结果并不满意。经过短暂一段时间的稳定,房价近来又开始反弹,引发了新一轮的紧缩措施。

一旦中国房地产泡沫破灭,将会引发地方政府、融资平台以及银行的债务危机。

非银行贷款的激增和影??子银行业务的膨胀是另一风险。政府在过去一年里进一步推动金融改革之后,各种非银行的金融产品蓬勃发展。这本身即有积极意义,但许多金融产品构成了高风险的来源,特别是一些以短期信贷来为长期项目提供资金的金融产品。一些理财产品以不切实际的高回报率吸引客户,接近于庞氏骗局。

中国经济存在的一些结构性问题更为棘手。

例如,环境污染带来的社会成本迅速上升,已到无法忍受的水平,如许多城市最近爆发的严重空气污染以及其它一些环境污染问题。

中国同时还面临着人口红利拐点和刘易斯拐点。劳动年龄人口的比例即将从过去30年上升的趋势转为下降趋势。劳动力从农业部门向高生产率部门转移的过程也在放缓,工资率显著上升。

中国政策当局充分了解这些风险和挑战,一直在积极采取政策和改革措施,以解决这些问题。

在我们的基准预测中,我们仍然相信中国可以实现“软着陆”。但在悲观预测方案中,模拟了一个中国经济硬着陆的结果。在中国投资率非常高的情况下,如果固定资产投资的增长率继续放缓5-6个百分点,其GDP增长就很可能会从8%降至至5%,即中国意义上的“硬着陆”。

中国经济硬着陆可能会导致全球产出在三年内比基准预测方案水平减少一个多百分点。

三.全球失衡与20国集团政策协调

20国集团在2009年推出了“强劲、可持续和平衡增长”的框架,用以协调其成员之间的宏观经济政策。

在此框架下,对外收支经常账户赤字国家,主要是美国,承诺采取政策支持居民储蓄和整合财政赤字。经常账户盈余国家同意通过减少市场扭曲,提高服务行业生产率,和提高社会保障等政策来加强国内需求。

目前,美国仍然是最大的赤字经济,但其经常帐赤字已从2006年高峰时占GDP的6%收窄至3%。中国,德国,日本和石油口国的盈余也相应下降。中国的经常账户盈余从2007年占GDP的10%下降到2%左右。虽然德国的顺差仍然占GDP的5%,欧元区的顺差只有1%左右。

鉴于目前的趋势,全球失衡在未来两年不会明显上升。因此,20国集团的国际政策协调重点不应该继续放在经常账户再平衡,而是要放在加强全球经济增长和创造就业机会,以及遏制国际贸易保护主义。

20国集团在任何情况下不应该将各主要经济体经常帐的“零”失衡作为政策协调的目标。这样一个静态的目标不符合全球经济一体化的规律。

    四.中国再平衡可能存在的误区

与全球经济再平衡有关,中国在调整经济结构,或再平衡,中得方法可能会存在一些误区。

一个非常流行的政策建议是中国应该减少投资和出口对经济增长的贡献,增加消费对增长的贡献。但这一思路是基于过于简单化的GDP支出统计恒等等式,认为,中国可以推高消费的份额,降低投资比重,使GDP仍然保持强劲增长。

然而,这一思路是错误的。作为GDP支出统计恒等等式中的消费和投资不是独立变量,它们是在系统中联立确定的。该系统还包括另外两个GDP核算恒等式,即生产和收入核算恒等式。

更重要的是,消费无法替代投资作为推动GDP长期增长动力。

57个国家(30个发达经济体和27个新兴经济体)1991至2010年20年期间的国民经济核算数据显示,居民消费占GDP的比重和GDP增长率存在轻微的负相关关系。从长期来看,消费比重越高的国家,GDP增长越低。虽然负相关不显著,但它至少可以否定高消费率有助于GDP增长的假设。

同一数据显示,投资率和GDP的增长呈高度正相关。投资率较高的国家具有较高GDP增长。这至少表明,投资是长期经济增长的必要条件。

各种经济增长理论也表明,投资是长期经济增长的一个重要的决定因素,但消费不是。

中国可以通过各种政策来降低储蓄,鼓励消费。然而,其结果只是在目前消费与未来消费之间的权衡,因为降低了目前的储蓄和投资率一定会导致未来GDP增长率的下降,导致未来消费增长率的下降。不可能既增加消费比重而又能同时保持GDP增长率不下降。

此外,过于仓促地提高消费,压低投资,会导致中国经济硬着陆。

Dichotomy betweenfinancial markets and the real economy

Pingfan Hong(2013-03-25)

(This is an excerpt from my recent speech at the G-24 Technical Group Meeting at the IMF HQ)

I would like to thank the G-24 Secretariat for inviting me to this meeting.

My presentation is based on the UN World Economic Situation and Prospects 2013, released at the beginning of the year. Given what has happened in the world economy in the past months, there is no need to revise our forecasts.

Since late 2012, we have seen a measurable improvement in the world financial markets. Equity prices worldwide have moved notably higher, particularly in the United States, where major indices have recovered or surpassed the peaks prior to the global financial crisis. Stock prices in other markets also gained, but most of them are still far below their pre-crisis peaks. Risk premiums in bond markets have also narrowed, particularly for a few European countries under debt stress, such as Spain and Italy, with Portugal managing to issue bonds for the time after falling into the debt crisis. Bank lending in the United States continued to rise, and a number of banks in Europe decided to pre-pay the long-term loans they borrowed from the ECB. Heightened volatility has, however, been found in foreign exchange markets, as a result of the sharp depreciation of Japanese yen. The most recent tension between Cyprus and the EU on how to restructure Cypriot crisis-hit banks has also disturbed global financial markets, reminding us of the remaining fragility in the banking sector of some European countries.

Unlike financial markets, signs so far have not been found for a strengthening real economy. Major developed economies in Europe, the US and Japan remain anaemic. The growth deceleration in emerging economies has been curbed in some of these countries, for example, in China, but these economies are not as buoyant as they were prior to the global financial crisis.

There are nuances between our forecasts and those of the IMF and the World Bank, as presented by the previous speakers, but the differences are not significant. I am not going to present the charts and data in details, but try to elaborate a few issues that my colleagues from the IMF and the World Bank have either omitted or have not had enough time to elaborate.

1. Major developed countries collected a large amount of seigniorage from developing countries through the quantitative easing

After developed countries launched a number of large-scaled quantitative easing programmes in the past few years, developing countries have expressed their concerns about the adverse spillovers, including the heightened volatility in capital flows, commodity prices and the exchange rates of the currencies of developing countries.

Empirical studies so far have not provided conclusive findings either to support or to disprove these concerns, but one thing is undeniable: major developed economies have collected a huge amount of seigniorage from developing countries through their quantitative easing.

By launching the large-scaled assets purchasing programmes, the four large central banks, namely, the US Fed, ECB, Bank of Japan and Bank of England, have increased the size of their holdings of assets by about $5 trillion in the past five years, to a total of$9.5 trillion. Accordingly, the size of their monetary base has expanded in the same magnitude, collecting a great amount of seigniorage for these governments.

Since these major developed economies are the issuers of international reserve currencies, they have collected seigniorage not only from their own households and businesses, but also from developing countries.

In the same period, the foreign exchange reserves of developing countries have increased by $3.5 trillion.

A comparison of the increase of $5 trillion in the monetary base of the major central banks with the increase of $3.5 trillion in the foreign exchange reserves of developing countries would indicate that a large proportion of the seigniorage collected by the central banks of the developed countries come from the developing countries. In this sense, the major developed economies have been able to transfer to developing countries a large part of the costs associated with the policies they adopted in response to the financial crisis

2. Risk of hard landing in some emerging economies

The UN report identified three major economic risks for the global economy in 2013: the debt and economic crisis in the euro area could continue to worsen and become more disruptive, the United States could fail to avert a “fiscal cliff”, and the slowdown in a number of large developing countries, including China, could well deteriorate further, potentially ending in a “hard landing”.

Currently, risk remains high for a continued recession in the euro area. The US has managed to avert a full-blown fiscal cliff, but the automatic cut activated, and uncertainties remain on if and how the US policymakers could come up with some new agreement to replace the sequestration, and on the pending debt ceiling.

Let me elaborate a little bit on the risk of a hard landing for some emerging economies.

A group of large emerging economies, particularly China and India, had sustained a robust growth before the global financial crisis. They also managed to recover quickly and strongly in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. However, since 2011, growth in these economies has moderated significantly.

For instance, growth in Brazil has dropped from 7.5 per cent in 2010 to about 1 per cent in 2012, which is already a hard landing. Growth in India dropped from 9.6 per cent to 5 per cent, the slowest pace in 10 years. China’s growth has weakened to 7.8 per cent, the lowest in 13 years.

A weakening global demand is definitely a factor for the slowdown in these emerging economies, but these economies are also faced with a number of domestic problems, both cyclical and structural. For instance, in Brazil, the low savings and investment rate, at 18 per cent, cannot support a robust growth in the longer run. In India, the downturn reflects weaker consumption and investment. Persistently high inflation, the large twin deficits, and a political gridlock, all these other factors are constraining the growth. China is also faced with a number of domestic challenges.

In the baseline outlook, we assumed these economies can stabilize the downturn, but in the alternative scenario, we used China as an example to illustrate the possibility of a hard landing for some large emerging economies.

After a miraculously robust growth for more than 30 years, at an average pace of about 10 per cent per annum, many people, including Chinese people and the Chinese authorities, believe it is desirable for China to shift to a lower, but more balanced and more sustainable trajectory of growth.

At issue is whether China could manage a smooth shift to the low gear.

To do so, China needs to cope with a number of risks. For instance, the housing sector has become a thorny issue. By any measures, house prices in China are far beyond a normal and sustainable range.

Concerned about the implications of the extremely high house prices for both social and economic stability, the authorities have in the past few years taken a number of measures in an attempt to control house prices. The result, however, is not satisfactory. After a short period of stabilization, house prices started to rebound again most recently, triggering a new round of tightening measures.

A burst of the housing bubble in China can be consequential, leading to debt crisis for the local governments, for the investment vehicles which were set up by the local governments to finance the property development, and for many banks.

Another risk is associated with the surge in no-banking loans, and shadow banking services.

As a result of the government’s recent move to deepen the financial liberalization, a variety of no-bank financial products spawned. Many of these products constitute a source of high risk as they have a short-term maturity, but are used for funding long-term projects. Some of these products offer unrealistically high returns in order to attract customers, close to a Ponzi scheme.

The structural problems in the Chinese economy are even more formidable.

For example, the costs of environmental degradation have increased rapidly, to an unbearable level, as indicated by the recent outbreak of severe air pollution in a large number of Chinese cities, as well as many other incidences of environmental degradation.

China is also facing a turning point in demographic dividend: the ratio of working age population to the dependents has been growing for the past 30 years, but now is declining. At the same time, the transferring of labour force from agricultural sector to high productive sector seem to have also reached a turning point, with wage rates starting to increase rapidly, the Lewis turning point.

The Chinese authorities understand well all these risks and challenges. They have been proactive in adopting policies and reform measures to deal with these issues.

In our baseline forecast, we still believe China can engineer a soft landing, but in an alternative scenario, we simulated a hard landing for China. Given the extremely high investment rate, we found that a shock to China’s fixed investment to lower it by 5-6 percentage points from the baseline would lower China’s GPD growth from 8 per cent to 5 per cent, which is considered to be a hard landing for China.

In a global context, a hard landing for China could lead to an accumulative loss of the global output by more than one percentage point compared with the baseline in a period of three years.

Global imbalances and G20 policy coordination

The G20 launched in 2009 a framework of strong, sustainable and balanced growth, for coordinating macroeconomic policies among its members.

Under this framework, the G20 members running current account deficit, mainly the United States, pledged to undertake policies to support private savings and to consolidate their fiscal deficit, while the surplus members agreed to strengthen domestic sources of growth, through measures such as reducing financial markets distortions, boosting productivity in service sectors, and improving social safety nets.

Currently, the United States remained the largest deficit economy, but its current account deficit has narrowed to 3 per cent of GDP, down substantially from the peak of 6 per cent of GDP in2006.

The surpluses of China, Germany, Japan and a group of fuel-exporting countries, have also declined correspondingly. China’s current account surplus is about 2 per cent of GDP, down from 10 per cent of GDP in 2007. While Germany’s surplus remains 5 per cent of GDP, the current account for the euro area as a whole is about 1 per cent of GDP.

Given current trends, the global imbalances are not expected to widen by a significant margin in the coming two years.

Therefore, international policy coordination in G-20 should not continue to focus on rebalancing the current account positions. Instead, it should give higher priority to the strengthening of the global growth, jobs creation, and the curbing of international protectionism.

In any case, the G-20 should not attempt to target, explicitly or implicitly, “zero” external imbalances across major economies. Such a static target is in contradiction to the dynamism of global economic integration.

Pitfalls in China’s approach to rebalancing

Related to the global rebalancing, China’s approach to restructuring, or rebalancing, its domestic economy seems to constitute some pitfalls.

A very popular policy proposal for China’s rebalancing is to shift the growth driver from investment (and exports) to consumption. The whole idea is based on an oversimplified accounting identity of GDP expenditure, believing that China can push up the share of consumption and lower the share of investment so that the economy can still maintain a robust growth.

However, this does not work, as each component of the GDP expenditure is not an independent variable, and they are simultaneously determined in the system, which includes other two GDP accounting identities, from both production side and income side.

More importantly, consumption cannot substitute for investment as a driver for GDP growth in the long run.

A data set from the national accounts of 57 large countries, including 30 developed economies and 27 emerging economies, for a period of 20 years from 1991 to 2010, shows a slightly negative correlation between the ratio of consumption to GDP and the GDP growth rate across these countries. Meaning, countries with higher consumption ratios would have lower GDP growth in the long run. Although the negative correlation is not significant, it can at least reject the hypothesis that a higher consumption ratio could contribute to higher GDP growth in the long run.

From the same data set, a strong positive correlation is found between the investment rate and the GDP growth. Countries with higher investment rate would have high GDP growth. This at least indicates that investment was the necessary condition for GDP growth in the long run, if not the sufficient condition.

Meanwhile, growth theories show that investment is one important determinant for long-run growth, but consumption is not.

China can adopt various policies to reduce the savings and encourage propensity to consume. However, this is a just matter of making trade-off between today’s consumption and the future consumption, as a lower saving and investment rate will definitely lead to a lower GDP growth in the future, and a lower consumption growth in the future. There is no way for China to increase consumption ratio while at the same time maintain the same high growth rate as before.

Moreover, a rash push for increasing the consumption ratio and pressing down the investment rate can in effect lead to a hard landing for the Chinese economy.

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栏目简介

《学者观察》栏目聚集当今活跃在市场的一流学者对于市场逻辑的观察与思考,是最接地气的调研与判断。

本栏目恪守市场的逻辑,坚持从市场的角度出发解读当下的商业世界,致力于推动中国商业环境的改善,并对当下的商业问题提供权威性的判断,并为市场发展提供方向性的意见。

本栏目为中国企业家网精心打造的核心栏目之一,欢迎学术界名流为共建商业文明提供更多的独立见解。投稿信箱为:iceomail#gmail.com,请来信时将#换成@。

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