Giuseppe Sandro Mela.
Il problema è semplicissimo, ma anche il solo accennarlo scatena le ire furiose dei liberal e dei socialisti ideologici, oggi ancora egemoni in Europa.
Gli stati afferenti l’Unione Europea, massimamente l’eurozona, stanno morendo soffocati dal debito pubblico.
Secondo la Cia, World Factbook, il rapporto debito / pil è 181.6 in Grecia, 132.5 in Italia, 126.2 in Portogallo, 108.4 in Irlanda, 106.7 in Belgio, 99.6 in Spagna, 92.2 nel Regno Unito, 96.5 in Francia, 69.0 in Germania. 82.5 nell’Eurozona.
Per comparazione, il rapporto debito / pil è 13.7 in Russia, 20.1 nella Repubblica popolare cinese e 52.3 in India.
Le banche centrali si sono trovate ad un bivio, un aut aut: o salvare gli stati acquistando titoli del debito sovrano altrimenti non collocabili, oppure salvare il sistema economico lasciando fallire gli stati.
Sono state costrette a seguire la prima direttiva, transitando da prestatrici ad acquirenti di ultima istanza. Hanno concesso tempo al sistema finanziario ed economico al costo di generare immani quantità di liquidità.
Gli stati occidentali ben si son guardati di utilizzare il tempo concesso per le doverose riforme strutturali, tranne la Germania che ha ridotto il proprio debito in modo consistente.
Lo scotto, oltre ad avere banche centrali snaturate ed adesso impotenti, è stato quello dei tassi di interesse negativi. Manna dal Cielo per gli stati che si sono trovati sgravati dal peso degli interessi, eutanasia dei sistemi creditizi, che vivono allocando denaro in cambio di interessi.
Per comprendere meglio la gravità di quanto accaduto, si faccia conto dei risultati che avrebbero potuto essere ottenuti iniettando nel sistema produttivo occidentale la cifra che le banche centrali hanno omaggiato agli stati: la Fed ha speso 3,600 miliardi Usd, e l’Ecb poco meno. Si pensi adesso ai risultati ottenuti dai cinesi investendo soltanto 1,500 miliardi nel progetto Belt and Road.
«The benefits of central banks pumping money into the economy by buying securities diminish over time»
«While the earlier actions significantly helped the economy, they said, the subsequent ones had little or no impact»
«While QE had “significant” positive effects on real gross domestic product and the consumer price index for the period until June 2011, thereafter the effects were “often not statistically significantly different from zero.”»
In parole povere: i QE avevano avuto un senso negli anni 2009 – 2011. Poi erano diventati finanziariamente inutili, per non dire dannosi. Sono sette anni che stampellano i debiti pubblici e basta.
«Denmark’s government is wondering how much longer the economy will be exposed to the distortions wrought by negative interest rates, and is urging European Union leaders to enter a debate on the appropriateness of the current monetary policy environment»
«Right now, I don’t think the low rates are the right medicine for a long-term positive development»
Adesso che gli Stati Uniti sono entrati nel tapering e, soprattutto, hanno ridotto la tassazione di 1,500 miliardi Usd, la Unione Europea entrerà in severi triboli. E dovrà sopportarli proprio in un periodo generalizzato di chaos politico. L’unica via di uscita logicamente rimasta sarebbe un consistente decremento della pressione fiscale, con conseguente riduzione dell’intervento statale nel sistema economico: ossia l’esatto contrario della dottrina socio-economico dell’attuale dirigenza.
→ Bloomberg. 2017-12-21. ECB’s ‘Aggressive’ Stimulus Policy Criticized by Danish Minister
– Danish finance minister urges EU leaders to review policies
– Denmark has had negative rates longer than any other country
Denmark’s government is wondering how much longer the economy will be exposed to the distortions wrought by negative interest rates, and is urging European Union leaders to enter a debate on the appropriateness of the current monetary policy environment.
The country, which has lived with negative rates longer than any other, has been forced to keep its main monetary policy instrument below zero for half a decade to protect the krone’s peg to the euro. Danish rates first went negative in mid-2012, and most economists expect the policy to persist until 2020.
The obvious risk is “price pressure that can lead to bubbles,” Danish Finance Minister Kristian Jensen said in an interview in Copenhagen on Wednesday. “We’re in a situation where our economic upswing has been under way for a while longer than in many other EU countries.”
“We would definitely be positive if the ECB would ease up on the very aggressive monetary policy it has right now,” Jensen said. “The buying of bonds is very aggressive in my view, especially looking at the condition of the European economy.”
“Right now, I don’t think the low rates are the right medicine for a long-term positive development,” Jensen said.
For Denmark, the monetary climate has pushed the economy to the limits of its capacity utilization. “We’re now facing a labor shortage, with more firms ready to hire than there are people willing to work,” he said. “That means we need a situation in which there’s less heat coming from monetary stimulus.”
Jensen says Denmark is now taking the opportunities available to it to raise these concerns with EU leaders. “There’s a growing number of EU countries that have emerged from the crisis, so these very low rates aren’t needed any more, the upswing is stable,” Jensen said.
“France is making sweeping reforms now, and Spain’s elevated itself markedly since last year. There’s a lot of countries doing a lot better and therefore we ought to see a normalization of monetary policy,” he said.
Denmark can’t exit its extreme monetary policy alone, because of the euro peg. Its main deposit rate is minus 0.65 percent, compared with the ECB’s deposit rate of minus 0.4 percent.
The distortions coming from extreme negative rates include an overheated property market, with the government recently taking measures to prevent Denmark’s most indebted households from borrowing more. The country’s biggest banks have warned that households are growing “blind” to the risk of rates ever going positive again.
Jensen says the era of extremely low rates, globally, is one of the reasons something like bitcoin can suddenly flourish.
“There’s no doubt that a part of bitcoin’s popularity stems from people looking for alternative investments, because the returns on other investments are so low,” he said.
While the Danish government has taken several steps to ensure consumers are protected from bubbles in the housing market, Jensen signaled he has little inclination to stop people experimenting with cryptocurrencies.
“People have to decide for themselves what to make of bitcoin,” he said.
→ Bloomberg. 2017-12-21. QE Works But Not Forever, BIS Study Tells Central Banks
The benefits of central banks pumping money into the economy by buying securities diminish over time, according to a BIS paper.
That’s the conclusion of a Bank for International Settlements Working Paper by Henning Hesse, Boris Hofmann and James Weber, who compared the effects of the asset purchases in the U.S. and the U.K. conducted between 2008 and mid-2011 with those thereafter. While the earlier actions significantly helped the economy, they said, the subsequent ones had little or no impact.
The issue is a topical one for central banks as they work out how to exit the emergency stimulus policies they imposed after the global financial crisis. The European Central Bank has slowed its bond purchases but not yet decided on a definite end-date, while the Federal Reserve is delicately shrinking its balance sheet.
The decreasing impact of quantitative easing might be because investors increasingly priced in the bond purchases before they were actually announced, the paper suggests. While QE had “significant” positive effects on real gross domestic product and the consumer price index for the period until June 2011, thereafter the effects were “often not statistically significantly different from zero.”
More and More Assets
The Fed’s balance sheet has risen due to its roughly $3.6 trillion in QE securities purchases
Following the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September 2008, central banks on both sides of the Atlantic started buying securities to contain the fallout. The Fed eventually spent roughly $3.6 trillion, while to date the Bank of England has spent 435 billion pounds ($580 billion) on gilts. Economists have raised concerns that the programs, designed to boost inflationary pressures, have had an outsized effect on equity valuations as yield-hungry investors flooded into the market – with potential risks for widening inequality.
That argument may be well founded, according to the BIS research.
In Britain and the U.S., the maximum increase after an asset purchase announcement shock was about 0.2 percent in both real GDP and CPI. Yet that for real stock prices was “10 times larger in the U.S. and 20 times larger in the U.K.”