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一、经济学人杂志双语文章摘要

美元坚挺的一个原因是人们对美国的财政刺激计划越发持怀疑态度。大选原本应该开启一个慷慨财政政策的新时期。现在看起来要就任何政策达成一致都很困难。如果拜登能在1月进入椭圆形办公室,他很可能会面临一个分裂的国会。但是美元的强势并不仅仅是政治因素造成的。相比民主党在选举中掀起“蓝色浪潮”的希望破灭,新冠病毒再次爆发的经济后果带来的影响一样大。

二、经济学人杂志双语文章中英对照翻译

Our currency, your problem 我们的货币,你们的麻烦

2020.11


Why dollar assets are still riding high—and why that matters for everywhere else
为什么美元资产仍居高不下,以及为什么这对其他地方也很重要 

经济学人双语杂志


CAN YOU identify what or whom the following describes: is widely disliked around the world; might have been ditched by some supporters earlier had convincing alternatives existed; has had a difficult six months; and refuses to go quietly? Here’s another clue: this is not a column about politics. The answer is the dollar. It is the most unloved of major currencies, apart from all the others. And, oddly, it has been given a fillip by a messy election result at home.
看你能否猜出以下内容所描述的对象:在全世界不受多数人待见;如果有更好的选择,可能一早就被一些支持者抛弃了;经历了艰难的六个月;拒绝安静地让位。还有一个提示:我们这不是个政治专栏。答案是美元。除去所有非主要货币,它是主要货币中最不受喜爱的。而且奇怪的是,美国大选结果的纷扰却给它带来了利好刺激。
Or perhaps that is not so odd. The dollar’s resilience has been one of the more monotonous motifs in financial markets in recent years. Dollar strength is twinned with another hardy theme—the growing heft of America’s companies, notably its tech giants, in global equity markets. The dollar matters for America, but it matters for everywhere else, too. A weaker dollar would trigger a period of catch-up by the rest of the world’s economies and asset markets. Such a prospect is seemingly delayed.
可能也没那么奇怪。近些年,美元坚挺已成了金融市场上持久到比较乏味的主题之一。美元强势与另一个同样持久的主题紧密相连:美国公司尤其是美国科技巨头在全球股票市场的影响力越来越大。美元对美国很重要,但对所有其他地方也很重要。美元疲软会触发一段全球其他经济体和资产市场上行追赶的时期。目前看来这样一个前景似乎延迟了。
A reason for dollar resilience is growing doubts over fiscal stimulus in America. The election was supposed to be the start of a new era of fiscal largesse. Agreeing on any kind of policy now looks hard. If Joe Biden enters the Oval Office in January he is likely to face a divided Congress. But dollar strength is not solely down to politics. It is as much about the economic consequences of a resurgent coronavirus as it is about dashed hopes of a blue-wave election.
美元坚挺的一个原因是人们对美国的财政刺激计划越发持怀疑态度。大选原本应该开启一个慷慨财政政策的新时期。现在看起来要就任何政策达成一致都很困难。如果拜登能在1月进入椭圆形办公室,他很可能会面临一个分裂的国会。但是美元的强势并不仅仅是政治因素造成的。相比民主党在选举中掀起“蓝色浪潮”的希望破灭,新冠病毒再次爆发的经济后果带来的影响一样大。
Begin with the blue wave that didn’t crest. Before the election, an idea had taken hold, fuelled by pollsters and election forecasters, that a clean sweep of the White House and both houses of Congress by the Democratic Party was highly likely. The upshot would be a weaker dollar.
从没能掀起的蓝色浪潮说起。大选前,在民调和选情预报机构的推动下,人们开始相信民主党很有可能在总统和国会两院选举中同时大获全胜。如此的结果将是美元走弱。
In 2016 a similar prospect of fiscal easing drove the dollar up, not down. This needs some explaining. The difference is that four years ago, the Federal Reserve was expected to offset the stimulative effect of tax cuts by raising interest rates in order to contain inflation—thus supporting the dollar. But with the economy now weak, the Fed has committed itself to easy money. A fiscal-stimulus package would be an unimpeded spur to aggregate demand, leading to more imports, a wider trade deficit and a weaker dollar. And a weaker dollar would in turn help the rest of the world, partly because of its role as a borrowing currency beyond America’s shores. A lot of emerging-market companies and governments have dollar debts, so a weaker greenback acts as an indirect stimulus to global growth.
类似的对财政宽松的预期在2016年推动了美元升值而非贬值。这需要解释一下。两者的不同之处是四年前市场预计美联储会加息来抵消减税的刺激作用,从而抑制通胀,这样就会支撑美元。但由于目前经济疲弱,美联储已承诺实施宽松的货币政策。财政刺激方案将不受阻碍地刺激总需求,导致进口增加,贸易赤字扩大,美元走弱。而美元走弱反过来又会帮到世界其他地区,原因之一是美元是美国以外的贷款计价货币。许多新兴市场的公司和政府都背负着美元债务,因此美元走弱会间接刺激全球增长。
Instead, the dollar has perked up a bit. That is because the dollar is special in another way. Dollar assets, notably shares, are more prized when the outlook seems less certain. Holders of dollars cling on to them for longer, rather than swap them for other currencies. This goes for wealthy savers in emerging economies, or Chinese or South Korean exporters, say, who have earned dollars on sales.
但美元实际上却略微升值了。那是因为美元在另一个方面的特殊性。当前景看起来不太确定时,人们会更看重美元资产,尤其是股票。手里有美元的人会坚持持有,而不会将它们换成其他货币。新兴经济体的富裕储蓄者同样如此,那些通过出口贸易赚到了美元的出口商(比如中国或韩国的)也一样。
It also goes for institutional investors at home who might have thought of cashing in some of their expensive-looking American tech stocks for a wager on cheap-looking cyclical stocks in Europe or Asia. The diminished prospect of fiscal stimulus is one reason why this “reflation trade” is less alluring. The resurgence of coronavirus infections is another. Much of Europe is now in soft lockdown. Its economy is losing steam. The appeal of cyclical stocks is similarly ebbing. Investors have instead piled back into tech firms, which benefit from the stay-at-home economy.
美国的一些机构投资者也是如此,它们本来已经在考虑将手中一些看起来价格较高的美国科技股兑现,去押注欧洲或亚洲看起来廉价的周期性股票。财政刺激的前景减弱是这种“再通胀交易”吸引力降低的原因之一。另一个原因是新一波新冠疫情。欧洲大部分地区现在进入软封锁状态,经济正在失去动力。周期性股票的吸引力也在减弱。投资者又转身涌向了从居家经济中受益的科技公司。
If there is one thing as hardy as the dollar itself, it is forecasts that its resilience cannot last. What might hasten the dollar’s fall now? Even without a friendly Senate to back his plans for increased federal spending, a President Biden would probably have a less bellicose and arbitrary trade policy than a re-elected President Trump. Good news on a vaccine might rekindle American investors’ appetite for buying cheap assets abroad.
如果说还有什么和美元本身一样坚挺,那就是“美元韧性不会持久”这一预测。那么眼下有什么因素可能加速美元下跌呢?拜登成为总统后,即使没有一个友好的参议院支持他增加联邦支出的计划,他的贸易政策也很可能不会像特朗普连任的情况下那么好斗和武断。有关疫苗的好消息可能会重新激起美国投资者购买海外廉价资产的兴趣。
Further out, the dollar still seems likely to weaken. Whatever the configuration of American politics, fiscal stimulus will not stay off the agenda for ever. Populism is hardly in retreat. Bond yields are incredibly low. In the circumstances it would be unwise to think that politicians will forgo the temptations of deficit-financed spending or tax cuts for too long. And for the past half-decade the greenback has drawn strength from the fact that short-term interest rates in America were higher than in western Europe and Japan. One of the few things that everyone can agree on is that this advantage is largely gone.
更长远来看,美元似乎仍有可能走弱。无论美国政局如何,财政刺激措施都不会永远脱离议程。几乎看不到民粹主义退潮的迹象。债券的收益率非常低。在这种情况下,如果认为政客能长时间抵制赤字支出或减税的诱惑是不明智的。过去五年里美元坚挺是因为美国的短期利率高于西欧和日本。人们难得能达成一致意见的一点就是这种优势已基本消失。