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金融英语:银行为何吝于放贷(双语)

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金融英语:银行为何吝于放贷(双语)

   

Stern sermons and looser rules won’t get bankslending more

  Why won’t those wretched banks lend money? That is aquestion many European and American politicians have asked inrecent months.

  为什么那些该死的银行不肯放贷?几个月来,欧洲和美国的许多政客一直在问这个问题。

  For as the global economy ails, there is growing anxiety about the seeming failure of banks tosupport growth. So much so, in fact, that this week my Financial Times colleagues reported thatBritish regulators are now quietly loosening some bank rules to encourage more loans – particularlyto small businesses, and other seemingly “worthy” borrowers.

  他们之所以这么问,是因为随着全球经济陷入困境,有一件事让他们感到越来越担心,那就是银行似乎没能对经济增长起到支持作用。实际上,正因为如此,英国监管部门现在才悄悄放松了一些银行业规定,以鼓励银行发放更多贷款,特别是面向小企业和其他看似“值得考虑”的借款人发放——这条消息来自我英国《金融时报》同事近日的报道。

  But as the political frustration bubbles, it is instructive to take a look at a presentation about bankbehaviour recently made by Phil Coffey, the chief financial officer of Westpac, to Australianregulators and financiers.

  但在政界的失望情绪日益高涨之时,我们却应当去看看西太平洋银行(Westpac)首席财务官菲尔 科菲(Phil Coffey)近期所做的一个讲演。这个讲演的主题是银行行为,听众是澳大利亚的监管人士和金融家。

  For while Mr Coffey’s vision is primarily shaped by the Antipodean market, his comments apply toEurope and the US too; indeed, the only difference is that Mr Coffey’s location leaves him speakingwith a sense of clarity and honesty that is (sadly) all too rare in the politically-charged arena of theCity or Wall Street.

  之所以这么说,是因为虽然科菲的愿景主要基于地球另一端的市场,但他的意见却对欧美同样适用;实际上,唯一有区别的地方在于,科菲发表讲演的地点不在政治色彩浓郁的伦敦金融城或华尔街,因此他的讲话带有一种在这两地极其罕见的清晰与实在(这种罕见真令人悲哀)。

  So what, in Mr Coffey’s view, is the reason why those banks will not make more loans? He citesthree key points. The first issue (which is often underplayed) is a change in the behaviour of bankcustomers.

  那么,在科菲看来,那些银行不肯发放更多贷款的原因是什么?科菲提出了三大原因。第一点(这一点往往不受重视)是,银行客户的行为发生了改变。

  Most notably, as I have noted in previous columns, consumers and companies are currently in adeleveraging mindset. Hence 41 per cent of Australians want to put their spare cash into a bankdeposit, up from 28 per cent five years ago, and 23 per cent want to pay down debt, double theratio five years ago.

  正如我在以前的专栏文章里指出的,尤其值得注意的是,消费者和企业目前都有减轻债务的心态。在这种心态下,41%的澳大利亚人想将闲钱存入银行,而五年前这一比例只有28%;23%的澳大利亚人有意减债,这一比例是五年前的两倍。

  And “like households, firms have tended to behave cautiously, prudently consolidating theirbalance sheets, limiting debt and growing their holdings of low-risk assets,” Mr Coffey says.

  科菲表示:“与老百姓一样,企业也倾向于谨慎行事,审慎地巩固资产负债表,限制债务,增持低风险资产。”

  Little wonder, then, that Australian bank deposits are an eye-popping 54 per cent up from late 2007.

  难怪澳大利亚银行现在的存款总额会较2007年底增长54%,这一增幅着实令人惊叹。

  Secondly – and more obvious – banks are being affected by a deluge of regulatory reform. Nevermind those Basel Capital rules that financiers keep complaining about; subtle reforms on, say, liquidity coverage ratios are also biting hard.

  第二点、也是更加明显的一点是,银行正受到监管改革浪潮的影响。先不提金融家们抱怨不已的巴塞尔资本金规定;就拿流动性覆盖比率的细微改革来说,这实际上已经很让银行头疼了。

  This makes banks far more conservative about lending money and fearful about how they managetheir balance sheets. In particular, chief financial officers are desperate to hang on to their swellingdeposits, by cultivating long term relationships and paying more to depositors.

  这种改革使得银行在放贷方面变得大为保守,在管理自身资产负债表方面也变得格外小心。特别是银行的首席财务官,他们正通过培养长期客户关系和以更高的利息吸引储户,来拼命确保存款额不断增长。

  Then there is a third, less-recognised – but equally crucial – issue: funding.

  接下来是第三点(这一点不太受认可、但其实同样关键):资金因素。

  Before 2007, CFOs presumed that they could always meet rising credit demand from theircustomers by tapping wholesale markets. The dominant cultural vision of credit, as a socialanthropologist might say, was an elastic thing. But during the financial crisis, wholesale marketssuddenly closed, cutting off that source of credit for banks and prompting groups such as “Northern Rock, HBOS, Dexia, Countrywide, Washington Mutual and so on” to collapse.

  2007年前,首席财务官们认为,他们总是能够借助批发市场来满足客户不断增长的信用需求。社会人类学家或许会说,主流文化观点认为,信用是有弹性的。但在金融危机期间,批发市场突然关闭,切断了银行的信用来源,并造成“北岩银行(Northern Rock)、苏格兰哈里法克斯银行(HBOS)、德克夏银行(Dexia)、美国国家金融服务公司(Countrywide)、华盛顿互惠银行(Washington Mutual)等”金融集团的崩溃。

  That sparked a cognitive shift: suddenly credit was no longer viewed as a bottomless pit butbecame a finite commodity which needed to be rationed.

  这引发了一次认知上的转变:突然之间,信用不再被视为极大丰富,而是一种需要限量供应的有限商品。

  Or, as Mr Coffey says, the days of “tapping endless wholesale funding to meet all comers arebehind us”. And while central banks have tried to replace those wholesale markets, few CFOs trustthat this central bank money will always be there.

  或者正如科菲所言:“那种利用无尽的批发市场资金来满足所有客户需求(的日子)已经一去不复返了。”尽管各国央行试图取代这些批发市场,但很少有首席财务官相信央行的资金能随叫随到。

  That has not just affected recent behaviour but could curb loans in the future, too. Most notably, if there is more demand from customers for credit in future times, banks are likely to ration thatcredit by raising the price.

  这不仅影响到了近期的放贷行为,也对未来的放贷行为产生了抑制。尤其值得注意的是,如果未来客户对信用的需求上升,银行很可能会通过提高利息来限量供给信用。

 

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