Attenti però che secondo alcuni c'è il rischio di una bolla, per esempio nell'immobiliare in Cina. Se n'era occupato anche l'Economist un paio di mesi fa in un'analisi comparativa della Cina di oggi con il Giappone della bolla immobiliare degli anni Ottanta concludendo che la situazione è molto diversa e tale da non giustificare allarmismi:
a close inspection of pessimists’ three main concerns—overvalued asset prices, overinvestment and excessive bank lending—suggests that China’s economy is more robust than they think. Start with asset markets. Chinese share prices are nowhere near as giddy as Japan’s were in the late 1980s. In 1989 Tokyo’s stockmarket had a price-earnings ratio of almost 70; today’s figure for Shanghai A shares is 28, well below its long-run average of 37. Granted, prices jumped by 80% last year, but markets in other large emerging economies went up even more: Brazil, India and Russia rose by an average of 120% in dollar terms. And Chinese profits have rebounded faster than those elsewhere. In the three months to November, industrial profits were 70% higher than a year before.
China’s property market is certainly hot. Prices of new apartments in Beijing and Shanghai leapt by 50-60% during 2009. Some lavish projects have much in common with those in Dubai—notably “The World”, a luxury development in Tianjin, 120km (75 miles) from Beijing, in which homes will be arranged as a map of the world, along with the world’s biggest indoor ski slope and a seven-star hotel.
Average home prices nationally, however, cannot yet be called a bubble. On January 14th the National Development and Reform Commission reported that average prices in 70 cities had climbed by 8% in the year to December, the fastest pace for 18 months; other measures suggest a bigger rise. But this followed a fall in prices in 2008. By most measures average prices have fallen relative to incomes in the past decade (see chart 1).
The most cited evidence of a bubble—and hence of impending collapse—is the ratio of average home prices to average annual household incomes. This is almost ten in China; in most developed economies it is only four or five. However, Tao Wang, an economist at UBS, argues that this rich-world yardstick is misleading. Chinese homebuyers do not have average incomes but come largely from the richest 20-30% of the urban population. Using this group’s average income, the ratio falls to rich-world levels. In Japan the price-income ratio hit 18 in 1990, obliging some buyers to take out 100-year mortgages.
Potrebbe nascere negli USA il National Institute of Finance, con il compito di cane da guardia contro i rischi di collasso del sistema finanziario...
The proposed agency, which has sometimes been referred to as the National Institute of Finance, is intended to give federal regulators daily updates on the stability of individual firms as well as that of their trading partners, including hedge funds.
By standardizing financial instruments and reporting mechanisms, the agency would give regulators a broader view of the health of participants in the financial markets and the potential for problems to spread. The idea’s supporters say that kind of information was lacking in recent years as the housing bubble burst and troubles spread from firm to firm. (...)
The agency would gather data from the largest firms and from a broad set of market participants, including all United States-based financial institutions, which would be required to report all their financial transactions, regardless of whether the counterparty was based here or abroad. The agency would take steps to safeguard proprietary trading information, while also shining a light onto the so-called shadow banking system of mortgage brokers, subprime lenders and unregulated hedge funds that contributed to the financial crisis.
The financial reform bill approved last year by the House would create a systemic risk council that would collect similar data without establishing an independent agency, a difference that will have to be resolved before a bill is sent to the president.
...anche se la rottura tra Democratici e Repubblicani sul tema della riforma finanziaria mi fa pensare che le cose andranno per le lunghe. Tra i più accesi sostenitori delle riforme c'è Gary G. Gensler, ex di Goldman Sachs che propone di
... forcing the big banks that sell derivatives to conduct their trades in the open on public exchanges and clear them through central clearinghouses, so that any investor can see the prices that dealers charge their customers. Today, those transactions are bilateral and private.
The banks and their customers might have to post collateral or guarantees to prevent the kinds of panics seen during the financial crisis, in which some investors worried that trading partners might have trouble keeping their side of the contract.
In this way, the clearinghouses would work as circuit breakers in the great web of derivatives trading encircling the globe. Shifting the products, and the risk of default, off the books of the banks and onto these middlemen would ensure that no single bank was too interconnected to fail, the rationale goes.
Anche Goldman Sachs sembra essere d'accordo mentre alcune compagnie non finanziarie, che usano i derivati per la gestione del rischio (e basta?) sono preoccupate di dover sostenere dei costi aggiuntivi:
Goldman also does not oppose a clearinghouse for trades, he said.
“We’re in favor of central clearing for derivatives,” he said. “We also think that all derivatives that can be traded on an exchange should be, but we don’t think it is a good idea to insist that derivatives can only be traded if they’re on an exchange.”
Some big nonfinancial companies that use the derivatives for hedging are fighting the reforms for their own reasons.
Organizations including the United States Chambers of Commerce have formed the Coalition of Derivatives End-Users, representing about 170 companies including Coca-Cola, Caterpillar and General Electric. The group argues that the changes could make derivatives too expensive for them to use — or tie up capital they should be putting to work in their businesses.
“The question is how much is legitimate hedging by corporations” as opposed to speculative trading, said Don M. Chance, a finance professor at Louisiana State University. “You have to be careful you don’t punish companies that want to use swaps in a productive, safe manner.”
Divertente post di Mebane Faber su come diventare un blogger importante: mi era sfuggito e ve lo segnalo. Il giorno che alfa o beta? raggiungerà il modesto obiettivo delle mille visite mensili organizziamo una festa (virtuale?)...