困局

難得看電視節目,是鏗鏘集。講通脹,百物騰貴,小商戶經營艱難,升斗市民怨聲載道,說政府無能為力,見黎民生活於水深火熱而見死不救。

這是經濟的問題。在罵街之前,我們要了解通脹的成因。第一,香港經濟是輸入型,大部份的貨物都依靠外地入口,如果全球商品價格上升,香港的物價必定會上升。第二,香港之前一直處於經濟增長,內需強勁,物價上升幾乎一定會出現。經濟週期裡,增長帶來通脹,衰退帶來通縮,那是常理。當然偶爾也會出現常理以外的事,例如滯脹便是,但現在香港還未出現這個現象,所以暫且不談。

今天是立法會選舉,候選人都痛責政府無能,未能解決通脹問題。我深信他們的政綱,往往是滯後太多的垃圾指標,現在應該要講經濟哀退的問題了!有人甚至強調要為最低工資立法,難道他們認為最低工資會將通脹問題解決? 另外政府行的是聯繫匯率,根本不能有貨幣政策,所以不能循改變利率解決通脹問題。政府現在派錢,的確可以紓緩通脹,但不可能解決通脹。減稅呢?香港的稅基已經太窄了。減了又難加,又要令民望下滑,不如不做更好。你們罵曾特首也沒有用,他再無能,曾經是財政司,我想他在這方面未致於是個白痴。

那通脹可以怎麼辦?不用擔心,不用議員出手,下一年通脹應該會下降,因為:

一)全球商品價格下跌;
二)香港經濟放緩。

所以,如同打風一樣,不要經常開口閉口也把過錯全推向政府。當恆指快衝上三萬點的時候,是沒有人出來稱讚政府令他在股市大有斬獲的--賺錢時沒有人會投訴錢太多,但當有一點麻煩的時候,就會罵娘了。人就是這樣犯賤,誰也不例外。難得沒有常識的議員還一起瘋:現在高喊要消滅通脹,情況如同在九八年要政府打擊樓價一樣,令人禁不住哈哈大笑。其實八萬五的促成,所有在那時亂叫議員都有份,所以投票最好找一個懂經濟的,或許可以救活許多人。

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在〈困局〉中有 1 則留言

  1. In modern new open macro-economics, the two common policy instruments are nominal interest rate (set by the central bank) and the fiscal policy (determined by the government). It can be shown that, among the two instruments, monetary policy strictly dominates fiscal policy to calm inflation, due to the pro-cyclic consequences of fiscal policy.

    As a currency board, Hong Kong has NO independent monetary policy (i.e HK interest rate must equal world interest rate). The only candidate becomes fiscal policy, which the government used. Kenneth Rogoff, however, suggested the following in a recent article:

    http://www.businessday.co.za/articles/topstories.aspx?ID=BD4A797286

    Essentially,

    1. Subsidies fail to function, if the governments act at the same time. The only effect is elevated inflation.

    2. The use of resources and commodities in emerging markets is rather inelastic –price control is certainly one issue. There is no guarantee, in the short run, reduced demand will drive price down.

    3. Labour is no longer the constraint in the currency expansion, but commodities. The collorary is commodity price will keep soaring until growth slows.

    Then, the central banks, namely the Fed and BOE, are doing the wrong thing. :)

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