Muito se tem escrito acerca do problema do ‘zero lower bound’, a taxa de juro de 0% a partir da qual um banco central deixa de ter armas (convencionais, pelo menos) para estimular a economia. O Japão é um ‘case study’ interessante que pode ter lições relevantes para a Europa e para os Estados Unidos, como explica hoje Tim Duy no seu Fed Watch. Why I agonize about the zero bound (Economist’s View).
Japan serves as a role model for the zero bound problem. As Paul Krugman notes, fiscal policy has been effective in staving off the worst consequences of the Japanese financial crisis. But the associated fiscal deficits appear never ending; the Japanese economy never gained enough strength to eliminate the dependency on fiscal stimulus, leading to what looks like an excessive build-up of government debt that now exceeds 200% of GDP.
We frequently see concerns that a build-up of government debt will lead to a new Japanese financial crisis. Peter Boone and Simon Johnson are the latest addition to that long line of thought. On the surface, it might be easy to dismiss such concerns, as they have been regularly voiced over at least the past 12 years, so far proving to be incorrect. Japanese interest rates have not skyrocketed, the crisis has not arrived.
That said, I would not bet against that crisis over the decade, and I think that the longer the economy is stuck at the zero lower bound, the more likely it becomes.