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美联储加息影响波及全球

更新时间:2017-3-21 12:00:48 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

The Fed Acts. Workers in Mexico and Merchants in Malaysia Suffer.
美联储加息影响波及全球

CIUDAD JUÁREZ, Mexico — Francisca Hervis Reyes and her family have persevered on the border, working in factories more than 1,300 miles from their hometown. They remained even as deadly warfare between drug cartels turned this city into one of the most dangerous on the planet.

墨西哥华雷斯——弗朗西斯卡·埃尔维斯·雷耶斯(Francisca Hervis Reyes)和家人一直坚持在边境的工厂里上班,这里距离他们的家乡超过1300英里(约合2100公里)。即便是在贩毒集团之间的火拼让这座城市成为全球最危险的地方之一时,他们仍留了下来。

But they may not endure the changing predilections of the Federal Reserve.

但面对美联储(Federal Reserve)的口味变化,他们大概要挺不住了。

Reyes is paid in Mexican pesos, a currency that has been losing value as the Fed, the central bank of the United States, has signaled plans to raise interest rates this year. In the parched terrain just south of the U.S. border, the prices of food and other necessities follow the dollar, whose value has been climbing. It is as if the Fed has slashed her pay.

雷耶斯的工资是墨西哥比索结算的。随着作为美国央行的美联储今年发出计划加息的信号,墨西哥比索不断贬值。在这片美国边境以南的干燥地带,食品和其他必需品的价格追随美元的价值不断攀升。这就像是美联储在扣她的工资。

Like millions of other people from Southeast Asia to Africa to Latin America, Reyes and her family are absorbing the consequences of a major shift playing out in the global economy.

和从东南亚、非洲等地来到拉丁美洲的数百万人一样,雷耶斯和家人正在承受全球经济中正在发生的一个重要变化的后果。

As the Fed lifted rates Wednesday, it added momentum to a steady stream of money that has been abandoning emerging markets and flowing toward U.S. shores. With further Fed increases expected this year, developing countries are bracing for additional impacts: more investment departing, more currencies falling, more economies weakening.

随着美联储周三上调利率,资金放弃新兴市场、稳定流向美国的势头增强。在外界预计美联储今年会进一步加息的情况下,发展中国家正在为其他影响做准备:投资撤离加剧,货币进一步贬值,更多经济体趋于疲弱。

By mandate, the Fed is answerable to the people of the United States.

美联储受命只对美国民众负责。

When times are lean and businesses are reluctant to hire, the Fed makes money more available by nudging down rates. When times are good and concern builds about elevated prices, it cools things off by lifting rates and tightening credit.

在经济困难,企业不愿招聘时,美联储会通过下调利率来降低资金成本。在经济形势看好,对物价攀升的担忧加剧时,美联储会通过上调利率并收紧信贷来给经济降温。

Yet in reality, the Fed is the central banker to the world.

但实际上,美联储是全世界的中央银行。

The dollar is the money used most widely as the repository of savings and as the currency for trade. When the Fed lowers rates, it makes the dollar less attractive, encouraging investors to seek rewards elsewhere. When the Fed lifts rates, investors switch gears, yanking capital and selling off other currencies.

美元是使用最广的储蓄和贸易结算货币。当美联储下调利率时,美元的吸引力会降低,这会鼓励投资者去其他地方寻求回报。当美联储上调利率时,投资者会改变策略,撤出资金并变卖其他货币。

In Turkey, shopkeepers who have withstood an attempted military coup, a subsequent crackdown and relentless terrorist attacks now grapple with the plunge of the Turkish lira, which has lifted the price of imported wares.

在土耳其,熬过了军事政变未遂、随后的镇压和接连不断的恐怖袭击的店主,现在正在努力应对土耳其里拉大幅贬值的问题,这种贬值已经导致进口商品涨价。

In Malaysia, businesses struggle with higher costs for items priced in dollars as the local currency falls. In Mexico, families are buffeted by a volatile currency that was already flagging on threats from President Donald Trump to tax goods coming over the border.

在马来西亚,由于当地货币贬值,企业要为以美元定价的商品支付更高成本。在墨西哥,家庭因动荡的货币而受到强烈冲击——该国货币本来就因唐纳德·特朗普总统威胁对墨西哥货物征税而变得疲软。

“Every time the peso goes down, we can afford less and less,” Reyes said on a recent evening, as pale desert light gave way to chilly darkness. “We’re thinking about going back to Veracruz. People are leaving the factories and going back to their towns.”

“比索每下跌一次,我们买得起的东西就越少,”雷耶斯在前不久的一个晚上说。当时,苍白的沙漠黄昏让位给寒冷的黑暗。“我们在考虑返回韦拉克鲁斯。越来越多的人正离开工厂,回到故乡。”

The Fed forces can be traumatic, especially in less affluent places.

美联储的威力可能造成巨大创伤,尤其是在不太富裕的地方。

As the financial crisis unfolded in 2008, the central bank took extraordinary measures to keep credit flowing. The result was a surge of investment into emerging markets.

2008年金融危机爆发后,该中央银行采取了非常措施,保持信贷流动。结果导致投资涌入新兴市场。

More than $259 billion poured into developing countries the next year, according to the Institute of International Finance, a trade association. From 2010 to 2015, the annual capital flows to those places averaged $328 billion.

根据贸易协会国际金融研究所(Institute of International Finance)的数据,2009年就有逾2590亿美元流入发展中国家。从2010年到2015年,那些地方的年均流入资金为3280亿美元。

In spring 2013, the Fed surprised markets with plans to slow its stimulus efforts. Investors then stampeded out of emerging countries, sending currencies plunging in Brazil, India, Indonesia, South Africa and Turkey. The episode became known as “the taper tantrum.”

2013年春,美联储计划减缓刺激措施,令市场感到惊讶。之后,投资者蜂拥退出新兴国家,导致巴西、印度、印度尼西亚、南非和土耳其的货币暴跌。这种情况被称为“削减恐慌”(taper tantrum)。

“The effect of interest rate increases on emerging countries is surprisingly strong,” said Gary Clyde Hufbauer, an international trade expert at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. “It’s a big thing.”

“利率上升对新兴国家的影响是巨大的,”彼得森国际经济研究所(Peterson Institute for International Economics)的国际贸易专家加里·克莱德·赫夫鲍尔(Gary Clyde Hufbauer)说,“它是件大事。”

Most economists assume the rate increases expected this year will play out far less dramatically. The Fed has telegraphed its plans, giving investors time to prepare. Many emerging countries have amassed larger reserves of dollars, giving them ammunition against a drop in their currencies.

大多数经济学家认为,今年预料之中的利率上调产生的影响会小得多。美联储提前透露了自己的计划,给投资者提供了做准备的时间。许多新兴国家储备了更多美元,以抵御货币贬值。

Still, some countries are already showing strains.

然而,有些国家已经出现压力。

Turkey’s currency has dropped about 25 percent against the dollar since May, and its government is operating with relatively meager reserves. The Mexican peso has been falling as Trump threatens to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. China swiftly reacted to the Fed’s action with its own interest-rate increase Thursday.

自5月份以来,土耳其货币对美元的价格下跌了约25%,其政府以相对较少的储备运转着。自特朗普威胁要就《北美自由贸易协定》(North American Free Trade Agreement)重新进行谈判以来,墨西哥比索一直在下跌。周四,中国对美联储的行动做出快速反应,上调了本国货币的利率。

Within the investing world, the peso functions as a proxy for all developing countries — the thing to bet against when sentiments go negative. “It’s kind of the first port of call for anyone who thinks something bad is going to happen to emerging markets,” said Mark Weisbrot, a director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington. “Mexico is vulnerable.”

在投资界,比索成为所有发展中国家的代表——在情绪转为负面时会遭到打压。“对任何认为新兴市场将出现糟糕情况的人说,它算是会去造访的第一站,”华盛顿的经济与政策研究中心(Center for Economic and Policy Research)主任马克·韦斯布罗特(Mark Weisbrot)说,“墨西哥很脆弱。”

WHAT COULD GO WRONG

可能出现什么问题

A year ago, the lights were burning brightly for Vivy Yusof, a prominent Malaysian entrepreneur. So brightly that, on an episode of her reality show, she joked, “I’m Kim Kardashian.”

一年前,马来西亚著名企业家维维·优素福(Vivy Yusof)的事业蒸蒸日上。在某集真人秀中,她开玩笑说:“我是金·卡戴珊(Kim Kardashian)。”

Yusof is at once a symbol of what has gone economically right in Malaysia and, with the Fed now raising rates, how much could go wrong.

优素福既代表着马来西亚经济运行良好时的样子,也代表着美联储提高利率后经济可能变糟的程度。

She is part of a group of tech-savvy business leaders who have emerged as Malaysia tries to evolve beyond its traditional dependence on selling commodities like palm oil and petroleum.

她是一群精通技术的商业领袖中的一员,他们是在马来西亚试图摆脱对棕榈油和石油等大宗商品的销售的传统依赖中涌现出来的。

Economic growth has been flagging, a reality playing out across Southeast Asia as the region adjusts to China’s slowdown. China is not buying commodities the way it used to.

随着中国经济放缓,整个东南亚的经济增长也随之放缓。中国不再像从前那样购买大宗商品。

Malaysia faces potential political instability as Prime Minister Najib Razak confronts accusations that people close to him harvested $1 billion from a state investment fund he oversaw. He denies wrongdoing.

马来西亚面临潜在的政治不稳定性,总理纳吉布·拉扎克(Najib Razak)正被指控与他亲近的人从他监管的一项国家投资基金中获取了10亿美元。他否认自己有不法行为。

Even before the Fed’s move, global investors were fleeing. Foreigners once owned more than half of Malaysia’s local bonds, but they have sold off 17 percent of their holdings since August. Their nervousness grew in November as Malaysia imposed controls on the movement of money.

甚至在美联储提高利率之前,全球投资者也在逃离马来西亚。外国人曾拥有马来西亚本地债券一半以上的份额,但自去年8月以来,他们卖掉了17%的相关债券。去年11月,马来西亚对货币流动实施控制之后,他们更紧张了。

Malaysia’s currency, the ringgit, has lost 8 percent against the dollar in the last year. For Malaysia’s consumers — and for companies that serve them — imports are getting more expensive.

去年,马来西亚货币林吉特兑美元的汇率下跌了8%。对马来西亚的消费者以及为他们服务的公司来说,进口商品变得越来越昂贵。

Yusof sells hijabs and other clothing, catering to cosmopolitan Muslims with a taste for distinctive patterns. Some of her garments are made in China. When the dollar rises, her profit margins are squeezed. And though online sales are brisk, business at her three mall stores has begun to slow.

优素福销售头巾等服饰,迎合都市穆斯林对独特图案的追求。她的有些服装是在中国制造的。美元升值时,她的利润空间受到挤压。虽然网上销售活跃,但她的三个商场店铺的生意变得有些冷清。

“We used to do a lot better,” she said.

“我们过去做得比现在好得多,”她说。

Throughout Mexico, the weak peso has been lifting prices for everything from cars to cooking gas to tortillas. As of February, prices were rising at an annualized pace of nearly 5 percent, Mexico’s highest rate of inflation in seven years.

在整个墨西哥,疲软的比索一直在抬高所有商品的价格,从汽车、燃气到玉米饼。截至今年2月,物价的年化增速达到近5%,通货膨胀率达到墨西哥7年以来的最高值。

Mexico’s central bank has been steadily lifting rates to protect its currency in the face of a possible trade war with the United States. With the Fed adding pressure, many analysts expect Mexico’s central bank to deliver a fresh rate increase this month.

墨西哥中央银行一直在稳步提高利率,以便在面对与美国可能出现的贸易战时保护本国货币。随着美联储增加压力,许多分析师预计墨西哥的中央银行会在本月再次提高利率。

Chicken, beef, milk and vegetables have all risen in price, with many of these items imported from the United States. Reyes’ family subsists mainly on beans and pasta.

鸡肉、牛肉、牛奶和蔬菜的价格都上涨了,其中许多是从美国进口的。雷耶斯一家主要靠豆类和面食维持生存。

She pointed toward a bodega across a patch of gravel from her house. “Eggs are twice the price they were six months ago,” she said. “We’ve been buying less.”

从她家穿过一块砂砾路有一家杂货铺。她指着杂货铺说:“现在鸡蛋的价格是6个月前的两倍,”她说,“我们买得越来越少。”

She used to send money back to her family in Veracruz, where one of her sisters is blind. Not anymore.

过去,她还寄钱给韦拉克鲁斯的家人,她有个盲人姐妹住在那里。现在不再寄了。

Inside the concrete-block home she shares with her husband, their three daughters and their three grandsons, the ceiling is stained from leaks. The walls are crumbling. Two windows are boarded up and held together by masking tape, having been damaged by a rock fight between two gangs.

她和丈夫、三个女儿和三个外孙住在一个混凝土石块房里,天花板因为漏雨而出现污渍。墙壁在剥落。两扇窗户用板子封了起来,用胶带固定,它们是在两个帮派扔石块斗殴时被损坏的。

As the family members prepared to share a lone queen-size bed, positioning their bodies sideways to maximize space, they had no heat to cut the 44-degree chill.

这家人睡在一张长长的大床上,为了省空间,他们都侧着身子睡,屋里没有暖气抵御6、7摄氏度的寒冷。

“We use blankets,” Reyes said, “and what love we have.”

“我们用毯子取暖,”雷耶斯说,“还有我们的爱。”

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