Minyanvilleの9月23日記事「With QE Out of the Way, the Real Economy Is Revealed」を興味深く読んだ。リフレーション政策マンセーと未だに叫んでいる人たちは必読では。例によって要点のみ抜粋。青字強調はmasayangによるもの。

In our current case, despite trillions in monetary and fiscal interventions, the overriding economic reality has not changed since 2009, or even 2001. The recovery, such as it was, was completely dependent on the government picking up the slack in economic flow that was destroyed first by the credit collapse of the housing bubble, and then the weak dollar as it “influenced” large and liquid businesses to invest capital offshore. There has been no private or sustainable effort to close the loop of economic activity through employment.
→ 何兆ドルもの金融政策・財政政策を打ってきた割には、アメリカ経済の現実は2009年以降(もしかしたら2001年以降)何も変わってない。「回復」は政府の景気刺激策に依存しており、民間が自発的かつ継続的に雇用を増やすような状況にはなってない。
Largely, the lack of employment reflects the actual economic potential of an economy no longer under the monetary influences of runaway credit. So much activity was built on the housing bubble (like the tech bubble before it) that nothing short of another asset bubble would do – and policymakers have tried hard to accommodate. The Fed disregarded the caution that the 2008 collapse exemplified and tried to rebuild the economy as it was in 2006.
Lowering interest rates and embarking on quantitative easing (QE) were efforts designed to do two concurrent things: stoke inflation expectations and make safe investment expensive. By engaging in this willful destruction, the Fed at least recognized the fundamental problem of closing the loop on economic flow. Its thinking, flawed as it usually is, was that by increasing the cost of holding money, companies would invest in capital projects and consumers would yield to that calculus of money cost, exchanging their overwhelming desire to hold money balances out of rightful concern for reckless spending fueled by even larger and more damaging debt balances.
Instead, we now have the desperate situation where the temporary bridge of economic flow that was provided by unemployment insurance, food stamp assistance, and federal transfers to states has ended. The results should not have been surprising. In the past 12 months, 1.7 million people have exhausted their unemployment benefits, rolling off those transfers into nothing. State workers are falling into the same abyss, although they are at least transitioning from employment to the beginning of their 99 weeks (still an economic adjustment).
→だが経済をどん底に落とさなかった要因は失業保険であり、食糧配給券(Food Stamp)であり、あるいは連邦政府から州政府への支援だったのである。それらの制度も予定期間が終わりつつあり、過去1年で170万人が失業保険給付期間を終えている。完全に無収入になったのである。
A healthy economy is one that flows freely back and forth between businesses and consumers. The reality is that we have not seen such a system in more than a decade. Monetary policy after the tech bubble created the same conditions we are experiencing today, where jobs and capital investment were shipped overseas through willful dollar devaluation. All that trade money came back to the US in the form of foreign buying of agency debt – our trade imbalance was turned into another pillar of the housing bubble.
And so the transfer of marginal import buying and trade dollars was repatriated domestically into housing debt, artificially closing the loop of economic flow. Now that price action in the housing market, and its subsequent credit production problems, is dead, there is nothing to artificially replace the previous version of monetarism. Marginal spending and investment flow that still goes overseas will only come back as US government debt, and that potential loop will eventually be destroyed by increased taxation (if the current administration is successful), owing to the now precarious position that monetary and fiscal policy has created in the misplaced and miscalculated hope of a self-starting recovery.
Quantitative easing was never designed to be a long-term "solution," only a temporary bridge to the recovery that economists took as a given. Because of their adherence to mathematical models and their historical extrapolations they still believe that our current economy is under cyclical influences. And so they are blind to the structural problems that are all too real, and in large part due to previous monetary exertions. Unfortunately, economists and policymakers believe that monetary policy does not impact the real economy beyond the short run, a principle they call monetary neutrality. Yet, as we are learning the hard way, monetary policy does have lingering and lasting negative effects.
The recovery they hoped for and counted on was never really a possibility. It has simply become a question of potential – owing to neutrality, the Fed made the mistake of actually believing that economic activity in the 2002-07 period was a natural economic progression. The sad truth is that economic activity during the housing bubble was artificially high and did not represent true potential.
The economy right now is simply reverting back to its real, unaltered potential now that consumers and businesses can no longer respond to monetary influences that are most definitely non-neutral. In other words, there was no chance for QE to do anything other than make the economy and markets worse. If there weren’t so many structural economic problems creating a renewed recession, the lack of additional QE should have been cheered.

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