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《经济学人》:全球经济,又是如履薄冰的一年

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The global economy全球经济

Another year of living dangerously又是如履薄冰的一年

Turmoil in the Middle East and disaster in Japan arouse economic angst. Central banks must not make it worse
中东的骚乱和日本的灾难引发经济上的忧虑。各国央行一定不能恶化事态

THIS was supposed to be a stress-free year for the global economy. By January the financial crisis had faded and Europe’s sovereign-debt crisis seemed less acute. America’s economy was resurgent. Investors piled into equities and sold some of the government bonds they’d bought for troubled times. If there was a worry, it was that emerging economies would grow too quickly, inflating commodity prices.

人们原本认为全球经济今年将会没有压力。一月份时,金融危机已经消退,欧洲的主权债务危机似乎不再那么严重,美国经济也在复苏。投资者大举买进股本,卖出一部分他们为艰难时期做准备而购买的政府债券。如果说有什么担心的话,那就是担心新兴经济体过快增长会推高物价。

The year without crisis is not to be. First, Arabian upheaval put oil markets on edge. Then earthquake, tsunami and a nuclear accident clobbered the world’s third-largest economy. How much of a setback to growth do these twin crises represent? And how should economic policymakers react to them?

没有危机的一年没有如愿出现。开头是阿拉伯世界的动乱把石油市场推向边缘。接着,地震、海啸和核事故冲击着日本这个世界第三大经济体。这两场危机对经济增长将会产生多大的阻碍作用?经济决策者应当如何应对?

Japan’s share of world output has been shrinking for decades, but at 9% it remains large enough for the hit to the country’s growth to subtract noticeably from global output. Then there are the ripple effects on the rest of the world. Japan is a large—in some cases the sole—supplier of intermediate goods to the world’s electronics and automotive industries, from the hardened glass on Apple’s iPad to gearboxes in Volkswagens. Many makers of such parts have had to slow or halt shipments because of damaged roads, power cuts or the loss of components from their own suppliers. The effects have spread well beyond Japan, causing shutdowns from South Korea to Spain. Still, the history of such disasters is that much of that lost production is eventually recovered and reconstruction delivers a fillip to subsequent growth.

日本在世界产值中的比重这几十年一直在下降,但是9%的份额依然足以使这次灾难对日本经济增长形成的冲击对全球产值产生明显的影响,而且对世界其他地区还会产生涟漪效应。日本是世界电子业和汽车业中间产品(从苹果iPad的硬化玻璃到大众的齿轮箱)的主要供应国,在有些方面甚至是唯一供应国。由于道路损坏、电力紧张或来自其供应商的零件短缺,这些部件的生产厂家已经被迫减缓甚至停止发货。影响已经波及到日本之外的地区,导致从韩国到西班牙的许多工厂停产。不过,在以前的这类灾难中,损耗的产能多数最终得以恢复,重建还刺激了之后的增长。

Pinpointing the impact of Arab political turmoil is complicated by the fact that oil prices were already rising thanks to a brighter global economic outlook. Nonetheless, a good portion of this year’s 25% increase seems due to worries over supplies. A rule of thumb holds that a 10% increase in the price of oil trims 0.2 percentage points from global growth. At the start of the year, the world looked likely to grow by 4-4.5%. A crude estimate is that the two crises will subtract between a quarter and half a percentage point from that.

由于全球经济前景更加光明,油价已在上涨,这使得阿拉伯政治动乱的影响难以明确。但是,对今年25%涨价幅度的相当一部分担心是在供应方面。概测法(拇指规律)表明,油价每上涨10%,全球经济增速就会减少0.2个百分点。年初时,世界经济似乎将会增长4-4.5%。粗略估计,阿拉伯和日本的这两场危机将使增速在4-4.5%的基础上减少0.25到0.5个百分点。

That may not capture the full effect. Crises by their nature generate clouds of uncertainty (see article). Businesses postpone capital spending and hiring until the clouds clear. Investors seek the safety of bonds and lose their taste for equities.

这可能还没考虑到所有影响。危机的本质会产生不确定性,在云开雾散之前企业推迟资本支出和招兵买马,投资者对股本失去兴趣而转向收益方面安全的债券。

重点单词   查看全部解释    
subdued [səb'dju:d]

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adj. 减弱的;被制服的;被抑制的 v. 使服从,压制

 
thumb [θʌm]

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n. 拇指
v. 翻阅,示意要求搭车

 
global ['gləubəl]

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adj. 全球性的,全世界的,球状的,全局的

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subtract [səb'trækt]

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vt. 扣掉
vi. 减少

 
supplier [sə'plaiə]

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n. 供应者,供应厂商,供应国

 
earthquake ['ə:θkweik]

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n. 地震

 
bond [bɔnd]

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n. 债券,结合,粘结剂,粘合剂
vt. 使结

 
commodity [kə'mɔditi]

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n. 商品,日用品

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resist [ri'zist]

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v. 抵抗,反抗,抵制,忍住
n. 防蚀涂层

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priority [prai'ɔriti]

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n. 优先权,优先顺序,优先

 


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