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银行抛售欧洲国债,监管部门难辞其咎

Charles P. Wallace 2011年11月25日

欧盟监管部门希望各大银行提高资本充足率,却没有想到银行会采用抛售资产的方式来实现这一目标。

    德国的反对姿态最为突出。该国央行行长延斯•魏德曼声称,欧洲央行无权向主权国家政府借贷,否则将违反欧盟赖以建立的条约。他向《金融时报》(the Financial Times)记者称:“我无法理解,确保货币联盟的稳定性怎么可能违反欧盟的法律条款。”

    兰努还指责,欧洲银行业管理局(European Banking Authority)持续将主权债券视为零风险资产也是大错特错。人人都知道希腊、葡萄牙这样的国家还不起债务,持有其国债的银行不可能获得足额清偿。根据欧洲银行业的规则,如果某家银行持有欧洲某国的政府债券,它不需要为此准备相应的资本。因此,许多银行都持有巨额本国政府发行的债券。

    这就在欧洲造成了一种诡异的悖论:大肆购入主权债券的银行,尤其是法国和德国银行,被认定为信用等级最佳;而西班牙银行积极向私营企业贷款,同时处心积虑地向拉丁美洲拓展业务,却被认定为存在较高风险,迫使它们筹集更多资本。最为荒谬的例子就是西班牙的桑坦德银行(Banco Santander),多数分析师都将其视为欧洲运营状况最佳的银行之一。可根据欧洲银行业新规,桑坦德必须筹集90亿美元新资本。

    “西班牙各界对此义愤填膺,”兰努称。“如果真想鼓励银行向企业贷款,就不能因为他们持有风险较高的资产而惩罚他们。”

    布鲁塞尔智库布勒哲尔(Brugel)金融监管政策高级研究员尼古拉斯•维纶指出,许多国家的政府缺乏资金,因此不愿意向本国银行注入资金,这就放大了重组银行资本的问题。

    “这套等式根本不成立,”维伦称。“欧盟成员国不想给本国银行注资,而市场现状也不容许为银行提供巨额资本,因此银行业只能依赖于去杠杆化。从经济意义上来看,这显然不是好主意,可能还会引起非常严重的后果。”

    维纶认为,要充实银行资本,就必须建立起泛欧级别的基金。银行业应当获得某种形式的资产掉期,从而得到救助。否则的话,他表示,欧洲危机势必将愈演愈烈。

    译者:小宇

    The Germans, in particular, are against it. Jens Weidmann, the president of the German central bank, said the ECB can't lend to sovereign governments because it would violate the treaty establishing the European Union. "I cannot see how you can ensure the stability off a monetary union by violating its legal provisions," Weidmann told the Financial Times.

    Lannoo also faults the European Banking Authority for continuing to assign zero risk weight to sovereign bonds, even though everyone knows countries like Greece and Portugal can't pay their debts and the banks will not get fully repaid. Under the European rules, if a bank owns a government bond from Europe, it doesn't have to hold capital against it. So many banks loaded up on their own country's debt.

    It's created a weird dichotomy in Europe: banks that gorged on sovereign debt, particularly in France and Germany, are considered the most creditworthy, while banks in Spain, which lent money to the private sector and thoughtfully diversified their business to Latin America, are considered risky, which forces them to raise the most capital. The most absurd example is Spanish bank Banco Santander, which most analysts consider one of the best-run banks in Europe. But under the new rules, Santander must raise $9 billion in new capital.

    "They are just furious in Spain," Lannoo says. "If you want to encourage banks to lend to enterprise then you don't penalize them for having higher risk assets."

    Nicolas Véron, senior fellow for financial regulation at Bruegel, a Bruseels-based think-tank, says the problem of recapitalizing the banks was exacerbated by the fact that many national governments were reluctant to inject cash into their banks because they lack funds.

    "It's an impossible equation," Véron says. "Member states don't want to nationalize their banks, but the marketplace is not ready to provide huge capital infusions. Therefore the fallback position is deleveraging, which is clearly not great economically and may be actually very bad."

    Véron says a European-wide fund is needed to recapitalize the banks, which should be offered some kind of asset swaps to bail them out. Otherwise, he says, the European crisis seems doomed to keep unraveling.

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