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Джозеф Стиглиц
Джозеф Стиглиц
Джозеф Юджин Стиглиц (Joseph Stiglitz; род. 9 февраля 1943 года, г. Гэри, штат Индиана) — американский экономист-неокейнсианец. Лауреат Нобелевской премии по экономике (2001, с Джорджем Акерлофом и Майклом Спенсом) «за анализ рынков с несимметричной информацией». Учился в Амхе ...

Джозеф Юджин Стиглиц (Joseph Stiglitz; род. 9 февраля 1943 года, г. Гэри, штат Индиана) — американский экономист-неокейнсианец. Лауреат Нобелевской премии по экономике (2001, с Джорджем Акерлофом и Майклом Спенсом) «за анализ рынков с несимметричной информацией». Учился в Амхерст-колледже и Массачусетском технологическом институте, где получил степень доктора. Профессор Колумбийского университета. Иностранный член РАН (22.05.2003), член научно-редакционного совета российского журнала «МИР: Модернизация. Инновации. Развитие».

Награждён медалью Дж. Б. Кларка (1979). Лауреат премии Ректенвальда (1998). Председатель Совета экономических консультантов при президенте США (1995—1997). Шеф-экономист Всемирного банка (1997—2000).

Джозеф Стиглиц известен как жёсткий критик неограниченного рынка, монетаризма и неоклассической экономической школы вообще, а также неолиберального понимания глобализации, политики МВФ в отношении развивающихся стран и либеральных реформ в России.

 

Биография

Родился в еврейской семье Шарлотты и Натаниеля Стиглица. С 1960 по 1963 учился в Амхерст-колледже, где был президентом студенческого самоуправления. Продолжил свою учёбу в Массачусетском технологическом институте. В 1965—1966 Стиглиц трудился над исследованиями в Чикагском университете под руководством Хирофуми Узава. В то время его исследования были посвящены проблемам экономического роста, инноваций и перераспределения доходов. Затем он вернулся в МТИ, где получил степень доктора наук в 1967. В дальнейшем Стиглиц преподавал в университетах Кембриджа, Йеля, Дьюка, Стэнфорда, Оксфорда и Уинстона и ныне является профессором Колумбийского университета, а также является соредактором журнала The Economists' Voice («Голос экономистов»).

Кроме своих значимых исследований в области микро- и макроэкономики, Стиглиц также напрямую играет важную роль в политической и общественной жизни. В 1992 он перебрался в Вашингтон, чтобы работать в администрации президента Клинтона. В 1993—1995 годах входил в состав Экономического совета при Президенте США Клинтоне. В 1995—1997 занимал должность председателя Совета экономических консультантов при президенте США. В 1997—2000 годах вице-президент и шеф-экономист Всемирного банка.

Я не настолько глуп, чтобы поверить, что рынок сам по себе решит все социальные проблемы. Неравенство, безработица, загрязнение окружающей среды непреодолимы без активного участия государства.

— Джозеф Стиглиц (2002)

С 2008 года является председателем международной Комиссии по основным показателям экономической деятельности и социального прогресса.

Жена — журналистка и редактор Аня Шиффрин (Anya Schiffrin, род. 1962), дочь издателя Шиффрин, Андре, внучка издателя Якова Савельевича Шифрина.

 

Модель Шапиро — Стиглица

 

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21 сентября, 00:41

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Links for 09-012-17

Why the US government can’t be downsized - Larry Summers What should we do about climate change? - AEA Re-thinking the capital code - Thomas Piketty Are Ideas Getting Harder to Find? - NBER Fiscal Stimulus and Fiscal Sustainability -...

30 августа, 09:00

Why Every European Country Has A Trump Or Sanders Candidate

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Authored by Richard Drake via TheAmericanConservative.com, The suicide in the Friuli region of northern Italy earlier this year of a 30-year-old man, identified in the newspapers only as Michele, has become a symbol of the country’s unemployment tragedy, particularly as it affects young people. Though much worse in the South, the country’s economic crisis also has had a blighting effect on the North. The national unemployment rate now stands at nearly 12 percent. A 40 percent youth unemployment rate nationwide, however, has people speaking of a generational apartheid in Italy. There is no work to be found for young people. In the workplace, comparatively speaking, they have been walled off from the rest of the population. Friuli is a region of plain and mountain in the northeastern part of Italy, flush against borders to the north with Austria and the east with Slovenia. The annals of Friuli antedate by many centuries the arrival of the ancient Romans, who founded the colony of Aquileia there nearly two hundred years before Christ. The barbarian invasions swept over Friuli in the general wreckage of the Roman Empire. An Aquileian state arose in the Middle Ages, but was absorbed in the 15th century by the expanding Venetian empire. Then Friuli passed through French and Austrian phases of occupation and control before becoming part the newly founded Kingdom of Italy, in 1866. The Friulani, a highly energetic and resourceful people steeped in the work ethic common to the peasant and artisanal cultures of traditional Europe, tilled the land and also gained a well-deserved reputation for their skill in specialty crafts and the building trades. Typically in such cultures, the work that a man did defined him. The modern world has changed those old ways of life, but the culture they generated persists. More recently, Friuli became renowned for its small businesses and factories, which played a vital role in the national economy. There was still hard work for the Friulani to do. From his mother’s milk, Michele would have imbibed the work ethic of his native region. He would have thought of work as dignity and honor. In a suicide note, he claimed to be bereft of such things and of hope. “Desire has passed me by,” he wrote. Michele never had been able to find a meaningful job and had despaired of ever finding one. Contemplating his blank future, a sense of deep frustration had crushed his spirit. He hoped that his parents would forgive his dreadful act, but could not envisage a place for himself in a society without work. No less than many other regions in the country, Friuli has been devastated by the economic crash of 2008 and its seemingly permanent aftermath. Hundreds of its small businesses and factories have closed, leaving many thousands unemployed. Michele’s father called his son’s death “the defeat of a moribund society.” What other way is there to describe a society unable to create work for its young people? One of Italy’s rising political figures, Beppe Grillo of the politically eclectic Five-Star Movement, has proposed a guaranteed citizen income for all Italians. His reasoning appears to be that the Italians should be getting something from their government other than its slavish devotion to the corrupt oligarchy of the banks and corporations that rule the country. There is a strong Bernie Sanders and Jill Stein component in the Five-Star Movement, as well as an admiration for the challenge that Hugo Chávez threw down to the multinationals in Venezuela. Grillo also has praised Ecuador’s Rafael Correa for his opposition to the International Monetary Fund, an institution that the Italian leader reviles as a battering ram of noxious austerity policies. Since the recent presidential election in the United States, Grillo has praised Trump as a much-needed change-of-air in world politics. Change of any kind, a powerful sentiment in the United States last fall, exerts the same kind of force in Italy now. Even if a guaranteed citizen income initiative were to prevail and become law, the main problem underscored by Michele’s death would still remain. An allowance conjures up the image of juvenile dependence. A national welfare program for all citizens certainly is preferable to leaving ever rising numbers of them in want, but it would not solve in a socially edifying way the anterior problem of work. Michele was not asking for an allowance. He wanted work to do. This is a human need that societies deserving of survival are obliged to supply, a point raised by Thorstein Veblen in the book of his he valued most, The Instinct of Workmanship (1914). Human beings, he wrote, are called by nature to useful effort. It is not only the deprivations and frustrations associated with sex that undermine and subvert the human personality. He judged the men who live by moving money around to be the greatest peril of all to those who live by work. The problem of work in Italy today belongs to the class of social consequences identified by Pier Paolo Pasolini in a famous Corriere della Sera article in 1974. “The Italians are no longer what they once were,” he observed. By this statement, Friuli’s greatest poet, filmmaker, and social critic meant that Italy’s traditional values had undergone an anthropological mutation. The country had abandoned its traditional way of life, which in its peasant culture had achieved a kind of poetic synthesis in the saying of Padron ‘Ntoni, novelist Giovanni Verga’s lead character in I Malavoglia (1881): “He is richest who has the fewest wants.” Pasolini feared that the new values of a hedonistic consumer society would be a poor substitute for Italy’s Christian and socialist ideals. What a debased fate for Italy, to come through the civilization-defining vicissitudes of its millennial history, only to end up ignobly aping American-style conspicuous consumption. Pasolini had in mind a particular phase of the globalized economy, which since the 1970s has sped forward on the principle that money must be completely liberated to maximize profits for those who have it. It is immediately evident why this golden rule for today’s economy, though achieving its purpose of profit-maximization, has been a poor proposition for most of the working people of the Western world. While rates of extreme poverty worldwide have declined in recent decades, the means to produce such a result have required an outsourcing of the West’s manufacturing base. The coincidental surge in profits made possible by the relocation of manufacturing jobs to countries unencumbered by high wages, labor unions, and environmental laws has with perfect justice sparked a political firestorm. Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz explained in Globalization and Its Discontents (2004) that the basic problem with the world’s current financial arrangement concerned the institutions and organizations commanding it. The International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the World Trade Organization, the U.S. Treasury, and the European Monetary Union protect special interests, Wall Street most of all. Despite their lip-service in democratic argot, the very last thing seriously on the minds of the top financial policy makers is the well-being of ordinary people. As a result of the methods used to promote globalization, the consequences for the West have been tragic. Work is becoming increasingly uncertain and insecure, or it is in the process of disappearing altogether. It would take Veblen’s talents for social satire, which are unsurpassed in all of American literature, to depict with the essential exactitude of artistic synthesis how far the United States has fallen away from democratic grace, the country’s dramatically widening gap between the haves and the have-nots being what it is. Clearly, we are on the wrong course. What the robotics revolution, now at an incipient stage, will do to further diminish opportunities for Western peoples to work can be easily imagined, if the economic imperative of corporate capitalism is the rule to go by. The same desolating trends can be seen in Europe, where people increasingly regard the European Union as a Trojan horse. The economic elites and their political front-men responsible for this image-challenged contraption lose public support with each new poll. The people by and large blame the European Union and the other accessories of globalization for their worsening standard of living. When informed by the establishment media that thanks to globalization Europe has never been more prosperous and peaceful, Europeans in historic numbers are reacting with disbelief. Their deepening sense of betrayal propels the surge of populism that defines the politics of Europe today. Arguments long-settled in favor of deregulation, liberalization, open borders, and other globalization watchwords have been reopened. The constituency is growing for a politics that puts the well-being of Europeans first. Political measures calling for the protection of European jobs and cultures have gained a following unforeseen prior to 2008. In Italy, for example, 77 percent of the people questioned in a recent poll could see no advantage to them at all from the country’s membership in the European Union. Sixty-four percent of them expressed hostility toward it. Eight Italian businesses out of 10 can find nothing positive to say about the European Union. It is seen to be a creature of the banks and the big financial houses. As public relations disasters go, this one has unfolded on an epic scale as the underlying populations, long left out of consideration by the economic elites, have begun to sense the fate their masters have in store for them. Leaving underlying populations out of consideration was a special feature of the planning that went into globalization. They have been voiceless. In America, Trump gave them a voice, and they responded to him with their political support. It did not matter that he came before them without a plan for their deliverance. That he came to them at all mattered. He understood the depth of the anger and alienation in America against a status quo personified by his opponent, Hillary Clinton, whose repeated and munificently rewarded speeches before the captains of finance on Wall Street effectively branded her as the safe candidate for all who wanted to leave existing economic arrangements fundamentally undisturbed. Trump may go down in history as a president who was hopelessly out of his depth on all vital matters, but his presidential campaign will be studied for as long as historians have an interest in American politics. It was a masterpiece of intuition based on an uncannily correct judgment about the spirit of the times. Bernie Sanders had the same insight, but the Democratic Party turned out to be much more corrupt and vulnerable to manipulation than the Republicans, an astonishing feat. In possibly an even more flagrant instance of interference in the American democratic process than anything yet proven against Vladimir Putin, internal machinations weighted the primary process against Sanders. The Republicans tried to head off Trump, too, but a fiercely loyal base and a dearth of plausible opponents gave him an easy victory in the primaries. At an academic conference in New York in May a year ago, I participated in a conversation among scholars, journalists, and government officials who generally thought that Trump would not even win 20 percent of the national vote. His ridiculous campaign surely would fall of its own dead weight. Professional pollsters, though not so far wrong as my conference colleagues in New York, also missed what appears to be the main story of the campaign: a loss of faith, unprecedented in its severity, by the American people in the rules of the game. There is no other way to explain the stunningly bizarre choice that they made for the man to lead them. That Trump has rapt admirers and self-confessed imitators in Europe should come as no surprise because the mood he represents is an international phenomenon. Virtually every European country has a Trump candidate saying basically the same things that he did in his campaign against immigrants, globalization trade agreements, and the establishment media. Italy has two such candidates: Grillo and the leader of the xenophobic League Party, Matteo Salvini. They are riding a wave of anti-establishment outrage and in tandem are outpolling the two major mainstream parties, the center-left Democratic Party, now in internal disarray from schism, and the center-right Go Italy Party. As Europe since the end of World War II has slipped ever more securely into the orbit of American military and economic power, it is only to be expected that the Atlantic Community will be increasingly homogeneous. The Italian case is most instructive about the fundamental meaning of America for Europe. Italy’s greatest postwar novelist, Cesare Pavese, explained in The Moon and the Bonfires (1950), “America is here already. We have our millionaires and people are dying of hunger.” Contemporary Italy, in keeping with Europe as a whole, is best understood as an example of America’s role as the prime mover in international affairs and economics, or of how the world works per necessità, in Machiavelli’s phrase, according to the dictates of those who hold irresistible power. By outsourcing its manufacturing base in search of portfolio enhancement, the United States exercised a freedom for which liberty-loving European businessmen, bankers, and politicians hungered as well. Unable to compete with 50-cent per hour labor, the working classes in America and Europe would have to go to the wall, but while adjusting their blindfolds they could rest assured that in the fullness of time the wonder-working ways of the free market would redeem the world. Such a promise held no meaning for Michele, and he left this world slamming the door. “I feel betrayed,” he wrote in his suicide note. Who can say which other factors drove him in those last desperate hours before he took his life? We do know what his stated reason was for doing it. Work was the final thought that he had. How else could a Friulano give a good account of himself in this life?

10 августа, 04:25

The Secret History Of The Banking Crisis

Authored by Adam Tooze via ProspectMagazine.co.uk, Accounts of the financial crisis leave out the story of the secretive deals between banks that kept the show on the road. How long can the system be propped up for? It is a decade since the first tremors of what would become the Great Financial Crisis began to convulse global markets. Across the world from China and South Korea, to Ukraine, Greece, Brexit Britain and Trump’s America it has shaken our economy, our society and latterly our politics. Indeed, it has thrown into question who “we” are. It has triggered both a remarkable wave of nationalism and a deep questioning of social and economic inequalities. Politicians promise their voters that they will “take back control.” But the basic framework of globalisation remains intact, so far at least. And to keep the show on the road, networks of financial and monetary co-operation have been pulled tighter than ever before. In Britain the beginning of the crisis was straight out of economic history’s cabinet of horrors. Early in the morning of Monday 14th September 2007, queues of panicked savers gathered outside branches of the mortgage lender Northern Rock on high streets across Britain. It was—or at least so it seemed—a classic bank run. Within the year the crisis had circled the world. Wall Street was shaking, as was the City of London. The banks of South Korea, Russia, Germany, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Ireland and Iceland were all in trouble. We had seen nothing like it since 1929. Soon enough Ben Bernanke, then chairman of the US Federal Reserve and an expert on the Great Depression, said that this time it was worse. But the fact that the tumult assumed such spectacular, globe-straddling dimensions had initially taken Bernanke by surprise. In May 2007 he reassured the public that he didn’t think American subprime mortgages could bring down the house. Clearly he underestimated the crisis. But was he actually wrong? For it certainly wasn’t subprime that brought down Northern Rock. The British bank didn’t have any exposure in the United States. So what was going on? The familiar associations evoked by the Northern Rock crisis were deceptive. It wasn’t panicking pensioners all scrambling to withdraw their savings at once that killed the bank. It wasn’t even the Rock’s giant portfolio of mortgages. The narrative of Michael Lewis’s The Big Short, of securitisation, pooling and tranching, the lugubrious details of trashy mortgage dealing, the alphabet soup of securitised loans and associated derivatives (MBS, CDO, CDS, CDO-squared) tell only one part of the story. What really did for banks like Northern Rock and for all the others that would follow—Bear Stearns, Merrill Lynch, Lehman, Hypo Real State, Dexia and many more—and what made this downturn different— so sharp, so sudden and so systemic, not just a recession but the Great Recession—was the implosion of a new system not just of bank lending, but of bank funding. It is only when we examine both sides of the balance sheet—the liabilities as well as the assets—that we can appreciate how the crisis was propagated, and then how it was ultimately contained at a global level. It is a story that the crisis-fighters have chosen not to celebrate or publicise. Ten years on, the story is worth revisiting, not only to get the history right, but because the global fix that began to be put in place in the autumn of 2007 is in many ways the most significant legacy of the crisis. It is still with us today and remains largely out of sight. The hidden rewiring of the global monetary system provides reassurance to those in the know, but it has no public or political standing, no resources with which to fight back if attacked. And this matters because it is increasingly out of kilter with the nationalist turn of politics. In the wake of the crash and its austere aftermath, voters in many countries have pointed the finger at globalisation. The monetary authorities, however, have quietly entwined themselves more closely than ever before—and they have done so in order to provide life support to that bank funding model which caused such trouble a decade ago. Ten years on, the question of whether this fix is sustainable, or indeed wise, is a question of more than historical interest. “To keep the show on the road, networks of financial and monetary co-operation have been pulled tighter than ever before” In 2007 economists were expecting a crisis. Not, however, the crisis they got. The standard crisis scenario through to autumn that year involved a sudden loss of confidence in American government debt and the dollar. In the Bush era, the Republicans had cut taxes and spent heavily on the War on Terror, borrowing from China. So what would happen, it was asked anxiously, if the Chinese pulled the plug? The great fear was that the dollar would plunge, interest rates would soar and both the US economy and the Chinese export sector would crash land. It was what Larry Summers termed a balance of financial terror. America’s currency seemed so doomed that in autumn 2007, the US-based supermodel Gisele Bündchen asked to be paid in euros for a Pantene campaign, and Jay-Z dissed the dollar on MTV. But somewhat surprisingly, like the nuclear stand-off in the Cold War, the financial balance of terror has become the basis for a precarious stability. Crucially, both Beijing and Washington understand the risks involved, or at least they seemed to until the advent of President Donald Trump. Certainly during the most worrying moments in 2008 Hank Paulson, Bush’s last Treasury Secretary, made sure that Beijing understood that its interests would be protected. Beijing reciprocated by increasing its commitment to dollar assets. In 2007, it was not the American state that lost credibility: it was the American housing market. What unfolded was a fiasco of the American dream: 8.7m homes were lost to foreclosure. But the real estate bust wasn’t limited to the US. Ireland, Spain, the UK and the Netherlands all had huge credit booms and suffered shattering busts. As homeowners defaulted some lenders went under. This is what happened early on to predatory lenders such as New Century and Countrywide. Bankruptcy also came to the Anglo Irish Bank and Spain’s notorious regional mortgage lenders, the cajas. In the fullness of time, it was—perhaps, though not necessarily—the fate that might well have befallen Northern Rock too. But before it could suffer death by a thousand foreclosures, Northern Rock was felled by a more fast-acting kind of crisis, a crisis of “maturity mismatch.” Banks borrow money short-term at low interest and lend long at marginally higher rates. It may sound precarious, but it is how they earn their living. In the conventional model, however, the short-term funding comes from deposits, from ordinary savers. Ordinarily, in a well-run bank, their withdrawals and deposits tend to cancel each other out. Fits of uncertainty and mass withdrawals are always possible, and perhaps even inevitable once in a while. So to prevent them turning into bank runs, governments offer guarantees up to a reasonable amount. Most of the Northern Rock depositors had little to fear. Their deposits were, like all other ordinary savers, guaranteed by then Chancellor Alistair Darling. The investors who weren’t covered by government backing were those who had provided Northern Rock with funding through a new and different channel—the wholesale money market. They had tens of billions at stake, and every reason to panic. It was the sudden withdrawal of this funding that actually killed Northern Rock. As well as taking in money from savers, banks can also borrow from other banks and other institutional investors. The money markets offer funds overnight, or for a matter of weeks or months. It is a fiercely competitive market with financial professionals on both sides of every trade. Margins are slim, but if the volumes are large there are profits to be made. For generations this was the preserve of investment bankers—the ultimate insiders of the financial community. They didn’t bother with savers’ deposits. They borrowed in the money markets. From the 1990s commercial banks and mortgage lenders began to operate on a similar model. It was this new form of “market-based” banking combined with the famous securitisation of mortgages that enabled the huge expansion of European and US banking that began to crash in 2007. Run for the hills: Northern Rock depositors rush to start taking out their money.  By the summer of 2007 only 23 per cent of Northern Rock’s funding came from regular deposits. More than three quarters of its operation was sustained by borrowing in capital and money markets. For these funds there were no guarantees. For a run to develop in the money market, the mortgages did not need to default. All that needed to happen was for the probability of some of them defaulting to increase. That was enough for interbank lending and money market funding to come abruptly to a halt. The European money markets seized up on 9th August. Within a matter of days Northern Rock was in trouble, struggling to repay short-term loans with no new source of funding in prospect. And it was through the same funding channel that the crisis went global. The attraction of money market funding was that it freed you from the cumbersome bricks-and-mortar branch network traditionally used to attract deposits. Using the markets, banks could source funding all over the world. South Korean banks borrowed dollars on the cheap to lend in Won. American banks operating out of London borrowed Yen in depressed Japan, flipped them into dollars and then lent them to booming Brazil. The biggest business of all was the “round tripping” of dollars between America and Europe. Funds were raised in America, which for reasons of history and the nation’s sheer scale, is the richest money market in the world. Those dollars were exported to institutions and banks in Europe, who then reinvested them in the US, very often in American mortgages. The largest inflow of funds to the US came not from the reinvestment of China’s trade surplus, but through this recycling of dollars by way of Europe’s banks. Barclays didn’t need a branch in Kansas any more than Lehman did. Both simply borrowed money in the New York money markets. From the 1990s onwards, Europe’s banks, both great and small, British, Dutch, Belgian, French, Swiss and German, made themselves into a gigantic trans-Atlantic annex of the American banking system. All was well so long as the economy was buoyant, house and other asset prices continued to go up, money markets remained confident and the dollar moved predictably in the direction that everyone expected, that is gently downwards. If you were borrowing dollars to fund a lending business the three things that you did not want to have happen were: for your own loans to go bad; money markets to lose confidence; or for dollars to suddenly become scarce, or, what amounts to the same thing, unexpectedly expensive. While the headlines were about sub-prime, the true catastrophe of the late summer of 2007 was that all three of these assumptions were collapsing, all at once, all around the world. “The Fed effectively established itself as a lender of last resort to the entire global financial system” The real estate market turned down. Large losses were in the pipeline, over years to come. But as soon as Bear Stearns and Banque Nationale de Paris (BNP) shut their first real estate funds, the money markets shut down too. Given the global nature of bank funding this produced an acute shortage of dollar funding across the European and Asian banking system. It was the opposite of what the best and brightest in macroeconomics had expected: strong currencies are, after all, meant to be built on thrift and industry, not shopping splurges and speculative debts. But rather than the world being glutted with dollars, quite suddenly banks both in Europe and Asia began to suffer periodic and panic-inducing dollar shortages. The paradigmatic case of this counterintuitive crisis would eventually be South Korea. How could South Korea, a champion exporter with huge exchange reserves be short of dollars? The answer is that in the years of the recovery from the 1997 East Asian crisis, while Korean companies Hyundai and Samsung had conquered the world, Korea’s banks had been borrowing dollars at relatively low interest rates to lend out back home in Won to the booming home economy. Not only was there an attractive interest rate margin, but thanks to South Korea’s bouyant exports, the Won was steadily appreciating. Loans taken out in dollars were easier to repay in Won. As such these loans cushioned the losses suffered by South Korean firms on their dollar export-earnings. By the late summer of 2008 the South Korean banks operating this system owed $130bn in short-term loans. Normally this was no problem, you rolled over the loan, taking out a new short-term dollar credit to pay off the last one. But when the inter-bank market ground to a halt the South Koreans were painfully exposed. Barring emergency help, all they could do was to throw Won at the exchange markets to buy the dollars they needed, which had the effect of spectacularly devaluing their own currency and making their dollar obligations even more unpayable. South Korea, a country with a huge trade surplus and a large official dollar reserve, faced a plunging currency and a collapsing banking system. In Europe the likes of RBS, Barclays, UBS and Deutsche had even larger dollar liabilities than their South Korean counterparts. The BIS, the central bankers’ bank, estimated that Europe’s mega-banks needed to roll over $1-1.2 trillion dollars in short-term funding. The margin that desperate European banks were willing to pay to borrow in sterling and euro and to swap into dollars surged. Huge losses threatened—and both the Bank of England and the European Central Bank (ECB) could not do much to help. Unlike their East Asian counterparts, they had totally inadequate reserves. The one advantage that the Europeans did have over the Koreans, was that the dollars they had borrowed had largely been invested in the US, the so-called “round-tripping” again. The huge portfolios of American assets they had accumulated were of uncertain value, but they amounted to trillions of dollars and somewhere between 20 and 25 per cent of the total volume of asset- and mortgage-backed securities. In extremis the Europeans could have auctioned them off. This would have closed the dollar-funding gap, but in the resulting fire sales the European banks would have been forced to take huge write downs. And most significantly, the efforts by the Fed and the US Treasury to stabilise the American mortgage market would have been fatally undercut. “In the 60s, swaps were about stabilising exchange rates. Now they’re all about stabilising oversized banks” This was the catastrophic causal chain that began to emerge in August 2007. How could the central banks address it? The answer they found was three-pronged. The most public face of crisis-fighting was the effort to boost the faltering value of the mortgage bonds on the banks’ books (typically securitised versions of other banks’ mortgage loans, which were becoming less reliable in the downturn), and to provide the banks with enough capital to absorb those losses that they would inevitably suffer. This was the saga of America’s Troubled Asset Relief Programme, which played out on Capitol Hill. In the case of Northern Rock this prong involved outright nationalisation. Others took government stakes of varying sizes. Warren Buffett made a lucrative investment in Goldman Sachs. Barclays has now been charged by the Serious Fraud Office with fraudulently organising its own bailout, by—allegedly—lending money to Qatar, which that state is then said to have reinvested in Barclays. Without the bailout, you ended up with Lehman: bewildered bankers standing on the pavements of the City and Wall Street carrying boxes of their belongings. The masters of the universe plunged to earth. It half-satisfied the public’s desire for revenge. But it did nothing for business confidence. With enough capital a bank could absorb losses and stay afloat. But to actually operate, to make loans and thus to sustain demand and avert a downward spiral of prices and more bankruptcies, the banks needed liquidity. So, secondly, the central banks stepped in, taking over the function, which the money market had only relatively recently assumed but was now suddenly stepping back from, of being the short-term lenders. The ECB started as early as August 2007. The Bank of England came in late, but on a large scale. The Fed became the greatest liquidity pump, with all of Europe’s banks benefiting from its largesse. The New York branches of Barclays, Deutsche, BNP, UBS and Credit Suisse were all provided with short-term dollar funding on the same basis as Citi, Bank of America, JP Morgan and the rest. But it was not enough. The Europeans needed even more dollars. So the Fed’s third, final and most radical innovation of the crisis was to devise a system to allow a select group of central banks to funnel dollars to their banks. To do so the Fed reanimated an almost-forgotten tool called the “swap lines,” agreements between central banks to trade their currencies in a given quantity for a given period of time. They had been used regularly in the 1960s, but had since gone out of use. Back then, the aim was stabilising exchange rates. This time, the aim was different: to stabilise a swollen banking system that was faltering, and yet abjectly too big to fail. At a moment when dollars were hard to come by, the new swap lines enabled the ECB to deposit euros with the Fed in exchange for the dollars that the eurozone banks were craving. The Bank of England benefited from the same privilege. Not that they were welcome at first. When the Fed first mooted the idea in the autumn of 2007, the ECB resisted. It did not want to be associated with a crisis that was still seen largely as American. If Gisele didn’t want to be paid her modelling fees in US dollars, why on earth should the ECB be interested? But as the European bank balance sheets unravelled, it would soon become obvious that Frankfurt needed all the dollars it could get. Initiated in December 2007, the swap lines would rapidly expand. By September all the major European central banks were included. In October 2008 the network was expanded to include Brazil, Australia, South Korea, Mexico, New Zealand and Singapore. For the inner European core, plus Japan, they were made unrestricted in volume. The sums of liquidity were huge. All told, the Fed would make swap line loans of a total of $10 trillion to the ECB, the Bank of England the National Bank of Switzerland and other major banking centres. The maximum balance outstanding was $583bn in December 2008, when they accounted for one quarter of the Fed’s balance sheet. It was a remarkable moment: the Fed had effectively established itself as a lender of last resort to the entire global financial system. But it had done so in a decentralised fashion, issuing dollars on demand both in New York and by means of a global network of central banks. Not everyone was included. Russia wasn’t, which was hardly surprising given that it had come to blows with the west over Georgia’s Nato membership application only weeks earlier. Nor did the Fed help China or India. And though it helped the ECB, it did not provide support to the “new Europe” in the east. The Fed probably imagined that the ECB itself would wish to help Poland, the Baltics and Hungary. But the ECB’s president Jean-Claude Trichet was not so generous. Instead, eastern Europe ended up having to rely on the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Swapsies? As a scholar of the Great Depression, the Fed’s Ben Bernanke knew the importance of swap lines. Photo: MARK WILSON/GETTY IMAGES The swap lines were central bank to central bank. But who did they really help? The reality, as all those involved understood, was that the Fed was providing preferential access to liquidity not to the “euro area” or “the Swiss economy” as a whole, but to Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse. Of course, the justification was “systemic risk.” The mantra in Washington was: you have to help Wall Street to help Main Street. But the immediate beneficiaries were the banks, their staff, especially their highly-remunerated senior staff and their shareholders. Though what the Fed was doing was stabilising the global banking system, it never acknowledged as much in so many words, certainly not on the record, where it said as little as it decently could about the swap line operation. The Fed’s actions have global effects. But it remains an American institution, answerable to Congress. Its mandate is to maintain employment and price stability in the US economy. The justification for the swap lines, therefore, was not global stability, but the need to prevent blowback from Europe’s de facto Americanised banks—to avoid a ruinous, multi-trillion dollar fire sale of American assets. Once the worst of the crisis had passed, Bernanke would assist the European banks in liquidating their American assets by way of the Fed’s three rounds of asset purchases, known as Quantitative Easing (QE). The swaps were meticulously accounted for. Every cent was repaid. No losses were incurred—the Fed even earned a modest profit. They were not exactly covert. But given the extraordinary extension of its global influence that the swaps implied, they were never given publicity, nor even properly discussed. Bernanke’s name will be forever associated with QE, not swap lines. In his lengthy memoirs, The Courage to Act, the swaps merit no more than a few cursory pages, though Bernanke as a scholar of the 1930s knows very well just how crucial these instruments were. Is this an accident? Surely not. In the case of the swap lines, the courage to act was supplemented by an ample measure of discretion. The Fed did everything it could to avoid disclosing the full extent and range of beneficiaries of its liquidity support operations. They did not want to name and shame the most vulnerable banks, for fear of worsening the panic. But there are politics involved too. Given the rise of the Bernanke-hating Tea Party in 2009, the likely response in Congress to news headlining the scale of the Fed’s global activity was unpredictable to say the least. When asked why no one on Capitol Hill had chosen to make an issue of the swap lines, one central banker remarked to me that it felt as though “the Fed had an angel watching over it.” One other reason for the tight lips is that the story of the swap lines is not yet over. The network was rolled out in 2007 and 2008 as an emergency measure, but since then it has become the under-girding of a new system of global financial crisis management. In October 2013, as the Fed prepared finally to begin the process of normalisation by “tapering” its QE bond purchases, it made another decision which made plain that the new normal would not be like the old. It turned the global dollar swap line system into a standing facility: that is to say, it made its emergency treatment for the crisis into a permanent feature of the global monetary system. On demand, any of the core group of central banks can now activate a swap line with any other member of the group. Most recently the swap line system was readied for activation in the summer of 2016 in case of fallout from the Brexit referendum. As the original crisis unfolded in 2008, radical voices like Joseph Stiglitz in the west, and central bankers in the big emerging economies called for a new Bretton Woods Conference—the meeting in 1944, which had decided on the post-war currency system and the creation of the IMF and the World Bank. The Great Financial Crisis had demonstrated that the dollar’s exorbitant privilege was a recipe for macroeconomic imbalances. The centre of gravity in the world economy was inexorably shifting. It was time for a new grand bargain. “Central banks has staged Bretton Woods 2.0. But they had not invited the public or explained their reasons” What these visionary suggestions failed to register was that foundation of the world’s de facto currency system were not public institutions like the IMF, but the private, dollar-based global banking system. The introduction of the swap lines gave that system unprecedented state support. The Fed had ensured that the crisis in global banking did not become a crisis of the dollar. It had signalled that global banks could rely on access to dollar liquidity in virtually unlimited amounts, even in the most extreme circumstances. The central banks had, in other words, staged their Bretton Woods 2.0. But they had omitted to invite the cameras or the public, or indeed to explain what they were doing. The new central bank network created since 2008 is of a piece with the new networks for stress testing and regulating the world’s systemically important banks. The international economy they regulate is not one made up of a jigsaw puzzle of national economies, each with its gross national product and national trade flows. Instead they oversee, regulate and act on the interlocking, transnational matrix of bank balance sheets. This system was put in place without fanfare. It was essential to containing the crisis, and so far it has operated effectively. But to make this technical financial network into the foundation for a new global order is a gamble. It worked on the well-established trans-Atlantic axis. But will it work as effectively if it is asked to contain the fallout from an East Asian financial crisis? Can it continue to operate below the political radar, and is it acceptable for it to do so? With the Fed in the lead it places the resources, expertise and authority of the world’s central banks behind a market-based system of banking that has shown its capacity for over-expansion and catastrophic collapse. For all the talk of “macroprudential” regulation, Basel III and Basel IV, rather than disarming, down-sizing and constraining the global banking system, we have—through the swap lines—embarked on, if you like, a regulatory race to the top, where the authorities intervene heavily to allow the big banks in some countries to continue what they were doing before the unsustainable ceased to be sustained. And without even the political legitimacy conferred by G20 approval. Not everyone in the G20 is part of the swap line system. The Fed’s safety net for global banking was born at the fag-end of the “great moderation,” the era when economies behaved nicely and predictably, and when a “permissive consensus” enabled globalisation. Though a child of crisis, it bore the technocratic, “evidence-based” hall marks of that earlier era. It bears them still. Can it survive in an age when the United States is being convulsed by a new wave of economic nationalism? Is there still a guardian angel watching over the Fed on Capitol Hill? And with Trump in the White House, how loudly should we even ask the question?  

09 августа, 17:06

"War Is A Racket" - Lockheed Martin Sees Jump In Missile-Defense Inquiries

Lockheed Martin CEO Marillyn Hewson should think about sending Kim Jong Un a gift basket. The escalating tensions between President Donald Trump and the North’s impertinent boy king have, predictably, been a boon for the US military-industrial complex. In an interview with Reuters, Tom Cahill, the vice president of Lockheed Martin’s missile-defense business, said he has been receiving more inquiries about the company’s offerings over the past 12-18 months – a bump that coincides with the accelerating pace of North Korean missile tests and the increasingly heated rhetoric. Here’s Reuters: “Lockheed Martin Corp, the Pentagon's No. 1 weapons supplier, said on Tuesday its customers want to defend themselves against possible incoming missile attacks and are increasingly asking about missile defense systems. The greater interest comes amid a surge of North Korean long-range missile tests, unsettling its neighbors South Korea and Japan, as well as the United States.   "The level of dialogue around missile defense is now at the prime minister and minister of defense level," Tim Cahill, the vice president of Lockheed's Air and Missile Defense business, told Reuters in an interview.” With South Korea, Japan and the US in North Korea’s crosshairs, it’s unsurprising that Lockheed’s international business would see a lift. And now that US officials have confirmed the worst-case scenario – that North Korea is already in possession of a nuclear warhead small enough to fit inside one of its ICBMs – inquiries will likely continue to climb. While President Donald Trump and the North’s dear leader swapped threats of nuclear annihilation, Lockheed’s share price has risen. The company has handily beaten the S&P 500 so far this year (despite giving Trump that $600 million price break on the F-35). It raised its sales and earnings guidance last month after reporting second-quarter earnings. “Some countries are putting missile defense at the top of their list of desired capabilities, Cahill said. Interest has increased over the last 12 to 18 months, as have threats, he said. Shares of Lockheed are up nearly 8 percent, to $300.10, since North Korea's first long-range missile test on July 4. The stock is up 20 percent year-to-date.” Of course, it will take years before any of this interest leads to an increase in sales because, as one might expect, the proliferation of heavy arms is a tightly regulated process in the US. “The increased demand could turn into sales over the coming years. The U.S. government sanctions weapons sales in a process that can take years and often requires the approval of U.S. legislators.” Lockheed outperformed the market on Tuesday, finishing 1% higher after Trump’s “fire and fury” comment triggered the algos and forced human traders to ponder the increasingly limited diplomatic avenues available to Trump and the North Koreans. As we have noted numerous times in the past, war continues to be the best 'racket' in town... Debt (from the borrower’s perspective) owed to banks is profit and income from the bank’s perspective. In other words, banks are in the business of creating more debt … i.e. finding more people who want to borrow larger sums. Debt is central to our banking system. Indeed, Federal Reserve chairman Greenspan was so worried that the U.S. would pay off it’s debt, that he suggested tax cuts for the wealthy to increase the debt. What does this have to do with war? War is the most efficient debt-creation machine. For starters, wars are very expensive. For example, Nobel prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz estimated in 2008 that the Iraq war could cost America up to $5 trillion dollars. A study by Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies says the Iraq war costs could exceed $6 trillion, when interest payments to the banks are taken into account. This is nothing new … but has been going on for thousands of years. As a Cambridge University Press treatise on ancient Athens notes: Financing wars is expensive business, and the scope for initiative was regularly extended by borrowing. So wars have been a huge – and regular – way for banks to create debt for kings and presidents who want to try to expand their empires. Major General Smedley Butler – the most decorated Marine in American history – was right when he said: Let us not forget the bankers who financed the great war. If anyone had the cream of the profits it was the bankers. War is also good for banks because a lot of material, equipment, buildings and infrastructure get destroyed in war. So countries go into massive debt to finance war, and then borrow a ton more to rebuild.

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19 июня, 07:07

Which books have shaped the thinking of Marc F. Bellemare?

Here is his long post, here is the opening entry: Development Pranab Bardhan, The Economic Theory of Agrarian Institutions. There was a time when development took theory seriously, and this book came out of that time. This book is a bit uneven (it’s an edited volume), but the introductory chapter by Joseph Stiglitz is probably […] The post Which books have shaped the thinking of Marc F. Bellemare? appeared first on Marginal REVOLUTION.

16 июня, 12:45

Борьба идеологий

Сейчас все говорят о кризисе современной цивилизации, смерти капитализма и т.д. Идёт активный поиск новых идеологических концепций, которые дали бы людям надежду и показали направление развития.В известной нам форме идеология появилась в конце 18 – начале 19 века в ходе революции во Франции. До этого идеологические концепции тоже имели место, но они опирались на религию и представляли собой религиозные расколы. Две первые идеологии – это либерализм и консерватизм. Либерализм превозносил прогресс и говорил о необходимости преобразований в интересах буржуазии. В свою очередь консерватизм, говорил о том, что старые формы возникли не на пустом месте. Они отражают потребность человека в стабильности, преемственности и почитании традиций. Эта идеология главным образом выступала в качестве выражения интересов собственников земли.В середине 19 века возникло третье идеологическое течение – марксизм. Он опирался на интересы промышленных рабочих и требовал полной отмены эксплуатации человека – человеком. Произойти это должно было после того как промышленный пролетариат захватил бы политическую власть и отобрал у буржуазии все заводы и фабрики.Консерватизм, либерализм и марксизм четко различаются по своему отношению к изменениям. Консерватизм выступает против изменений, либерализм требует постепенных, эволюционных изменений, марксизм настаивает на революционных преобразованиях. Таким образом, консерватизм отражает интересы действующей элиты. Либерализм является идеологией людей, которые смогли добиться улучшения своего экономического положения, но хотят получить и политическую власть, чтобы стать элитой и передать власть и богатство своим детям. Марксизм выступает в качестве идеологии бедняков, которые могут рассчитывать на улучшение своего положения, только в результате революционных преобразований.Консерватизм ставит во главе угла – коллективизм, говоря об интересах нации и государства. Марксизм тоже выступает за коллективизм, но он говорит об интересах класса трудящихся – промышленных рабочих. Либерализм опирается на индивидуализм и много говорит о честной конкуренции и о правах человека. Всё это легко объяснить. Действующая консервативная элита прекрасно осознаёт свой коллективный интерес и опирается на группы зависимых людей. Либералы только стремятся войти в элиту, опираясь на свои личные способности, поэтому они заинтересованы в честной конкуренции при занятии важных должностей. Бедные люди, не имеющие выдающихся способностей, могут добиться улучшения своего положения, только действуя сообща.Интересно отношение этих идеологий к государственной власти. Консерватизм говорит, что власть принадлежит элите по праву традиции и передаётся по наследству. Часто здесь фигурирует ссылки на божественную волю, одобряющую именно такое положение вещей. Либерализм говорит о том, что власть принадлежит тем людям, которые лучше других способны организовывать совместную деятельность людей для достижения всеобщего блага. Здесь делается упор на организаторские способности и профессионализм. Марксизм говорит о том, что государство это аппарат угнетения низших классов – высшими. Здесь главный упор делается на подавление и репрессии. Выход для низших классов – революция.В 20 веке происходило смешение этих идеологических концепций. Ключевым моментом был уровень развития капитализма в той или иной стране. Если страна принадлежала к лидерам капиталистической системы, то в них марксизм постепенно отказывался от революционности в пользу реформ и сближался с либерализмом. Социал-демократия была уверена, что трудящиеся могут добиться улучшения своего положения за счет делегирования своих представителей в парламент, а затем и в правительство. В странах периферии капиталистической системы национальная буржуазия была слаба и сильно зависела от иностранного капитала. В результате развитие капитализма в таких странах приводило к резкому ухудшению положения трудящихся, так как значительная часть доходов предприятий уходила за рубеж. Именно поэтому в ряде стран периферийного капитализма победили революции под знаменем марксизма – ленинизма, маоизма и т.д. Здесь происходило масштабное огосударствление собственности для того, чтобы противостоять давлению богатых и могущественных стран Запада. Однако страны, в которых правили коммунистические партии, не смогли обогнать ведущие капиталистические страны по уровню производительности труда. Это означало, что их проигрыш Западу был неизбежен.Сегодняшняя Россия не представляет никакой альтернативы странам Запада. Мы вернулись к тому же самому периферийному капитализму, поставляя на мировой рынок преимущественно сырьевые товары. В результате возникает логичный вопрос: почему же иностранные корпорации не господствуют в нашей экономике? Не случайно многие представители нашей элиты, которые называют себя либералами, выступают за тотальную продажу госсобственности иностранцам. Российские консерваторы, многие из которых вышли из системы КГБ, прекрасно понимают, что иностранцы будут использовать их в лучшем случае в качестве охранников собственности от недовольного большинства населения, да и то далеко не всех. Именно поэтому наши консерваторы пытаются обосновать своё право на власть и собственность. И тут они неизбежно вспоминают о религии. В результате мы видим смычку православного духовенства и власти. Именно поэтому власти приходится делиться с церковью собственностью и привилегиями. Очень показательна история с Исаакиевским собором.Развитие транспорта и информационных технологий сделали мир глобальным. Люди могут узнать о том, что происходит в других уголках планеты. Постепенно к большинству людей приходит осознание того, что нынешняя капиталистическая система находится в глобальном кризисе и не предлагает привлекательных путей развития для большинства человечества. Глобальная элита озабочена сохранением своего господства и стремится к ещё большему усилению своих позиций за счёт абсолютного большинства населения планеты. В качестве противовеса этой тенденции растёт популярность требований глобальной справедливости. Причем не только в бедных, но и в богатых странах.Американский экономист, лауреат Нобелевской премии по экономике Джозеф Стиглиц в своей книге «Цена неравенства» предупреждает элиту США о том, что если не будут проведены реформы, направленные на снижение уровня неравенства, то представители элиты сильно пожалеют об этом. Ведь большинство населения, которое окончательно лишится надежд на лучшее будущее, неизбежно объявит войну элите.Вот несколько предложений Стиглица (даю простое перечисление без детальной расшифровки, которую можно найти в книге):Обуздать финансовый сектор.Более строгая и эффективная реализация законов о конкуренции.Улучшение корпоративного управления – особенно сокращение власти топ-менеджмента по выделению большого количества корпоративных ресурсов на собственные нужды.Многоуровневая реформа закона о банкротстве.Положить конец государственным раздачам – будь они расположены в государственных активах или закупках.Положить конец искусственному корпоративному благосостоянию – включая скрытые субсидии.Правовая реформа – демократизация доступа к правосудию и уменьшение гонки вооружений.Более прогрессивный подоходный налог и корпоративная налоговая система с меньшим количеством лазеек.Эффективное применение системы налогообложения наследуемого имущества, чтобы не позволить возникнуть новой олигархии.Улучшение доступа к образованию.Государственное стимулирование обычных людей накапливать деньги.Здравоохранение для всех.Усиление программ социальной помощи.

15 июня, 19:55

The Controversy Over Inflation

“This is one of the most important questions facing monetary policy.”

11 июня, 03:15

Meet The 22 Economists That Want To Kill Your Purchasing Power

After the Fed failed to spark any notable increase in aggregate demand despite keeping interest rates at zero for seven years, a group of economists is pressuring the central bank to rethink one of its most closely held-policy parameters. The group of 22 economists, which includes Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz and former Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota, delivered a letter to the Fed on Friday pressuring it to appoint a blue-ribbon commission to reevaluate its policy targets in a way that’s transparent and also involves officials with a diversity of viewpoints. Ultimately, the group hopes the central bank will reevaluate its inflation target, which has stood at just below 2% since 2012. Borrowing the reasoning from a paper published by the San Francisco Fed earlier this year called “Monetary Policy in a Low R-Star World,” the group argued that structural shifts in the US economy appear to have shifted the real rate of interest permanently lower – and that the US economy can now tolerate higher inflation as a form of compensation. Here's a passage from the letter: “Even if a 2 percent inflation target set an appropriate balance a decade ago, it is increasingly clear that the underlying changes in the economy would mean that, whatever the correct rate was then, it would be higher today. To ensure the future effectiveness of monetary policy in stabilizing the economy after negative shocks – specifically, to avoid the zero lower bound on the funds rate – this fall in the neutral rate may well need to be met with an increase in the long-run inflation target set by the Fed.” Such a reassessment would be particularly appropriate now, the economists argue, because “the lack of evidence that moderately higher inflation would harm Americans’ standard of living is juxtaposed with the tremendous evidence that a tighter labor market would improve Americans’ standards of living.” Some Fed officials have already expressed tentative support for raising the inflation target, or at least changing the system by which the central bank’s parameters are set. Williams noted the need for the Fed “to adapt policy to changing economic circumstances” in his paper, and Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren has said that the Fed should adapt policy to changing circumstances. Vice Fed Chairman Stanley Fischer has praised the system adopted by the Bank of Canada, where policy targets are reviewed every five years, then re-set with the participation of the legislature. The argument for why a central bank should aim to push consumer prices even higher might seem obtuse to some readers - so Kocherlakota explained his reasoning for signing the letter in a column published by Bloomberg. Raising the inflation target would give the Fed more room to maneuver during the next slowdown by allowing it to focus on reining in inflation if benchmark rates are already low, Kocherlakota said. “If, for example, people expect inflation to be 3 percent, then a zero nominal rate translates into a negative 3 percent real rate -- a full percentage point lower than the Fed could achieve if expected inflation were 2 percent.” Experience suggests the Fed could use the support. During the most recent period of near-zero interest rates, the U.S. unemployment rate remained above 5 percent for nearly seven and a half years. And Yellen has suggested that, if another recession takes the Fed to the zero lower bound, the unemployment rate might stay above 5 percent for close to five years. But while the Bureau of Labor Statistic’s seasonally adjusted CPI slumped to a 19-month low in April, other measures, like a gauge of consumer prices from PriceStat, have consistently recorded higher levels of inflation. And regardless of what the rate of price growth is right now, the hard truth of the situation for many American workers is that real average wage growth is mired in the red while average household debt levels have climbed to record highs. While many would welcome higher wages and better jobs, the relationship between inflation and employment – as Janet Yellen herself admitted – has seemingly broken down. Whether the central bank can successfully push inflation higher is up for debate; it has struggled in recent years – despite pumping trillions of dollars into the economy. But regardless, higher consumer prices are not what Americans need right now. In addition to Stiglitz and Kocherlakota, the letter a signed by Dean Baker from the Center of Economic and Policy Research, Heather Boushey, from Washington Center for Equitable Growth, Brad DeLong, University of California, Berkeley, Joseph Gagnon, Peterson Institute, Lawrence Mishel, Economic Policy Institute, William Spriggs, Howard University, Valerie Wilson, Economic Policy Institute, Gene Sperling, Obama Administration Economist, Jared Furman, Peterson Institute, Marc Jarsulic, Center for American Progress, Lawrence Bell, Johns Hopkins University, Josh Bivens, Economic Policy Institute, Tim Duy, University of Oregon, Manuel Pastor, University of Southern California, Mark Thoma, University of Oregon, Justin Wolfers, University of Michigan, David Blanchflower, Dartmouth College, Mike Konczal, Roosevelt Institute, Michael Madowitz, Center for American Progress. ***** Read the full text of the letter below: Dear Chair Yellen and the Board of Governors,   The end of this year will mark ten years since the beginning of the Great Recession. This recession and the slow recovery that followed was extraordinarily damaging to the livelihoods and financial security of tens of millions of American households. Accordingly, it should provoke a serious reappraisal of the key parameters governing macroeconomic policy.   One of these key parameters is the rate of inflation targeted by the Federal Reserve. In years past, a 2 percent inflation target seemed to give ample leverage with which the Fed could lower real interest rates. But given the evidence that the equilibrium interest rate had fallen substantially even prior to the financial crisis, and that the Fed’s short-term policy rate remained at zero for seven years without sparking any large acceleration of aggregate demand growth, a reassessment of this target seems warranted. Such a reassessment is particularly appropriate when the lack of evidence that moderately higher inflation would harm Americans’ standard of living is juxtaposed with the tremendous evidence that a tighter labor market would improve Americans’ standards of living.   Some Federal Reserve policymakers have acknowledged these shifting realities and indicated their willingness to reconsider the appropriate target level. For example, San Francisco Federal Reserve President John Williams noted the need for central banks to “adapt policy to changing economic circumstances,” in suggesting a higher inflation target, and Boston Federal Reserve President Eric Rosengren cited the different context in which the inflation target was set in emphasizing the need for debate about the right target. In May, Vice Chair Stanley Fischer highlighted the Canadian system of reconsidering the inflation target every five years, saying, “I can envisage – say, in the case of inflation targeting – a procedure in which you change the target or you change the other variables that are involved on some regular basis and through some regular participation.”   The comments made by Fischer, Rosengren, and Williams all underscore the ample evidence that the long-term neutral rate of interest may have fallen. Even if a 2 percent inflation target set an appropriate balance a decade ago, it is increasingly clear that the underlying changes in the economy would mean that, whatever the correct rate was then, it would be higher today. To ensure the future effectiveness of monetary policy in stabilizing the economy after negative shocks – specifically, to avoid the zero lower bound on the funds rate – this fall in the neutral rate may well need to be met with an increase in the long-run inflation target set by the Fed.   More immediately, new, post-crisis economic conditions suggest that a reiteration of the meaning of the Fed’s current target is in order. In its 2016 statement of long-run goals and strategy, the Federal Open Market Committee wrote: “The Committee would be concerned if inflation were running persistently above or below this objective.” Some FOMC participants, however, appear to instead consider 2 percent a hard ceiling that should never be breached, and justify their decision-making on that basis. It is important that the Federal Reserve makes clear – and operates policy based on – its stated goal that it aims to avoid inflation being either below or above its target.   Economies change over time. Recent decades have seen growing evidence that developed economies have harder times generating faster growth in aggregate demand than in decades past. Policymakers must be willing to rigorously assess the costs and benefits of previously-accepted policy parameters in response to economic changes. One of these key parameters that should be rigorously reassessed is the very low inflation targets that have guided monetary policy in recent decades. We believe that the Fed should appoint a diverse and representative blue ribbon commission with expertise, integrity, and transparency to evaluate and expeditiously recommend a path forward on these questions. We believe such a process will strengthen the Fed as an institution and its conduct of monetary policy, and help ensure wise policymaking for the years and decades to come. The endgame, of course, is to pay off the old 'expensive' dollars with new 'cheap' dollars... quietly taxing the citizenry to death...

11 июня, 03:15

Meet The 22 Economists That Want To Kill Your Purchasing Power

After the Fed failed to spark any notable increase in aggregate demand despite keeping interest rates at zero for seven years, a group of economists is pressuring the central bank to rethink one of its most closely held-policy parameters. The group of 22 economists, which includes Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz and former Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota, delivered a letter to the Fed on Friday pressuring it to appoint a blue-ribbon commission to reevaluate its policy targets in a way that’s transparent and also involves officials with a diversity of viewpoints. Ultimately, the group hopes the central bank will reevaluate its inflation target, which has stood at just below 2% since 2012. Borrowing the reasoning from a paper published by the San Francisco Fed earlier this year called “Monetary Policy in a Low R-Star World,” the group argued that structural shifts in the US economy appear to have shifted the real rate of interest permanently lower – and that the US economy can now tolerate higher inflation as a form of compensation. Here's a passage from the letter: “Even if a 2 percent inflation target set an appropriate balance a decade ago, it is increasingly clear that the underlying changes in the economy would mean that, whatever the correct rate was then, it would be higher today. To ensure the future effectiveness of monetary policy in stabilizing the economy after negative shocks – specifically, to avoid the zero lower bound on the funds rate – this fall in the neutral rate may well need to be met with an increase in the long-run inflation target set by the Fed.” Such a reassessment would be particularly appropriate now, the economists argue, because “the lack of evidence that moderately higher inflation would harm Americans’ standard of living is juxtaposed with the tremendous evidence that a tighter labor market would improve Americans’ standards of living.” Some Fed officials have already expressed tentative support for raising the inflation target, or at least changing the system by which the central bank’s parameters are set. Williams noted the need for the Fed “to adapt policy to changing economic circumstances” in his paper, and Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren has said that the Fed should adapt policy to changing circumstances. Vice Fed Chairman Stanley Fischer has praised the system adopted by the Bank of Canada, where policy targets are reviewed every five years, then re-set with the participation of the legislature. The argument for why a central bank should aim to push consumer prices even higher might seem obtuse to some readers - so Kocherlakota explained his reasoning for signing the letter in a column published by Bloomberg. Raising the inflation target would give the Fed more room to maneuver during the next slowdown by allowing it to focus on reining in inflation if benchmark rates are already low, Kocherlakota said. “If, for example, people expect inflation to be 3 percent, then a zero nominal rate translates into a negative 3 percent real rate -- a full percentage point lower than the Fed could achieve if expected inflation were 2 percent.” Experience suggests the Fed could use the support. During the most recent period of near-zero interest rates, the U.S. unemployment rate remained above 5 percent for nearly seven and a half years. And Yellen has suggested that, if another recession takes the Fed to the zero lower bound, the unemployment rate might stay above 5 percent for close to five years. But while the Bureau of Labor Statistic’s seasonally adjusted CPI slumped to a 19-month low in April, other measures, like a gauge of consumer prices from PriceStat, have consistently recorded higher levels of inflation. And regardless of what the rate of price growth is right now, the hard truth of the situation for many American workers is that real average wage growth is mired in the red while average household debt levels have climbed to record highs. While many would welcome higher wages and better jobs, the relationship between inflation and employment – as Janet Yellen herself admitted – has seemingly broken down. Whether the central bank can successfully push inflation higher is up for debate; it has struggled in recent years – despite pumping trillions of dollars into the economy. But regardless, higher consumer prices are not what Americans need right now. In addition to Stiglitz and Kocherlakota, the letter a signed by Dean Baker from the Center of Economic and Policy Research, Heather Boushey, from Washington Center for Equitable Growth, Brad DeLong, University of California, Berkeley, Joseph Gagnon, Peterson Institute, Lawrence Mishel, Economic Policy Institute, William Spriggs, Howard University, Valerie Wilson, Economic Policy Institute, Gene Sperling, Obama Administration Economist, Jared Furman, Peterson Institute, Marc Jarsulic, Center for American Progress, Lawrence Bell, Johns Hopkins University, Josh Bivens, Economic Policy Institute, Tim Duy, University of Oregon, Manuel Pastor, University of Southern California, Mark Thoma, University of Oregon, Justin Wolfers, University of Michigan, David Blanchflower, Dartmouth College, Mike Konczal, Roosevelt Institute, Michael Madowitz, Center for American Progress. ***** Read the full text of the letter below: Dear Chair Yellen and the Board of Governors,   The end of this year will mark ten years since the beginning of the Great Recession. This recession and the slow recovery that followed was extraordinarily damaging to the livelihoods and financial security of tens of millions of American households. Accordingly, it should provoke a serious reappraisal of the key parameters governing macroeconomic policy.   One of these key parameters is the rate of inflation targeted by the Federal Reserve. In years past, a 2 percent inflation target seemed to give ample leverage with which the Fed could lower real interest rates. But given the evidence that the equilibrium interest rate had fallen substantially even prior to the financial crisis, and that the Fed’s short-term policy rate remained at zero for seven years without sparking any large acceleration of aggregate demand growth, a reassessment of this target seems warranted. Such a reassessment is particularly appropriate when the lack of evidence that moderately higher inflation would harm Americans’ standard of living is juxtaposed with the tremendous evidence that a tighter labor market would improve Americans’ standards of living.   Some Federal Reserve policymakers have acknowledged these shifting realities and indicated their willingness to reconsider the appropriate target level. For example, San Francisco Federal Reserve President John Williams noted the need for central banks to “adapt policy to changing economic circumstances,” in suggesting a higher inflation target, and Boston Federal Reserve President Eric Rosengren cited the different context in which the inflation target was set in emphasizing the need for debate about the right target. In May, Vice Chair Stanley Fischer highlighted the Canadian system of reconsidering the inflation target every five years, saying, “I can envisage – say, in the case of inflation targeting – a procedure in which you change the target or you change the other variables that are involved on some regular basis and through some regular participation.”   The comments made by Fischer, Rosengren, and Williams all underscore the ample evidence that the long-term neutral rate of interest may have fallen. Even if a 2 percent inflation target set an appropriate balance a decade ago, it is increasingly clear that the underlying changes in the economy would mean that, whatever the correct rate was then, it would be higher today. To ensure the future effectiveness of monetary policy in stabilizing the economy after negative shocks – specifically, to avoid the zero lower bound on the funds rate – this fall in the neutral rate may well need to be met with an increase in the long-run inflation target set by the Fed.   More immediately, new, post-crisis economic conditions suggest that a reiteration of the meaning of the Fed’s current target is in order. In its 2016 statement of long-run goals and strategy, the Federal Open Market Committee wrote: “The Committee would be concerned if inflation were running persistently above or below this objective.” Some FOMC participants, however, appear to instead consider 2 percent a hard ceiling that should never be breached, and justify their decision-making on that basis. It is important that the Federal Reserve makes clear – and operates policy based on – its stated goal that it aims to avoid inflation being either below or above its target.   Economies change over time. Recent decades have seen growing evidence that developed economies have harder times generating faster growth in aggregate demand than in decades past. Policymakers must be willing to rigorously assess the costs and benefits of previously-accepted policy parameters in response to economic changes. One of these key parameters that should be rigorously reassessed is the very low inflation targets that have guided monetary policy in recent decades. We believe that the Fed should appoint a diverse and representative blue ribbon commission with expertise, integrity, and transparency to evaluate and expeditiously recommend a path forward on these questions. We believe such a process will strengthen the Fed as an institution and its conduct of monetary policy, and help ensure wise policymaking for the years and decades to come. The endgame, of course, is to pay off the old 'expensive' dollars with new 'cheap' dollars... quietly taxing the citizenry to death...

10 июня, 03:40

Actions Have Consequences! Ask Venezuela

Authored by Bill Bonner via InternationalMan.com, Let’s turn to an economy getting doomier by the day: Venezuela. Actions have consequences. In public policy, it is impossible to say what the consequences will be. There are too many delusions and too much smoke. Take a policy said to eradicate city rats. Its real purpose is to reward a large political donor who owns a pest control firm. It ends up killing the pigeons. Often, policies with clear and obvious purposes end up producing outcomes completely at odds with the stated objectives. Prohibition, for example, increased the number of drunks. The War on Drugs fattened drug dealers’ profits. The War on Poverty has made poverty respectable… even attractive… to poor people. The War on Terror has probably made a million otherwise sane and sensible Muslims yearn to blow up something with a U.S. flag on it. Most often, these outcomes are not exactly surprises. Look more closely and you will often find, hidden behind the promises… a pest control firm! News reports, for example, tell us that U.S. arms dealers are about to get a $110 billion payday. President Trump announced a weapons deal with the Saudis – the biggest in history. Into the Abyss Although the exact consequences of public policies are obscure, the patterns are familiar. Win-lose deals always reduce total human satisfaction. Win-lose deals – unless they are imposed by petty criminals or local bullies – require government insistence. Otherwise, no one would take the losing side. So the more government there is… the more active, ambitious, and overbearing it is… the more win-lose deals subtract from the sum of human happiness. A month ago, as many as a million of these disappointed people demonstrated against the government of Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela. It was the “Mother of All Protests,” they said. What was their beef? Inflation is running at about 700% a year. Last year, GDP plunged 19%. Food staples – beans, rice, bread – are disappearing. Families cross the border into Colombia to buy toilet paper. Hospitals have no medicine, no equipment, not even rubber gloves and disinfectants. Sometimes, they have no electricity. Deaths of premature babies have increased 10,000% in the last five years. How did a country make such a mess of itself? Win-Lose In a sense, the country was a victim of its own good luck… and then a victim of its own bad judgment. The good luck happened in 1914 when the first oilfield was drilled. The money followed. By the 1950s, with a basically market-oriented government, Venezuela rose to become the world’s fourth-richest country in terms of GDP per capita. Today, the country has the largest proven oil reserves in the world – 297 billion barrels of the stuff compared to 267 billion barrels in Saudi Arabia. But good luck allows you to make bad judgments. With the oil wealth flowing, Hugo Chávez – who described himself as a Trotskyist two days before his inauguration as president in 2007 – could impose win-lose deals on the whole economy. Key industries were nationalized. Price controls were put in place. Wealth was redistributed. Win-lose deals can redistribute wealth but only to the extent win-win deals create it. Take away the win-win deals, and the wealth soon runs out… as it did in Cuba and the Soviet Union. Now the tank is about empty in Venezuela, too. Banana Republic It doesn’t matter what you call it – government is always a means for the few to exploit the many. The few use every resource available to them to keep the hustle going, with special attention given to manipulating the gullible mob. The typical citizen rarely has any idea of what is going on… and doesn’t have much curiosity about it. As long as he has credit for a new pickup and a champion who promises to smite his enemies, the common man will go along with almost anything. But the Venezuelan auto industry has been ruined. And there’s no credit available. So there are few new pickups on the streets, and much of the public has turned against the government. Not surprisingly, the policies that destroyed Venezuela delighted U.S. economists and politicians – who were eager to impose win-lose deals of their own. In 2007, Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz praised the “positive policies” in health and education of the Chávez government. And in 2011, Bernie Sanders wrote: These days, the American dream is more apt to be realized in South America, in places such as Ecuador, Venezuela and Argentina, where incomes are actually more equal today than they are in the land of Horatio Alger. Who’s the banana republic now? Sanders had no idea what was really going on in Venezuela. But he was right about what was going on in the U.S. It was on its way to becoming a banana republic. Only without the bananas. Or the republic.

09 июня, 22:49

Rethink 2%

Rethink 2% : Federal Reserve Board of Governors Constitution Ave NW & 20th Street Northwest Washington, D.C. 20551 Dear Chair Yellen and the Board of Governors: The end of this year will mark ten years since the beginning of the Great Recession. This recession and the slow recovery that followed was extraordinarily damaging to the livelihoods and financial security of tens of millions of American households. Accordingly, it should provoke a serious reappraisal of the key parameters governing macroeconomic policy. One of these key parameters is the rate of inflation targeted by the Federal Reserve. In years past, a 2 percent inflation target seemed to give ample leverage with which the Fed could lower real interest rates. But given the evidence that the equilibrium interest rate had fallen substantially even prior to the financial crisis, and that the Fed’s short-term policy rate remained at zero for seven years without sparking any large acceleration of aggregate demand growth, a reassessment of this target seems warranted. Such a reassessment is particularly appropriate when the lack of evidence that moderately higher inflation would harm Americans’ standard of living is juxtaposed with the tremendous evidence that a tighter labor market would improve Americans’ standards...

07 июня, 15:20

Austerity has strangled the British economy. Only Labour gets this | Joseph Stiglitz

Neoliberalism was a creature of the Reagan and Thatcher era. Austerity is its death rattle. Before it does any more damage, Britain needs a plan for growthThe choice facing the voters in this election is clear – between more failed austerity or a Labour party advancing an economic agenda that is right for the UK. To understand why Labour is right, we first need to look back to the 1980s.Under Ronald Reagan in the United States and Margaret Thatcher in the UK, there was a rewriting of the basic rules of capitalism. These two governments changed the rules governing labour bargaining, weakening trade unions; and they weakened anti-trust enforcement, allowing more monopolies to be created. In our economy today we can see industries with one or two or three firms with market power. This gives them the power to raise prices – and as they raise prices, people’s incomes fall, in terms of what they can buy. Continue reading...

02 июня, 16:29

How to respond to Trump's America | Joseph Stiglitz

Action is needed to safeguard economic progress against a prejudiced White House that rejects science and enlightened valuesDonald Trump has thrown a hand grenade into the global economic architecture that was so painstakingly constructed in the years after the end of the second world war. The attempted destruction of this rules-based system of global governance – now manifested in Trump’s withdrawal of the United States from the 2015 Paris climate agreement – is just the latest aspect of the US president’s assault on our basic system of values and institutions.The world is only slowly coming fully to terms with the malevolence of the Trump administration’s agenda. He and his cronies have attacked the US press – a vital institution for preserving Americans’ freedoms, rights and democracy – as an “enemy of the people”. They have attempted to undermine the foundations of our knowledge and beliefs – our epistemology – by labelling as “fake” anything that challenges their aims and arguments, even rejecting science itself. Trump’s sham justifications for spurning the Paris climate agreement is only the most recent evidence of this. Continue reading...

27 мая, 08:46

G7: что происходит в клубе самых богатых западных экономик?

Видимо, найти ответ на встающий и перед Европой, и перед Азией вопрос о месте, которое они смогут занять в мировой экономике, предстоит, прежде всего, Китаю. На корню отвергая резоны Moody’s о «неподъёмном» государственном долге, составляющем сейчас 40 процентов ВВП, сокращении инвестиций, снижении среднего возраста работоспособного населения и дальнейшем падении производительности труда, Пекин снисходительно умалчивает о том, что у его американских оппонентов госдолг многократно больше. И покупает казначейских облигаций США на 27,9 миллиарда долларов. Кроме того, по данным американского казначейства, китайцы хранят под подушкой 1,0876 триллиона долларов. То есть Китай, этот второй после Японии кредитор американской экономики, «держит лисицу за хвост».

26 мая, 18:12

G7: что происходит в клубе самых богатых западных экономик?

Перед встречей лидеров «семёрки» в Таормине на Сицилии внутри Группы семи наметились серьёзные расхождения. Видно, неспроста агентство Bloomberg разместило фотографии лидеров G7 на фоне извергающейся Этны: противоречия между ними тоже могут выплеснуться наружу. Было бы странным полагать, что поставивший на протекционизм американский президент Трамп откажется от своей идеи в благодарность за более чем сорокалетнее следование...

16 июня, 12:45

Борьба идеологий

Сейчас все говорят о кризисе современной цивилизации, смерти капитализма и т.д. Идёт активный поиск новых идеологических концепций, которые дали бы людям надежду и показали направление развития.В известной нам форме идеология появилась в конце 18 – начале 19 века в ходе революции во Франции. До этого идеологические концепции тоже имели место, но они опирались на религию и представляли собой религиозные расколы. Две первые идеологии – это либерализм и консерватизм. Либерализм превозносил прогресс и говорил о необходимости преобразований в интересах буржуазии. В свою очередь консерватизм, говорил о том, что старые формы возникли не на пустом месте. Они отражают потребность человека в стабильности, преемственности и почитании традиций. Эта идеология главным образом выступала в качестве выражения интересов собственников земли.В середине 19 века возникло третье идеологическое течение – марксизм. Он опирался на интересы промышленных рабочих и требовал полной отмены эксплуатации человека – человеком. Произойти это должно было после того как промышленный пролетариат захватил бы политическую власть и отобрал у буржуазии все заводы и фабрики.Консерватизм, либерализм и марксизм четко различаются по своему отношению к изменениям. Консерватизм выступает против изменений, либерализм требует постепенных, эволюционных изменений, марксизм настаивает на революционных преобразованиях. Таким образом, консерватизм отражает интересы действующей элиты. Либерализм является идеологией людей, которые смогли добиться улучшения своего экономического положения, но хотят получить и политическую власть, чтобы стать элитой и передать власть и богатство своим детям. Марксизм выступает в качестве идеологии бедняков, которые могут рассчитывать на улучшение своего положения, только в результате революционных преобразований.Консерватизм ставит во главе угла – коллективизм, говоря об интересах нации и государства. Марксизм тоже выступает за коллективизм, но он говорит об интересах класса трудящихся – промышленных рабочих. Либерализм опирается на индивидуализм и много говорит о честной конкуренции и о правах человека. Всё это легко объяснить. Действующая консервативная элита прекрасно осознаёт свой коллективный интерес и опирается на группы зависимых людей. Либералы только стремятся войти в элиту, опираясь на свои личные способности, поэтому они заинтересованы в честной конкуренции при занятии важных должностей. Бедные люди, не имеющие выдающихся способностей, могут добиться улучшения своего положения, только действуя сообща.Интересно отношение этих идеологий к государственной власти. Консерватизм говорит, что власть принадлежит элите по праву традиции и передаётся по наследству. Часто здесь фигурирует ссылки на божественную волю, одобряющую именно такое положение вещей. Либерализм говорит о том, что власть принадлежит тем людям, которые лучше других способны организовывать совместную деятельность людей для достижения всеобщего блага. Здесь делается упор на организаторские способности и профессионализм. Марксизм говорит о том, что государство это аппарат угнетения низших классов – высшими. Здесь главный упор делается на подавление и репрессии. Выход для низших классов – революция.В 20 веке происходило смешение этих идеологических концепций. Ключевым моментом был уровень развития капитализма в той или иной стране. Если страна принадлежала к лидерам капиталистической системы, то в них марксизм постепенно отказывался от революционности в пользу реформ и сближался с либерализмом. Социал-демократия была уверена, что трудящиеся могут добиться улучшения своего положения за счет делегирования своих представителей в парламент, а затем и в правительство. В странах периферии капиталистической системы национальная буржуазия была слаба и сильно зависела от иностранного капитала. В результате развитие капитализма в таких странах приводило к резкому ухудшению положения трудящихся, так как значительная часть доходов предприятий уходила за рубеж. Именно поэтому в ряде стран периферийного капитализма победили революции под знаменем марксизма – ленинизма, маоизма и т.д. Здесь происходило масштабное огосударствление собственности для того, чтобы противостоять давлению богатых и могущественных стран Запада. Однако страны, в которых правили коммунистические партии, не смогли обогнать ведущие капиталистические страны по уровню производительности труда. Это означало, что их проигрыш Западу был неизбежен.Сегодняшняя Россия не представляет никакой альтернативы странам Запада. Мы вернулись к тому же самому периферийному капитализму, поставляя на мировой рынок преимущественно сырьевые товары. В результате возникает логичный вопрос: почему же иностранные корпорации не господствуют в нашей экономике? Не случайно многие представители нашей элиты, которые называют себя либералами, выступают за тотальную продажу госсобственности иностранцам. Российские консерваторы, многие из которых вышли из системы КГБ, прекрасно понимают, что иностранцы будут использовать их в лучшем случае в качестве охранников собственности от недовольного большинства населения, да и то далеко не всех. Именно поэтому наши консерваторы пытаются обосновать своё право на власть и собственность. И тут они неизбежно вспоминают о религии. В результате мы видим смычку православного духовенства и власти. Именно поэтому власти приходится делиться с церковью собственностью и привилегиями. Очень показательна история с Исаакиевским собором.Развитие транспорта и информационных технологий сделали мир глобальным. Люди могут узнать о том, что происходит в других уголках планеты. Постепенно к большинству людей приходит осознание того, что нынешняя капиталистическая система находится в глобальном кризисе и не предлагает привлекательных путей развития для большинства человечества. Глобальная элита озабочена сохранением своего господства и стремится к ещё большему усилению своих позиций за счёт абсолютного большинства населения планеты. В качестве противовеса этой тенденции растёт популярность требований глобальной справедливости. Причем не только в бедных, но и в богатых странах.Американский экономист, лауреат Нобелевской премии по экономике Джозеф Стиглиц в своей книге «Цена неравенства» предупреждает элиту США о том, что если не будут проведены реформы, направленные на снижение уровня неравенства, то представители элиты сильно пожалеют об этом. Ведь большинство населения, которое окончательно лишится надежд на лучшее будущее, неизбежно объявит войну элите.Вот несколько предложений Стиглица (даю простое перечисление без детальной расшифровки, которую можно найти в книге):Обуздать финансовый сектор.Более строгая и эффективная реализация законов о конкуренции.Улучшение корпоративного управления – особенно сокращение власти топ-менеджмента по выделению большого количества корпоративных ресурсов на собственные нужды.Многоуровневая реформа закона о банкротстве.Положить конец государственным раздачам – будь они расположены в государственных активах или закупках.Положить конец искусственному корпоративному благосостоянию – включая скрытые субсидии.Правовая реформа – демократизация доступа к правосудию и уменьшение гонки вооружений.Более прогрессивный подоходный налог и корпоративная налоговая система с меньшим количеством лазеек.Эффективное применение системы налогообложения наследуемого имущества, чтобы не позволить возникнуть новой олигархии.Улучшение доступа к образованию.Государственное стимулирование обычных людей накапливать деньги.Здравоохранение для всех.Усиление программ социальной помощи.

14 апреля 2016, 23:21

Стиглиц: что не так с отрицательными ставками?

За лауреатом Нобелевской премии Джозефом Стиглицем уже давно закрепилось амплуа скептика, который ни при каких условиях не согласится с тем, что мировая экономика стала восстанавливаться после кризиса 2008 года.

08 февраля 2016, 17:29

Что тормозит мировую экономику?

НЬЮ-ЙОРК – В 2015 году, семь лет спустя после глобального финансового кризиса, разразившегося в 2008-м, мировая экономика продолжала балансировать на грани. По данным доклада ООН «Мировая экономическая ситуация и перспективы 2016 года», средние темпы роста экономики в развитых странах после кризиса …

05 октября 2015, 16:20

США удалось достичь крупнейшего торгового соглашения за 20 лет

Представители США и 11 государств Тихоокеанского пояса достигли соглашения по договору о Транстихоокеанском партнерстве. Как отмечает Bloomberg, эта договоренность является крупнейшей для США за последние 20 лет

15 мая 2015, 18:05

Стиглиц: Обама продвигает захват мира корпорациями

По мнению известного американского экономиста Джозефа Стиглица, договоры о свободной торговле со странами Европы и Азией, которые пытается продвигать администрация Барака Обамы, ставят частные корпорации выше государственного регулирования.

08 октября 2012, 18:31

Стиглиц: эффект на экономику от действий ЕЦБ и ФРС

Центральные банки по обе стороны Атлантики в сентябре приняли чрезвычайные меры кредитно-денежной политики: долгожданное QE3 со стороны Федеральной резервной системы США и заявление Европейского центрального банка о том, что он будет скупать неограниченные объемы облигаций проблемных членов еврозоны. Рынки ответили эйфорией, и цены на акции в США достигли максимума после рецессии, пишет на Project Syndicate нобелевский лауреат по экономике Джозеф Стиглиц. ФРС и ЕЦБ сообщили три послания, которые должны были предоставить передышку рынкам Некоторые, особенно с политическим правым уклоном, опасались, что недавние меры денежно-кредитной политики подстегнут инфляцию в будущем и поспособствуют необузданным государственным расходам.В действительности, как опасения критиков, так и эйфория оптимистов, являются необоснованными. Сегодня, с такими большими неиспользуемыми на полную мощность производственными мощностями и столь мрачными ближайшими экономическими перспективами, риски серьезной инфляции минимальны.Тем не менее действия ФРС и ЕЦБ сообщили три послания, которые должны были предоставить передышку рынкам. Во-первых, они говорили, что предыдущие действия не сработали, более того, что крупнейшие центральные банки несут большую часть вины за кризис. Но их способности по исправлению этих ошибок ограничены.Во-вторых, заявление ФРС о том, что она будет держать процентные ставки на чрезвычайно низком уровне до середины 2015 г., подразумевает, что она не ожидает восстановления в ближайшее время. Это должно стать предупреждением для Европы, чья экономика сейчас гораздо слабее, чем американская.Наконец, ФРС и ЕЦБ сообщили, что рынки быстро не восстановят полную занятость самостоятельно. Нужен стимул. Он должен стать ответом тем в Европе и Америке, кто призывают к прямо противоположному ‑ дальнейшей жесткой экономии.Но стимул, который нужен ‑ по обе стороны Атлантики, ‑ это финансовый стимул. Денежно-кредитная политика оказалась неэффективной, и большая ее часть вряд ли сможет вернуть экономику к устойчивому росту.В традиционных экономических моделях повышенная ликвидность приводит к увеличению кредитования, в основном инвесторов, а иногда и потребителей, тем самым увеличивая спрос и занятость. Но рассмотрим случай Испании, где так много денег наводнило банковскую систему и продолжает наводнять, по мере того как Европа говорит о реализации общей банковской системы. Просто добавляя ликвидность и продолжая нынешнюю политику жесткой экономии, нельзя возродить испанскую экономику.Также в США мелкие банки, которые в основном финансируют малые и средние предприятия, были проигнорированы. Федеральное правительство – во времена как президента Джорджа Буша, так и Барака Обамы – выделило сотни миллиардов долларов, чтобы поддержать мегабанки, позволяя при этом сотням таким критически важным, менее крупным кредиторам обанкротиться.Но кредитование бы не работало, даже если бы банки были здоровы. В конце концов, малые предприятия полагаются на залоговые кредиты, а стоимость недвижимости ‑ основная форма залога – все еще на треть ниже докризисного уровня. Кроме того, учитывая величину избыточных активов в сфере недвижимости, снижение процентных ставок не сильно поможет восстановлению цен на недвижимость, тем более раздутию еще одного потребительского пузыря.Конечно, не стоит исключать маргинальный эффект: небольшие изменения в долгосрочных процентных ставках от QE3 могут привести к небольшому росту инвестиций; некоторые богатые воспользуются временно высокими ценами на акции, чтобы потреблять больше; и некоторые домовладельцы смогут рефинансировать свои ипотечные кредиты, а меньшие выплаты также позволят им повысить свой уровень потребления.Но большинство богатых знают, что временные меры приводят лишь к мимолетным всплескам цен на акции, чего вряд ли достаточно, чтобы поддержать неудержимое потребление. Кроме того, доклады свидетельствуют о том, что лишь немногие из преимуществ снижения долгосрочных процентных ставок просачиваются до домовладельцев; основными бенефициарами, по-видимому, являются банки. Многие, кто хотят рефинансировать свои ипотечные кредиты, по-прежнему не могут этого сделать, поскольку они "находятся под водой" (имея долг по своей ипотеке выше, чем стоит залоговое имущество).В других обстоятельствах США могли бы выиграть от ослабления обменного курса, что следует из более низких процентных ставок. Это своего рода конкурентная девальвация "разори своего соседа", что произойдет за счет торговых партнеров Америки. Но, учитывая более низкие процентные ставки в Европе и глобальное замедление экономического роста, прибыль, вероятно, будет малой даже здесь.Некоторые беспокоятся, что свежая ликвидность приведет к худшим результатам, например сырьевому буму, который будет действовать наподобие налога на американских и европейских потребителей. Пожилые люди, которые были разумными и держали свои деньги в государственных облигациях, получат более низкие доходы, что приведет к дальнейшему сокращению их потребления. И низкие процентные ставки будут стимулировать фирмы, которые действительно делают инвестиции, приобретать в качестве основного капитала машины высокой степени автоматизации, обеспечивая, тем самым то, что, когда придет восстановление, оно будет относительно безработным. Короче говоря, выгода, в лучшем случае, небольшая.В Европе у денежной интервенции больший потенциал для помощи, но с таким же риском усугубить положение. Чтобы развеять беспокойство по поводу расточительности правительств, ЕЦБ встроил условия в свою программу скупки облигаций. Но если условия действуют как меры жесткой экономии ‑ введенные без значительных сопутствующих мер роста, ‑ они будут больше похожи на кровопускание: пациент должен рисковать жизнью, прежде чем получить подлинное лекарство. Из страха потерять экономический суверенитет правительства будут неохотно обращаться за помощью к ЕЦБ, и только когда они будут обращаться, будет какой-нибудь реальный эффект.Для Европы есть и дополнительный риск: если ЕЦБ слишком много внимания будет уделять инфляции, в то время как ФРС пытается стимулировать экономику США, разницы в процентных ставках приведут к более сильному евро (по крайней мере относительно того, каким бы он был в противном случае), подрывая конкурентоспособность Европы и перспективы ее роста.Для Европы и Америки опасность состоит теперь в том, что политики и рынки считают, что денежно-кредитная политика может оживить экономику. К сожалению, ее основное воздействие в этой ситуации состоит в отвлечении внимания от мер, которые бы по-настоящему стимулировали экономический рост, в том числе экспансионистской налогово-бюджетной политики и реформ финансового сектора, которые увеличивают кредитование.Нынешний спад, который продолжается уже половину десятилетия, не закончится в ближайшее время. Это то, о чем в двух словах говорят ФРС и ЕЦБ. Чем скорее наши лидеры признают это, тем лучше.