Diese geniale Überschrift ist leider nicht von mir, sondern von den Volkswirten von Credit Suisse. Die haben heute in einer Research-Note ihre Sicht zur Target2-Debatte dargestellt – und betonen die Bedeutung der Kapitalflucht aus Spanien und Italien für die Explosion der Target-Salden.
Bislang werde die Kapitalflucht hauptsächlich von ausländischen Investoren getrieben, nicht von spanischen und italienischen Sparern.
Zudem unterschreiben die Credit-Suisse-Ökonomen, dass die Target-Salden nur ein Symptom für die Probleme des Währungsraums sind, nicht aber selbst ein Problem darstellen. Eine Sichtweise, die ich seit fast einem Jahr vertrete. Daraus folgt, dass eine wie auch immer geartete Beschränkung der Target-Salden nichts bringt.
Hier die Argumentation der Credit-Suisse-Ökonomen in voller Schönheit:
“European Economics: TARGET2: I’m a euro, get me out of here!
Unsurprisingly, the massive injection of liquidity by the ECB in both of its two three-year LTROs was disproportionately taken up by Spanish and Italian banks. That’s clearly evident in the latest data showing the take-up of those loans. However, that has also been associated with a continued increase in the TARGET2 liabilities of the Spanish and Italian central banks.
We explained the TARGET2 system and why these balances had increased last year. The increases in these balances are symptomatic of the euro area’s problems rather than the problem itself. They reflect capital flight from the countries in question and consequent increased dependence on ECB financing of their banking sectors.
In our view, it is not surprising that the increase in TARGET2 liabilities has coincided with the increase in LTRO lending. There has generally been a close correlation between the two even if there is little causality. That said, rising TARGET2 liabilities in Italy and Spain are indicative of a continued net departure of capital from these economies. That trend continued during the first quarter of 2012, and market price action for April suggests that has not yet started to abate.
And that is a problem. Continued capital flight from the periphery has the potential to derail the adjustments undertaken by these countries by putting enough downwards pressure on the money supply and nominal activity to prevent orderly public and private sector deleveraging. That manifests itself through low asset prices and high real interest rates.
Of course, policy measures such as the LTRO go some way to mitigate those effects. Even after the recent sell-off in Italian and Spanish debt, bank and sovereign funding conditions are much improved from the autumn of last year. But if capital flight from these countries continues, then there will be a need for more, not less, of these policies.
It’s instructive to examine what has been driving these capital outflows from Italy and Spain. So far, the outflows have been predominantly from foreign investors rather than domestic capital flight, and largely in the form of deposit outflows.
So far, the stability of domestic investors is a positive. The outflows have been narrow rather than broad. And it’s likely that policy measures of financial repression will attempt to hinder domestic funds from leaving their counties, but such policies cannot be absolute. So if the crisis was to deepen this year a broadening of the outflows to include domestic investors would mean they’d run at a completely different order of magnitude: TARGET2 balances could increase far more dramatically than they already have.”
Hier gibt es ein zehnseitiges Diskussionpapier, in dem die Volkswirte ihre Argumente im Detail aufdröseln.
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