Nel primo trimestre 2019 si stima una flessione congiunturale delle esportazioni per quasi tutte le ripartizioni territoriali: -2,4% per il Sud e Isole, -1,0% sia per il Nord-est sia per il Nord-ovest, mentre per il Centro si registra un ampio aumento delle vendite (+7,0%).
Nello stesso periodo l’export mostra una crescita tendenziale molto sostenuta per il Centro (+15,1%), superiore alla media nazionale per il Sud (+2,5%) e il Nord-est (+2,4%), mentre il Nord-ovest registra una diminuzione (-2,0%) e le Isole una marcata contrazione delle vendite (-17,6%).
Tra le regioni più dinamiche all’export nel confronto con il primo trimestre 2018, si segnalano Molise (+59,1%), Lazio (+21,0%), Toscana (+16,1%) e Puglia (+9,7%). Diversamente, si registrano ampi segnali negativi per Sardegna (-17,7%), Sicilia (-17,5%), Basilicata (-16,3%) e Calabria (-14,7%).
Nel primo trimestre 2019 le vendite di articoli farmaceutici, chimico-medicinali e botanici dal Lazio e di articoli in pelle, escluso abbigliamento, e simili e di metalli di base e prodotti in metallo, esclusi macchine e impianti, dalla Toscana contribuiscono alla crescita tendenziale dell’export nazionale per 1,6 punti percentuali.
Su base annua un impulso positivo alla crescita dell’export nazionale proviene dalle vendite della Toscana verso Svizzera (+84,2%) e Regno Unito (+34,7%), del Lazio verso gli Stati Uniti (+113,7%) e dell’Emilia Romagna verso il Regno Unito (+19,6%).
Nell’analisi provinciale dell’export, si segnalano le performance positive di Firenze, Latina, Frosinone, Bologna e Arezzo.
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Nel primo trimestre 2019 l’Italia ha esportato per 114.738 miliardi di euro, +2.0% anno su anno, e questo è un risultato consolante.
Mentre il Centro evidenzia un +15.1%, Nord est e Sud sono pienamente nella media nazionale con il +2.4% ed il +2.5%, rispettivamente.
Un serio problema emerge invece con le isole, che hanno esportato solo per 3.133 miliardi euro, con una contrazione anno su anno del -17.6%.
Questo è uno dei tanti segni che indicano un diffuso malessere economico in quelle regioni.
Solo per comparazione, vorremmo ricordare come la Germania abbia esportato per 109.7 miliardi euro nel solo mese di aprile.
Finalmente, dopo mesi di report negativi, Destatis può riportare dati confortevoli per la Germania e, con essa, per l’Unione Europea.
«Export. 118.3 billion euros. +1.5% on the previous month (calendar and seasonally adjusted) +1.9% on the same month a year earlier»
«Import. 95.6 billion euros. +0.4% on the previous month (calendar and seasonally adjusted) +4.5% on the same month a year earlier»
«Germany exported goods to the value of 118.3 billion euros and imported goods to the value of 95.6 billion euros in March 2019.»
«Based on provisional data, the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) also reports that German exports were up by 1.9% and imports by 4.5% in March 2019 year on year. After calendar and seasonal adjustment, exports increased by 1.5% and imports by 0.4% compared with February 2019»
«In March 2019, Germany exported goods to the value of 70.5 billion euros to the Member States of the European Union (EU), while it imported goods to the value of 56.6 billion euros from those countries.»
«Compared with March 2018, exports to the EU countries increased by 2.5%, and imports from those countries by 5.5%»
«Goods to the value of 44.5 billion euros (+0.5%) were exported to the Euro area countries in March 2019, while the value of the goods imported from those countries was 36.9 billion euros (+5.6%)»
«Exports of goods to countries outside the European Union (third countries) amounted to 47.8 billion euros in March 2019, while imports from those countries totalled 39.0 billion euros.»
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Se è vero che su base annua le importazioni sono aumentate del +4.5% mentre le esportazioni sono variate del +1.9%, sarebbe altrettanto da constatare come i valori assoluti rendano conto di un margine più che ragionevole.
Questi dati ripropongono però un altro problema.
Con un export di 70.5 mld verso i paesi dell’Unione Europea, la Germania sta diventando sempre più dipendente da essa. La buona salute economica dei paesi membri è quindi non solo di loro interesse, ma anche e, forse, soprattutto, della Germania stessa.
+1.5% on the previous month (calendar and seasonally adjusted)
+1.9% on the same month a year earlier
Imports, March 2019
95.6 billion euros
+0.4% on the previous month (calendar and seasonally adjusted)
+4.5% on the same month a year earlier
Foreign trade balance, March 2019:
22.7 billion euros
20.0 billion euros (calendar and seasonally adjusted)
Current account according to calculations of the Deutsche Bundesbank, March 2019
30.2 billion euros
WIESBADEN – Germany exported goods to the value of 118.3 billion euros and imported goods to the value of 95.6 billion euros in March 2019. Based on provisional data, the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) also reports that German exports were up by 1.9% and imports by 4.5% in March 2019 year on year. After calendar and seasonal adjustment, exports increased by 1.5% and imports by 0.4% compared with February 2019.
The foreign trade balance showed a surplus of 22.7 billion euros in March 2019. In March 2018, the surplus amounted to 24.6 billion euros. In calendar and seasonally adjusted terms, the foreign trade balance recorded a surplus of 20.0 billion euros in March 2019.
According to provisional results of the Deutsche Bundesbank, the current account of the balance of payments showed a surplus of 30.2 billion euros in March 2019, which takes into account the balances of trade in goods including supplementary trade items (+24.9 billion euros), services (-0.9 billion euros), primary income (+9.9 billion euros) and secondary income (-3.6 billion euros). In March 2018, the German current account showed a surplus of 29.4 billion euros.
In March 2019, Germany exported goods to the value of 70.5 billion euros to the Member States of the European Union (EU), while it imported goods to the value of 56.6 billion euros from those countries. Compared with March 2018, exports to the EU countries increased by 2.5%, and imports from those countries by 5.5%. Goods to the value of 44.5 billion euros (+0.5%) were exported to the Euro area countries in March 2019, while the value of the goods imported from those countries was 36.9 billion euros (+5.6%). In March 2019, goods to the value of 26.0 billion euros (+6.0%) were dispatched to EU countries not belonging to the Euro area, while the value of the goods which arrived from those countries was 19.7 billion euros (+5.3%).
Exports of goods to countries outside the European Union (third countries) amounted to 47.8 billion euros in March 2019, while imports from those countries totalled 39.0 billion euros. Compared with March 2018, exports to third countries increased by 1.1% and imports from those countries by 3.1%.
«Se negli anni sessanta l’Occidente rendeva conto di oltre il 90% del pil mondiale, ad oggi supera a stento il 40%: paesi allora miseri sono emersi economicamente ed adesso sono potenze economiche mondiale o, almeno, locoregionali. ….
Stiamo assistendo al crollo della visione occidentale di tentare di integrare obtorto collo le altre realtà politiche, sociali ed economiche usando la sola leva economica. ….
Il nodo è che i popoli sono attaccati al loro retaggio religioso, storico, culturale e sociale in modo ben più radicato e profondo di quanto non possa apparire ad un’analisi superficiale. ….
In Cina Deng Xioaping ha fatto transitare il Pcc in una risorta scuola mandarinica. ….»
«South Africa is the only country on the continent to have legalised gay marriage. Most African countries have made it illegal to be gay or lesbian»
«China’s popularity in Africa is strong. Its policy of not linking aid and investments to human rights and good governance has made Beijing many friends on the continent, beyond its authoritarian governments»
«La ricetta cinese è di estrema semplicità: mentre l’Occidente condiziona i rapporti economici all’accettazione della propria Weltanschauung, la Cina molto pianamente accetta trattative alla pari, senza imporre condizioni che mutino i costumi dei popoli. Solo per fare un esempio, il suffragio universale vige quasi esclusivamente in Occidente, e così come la visione di una società lgbt, del tutto aliena a quella africana.»
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La seconda grande differenza tra Occidente e Cina risiede nel fatto che quest’ultima è da millenni abituata a pensare in termini strategici, ossia con piani di lungo termine, sull’arco dei decenni. L’occidentale giudica su quanto guadagna ora, il cinese su quanto guadagnerà domani.
Comprendere a fondo queste due differenze consente di capire appieno cosa stia succedendo.
Mentre per l’Occidente l’Africa subsahariana è un posto desolatamente misero da cui portar via quante più risorse maturali sia possibile, per la Cina è invece una zona abbandonata dall’Occidente ma destinata a crescere e svilupparsi: e ciò è utile che avvenga sotto l’egida cinese. Ragionamento analogo per altre parti del mondo: l’obiettivo di lungo termine è quello di rinchiudere l’Occidente entro i suoi confini naturali.
«Le esportazioni di alcuni importanti Paesi dell’Africa subsahariana dipendono dagli alti e bassi del Paese asiatico»
«A prima vista è un bene, ma a lungo andare ciò significa che Pechino può influenzare a suo piacimento l’andamento economico di intere nazioni»
«Mauritania, Gambia, Eritrea, Sud Sudan, Gabon, Congo, Repubblica democratica del Congo, Angola e Zambia: le loro esportazioni africane in Cina pesano per il 30% sul totale»
«Sempre in Africa subsahariana gli Stati con un export verso la Cina compreso fra il 15 e il 30% sono Guinea, Sierra Leone, Repubblica Centrafricana e persino il ricco Sudafrica»
«il gruppo composto da Ghana, Camerun, Chad, Tanzania e Madagascar al 5-10%.»
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Se si riuscisse a ragionare in termini strategici, si dovrebbe concludere che nel volgere di una generazione l’Africa subsahariana sarà intimamente interconnessa commercialmente con la Cina da formare un unico blocco politico.
Questo dovrebbe aprire alla Cina futuri mercati di miliardi di persone in sistemi economici emergenti. Si pensi ad una Cina da quattro miliardi e più di persone.
L’Europa farà la fine dell’Africa? Nessun allarmismo, sono i numeri che parlano. Le esportazioni di alcuni importanti Paesi dell’Africa subsahariana dipendono dagli alti e bassi del Paese asiatico. A prima vista è un bene, ma a lungo andare ciò significa che Pechino può influenzare a suo piacimento l’andamento economico di intere nazioni.
Le esportazioni africane in Cina
La cartina sopra mostra quanto pesano le esportazioni africane in Cina per ciascun Paese africano, calcolate in percentuale rispetto all’export complessivo. Guardiamo Mauritania, Gambia, Eritrea, Sud Sudan, Gabon, Congo, Repubblica democratica del Congo, Angola e Zambia: le loro esportazioni africane in Cina pesano per il 30% sul totale. Ciò significa che se domani Pechino decidesse di interrompere i rapporti commerciali, questi Paesi non saprebbero più a chi vendere un terzo delle proprie merci. Una condizione di subalternità che inevitabilmente ne influenza le politiche economiche e gli accordi strategici.
Sempre in Africa subsahariana gli Stati con un export verso la Cina compreso fra il 15 e il 30% sono Guinea, Sierra Leone, Repubblica Centrafricana e persino il ricco Sudafrica. Poi ci sono Niger, Sudan, Etiopia e Mozambico, tutti al 10-15% e il gruppo composto da Ghana, Camerun, Chad, Tanzania e Madagascar al 5-10%. Il Madagascar si è “salvato” dall’influenza cinese anche perché è una specie di “colonia” americana, come Truenumbers ha spiegato in questo articolo. Infine ci sono quei Paesi che hanno mantenuto le esportazioni verso il Dragone inferiori al 5% (è il caso di quelli che si affacciano sul Mediterraneo).
Il neocolonialismo cinese
Ma c’è un altro modo attraverso il quale la Cina si sta “comprando” l’Africa. Mentre gli investimenti statunitensi ed europei nel Paese in Africa sono spesso subordinati alla realizzazione di riforme nel campo dei diritti umani e della democrazia, la Cina non pone condizioni e, in cambio dello sfruttamento delle risorse presenti sul suolo africano, Pechino mette sul piatto miliardi di dollari in infrastrutture, scuole, ospedali, investimenti industriali. Un sistema che però ha creato una vera e propria dipendenza commerciale. Lo possiamo chiamare neocolonialismo?
«Wall Street — and the White House — eagerly await the release of GDP data on Friday that many economists expect to top 4 percent. The last time the economy expanded at a comparable pace was in 2014, when growth hit 5.2 percent in the third quarter.
Granted, a single three-month period of rising output is a limited gauge of the economy’s health. The quarterly figures are volatile and can swing sharply from quarter to quarter. But this year’s second-quarter number will be more closely watched than usual, thanks to President Donald Trump’s repeated pledge to hit annual growth of “much higher” than 3 percent.
The economy grew 2.3 percent in 2017, which is considered typical for the late stages of a post-recession recovery. GDP growth for a full year hasn’t crossed the 3 percent mark in 14 years.»
Il The New York Times annuncia anche esso la notizia, intercalandola con la bile che ha emesso.
«The Commerce Department released its initial estimate of second-quarter economic growth on Friday, providing the latest snapshot of the American economy.
– United States gross domestic product rose at an annual rate of 4.1 percent in the second quarter, up from 2.2 percent in the first three months of the year. It was the strongest quarter of growth since 2014.
– Consumer spending rose 4 percent, but private investment fell slightly as the housing market cooled.
– Exports rose 9.3 percent, driven in part by a surge in soybean shipments tied to President Trump’s trade policies.
– Consumer prices rose at a 1.8 percent annual rate.
Economic growth surged in the second quarter — but don’t expect the boom to last.
The second-quarter acceleration was widely anticipated by economists, a result of a confluence of events unlikely to recur. Most economists expect growth to slow in the second half of the year.
Still, recent data does suggest that the pace of growth has picked up this year. Some economists think full-year growth in gross domestic product could hit 3 percent in 2018 for the first time in the nearly decade-long recovery, a prospect that became more likely following Friday’s strong numbers. The second quarter was the first time since 2014 that economic growth topped 4 percent in a quarter; the economy reached that level or higher just four times during the eight years of the Obama administration.
“The bottom line is that the economy is doing better,” said Diane Swonk, chief economist for the accounting firm Grant Thornton.
Mr. Trump didn’t wait for the numbers to be released to herald rosy news. At an event in Iowa on Thursday, he said he was expecting very strong result, noting predictions that ran to 5 percent or higher.
“We’ll take anything with a four in front,” he said.»
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Cerchiamo di ragionare.
«but don’t expect the boom to last»
«Most economists expect growth to slow in the second half of the year»
Gli economisti del NYT la vedono grigia: ‘dura minga, non può durare‘. Sono gli stessi economisti che da circa trenta anni celebrano anticipatamente i funerali al sistema economico cine, che invece sopravvive alla grande. Non hanno molto feeling con le previsioni.
Ma il meglio è in coda
«the economy is doing better»
Ma a dir ciò è niente po po di meno che Mrs Diane Swonk, “chief economist for the accounting firm Grant Thornton.”
Ma allora: gli economisti dicono che va male oppure he va bene?
I liberal democratici stanno annegando nel mare di bile che si stanno facendo da quando al governo c’è Mr Trump.
«Republican tax cuts are probably also playing a role»
Già. Lascia la gente a lavorare in pace, ed il paese prospera.
Non servirebbe essere Pico della Mirandola per arrivarci.
– Gross domestic product increased 4.1 percent in the second quarter, matching Reuters estimates.
– Strong consumer and business spending as well as a surge in exports ahead of retaliatory tariffs from China helped drive economic growth.
The last time the economy grew this quickly was in the third quarter of 2014.
Gross domestic product grew at a solid 4.1 percent pace in the second quarter, its best pace since 2014, boosting hopes that the economy is ready to break out of its decade-long slumber.
The number matched expectations from economists surveyed by Reuters and was boosted by a surge in consumer spending and business investment. Stock market futures edged lower on the news while government bond yields moved lower.
That’s the fastest rate of the growth since the 4.9 percent in the third quarter of 2014 and the third-best growth rate since the Great Recession. In addition to the strong second quarter, the Commerce Department revised its first-quarter reading up from 2 percent to 2.2 percent.
In addition to the rise in consumer and business spending, increases in exports and government spending also helped. Personal consumption expenditures rose 4 percent while business investment grew 7.3 percent while federal government outlays increased by 3.5 percent.
Exports rose in part as farmers rushed to get soybeans to China ahead of expected retaliatory tariffs to take effect in the coming days. Declines in private inventory investment and residential fixed investment were the main drags, the report said.
The tariffs as well as last year’s massive tax cut both were key factors in the growth.
“Bottom line, if it wasn’t for a big upside to inflation, GDP would have been much better because of the upside in spending, boost in exports and government spending which offset an unexpected sharp decline in inventories and no change in gross private investment,” said Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Advisory Group.
“We hope capital investment continues to improve in light of the tax incentive to ramp up,” he added. “The consumer has tax cuts and higher wages on one side and a low savings rate and a recent credit card binge on the other.”
In recent days, White House officials had been indicating the reading will be strong.
President Donald Trump himself tweeted a few days ago that the U.S. has the “best financial numbers on the planet,” while National Economic Council Chairman Larry Kudlow predicted on Thursday that Q2 GDP will be “big.”
The administration has used a mix of tax cuts, deregulation and spending increases to goose growth. White House budget director Mick Mulvaney told CNBC earlier this week that deregulation likely has had the most impact so far as companies feel more comfortable about committing capital.
The next question will be whether the growth spurt is sustainable. There were several jumps in GDP under former President Barack Obama. That Q3 increase in 2014 was preceded by a 5.1 percent rise in the second quarter. But by the end of 2015, growth had slowed to 0.4 percent. Federal Reserve officials forecast GDP to rise 2.8 percent for all of 2018 but then to tail off to 2.4 percent in 2019 and 2 percent in 2020.
Some economists worried that the jump in consumer spending for the April-to-June period may not be sustainable, adding to skepticism that the gains will continue.
“Personal consumption would need to keep up with this impressive pace to see a solid second half,” said Ian Lyngen at BMO Capital Markets.
Economists generally expect the trade war between the U.S. and China to temper further growth. Trump has slapped 25 percent duties on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports and has threatened $200 billion more. The administration also has put tariffs on steel and aluminum.
However, more recently the administration said it has made progress on trade agreements with the European Union.
In a recent forecast, Goldman Sachs said the effects from trade disputes are “typically modest,” shaving about 0.2 percent from output.
I dati rilasciati dall’Istituto di Statistica della Germania Federale sono inequivocabili: il sistema produttivo industriale tedesco è in crisi, per non voler usare il termine recessione. Gli ordinativi dall’eurozona sono crollati del -9.9%.
«price-adjusted new orders in manufacturing had decreased in April 2018 a seasonally and calendar adjusted 2.5% on the previous month»
«Domestic orders decreased by 4.8% and foreign orders decreased by 0.8% in April 2018 on the previous month»
«New orders from the euro area were down 9.9%»
«The manufacturers of capital goods showed decreases of 5.6% on the previous month»
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I dati sono questi: possono essere discussi a piacere, ma restano pur sempre questi.
Interessante la discussione proposta dal Deutsche Welle.
«Contracts for German goods were down 2.5 percent from March ….
Orders from Germany’s neighbors in the eurozone dropped by 9.9 percent month on month, while domestic contracts fell by 4.8 percent ….
The overall drop in industrial orders disappointed analysts who’d penciled in a slight pickup on the back of a raft of strong economic indicators, including rising retail sales and record-low unemployment. ….
Industry organizations suggested the downturn may have been caused by growing uncertainties over looming trade conflicts ….
But they also mentioned other fears hanging over Germany’s and Europe’s economy, ranging from the big spending plans of Italy’s new government that may plunge the eurozone into another crisis, to stalled progress in negotiations over Britain’s 2019 departure from the EU. »
Questi commenti lasciano stupiti e perplessi, perché sembrerebbero non tenere in conto altri fattori di notevole portata.
Non solo. Una produzione industriale rivolta alle esportazioni può sopravvivere solo sotto la condizione che il governo pratichi una politica estera che la promuova e la spinga, proponendola in modo amichevolmente appetibile ai possibili acquirenti esteri, che dovrebbero essere approcciati in modo paritetico.
April 2018 (provisional): new orders in manufacturing
–2.5% on the previous month (price, seasonally and calendar adjusted)
–0.1% on the same month a year earlier (price and calendar adjusted)
March 2018 (revised): new orders in manufacturing
–1.1% on the previous month (price, seasonally and calendar adjusted)
+2.9% on the same month a year earlier (price and calendar adjusted)
Based on provisional data, the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) reports that price-adjusted new orders in manufacturing had decreased in April 2018 a seasonally and calendar adjusted 2.5% on the previous month. For March 2018, revision of the preliminary outcome resulted in a decrease of 1.1% compared with February 2018 (primary –0.9%). Price-adjusted new orders without major orders in manufacturing had decreased in April 2018 a seasonally and calendar adjusted 1.7% on the previous month.
Domestic orders decreased by 4.8% and foreign orders decreased by 0.8% in April 2018 on the previous month. New orders from the euro area were down 9.9%, new orders from other countries increased 5.4% compared to March 2018.
In April 2018 the manufacturers of intermediate goods saw new orders rise by 2.5% compared with March 2018. The manufacturers of capital goods showed decreases of 5.6% on the previous month. For consumer goods, a decrease in new orders of 2.2% was recorded.
Turnover +0.3% seasonally adjusted on the previous month
The price-adjusted turnover in manufacturing in April 2018 was up a seasonally and calendar adjusted 0.3% on the previous month. In March 2018, the corrected figure shows an increase of 0.6% to February 2018 (primary value: +0.4%).
The data shown here on new orders and turnover are based on the volume index of manufacturing, seasonally and calendar adjusted by means of X13 JDemetra+. The underlying mathematical-statistical method is not fundamentally different from the previously applied method X-12-ARIMA.
Handelsblatt è il giornale della confindustria tedesca. Formalmente filogovernativo, qualsiasi sia il governo in carica, è sostanzialmente scettico sulla attuale situazione: il paziente era vivo un secondo prima di morire. Il fatto dunque che la Germania stia in piedi non è certo garanzia che prosegua a starci.
I dati sono molto semplici da leggersi, ma difficili da essere interiorizzati.
Secondo l’International Monetary Fund nel 2017 il pil ppa della Germania arriva a 4,149.573 miliardi Usd, contro un pil ppa mondiale di 126,687.917 miliardi Usd: la Germania conta quindi il 3.27% dell’economia mondiale. Per paragone, l’India con un pil ppa di 9,446.789 miliardi Usd vale il 7.46% del pil ppa mondiale: oltre il doppio della Germania.
In parole estremamente povere, la Germania è obbligata dalla realtà a dover ritornare nei ranghi: non si può essere supponenti quando si vale solo il 3.27%, e, per di più, si è in declino.
Piaccia o non piaccia, al mondo esistono anche gli altri.
Per esempio, la detassazione in atto negli Stati Uniti, unitamente al ritorno dei dazi, nonché la svalutazione politica del dollaro sono elementi dei quali la Germania dovrebbe tenere in un’accurata attenzione. Ripetiamo: tutti i pugili stavano in piedi prima di finire ko.
Tutti si sciacquano la bocca con le future nuove tecnologie: future, non attuali. Ma oggi, adesso, in questo momento, si devono comprare all’estero le materie prime delle quali la Germania non dispone. Fuori i soldi, quindi, ed accettare prezzi anche triplicati.
«Growing global demand for everything from aluminum to zinc is squeezing Germany’s muscular export economy»
«A global rebound in raw-materials prices has boosted the profits of mining companies»
«But it also threatens to pinch German manufacturers …. Many depend on imports like iron ore, copper, and coal, as well as lithium, graphite, and cobalt for electric autos, batteries, wind turbines and other new technologies»
«Germany spends more than $100 billion a year on imported oil, gas, coal, ore, metals and other basic commodities»
«The bad news for German industry is that prices for iron ore, coal, nickel and copper have risen more than 75 percent on average from their lows two years go. The big global mining companies – Glencore, BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Anglo American – reaped combined profits of $23.6 billion in 2017, almost 20 times more than in the previous year»
«Demand for lithium, a vital component for the batteries in electric autos, is expected to quadruple by 2035»
«China, in particular, explains the demand increases. It accounts for 40 to 60 percent of demand for industrial metals by itself»
«This boom in input prices “increases the costs for the manufacturing industry in Germany»
«It is estimated to cost more than $100 billion.»
A conti fatti – già, quei numeri orrore dei politici – in breve la Germania si troverà una spesa extra di circa 100 miliardi per approvvigionarsi di materie prime. E questa che le vada bene: queste sono stime minimali. E per di più saranno sempre in continuo aumento.
In parole povere, l’export tedesco si illanguidirà nel tempo.
Uno dei drammi dei paesi occidentali è che i politici ed i governi sono eletti per lassi di tempo brevi: dai quattro ai cinque anni. I governanti hanno quindi un orizzonte temporale che va dalla fatica per vincere la competizione elettorale alla prossima susseguente tornata. Ma il problema delle materie prime non può essere affrontato con piani economici e finanziari articolati su durate temporali così brevi.
Ce lo si ricordi bene: il gigante dai piedi di argilla stava in piedi fino a tanto che un sassolino non lo urtò.
Growing global demand for everything from aluminum to zinc is squeezing Germany’s muscular export economy.
A global rebound in raw-materials prices has boosted the profits of mining companies. But it also threatens to pinch German manufacturers. Many depend on imports like iron ore, copper, and coal, as well as lithium, graphite, and cobalt for electric autos, batteries, wind turbines and other new technologies.
Germany’s seemingly invincible export economy has thus discovered its Achilles heel. Europe’s industrial powerhouse relies on imports for most of its raw materials. Germany spends more than $100 billion a year on imported oil, gas, coal, ore, metals and other basic commodities. Virtually all metals come from outside the country, often in the form of semi-finished goods like pipes, sheets, wire or castings. In all, Germany gets four-fifths of the periodic table of elements from abroad – twice the share it imported a century ago.
The bad news for German industry is that prices for iron ore, coal, nickel and copper have risen more than 75 percent on average from their lows two years go. The big global mining companies – Glencore, BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Anglo American – reaped combined profits of $23.6 billion in 2017, almost 20 times more than in the previous year.
Germany gets 80% of the periodic table of elements from abroad.
And there is no end in sight. Demand for lithium, a vital component for the batteries in electric autos, is expected to quadruple by 2035, according to the German Mineral Resources Agency. Demand for more basic metals and energy sources is being driven by ambitious infrastructure plans in the world’s two biggest economies, the United States and China.
China, in particular, explains the demand increases. It accounts for 40 to 60 percent of demand for industrial metals by itself, according to Julian Kettle at Wood Mackenzie. China is now building out its so-called “Silk Road Economic Belt”, a gigantic rail-to-ports project linking China to markets in Europe, Asia and Africa. It is estimated to cost more than $100 billion.
This boom in input prices “increases the costs for the manufacturing industry in Germany,” Henry von Klencke, a raw materials analyst at the BDI German Industry Federation, told Handelsblatt. And no increase in supply is likely in the foreseeable future. It can take five to seven years for a new mine to become operational, so those investments should already be under way. They are not. There will be a shortage of copper within two years, analysts at Australia’s Bank Macquarie reckon.
“The times when one mine after the other was opened up are past,” said Ernst Frankl at Oliver Wyman consultants. The companies will hold back until they are sure the new mines will produce commensurate earnings in the very long run.
Investors, too, have been hesitant bid up mining stocks, despite the record profits. “It surprises me a lot that the market is so guarded toward raw materials producers,” said Evy Hambro, who heads up the sector for giant money manager BlackRock. “The companies are once again producing free cash flow; they are paying high dividends, and there’s a whole array of raw materials experiencing supply shortages while the global economy is growing and demand is increasing,” Mr. Hambro said. And yet, investors are not clamoring for these stocks.
«Much of Germany’s $2.6 trillion in total trade surpluses since 2000 will be lost forever»
«Germany not only has a trade surplus from shipping many more goods abroad than it imports. It must also send all its export earnings abroad that it cannot invest domestically»
«Germany is exporting its savings to the U.S., which then allow Americans to purchase German Porsches, designer kitchens and gummy bears»
«Each year, the money the world owes to German corporations, banks, insurance companies and retirement savers grows by the amount of Germany’s annual trade surplus, or €253 billion in 2016 (plus changes in asset values of course). America’s total foreign debt, in turn, rises according to its annual trade deficit, or $480 billion in 2016 alone»
«Similarly, some very large German companies have run up spectacular losses from ill-fated foreign takeovers, like Daimler’s disastrous purchase of Chrysler, BMW’s expensive foray into Britain, and steelmaker ThyssenKrupp’s heavy losses in Brazil»
«Germany’s massive assets in the U.S. are subject to devaluation»
«Unfortunately, Germany hasn’t invested its gigantic surpluses very well»
«The country’s accumulated current account surpluses have increased to $2.6 trillion since the start of the millennium, while its current net foreign assets amount to only $1.6 trillion. That difference is lost, never to return»
«it is Germany that should reconsider whether net capital exports on such a scale make sense in a world of highly volatile and speculative financial markets»
* * * * * * * *
Il prof Gunther Schnabl indica in modo documentato un altro punto di debolezza delle esportazioni tedesche.
È il solito giochetto di finanziare artificialmente le esportazioni, non ultimo a scopo di eludere il fisco tedesco.
Quando finalmente saranno finite le tornate elettorali in Europa, vedremo cosa potranno fare la Commissione Europea ed i governi dei singoli stati.
Poche cose sono certe, ma una lo sembrerebbe essere sicuramente. È necessario cambiare completamente le direttive di politica economica finora seguite, pena la catastrofe.
Fino a tanto che in Europa sarà più redditizio l’investimento finanziario a discapito di quello nel comparto produttivo il sistema economico resterà sempre in crisi.
Germany’s surplus is a problem, but not for the reasons Donald Trump thinks. Much of Germany’s $2.6 trillion in total trade surpluses since 2000 will be lost forever.
Peter Navarro, the new U.S. trade advisor under President Trump, has lashed out at Germany for exploiting the U.S. with its trade surplus. While Navarro is right that Germany runs a massive surplus with the U.S. (in 2016, Americans spent €49 billion more on German goods than vice versa), he’s wrong about who’s exploiting whom. Because it’s entirely uncertain if the bulk of the money that America owes Germany for all those goods will ever be repaid.
But first, consider this basic lesson from Econ 101: Germany not only has a trade surplus from shipping many more goods abroad than it imports. It must also send all its export earnings abroad that it cannot invest domestically – that’s known as a capital surplus. In fact, the trade and capital surpluses are equal in a world of free exchange rates.
In other words: Germany is exporting its savings to the U.S., which then allow Americans to purchase German Porsches, designer kitchens and gummy bears. The U.S., meanwhile, runs up debt to afford itself more private and public consumption. Over time, Germany’s claims on U.S. assets grow. Each year, the money the world owes to German corporations, banks, insurance companies and retirement savers grows by the amount of Germany’s annual trade surplus, or €253 billion in 2016 (plus changes in asset values of course). America’s total foreign debt, in turn, rises according to its annual trade deficit, or $480 billion in 2016 alone.
In theory, all those assets that Germans are accumulating will at some point be repaid – including America’s running tab for German imports. That’s exactly what happened in the 1990s following German reunification, when Germany repatriated substantial foreign assets to pay for the reconstruction of the former East Germany.
But it’s a very different story when those foreign assets are devalued. Take the German publicly-owned Landesbanken: During the U.S. mortgage crisis in 2008 and 2009, their bad investments vanished into thin air like so many Lehman Brothers certificates. Similarly, some very large German companies have run up spectacular losses from ill-fated foreign takeovers, like Daimler’s disastrous purchase of Chrysler, BMW’s expensive foray into Britain, and steelmaker ThyssenKrupp’s heavy losses in Brazil.
Even without such costly mistakes, Germany’s massive assets in the U.S. are subject to devaluation. That’s because America’s foreign liabilities are mainly denominated in dollars, not in the euros that matter to Germans. If the U.S. dollar falls – for example, because the Federal Reserve decides to run an inflationary monetary policy – the real value of America’s foreign debt falls. Every American asset held by other countries in the form of U.S. Treasury bills, stakes in companies or asset-backed securities now incurs losses in terms of those other countries’ own currencies.
In the past, the U.S. has frequently undertaken such devaluations with interest rate cuts. By pumping money into the economy, low interest rates create financial market bubbles (such as the 2000 dotcom bubble and the pre-2008 U.S. mortgage-loan boom), which devalue liabilities when they burst. Low interest rates also devalue the dollar. As a result of both types of devaluation, foreign holders of American assets lose repayment of a considerable part of their holdings.
While America has run up current account deficits (or net capital imports) totaling $10.8 trillion since 1980, net foreign liabilities today are around $3 trillion lower. Back in the 1960s, the then-president of France, Charles de Gaulle, already criticized America’s ability to slash the value of foreign-held debt to its own advantage as an “exorbitant privilege.”
Unfortunately, Germany hasn’t invested its gigantic surpluses very well. The country’s accumulated current account surpluses have increased to $2.6 trillion since the start of the millennium, while its current net foreign assets amount to only $1.6 trillion. That difference is lost, never to return. A large part of German savings invested abroad went up in smoke during the U.S. mortgage market boom. A similar thing happened in southern Europe, where German savings resulting from the trade surplus financed everything from Greek government bonds to inflated Spanish real estate. Ditto for Ireland during that country’s financial-sector collapse, and many other places around the world. Total losses to Germany have reached almost $1 trillion. Gone. Poof. Auf Wiedersehen.
In other words: It’s the U.S. that exploits its trading partners, not the other way around. America’s biggest paymasters are Germany, Japan and China. Trump would be mad to abandon his “exorbitant privilege” by bringing his deficit down. If anything, it is Germany that should reconsider whether net capital exports on such a scale make sense in a world of highly volatile and speculative financial markets. They could probably be better invested in Germany – in new roads, better bridges, faster rail links, more kindergartens and smart new inner cities for blighted industrial towns like Duisburg and Dortmund. At least these investments wouldn’t disappear without a trace, like so many of Germany’s assets do now.