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QUEM SÓ TEM UM MARTELO VÊ TODOS OS PROBLEMAS COMO PREGOS: O alívio quantitativo aliviará? (37) O clube dos incréus reforçou-se (VI)

Outras marteladas.

«Public pronouncements about the objectives of QE are deliberately shrouded in central bank speak. Depreciation of the yen is quite obviously an indirect effect of large-scale Japanese money printing — but it would not do for Shinzo Abe, the Japanese prime minister, or Haruhiko Kuroda, the Bank of Japan governor, to say so plainly. That would be politically toxic in the American heartlands. Nor would Mario Draghi, president of the European Central Bank, acknowledge that he is artificially distorting the bond markets so that the debt-ridden governments of peripheral Europe can continue to enjoy a low cost of capital (the eurozone’s very own Ponzi scheme). But that is what he is doing.

Instead, central bankers talk about two main objectives of QE. The first is to maintain the supply of money to the banking system, to prevent a contraction in credit from leading to a seizure of 1930s proportions.

The second is to stimulate what they call the “portfolio channel” via the purchase of sovereign bonds. Government bonds provide the risk-free rate for financial markets, off which everything else is priced. If you suppress the risk-free rate by buying debt, you boost the price of all other assets, from credit to equities to property.

Banks have been the biggest beneficiaries, with their 20- or 30-times leveraged balance sheets. Asset managers and hedge funds have benefited, too. Owners of property have made out like bandits. In fact, anyone with assets has grown much richer. All of us who work in financial markets owe a debt to QE.

«Central banks have made the rich richer», Paul Marshall, chairman of Marshall Wace, a London-based hedge fund

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