中国经济面临关键决策时刻 China Faces Policy Crunch Time

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中国经济面临关键决策时刻 China Faces Policy Crunch Time

Post by Admin on Mon Nov 15, 2010 11:53 am







但正如Stone & McCarthy Research Associates的分析师欧乐鹰(Tom Orlik)所说,让经济增长这艘船在信贷海洋上保持行驶并不是件 容易的事。对决策者来说问题在于当信贷的闸门被关闭后经济是否还能继续高速增长──如果通胀持续高企,银行的不良贷款问题开始显现,信贷闸门将不得不关闭。



Andrew Peaple
For Chinese policy makers, a crunch moment in the trade-off between growth and inflation is looming.

A spike in China's consumer-price inflation in October -- the annual rate rose to 4.4%, up from 3.6% in September -- means price gains are now well above Beijing's comfort zone, given that the CPI target for 2010 is 3%. At the same time, China's banks are still pumping out credit at a rate that's not much slower than 2009's lending bonanza. October saw an additional $89 billion of new loans made.

The People's Bank of China is already pulling harder on the other end of the rope. Prior to Thursday's data, it raised its reserve requirement ratio, forcing banks to set more money aside, rather than lend it. Last month it raised benchmark interest rates, after keeping them at post-credit-crunch lows for nearly two years.

More increases will be necessary. With inflation now 1.9 percentage points higher than the deposit rate banks pay, Chinese savers are seeing the value of their holdings eroded. Unsurprisingly, deposit levels fell by more than $100 billion in October, a record pace.That depositors are looking for better places to put their money to work is a danger, because it helps fuel asset-price bubbles.

But with the year winding down, the central bank also has to decide how much it should tighten lending quotas for next year. The current year's cap on new bank loans is about $1.1 trillion.

Heavy bank lending from late 2008, more than direct fiscal stimulus, got China through the global financial crisis with still-high levels of economic growth. Money loaned to state-owned enterprises and local government-related entities spurred heavy investment, in turn propping up overall growth.

But, as Tom Orlik, an analyst with Stone & McCarthy Research Associates, says, keeping growth afloat on a sea of credit isn't much of a trick. The question for policy makers is whether economic expansion can continue at a high rate when the lending taps are turned off -- as they will have to be if high inflation persists and bad loans at the banks start to emerge.

Despite all the talk of China's rebalancing, in the near term the economy doesn't have the drivers to fully compensate for a sharp fall in credit-led investment. But inflation has to be tamed, too.

For Beijing, 2011 is already looking like a year of headaches.

Andrew Peaple
Google Inc. (Cl A)


Posts : 14
Join date : 2010-11-02

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