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Πόσο θα αντέξει η φούσκα των διεθνών αγορών;

του Μιχάλη Γιαννεσκή

«Ενόσω η κυβέρνηση δεν επεμβαίνει, εγώ θα πουλάω», σχολίασε πρόσφατα ένας χρηματιστής σχετικά με την πτώση του χρηματιστηρίου της Κίνας. Εννοούσε ότι θα πουλάει μετοχές, ομόλογα και άλλα χρηματοπιστωτικά προϊόντα, για να προκαλέσει κυβερνητική επέμβαση. Διότι γνωρίζει πολύ καλά ότι η κυβέρνησή της Κίνας, όπως και η κυβέρνηση κάθε μεγάλης οικονομίας, αργά ή γρήγορα θα ρίξει όσα κρατικά κονδύλια χρειάζονται στην αγορά για να αγοράσει μετοχές και ομόλογα, να στηρίξει τη φούσκα των αγορών και να αποφύγει περαιτέρω πτώση του χρηματιστηρίου της.

Γιατί, αν και τα παγκόσμια χρέη έχουν φτάσει τα 200 τρις. δολάρια, τα τοξικά χρηματοπιστωτικά προϊόντα (τα «παράγωγα») έχουν ξεπεράσει τα 700 τρις. δολάρια και η πραγματική (η παραγωγική) διεθνής οικονομία έχει πέσει σημαντικά, οι κεντρικές τράπεζες της υφηλίου επαφίενται σε διαστρεβλωμένα στατιστικά στοιχεία που υποδεικνύουν μια επερχόμενη «ανάκαμψη». Στις περισσότερες περιπτώσεις, ένας πιο ακριβής όρος για αυτά τα «στατιστικά στοιχεία» θα ήταν «ψέμματα». Αλλά οι κυβερνήσεις συνεχίζουν να σπαταλούν φόρους και κρατικά έσοδα για να στηρίξουν το σαθρό οικοδόμημα που ονομάζεται «ελεύθερη αγορά».

Ειδικά η Κίνα έχει δοκιμάσει κάθε δυνατό τρόπο υποστήριξης των χρηματιστηρίων της: συνεχείς ενέσεις χρηματοδότησης, υποτίμηση του νομίσματός της, αγορά μετοχών από το γιγαντιαίο κρατικό συνταξιοδοτικό ταμείο της και μείωση των επιτοκίων. Το αποτέλεσμα, όπως παρατήρησε ο οικονομικός αρχισυντάκτης του βρετανικού Channel 4 Πωλ Μέισον στο twitter πριν λίγες μέρες, είναι ότι οι αγορές βουλιάζουν ενώ η υφήλιος καταλαβαίνει ότι η κύρια μηχανή της ανάπτυξης της (η Κίνα) βρίσκεται στα χέρια ενός ανίκανου, μυστικοπαθούς, αστυνομικού κράτους που νομίζει ότι μπορεί να υπαγορεύει τις τιμές των μετοχών.

Και παρ’ όλες τις επεμβάσεις, η πτωτική τάση της κινεζικής οικονομίας συνεχίζεται με μικρές βραχύβιες ανόδους και κέρδη, τα οποία σύντομα εξατμίζονται. Αλλά η Κίνα όχι μόνο δεν αποτελεί εξαίρεση, αλλά ταυτόχρονα, λόγω του μεγέθους της οικονομίας της και της εξάρτησης πολλών κρατών από τις εμπορικές τους σχέσεις με αυτή, έχει αποκτήσει το ρόλο του βηματοδότη πολλών «αναδυόμενων» αγορών. Ως αποτέλεσμα, η αξία των χρηματιστηρίων πολλών τέτοιων αγορών που εξαρτιόνταν από εξαγωγές πετρελαίου και άλλων πρώτων υλών στην Κίνα έχει πέσει πάνω από 33% τον τελευταίο χρόνο: της Ινδονησίας και της Μαλαισίας κατά 37% και της Βραζιλίας κατά 51%.

Μολαταύτα, οι διεθνείς χρηματοπιστωτικοί οργανισμοί προβαίνουν τακτικά σε προβλέψεις συγκρατημένης αισιοδοξίας και εστιάζουν την προσοχή τους στην αποπληρωμή των σχετικά αμελητέων χρεών της Ελλάδας και άλλων κρατών.

Τέτοιες αισιόδοξες προβλέψεις δεν αποτελούν οξύμωρο, εφόσον η ρύθμιση των αγορών επαφίεται σε οργανισμούς όπως η Ομοσπονδιακή Τράπεζα των ΗΠΑ (Federal Reserve) και η ΕΚΤ. Ποιος θα αισθάνονταν ασφαλής για τα φάρμακα που αγοράζει εάν οι οργανισμοί που είναι υπεύθυνοι για τον έλεγχό τους στην Ελλάδα (ΕΟΦ), ή στην Ευρώπη (EMA), ή στις ΗΠΑ (FDA), ήταν εταιρείες των οποίων οι μέτοχοι ήταν οι μεγάλες φαρμακοβιομηχανίες και οι διοικήσεις τους αποτελούνταν από στελέχη αυτών των βιομηχανιών; Παρομοίως, ποιος μπορεί να έχει εμπιστοσύνη στις μεγάλες κρατικές ή διακρατικές τράπεζες, όταν τα συμβούλιά τους περιλαμβάνουν νυν και πρώην τραπεζίτες; 5 από τα 12 μέλη της πιο σημαντικής επιτροπής του Federal Reserve είναι τραπεζικά στελέχη εν ενεργεία, ενώ 2 από τα 6 μέλη της εκτελεστικής επιτροπής της ΕΚΤ υπήρξαν στελέχη τραπεζών - ο Mario Draghi διευθύνων σύμβουλος και αντιπρόεδρος της Goldman Sachs, και ο Peter Praet αρχι-οικονομολόγος της Fortis Bank.

Αλλά ακόμη και όταν η ρύθμιση των αγορών περιλαμβάνει αυστηρούς κανόνες, παράδειγμα για τον έλεγχο επισφαλών «παραγώγων», οι μεγάλες τράπεζες βρίσκουν σχεδόν «αόρατα» παράθυρα για να παρακάμπτουν κάθε έλεγχο: το Reuters απεκάλυψε στις 21 Αυγούστου ότι συναλλαγές αξίας εκατοντάδων δισεκατομμυρίων δολαρίων των 5 μεγάλων τραπεζών των ΗΠΑ είχαν «εξαφανιστεί» από τις αμερικανικές αγορές και είχαν μεταφερθεί στο Λονδίνο, όπου η ρύθμιση της αγοράς είναι πιο επιεικής για τους τραπεζίτες, για να ξεφύγουν από τους σχετικούς ελέγχους. Όπως είχε αναφέρει ένας πρώην υπουργός οικονομικών της Κύπρου, οι μεγάλες τράπεζες καταφέρνουν πάντα να βρίσκονται ένα βήμα μπροστά από κάθε περιορισμό και έλεγχο που τους επιβάλλεται. Ακόμη και όταν αυτοί οι έλεγχοι και δημοσιονομικοί κανόνες είναι στημένοι προς όφελος του πλουσιότερου 1% του πληθυσμού της υφηλίου, όπως παρατήρησε την προηγούμενη εβδομάδα ο Αμερικανός γερουσιαστής Bernie Sanders.

Βέβαια κάθε αποφυγή τραπεζικού έλεγχου μεγαλώνει τη φούσκα των αγορών και επιτείνει τον κίνδυνο να σκάσει ανά πάσα στιγμή. Ιδίως όταν οι περισσότερες συναλλαγές των χρηματιστηρίων γίνονται αυτόματα από υπολογιστές, με ιλιγγιώδεις ταχύτητες. Όταν σκάσει η φούσκα, οποιοδήποτε τραπεζικό βήμα μπροστά, όσο γρήγορο και να είναι, θα αποτελεί βήμα στο κενό.

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