最有看点的互联网金融门户

最有看点的互联网金融门户
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比尔·盖茨等多位业界巨擘捐出0.004%净资产抵御潜在金融危机

2009年来,全球各地央行及政府一直竭尽全力阻止发生另一场金融危机。银行业受到数百页额外立法、新监事会、更为严苛资本要求等条例的管制,以免其再次拖垮全球经济。

然而我们必须认识到:另一场金融危机总是要爆发的,而且势必不可避免。英格兰银行一位政策制定者在今年早些时候曾说过,我们很难通过数据简单预测下一场金融危机将在何时、以何种方式“来到”我们面前。

为防范这种必然,比尔·盖茨、杰夫·贝佐斯、迈克尔·布隆伯格、皮特·彼得森等投资者及慈善家向耶鲁金融稳定性项目捐助1000万美元,以建立危机应对计划。坦白说,对这四位净资产合计超过2000亿美元的人来说1000万美元不过是个小数目,但不可否认,这肯定是一项有价值的事业。此项目并不是又一个有关危机预防的调查与学术研究,而是旨在填补政策制定者在危机发生之时应如何作为的知识空缺。

耶鲁项目负责人安德鲁·迈特里克在2008-2009金融危机后就亲身经历了这一问题。他说,与奥巴马政府共事通过金融监管法令,显然处在高位的人们并不知道应如何应对。学术研究常常并不完善或毫不相关。他表示:

(危机)在某种程度上是项新事物,因为我们监管者、央行官员与学者们都认为金融危机会再次发生在发达国家,就像热带疾病一样,它们只出现在发展中市场。因此危机发生之时令人震惊,暴露了知识的空缺。

为解决这一问题,迈特里克2013年在耶鲁启动了该项目,他相信公共机构忙于制定危机预防措施,那么私人组织就可着手加以解决。项目同样在于储备曾帮助训练或与世界各地央行官员合作的金融危机及过往项目知识。

这一最新项目旨在最终创建一个在线平台,为处理危机提供实时支持。自7月起,迈特里克及其研究团队将就过去一个世纪金融危机之时所作的干预进行记录。之后其计划将敢于措施整理编辑成最佳措施,或至少应避免的错误。最终其想要将过去危机的知识教训变为处理下一场危机时可操作的实时应对措施。这是一项颇具雄心的计划,迈特里克希望能在五年内完成,于2019年末推出试用版。

该项目还是国际性的,世界各地的政策制定者均可共享数据,获取应对措施。迈特里克说道:“要是我们作出的成品聚焦美国,那么我们就失败了。”

盖茨、贝佐斯、布隆伯格、彼得森已提供了捐助总金额1000万美元四分之三以上的资金,但它们对此项目将并无发言或管理权。(迈特里克拒绝透露另一位捐助者的姓名)。此耶鲁项目还扩大了其咨询委员会范围,其中包括前美联储主席本·伯克南、墨西哥银行行长阿古斯丁·卡斯滕斯、IMF前首席经济学家肯尼斯·罗格夫、日本央行行长白川方明。该计划需对危机之时作出决策的人士提供帮助,咨询委员会也旨在由在以往危机中的决策者提供反馈,表明其是否得以实现。

迈特里克是否担心使用过往数据来分析未来不知以何形式降临的危机并不充分?他答道,并不会,因为随着时间的推移金融危机的本质及乎没有改变。实际上,该项目以英国新闻工作者白芝浩的名字命名,他在危机之时给央行工作者提供的建议历经150年,至今仍是一套广为使用的理论。

迈特里克说道:“我们不断地重复者同样的错误。即便我们过去在危机发生之时成功地想出如何加以抵御,也算不上是某种进步。”

Since 2009, central banks and governments around the world have been in overdrive trying to prevent another financial crisis. Hundreds of pages of extra legislation, new supervisory boards, stricter capital requirements and other regulations have been imposed on the banking industry to make sure they can’t bring down the global economy again.

But let’s face it, another financial crisis will happen. It’s completely inevitable. As a Bank of England policymaker said earlier this year, there simply isn’t the data to predict when the next crisis will come, or what it will be.

To prepare for that eventuality, investors and philanthropists—including Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Mike Bloomberg and Pete Peterson—have donated $10 million to Yale’s Program on Financial Stability to set up a crisis-response project. Frankly this is small change to four men with a combined net worth of more than $200 billion. Still it’s a worthy cause. Instead of adding to the research and academic efforts on crisis prevention, this project is designed to fill a gap in the knowledge of what policymakers should actually do when there is a crisis.

Andrew Metrick, head of the program at Yale, experienced this problem firsthand after the 2008-2009 crisis. Working with the Obama administration to pass financial regulation laws, he said, it became clear that people in high places didn’t really know what to do. Too often the academic research was incomplete or irrelevant, Metrick told Quartz:

[This crisis] was somewhat of a new thing because we collectively—as regulators, central bankers and academics—didn’t think of financial crises as something that happened to rich countries anymore, a little like tropical diseases, they just happened in emerging markets. So when it did happen it was a shock and exposed the knowledge gap.

He started the program at Yale in 2013 to fix this, believing that a private institution could take on this issue while public institutions were busy with crisis-prevention measures. The goal is also to preserve knowledge of financial crises and past projects have helped train or worked with central bankers from all over the world.

This latest project aims to eventually create an online platform to provide real-time support for dealing with a crisis. Starting in July, Metrick and a team of researchers will document all the interventions made during financial crises in the past century. Then they plan to codify the interventions into best practices or—at least—mistakes to avoid. Ultimately they want to turn the knowledge of past crises into actionable real-time responses for the next one. It’s an ambitious project Metrick hopes to see completed in five years, with a beta program available by the end of 2019.

It’s also meant to be international, so policy makers anywhere in the world can share data and get responses. “If what we come out with is something that is US-focused then we have failed,” said Metrick.

Gates, Bezos, Bloomberg and Peterson have put up more than three-quarters of the total $10-million donation, though they will have no say or governance over the project. (Metrick declined to say who the other funders are.) The Yale program has also expanded its advisory board to include former US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke, Bank of Mexico governor Agustín Carstens, Kenneth Rogoff—a former chief economist at the IMF—and Masaaki Shirakawa, former governor of the Bank of Japan. The project is supposed to be useful to policymakers who have to make a decision in a crisis, and the board is designed to provide feedback on whether this has been achieved by those who have had to make decisions in a crisis before.

Is Metrick concerned that using past data and experience won’t be sufficient for a future crisis that’s likely to take an unknown form? Not really, he says, because the nature of financial panics has hardly changed over time. In fact, the project is named after Walter Bagehot, the British journalist whose 150-year-old advice to central bankers in times of crisis is still a widely used theory today.

“We make the same mistakes over and over again,” Metrick said. “Even if all we do is figure out how to fight a crisis as we’ve had them in the past successfully, that would be some kind of improvement.”


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