V Veliki Britaniji, ki je bila med prvimi, kjer so uvedli dogmo o neodvisnosti centralne banke od vlade, so tudi prvi to dogmo začasno suspendirali za čas te korona krize. Britanska vlada je namreč uvidela, da tekočih likvidnostnih potreb ne more dovolj hitro pokriti s pridobivanjem sredstev na kapitalskem trgu (z izdajanjem obveznic). Zato je presekala obvod, pri katerem bi najprej izdala obveznice v primarni emisiji, ki bi jih nato Bank of England odkupila od finančnih institucij. S tem se je izognila tudi plačevanju stroškov tega posredništva. Zaenkrat je ostala odprta le še iluzija, da bo ta “kredit” centralne banke treba tudi kdaj odplačati. Seveda ga ne bo treba, toda dajmo se glede tega še nekaj časa pretvarjati.
In seveda se dušebrižnikom ni treba bati, to se v EU in Evrosistemu (še) ne more zgoditi. Za kaj takšnega potrebuješ monetarno neodvisnost (svojo valuto in svojo centralno banko).
The UK has become the first country to embrace the monetary financing of government to fund the immediate cost of fighting coronavirus, with the Bank of England agreeing to a Treasury demand to directly finance the state’s spending needs on a temporary basis.
The move allows the government to bypass the bond market until the Covid-19 pandemic subsides, financing unexpected costs such as the job retention scheme where bills will fall due at the end of April.
Although BoE governor Andrew Bailey opposed monetary financing earlier this week, Treasury officials felt it was best to have the insurance of the central bank willing to finance its operations in the short term.
It highlights the extraordinary demands on cash the government has experienced in recent weeks, which it feels it cannot finance immediately in the gilts market.
In a statement to financial markets on Thursday, the government announced it would extend the size of the government’s bank account at the central bank, known historically as the “Ways and Means Facility”, which normally stands at just £370m.
This will rise to an effectively unlimited amount, allowing ministers to spend more in the short term without having to tap the gilts market. In 2008, a similar move saw the facility rise briefly to £20bn.
The scale is likely to be large. The government has already tripled the amount of debt it wanted to raise in financial markets in April from £15bn announced in the March 11 Budget to £45bn by the start of this month.
This direct monetary financing of government would be “temporary and short-term”, the Treasury said in its statement.
Tony Yates, senior adviser at Fathom Consulting and a former BoE official, said the move was “an indication of the extraordinary pressures on government”. He added, however, that UK monetary financing of government deficits was unlikely to turn Britain into Zimbabwe because, once the crisis was over, the UK’s capacity to raise taxes again remained intact.
But just as the quantitative easing the BoE has introduced since 2009 has never been repaid, Richard Barwell, head of macro research at BNP Asset Management and also a former BoE official, said temporary moves such as this often became more permanent as time passed.
“Persistent monetary financing feels inevitable. Central banks just need to figure out a plan for how to best get into it and how they might eventually want to get out of it,” he said.
Vir: Financial Times