Martin Sandbu ima v Financial Timesu zelo dober tekst o tem, koliko smo se naučili iz pretekle krize in ali smo res pripravljeni na prihodnjo. Ključni so trije elementi. Prvič, ali regulatorji bank dovolj spremljajo (ponekod alarmantne) trende v zasebnem zadolževanju (podjetij in gospodinjstev) in ali so zavarovalne sheme dovolj dobre. Drugič, smo se iz pretekle krize naučili, da je ob nastopu krize potrebna bliskovita akcija čiščenja bančnih bilanc ter dovolj velik in trajen fiskalni in monetarni stimulus? In tretjič, ali se dovolj zavedamo, da imajo napake pri prvih dveh elementih (zapoznela sanacija bank, nezadovoljiv in prekratko trajajoč stimulus) nepopravljive politične posledice? In sicer fragmentacijo političnega prostora in njegovo radikalizacijo v smeri porasta skrajno desnega populizma.
Torej, kako dobro smo pripravljeni v Sloveniji? (Upam, da mi ne bo treba reciklirati starih člankov od 2008 naprej)
The crisis itself only happened because of the huge build-up of debt that policymakers treated with reprehensible neglect. While economic observers worried about current account asymmetries, the real danger lay not in net flows (inflows minus outflows) of finance between countries, but gross (total) flows. As the Bank for International Settlements chart below shows, this stock of cross-border financial claims trebled from $10tn to more than $30tn just from 2000 to 2008, an order of magnitude greater than the net flows.
With huge cross-border credit growth, of course, came huge domestic credit growth. It bears mentioning that this growth was largely in private credit — governments were not particularly profligate, though some had hangovers over legacy debt and, in a crisis, private debts usually end up in public balance sheets anyway. But it was clearly a policy error to allow private credit at this scale: we now know that beyond a certain point, more private credit (whether a higher level or faster growth) is harmful for economic growth and an indicator of a looming financial crisis.
And we know this not from the sworn enemies of the financial sector, but from such stalwarts of the liberal economic order as the IMF, the OECD and the BIS, all of which have published research pointing out that a surfeit of credit — in particular bank credit to households — does more harm than good.
Blame for the damage caused by the financial crash itself, therefore, should at least in part be laid at policymakers’ door for letting private credit grow out of control through neglect and sometimes with active encouragement.
That is not the end of it. After the welcome outburst of good policy in 2008-09, which arrested the downturn and triggered an initially strong recovery, the mistakes continued. In the US and Europe alike, fiscal stimulus was reversed and monetary stimulus was never pushed to the limit, and was sometimes prematurely withdrawn. The result was slower growth and lower economic activity than would have been achievable, manifest in less than full employment almost everywhere (with the notable exception of the UK, which added jobs faster than expected) and disappointing earnings growth, particularly in the UK where real wages did worse than almost anywhere else during the recovery. (On a very conservative calculation for the US, I found that the wasted economic output due to letting the economy languish for too long below full employment amounted to about 50 per cent of one year’s worth of output. Similar, if not bigger, numbers would hold in most western countries.)
These economic policy mistakes matter beyond the trillions lost in economic value. They are also political mistakes. Economists have shown empirically that financial crises as a rule strengthen hard-right extremes and erode the political centre. As Manuel Funke, Moritz Schularick and Christoph Trebesch conclude in a study of crises going back to 1870: “The typical political reaction to financial crises is as follows: votes for far-right parties increase strongly, government majorities shrink, the fractionalisation of parliaments rises and the overall number of parties represented in parliament jumps. These developments likely hinder crisis resolution and contribute to political gridlock. The resulting policy uncertainty may contribute to the much-debated slow economic recoveries from financial crises.”
Vir: Martin Sandbu, Financial Times