For governments and central banks worldwide, the Coronavirus couldn’t have come at a more convenient time. Though it was a global pandemic that sent the global economy into a tailspin, any other black swan event would have lead to the economic collapse we are now experiencing, and if maintaining a confidence game is the key to a stable but artificial economy, then COVID-19 is the ideal justification to reopen the floodgates of liquidity once again.

对于世界各国政府和央行来说,冠状病毒的出现可谓恰逢其时,尽管这是一次全球大流行,全球经济陷入混乱,其他黑天鹅事件会导致我们现在经历的经济崩溃,但如果维持信心游戏是一个稳定但人为的经济关键,那么新型冠状病毒肺炎是再次打开流动性闸门的理想理由。


In Europe, newly-appointed President of the European Central Bank (ECB), Christine Lagarde, is in talks with E.U leaders this week to discuss a potential increase in public spending, while also considering cheaper funding for E.U banks.

在欧洲,新任命的欧洲央行行长克里斯蒂娜·拉加德正在与欧盟领导人讨论增加公共开支的可能性,同时也在考虑为欧洲央行的银行提供更廉价的资金。

Across the pond, U.S Treasury Secretary Mnuchin is recommending that the Internal Revenue Service delay tax payments for all Americans. Plus, he is in talks with top Federal regulators to discuss potential ways of easing conditions to regain confidence in financial markets.

在大西洋彼岸,美国财政部长努钦建议国税局推迟向所有美国人缴纳税款。 此外,他正在与联邦最高监管机构进行会谈,讨论可能采取何种方式放松环境,以恢复对金融市场的信心。

Meanwhile, in the eastern hemisphere, the Japanese government has allowed the BOJ to support the stock market with additional ETF purchases, and Australia recently announced an $11.4 billion stimulus package, providing cash flow assistance to small and medium-sized businesses.

与此同时,在东半球的东亚,日本政府允许日本央行通过购买交易所交易基金来支持股市,澳大利亚最近宣布了114亿美元的经济刺激计划,为中小企业提供现金流援助。

Emerging markets are also joining in: South Korea has issued a six-month ban on short-selling equities, Thailand has issued a 400 billion Thai Baht stimulus package to support low-income workers, and Hong Kong has issued each citizen with a credit of $10,000 HK dollars.

新兴市场也加入进来:韩国发布了为期6个月的股票卖空禁令,泰国发布了4000亿泰铢的经济刺激计划,以支持低收入工人,香港向每个公民发放了1万港元的信贷。

The abundance of stimulus globally shows our leaders are in panic mode, and rightly so. We’re in the midst of a global crisis. But what makes the situation even hairier, is our central bank’s lack of ammunition compared to the last recession. Interest rates worldwide are already near the zero bound with multiple countries and regions already in the negative: Europe and Japan to name a few. And in money markets, despite the Federal Reserve already injecting an emergency $1.5 trillion package, risk assets continue to plunge.

全球范围内大量的经济刺激计划表明,我们的领导人正处于恐慌状态,而且理应如此,我们正处于一场全球危机之中。
但是,与上次经济衰退相比,我们的中央银行缺乏弹药,这使得情况更加糟糕。
世界范围内的利率已经接近于零,许多国家和地区已经处于负值,欧洲和日本只是其中的几个,在货币市场,尽管美联储已经注入了1.5万亿美元的紧急救助资金,但风险资产继续暴跌。

It no surprise, then, that there’s rampant speculation in the finance community that authorities will ratchet up the amount of stimulus to rescue the economy. As bond expert George Goncalves illustrates using a chart of policy responses versus the stock market during the GFC, when the bubble bursts, minor easing — such as cutting interest rates and issuing tax breaks — fails to support risk appetite.

因此,在金融界有关当局将加大刺激力度以拯救经济的猜测甚嚣尘上,也就不足为奇了。
正如债券专家乔治贡萨尔维斯用一张关于全球金融危机期间股市与政策反应的图表说明,当泡沫破裂时,轻微的宽松政策——比如降息和减税——无法支撑风险偏好。

When these policies inevitably miss the spot, global authorities will have no choice but to fire the “big bazooka”: finance culture’s comical name for quantitative easing. But this time, with no other tools in the shed, they will also unleash “QE Infinity”: permanent large-scale asset purchasing; a central bank’s untested but supposedly ultimate weapon.

当这些政策不可避免地未能奏效时,全球当局将别无选择,只能“放大火箭” : 金融届对定量宽松的滑稽称呼。
但这一次,在没有其他工具的情况下,他们还将推出 永久性的大规模资产购买,央行未经考验但据称是终极武器:“无限量化宽松”。

After the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), many economists warned that quantitative easing would cause hyperinflation. But while they were right about inflation, they were wrong about where it would show up. Instead of consumer prices skyrocketing, speculative assets: stocks, bonds, housing, etc., went parabolic, creating a wealth effect that has kept the global economy stable ever since.

在全球金融危机之后,许多经济学家警告说,量化宽松政策将导致恶性通货膨胀,然而,尽管他们对通胀的预测是正确的,但他们对通胀将出现在哪里的预测却是错误的。
投机性资产: 股票、债券、房地产等等,取代了消费者价格的暴涨,呈抛物线走势,创造了财富效应,从此保持了全球经济的稳定。

But if propping up speculative assets eventually goes out of style, a new economic theory may cause those economist''''s original prediction to come true: If governments are willing to try everything to spur growth, they will implement Modern Monetary Theory (MMT): a new radical idea where governments pump money from the central bank directly into the wallets of consumers instead of the banks. In theory, MMT sounds like a win for the people, but it always ends in consumer price hyperinflation — in Weimar, Germany a simple staples purchase took you to the bankruptcy court.

但是,但如果支撑投机性资产最终过时,一种新的经济理论可能会使这些经济学家最初的预测成为现实:

如果政府愿意尽一切努力刺激经济增长,他们将实施现代货币理论(MMT) ——一种新的激进理念,即政府从央行直接把钱注入消费者的钱包,而不是银行,理论上,MMT 听起来像是人民的胜利,但它总是以居民消费价格的恶性通胀告终ーー德国魏玛共和国时期,一笔简单的必需品交易就能把你送上了破产法庭。
The alternative to MMT, defaulting on debt, is also unfavorable. As the Great Depression shows, allowing a large debt burden — especially $257 trillion of global debt — to unwind will lead to the biggest deflationary period in human history and will cause just as much pain as an inflationary collapse.

作为 MMT 的替代方案,债务违约也是不利的,正如大萧条所显示的那样,允许大量债务负担 ( 尤其是全球债务达257万亿美元之巨) 得到平衡,将导致人类历史上最严重的通缩,造成的痛苦与通胀崩溃一样大。

Quite simply, we’re in a pickle. History tells us that all the policies the authorities are implementing lead to an unfavorable outcome, so its anyone’s guess as to which policy causes the least long-term damage. Although QE infinity, whether that''''s supporting asset prices or running MMT, will improve financial conditions in the short term, any kind of money printing will prove to be an ineffective long-term solution.

很简单,我们陷入了困境。
历史告诉我们,当局正在实施的所有政策都会导致不利的结果,因此,对于哪一项政策造成的长期损害最小,谁也说不准。
尽管无限量化宽松 ( 无论是支撑资产价格还是运营MMT) 将在短期内改善金融状况,但事实将证明,任何形式的印钞都是一种无效的长期解决方案。

The end game for global authorities, however, is not to consider the future consequences of inflating the bubble further. It’s to do whatever it takes to curb the effects of COVID-19, saving the global economy from a total collapse, and maintaining the stability of an already broken global economic system.

然而,全球监管机构的最终目标,并非考虑进一步吹大泡沫的未来后果,而是要不惜一切代价遏制新型冠状病毒肺炎的影响,拯救全球经济免于全面崩溃,并维护已经支离破碎的全球经济体系的稳定。