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From fission to Pharaoh?
从核武到政权

Dec 17th 2009 | CAIRO
From The Economist print edition

Egyptian reformers suggest a possible president
埃及的改革者建议的未来总



Planting a bomb under Egyptian politics
在埃及的政治舞台埋下炸弹

WHEN Mohamed ElBaradei won the Nobel peace prize in 2005, Egyptians happily proclaimed him a national hero. But now that he has retired after 12 years as head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN’s nuclear watchdog, some are calling him a villain. He may be an American or even an Iranian agent, hint editorials in Egypt’s state-owned press. He bears a nasty grudge against his native country after so long abroad, grumble other government mouthpieces.
当穆罕默德?巴拉迪在2005年获得诺贝尔和平奖时,埃及人兴奋的称他为国家英雄。但现在,当他从工作了十二年的国际原子能机构(联合国核武器监察机构)总干事职务上退休时,有些人却称呼他恶棍。埃及的国有新闻机构发表社论,暗指他可能是美国甚至是伊朗的间谍。在国外多年之后,他对自己的祖国怀有恶毒的怨恨,抱怨其他的政府官员。

The reason for this sudden spate of spurious insinuation? Responding to pleas from reform-minded Egyptians despairing of local politics, Mr ElBaradei has suggested he may return to Egypt and run for president in elections due in 2011. Worse yet, he has deigned to propose conditions for his possible candidacy. The poll, he says, must meet internationally accepted standards.
突然爆发的这些恶意指责,原因是什么呢?巴拉迪先生响应了埃及国内那些绝望的改革派的呼吁,承认他可能会返回埃及,参与2011年的总统选举。更糟糕的是,他为他的参选提出了条件,他说,投票选举必须符合国际通行的准则。

For so prominent a citizen to toss his hat into the ring would cause scarcely a shrug elsewhere. In Egypt, where five decades under a single party and almost three under its present leader, President Hosni Mubarak, have smothered all but a pretence of democracy, it has raised a big cloud of dust. The notion of Mr ElBaradei’s candidacy brings a frisson of unpredictability to what Egyptians had assumed would be a scripted outcome, giving either a sixth six-year term to Mr Mubarak, now 81, or a win for his son, Gamal, who steers policy in the ruling National Democratic Party (NDP).
对于一个如此名声显赫的公民参与选举,在别的地方可能并不能算是什么。但在埃及却能搅起风暴。这个国家在过去的五十年里一直被同一个政党统治,现任总统胡斯尼?穆巴拉克的统治几乎就占了三十年,民主已经成为虚假的表象。埃及人本以为选举的结果已经确定,要么是给已经81岁的穆巴拉克第六个六年任期,要么就是他的儿子贾迈勒当选,目前他已经开始掌控民族民主党(NDP)。但巴拉迪参选的打算给这次选举带来了变数。

More annoyingly for Egypt’s rulers, Mr ElBaradei’s declaration of conditions has cast unwonted light on the crafty constitutional mechanics that allow the stage-managing of Egypt’s supposed democracy. Even to become a legal independent candidate, for instance, Mr ElBaradei would need to collect 250 signatures from a range of “elected” officials, all of whom happen to sit in bodies massively dominated by the NDP.
令埃及统治者更加感到恼怒的是巴拉迪所宣称的选举条件,因为这将引起大众对宪法的关注,而在现有的宪法,在机制上可巧妙地确保对埃及所宣称的民主选举进行某种暗箱操作。例如,为了成为一个合法的独立候选人,巴拉迪需要在选举的官员中收集到250签名推荐,而这些官员却大多属于统治党民族民主党(NDP)。

Perhaps not even Mr ElBaradei himself expects that he may be allowed to become a serious challenger. Yet such is the depth of frustration with Egypt’s stagnant politics and many social ills, particularly among the generation that has known no rule except Mr Mubarak’s, that even this distant hope has stirred passions. Surprisingly, considering that he has spent most of the past 40 years outside Egypt, and rarely pronounced on its troubles, some 21,000 enthusiasts have signed on to a Facebook support group. Perhaps theirs is the voice of Egypt’s future.
或许即使巴拉迪自己也没有奢望自己会被允许成为一个正式的挑战者。然而正是这种埃及国内沉闷的政治环境和社会问题,特别是那些在穆巴拉克统治下成长起来的一代人中,缥缈的希望也给人们带来了巨大的激情。因此,即使巴拉迪在过去的40年中大部时间都在国外度过,也很少讨论埃及所面临的问题,却仍然有21,000热烈支持者签名加入在Facebook网站的支持群组。或许他们代表了埃及未来的呼声。


An imperfect storm
一场不完美的风暴
Nov 13th 2009
From The World in 2010 print edition
By Simon Cox, DELHI
Thanks partly to the monsoon, manufacturing will overtake agriculture for the first time in India
一定程度上得归功于季风气候,印度的制造业总值将首次超越农业。



From the village of Vijay Pura in the Indian state of Rajasthan, the global financial crisis seems remote. The downturn is something people here read about in the newspapers, according to Dhanna Singh, a member of the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan (MKSS), a union of activists and farmers. The villages have welcomed back migrant workers from neighbouring states, where people no longer find work twisting steel in Mumbai or polishing diamonds in Surat. But, by and large, India’s rural poor were protected from the crisis by the same things that make them poor. If you never had secure employment or many financial assets, you cannot lose them to the crisis.

对于印度拉贾斯坦邦维杰.普拉村来说,全球性金融危机似乎很遥远。根据德哈那.辛格,一名积极分子与农场主联合会MKSS成员的说法,经济低迷只是这里的人们从报纸上读到的谈资而已。很多移民工人从邻国返回到这里,因为他们在那儿找不到工作,既不能在孟买扭钢筋,也不能在苏拉特磨钻石。总的来说,印度贫困地区的人民因其贫困而免受经济危机的影响,因为,既然没有可靠就业和大量的财务资产,也就不会在经济危机中丧失。

In Rajasthan, this resilience is also the result of government policy. The National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA), extended to every rural district in April 2008, is supposed to offer 100 days of work a year, at the minimum wage, to every rural household that needs it. Rajasthan, a parched state with a long history of drought-relief works, comes closer to fulfilling that promise than anywhere else, providing 68 days of work on average in the year to March 2008, according to a survey published in Frontline, an Indian newsweekly. Vijay Pura is cross-hatched with hard-packed roads built by people on the act’s payroll. Thanks to the roll-out of the NREGA and a hike in the minimum wage, “People here are feeling a sense of security for the first time,” says Shankar Singh of the MKSS.

在拉贾斯坦邦,这次经济反弹也是政府政策的产物。2008年四月全国农村地区就业保证法案扩展到了每一个农村地区,在最低工资下有望在一年里提供100天的工作时间给每一个需要的家庭。发表在印度的一家新闻周刊《前线》的调查显示,从今年到2008年三月,拉贾斯坦邦这个有着悠久抗旱历史的的“旱邦”将提供平均68天的工作时间,相对其他地方离兑现承诺更近了。维杰.普拉位于几条硬化路的交叉点上,这些路是就业保证法案覆盖到的雇员修建的。幸亏有该法案的出台及最低工资水平的提高,“这里的人们第一次有了一种安全感,”MKSS的成员香卡.辛格说。

The strength of rural demand is one reason why India escaped from the crisis so lightly. Sales of many “fast-moving” consumer goods, such as shampoo and toothpaste, are now growing faster in the villages than in the cities. Rural India’s purchases of chyawanprash, an ayurvedic paste that eases digestion and bolsters the immune system, outpaced urban India’s by over six percentage points in the second quarter. And Maruti Suzuki, India’s biggest carmaker, more than doubled its sales in rural areas in the year to March 2009.

农村地区的需求力量是印度得以如此轻易地从金融危机中脱身的原因之一。许多诸如洗发水、牙膏之类的快速消费品需求如今在农村比城市要增长得更快些。第二季度,一些有助于消化、增强免疫系统的阿叔吠陀膏药chyawanprash的农村消费比城镇超出六个百分点,且截至2009年3月,印度最大的汽车制造商马鲁蒂铃木在农村地区的汽车销量翻了一番还多.

India’s economy is now on the cusp of an historic transition.

印度经济正经历历史性转型

But, having weathered the financial crisis, rural India must now weather the weather. The monsoon rains, which feed India’s unirrigated farmland, have been fickle, inflicting drought on almost half of India’s districts, followed by floods in some areas as the monsoon departed. In a worst-case scenario, India’s agricultural output could shrink by up to 7% in the fiscal year ending in March 2010, according to Citigroup. That would drag India’s GDP growth down to 5.2%, slower than in the thick of the financial crisis.

但是度过了这次金融危机后,印度农村还要扛得过气候问题。哺育印度干旱农田的季风雨反复无常,使一半以上的印度地区遭受旱灾的折磨,接着便是季风过后在一些地区发生的涝灾。花旗集团的数据显示,到2010年3月的财政年度,印度的农业产出在最糟糕的情况下将会以7%的速度萎缩,这将使印度的GDP增长减少到5.2%,比金融危机风起云涌时还要低。

The drought will raise food prices, adding to inflation. India is already the only big economy where consumer prices are rising faster now than they were before the crisis. The price of pulses rose by 20% in the year to August 28th; the price of sugar by 35% . That will force the Reserve Bank of India to tighten monetary policy. Goldman Sachs expects it to raise rates by as much as three percentage points in 2010. Spending on drought relief will also add to the government’s yawning fiscal deficit, which will exceed 10% of GDP this fiscal year, if the budget gaps of the state governments are included.

干旱将抬高食品价格,助长通货膨胀。当前印度现在已经是唯一一个消费者价格比危机前上升更快的大经济体了,截至今年8月28日,价格已以5%的幅度上升,其中糖价上升35%,这将迫使印度储备银行收紧货币政策。高盛预期印度的价格指数将在2010年上升3个百分点。对旱灾的赈济开支将加剧政府本已高企的财政赤字,如果加上各邦政府的预算缺口在内,2010年的财政赤字将超过GDP的10%。

The monsoon once decided India’s economic fate. Now it only influences it. Agriculture’s share of India’s national output has dropped from 40% 30 years ago to 17% in 2009. Indeed, India’s economy is now on the cusp of an historic transition. In 2010 agriculture will account for a smaller share of GDP than manufacturing: India’s output of widgets will exceed its output of wheat, rice, cotton and the other fruits of the land. The factory will surpass the farm.

季风曾经决定印度经济的命运,现在则只能起影响作用。农业在印度全国产出的比重已从三十年前的40%跌到2009年的17%.不错,印度经济正处在历史性转型的关头,GDP中农业产值将比制造业占有更小的比重:印度小机械产品产值将超过小麦,水稻,棉花和其他一些农作物。工厂将超越农场。

Return to the glory days
回到峥嵘岁月

That is not just because agriculture is poised to shrink. Manufacturing, which stagnated during the crisis, should recover smartly in 2010. It was already growing by over 7% in July 2009, according to the index of industrial production. Investment in new plant and machinery will get a boost from the return of foreign capital inflows, some $44.1 billion in the year to March 2010 and $52.1 billion the following year, according to Rohini Malkani of Citigroup. About 35-40% of those flows will be foreign direct investment.

这不仅仅是因为农业准备要收缩,在金融危机中停滞的制造业将在2010年悄然复苏,工业生产指数显示其在2009年7月已经增长7%强。依照花旗集团的(首席经济学家)罗希尼?马尔卡尼的观点,在国际资本回流的帮助下,厂房和机器投资将在2010年3月及接下来的一年分别获得441亿、521亿美元的极大提振,其中约35%-40%将属于国外直接投资。

India’s historians often hark back to the glory days of manufacturing in the 18th century, when Indian artisans produced calicoes and other fabrics of such appeal that Britain’s spinners, weavers and printers clamoured (successfully) for import bans to protect their livelihoods.

印度的历史学家常常重提18世纪制造业的峥嵘岁月,那时印度的能工巧匠们生产白羊布及其他一些类似的纤维织物,这引起英国的纺纱工人、织布工和印染工嚷嚷着(成功地)颁布进口禁令以保护他们的生计。

During Britain’s industrial revolution, however, Indian weavers were “thrown back on the soil”. India’s first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, wrote that India’s industrial destiny had been thwarted by imperial economics. In 2010, thanks to a failure of the monsoon and a recovery of the world economy, India’s agriculture will at last give way to its manufacturing prowess.

然而,英国工业革命期间,印度的纺织工“被摔在了地上”,印度第一任总理贾瓦哈拉尔.尼赫鲁写道:印度工业的命运已经被英帝国经济所击倒。多亏雨水不足的雨季和世界经济的复苏,印度2010年的农业最终将让位于制造技术。


Gamblers united
大家联手赌一把

Dec 17th 2009 | MADRID
From The Economist print edition

How an original business model got Spaniards hooked
一个古老的商业模式缘何让西班牙人全民皆赌

IT IS called El Gordo (“the Fatty”) because of the huge amount it pays out: *2.3 billion ($3.3 billion) in this year’s draw, to be held on December 22nd. Yet Spain’s Christmas lottery is notable not just for the vast sums to be won, but also for its clever business model.

我们称它为“大肥彩”(El Gordo (“the Fatty”) ),是因为它将在今年12月22号开出的超级巨额大头彩--23亿欧元(33亿美元)。但是西班牙的圣诞博彩之所以值得一提,不仅仅因为它提供的巨额奖金,还因为它精明的商业运作模式。

Spaniards are not especially big gamblers, with spending per head below the average for the European Union, according to a 2006 study by London Economics, a consultancy. Yet they spend about *12 billion a year on lottery tickets, over 1% of GDP—almost as much as the country spends on research and development. Roughly three-quarters of them participate in the Christmas lottery.

西班牙人其实不算爱赌博。根据某咨询公司“伦敦经济”(London Economics)2006年的一项研究,西班牙的人均博彩开销低于欧盟的平均水平。但是,他们每年在买彩票上花的钱达120亿欧元,占本国GDP的1%上,几乎和该国的研发开支齐平。其中,大约有四分之三的人会参加圣诞节期间的那次开彩。

Loterías y Apuestas del Estado, the government agency that runs El Gordo and other lotteries during the year, encourages mass participation by dividing each *200 ticket into décimos, or tenths, which sell for *20. This, in turn, allows players to improve their odds by buying small shares in many tickets, often by forming syndicates with friends and colleagues. The lottery also offers enough smaller prizes in addition to its jackpots to give participants almost a one-in-six chance of winning something.

每年管理“大肥彩”和其他一些乐透的政府机构Loterías y Apuestas del Estado,通过将每张200欧的彩票分割成10小张,每小张售20欧的方式,鼓励国民的广泛参与。这样一来,参与者可以在更多大张彩票中购买数张小额股份,而这一般可通过与朋友同事合购的方式实现。除了头彩,它还设置了很多小额的奖励,使得参与者基本上每抽六次,就可以赢回点东西。

All this has transformed the lottery from a glorified tax on the poor, as it is in most countries, into part of the social fabric. Sharing tickets at Christmas has become a way to reinforce social ties, says Roberto Garvía, a visiting professor at Georgetown University. The practice of forming syndicates, which initially started in the 19th century when lottery tickets became too expensive for working-class folk, has become a tradition among all classes. As one banker says, “I don’t want to be the only idiot who has to turn up to work if the office number wins.” Even the Spanish Civil War did not succeed in shaking the lottery’s grip: each side held its own Christmas draw.

这一切使得博彩业由一种被美化了的向穷人征收的税收(多数国家都是这样的情况),变成了社会生活中的一元素。“在圣诞节和别人凑份子买彩票已经成了强化社会关系的纽带。”乔治敦大学(Georgetown University)的做客教授Roberto Garvía如是说道。凑份子的做法最初起源于19世纪,因为当时的彩票贵得让工人阶层买不起。后来,这个传统就在各个阶层就传下来了。正如某个崽银行职员说的:“我可不像成为那个全办公室人都中奖了,却得继续一个人埋头工作的那个傻蛋儿。”

The biggest winner is the Spanish government, which receives 30% of the revenue from ticket sales, less the running costs. But it need not feel too exploitative, argue Mr Garvía and Mauro Guillén of the Wharton School of Business, who have studied lottery syndicates along with Andrés Santana of the Fundación March: “There is some evidence that at Christmas time, syndicates lure into the lottery the relatively wealthy, which might make it less regressive.”

最大的赢家是西班牙政府,它们从彩票销售收入中可以获得30%的收益,还不包括运营成本。“但是也没必要觉得被剥削了”,沃顿商学院的Mr Garvía和Mauro Guillén解围道。他们曾经和“前进基金会”(Fundación March)的Andrés Santana一起研究过博彩业中凑份子现象这一课题。他们解释道:“数据显示,在圣诞节期间,凑份子的做法会吸引更多相对富有的人购买彩票,这就使得它更像是一个累积税。”


Survival of the quickest
最速者生存

Nov 12th 2009
From The Economist print edition

Frequent crises have made for strong banks and nimble financiers
频繁发生危机已使银行更健全,金融业者思惟更敏捷

BRAZILIAN businessmen often say that the country’s recent economic past has strengthened companies, and especially banks. The argument goes like this: you need to be good, or at least inventive, to survive and make money when you have no idea whether inflation next year will be 50% or 500%. Bankers and finance directors have had to be particularly nimble. One example is Souza Cruz (a subsidiary of BAT), Brazil’s largest tobacco company, which in the days of high inflation did no better than break even on its cigarette sales. Its profits came from the interest on the cash it held between being paid by retailers and paying tax fortnightly. Companies used to operating in such unusual circumstances flourished when life became more predictable.

巴西商人经常说,巴西最近在经济上的经历增强了公司体质,尤其是银行业。类似说法包括︰贵公司必须体质更好(或至少具备创新能力)以存活下来,在意想不到的时机赚大钱,无论明年通货膨胀将是50%或500%。尤其,银行业者和金融主管的思惟必须更敏捷灵活。举一个例子,巴西最大烟草商Souza Cruz(英美烟草BAT子公司)在高通膨期间,香烟销量甚至几乎与歇业时期一样。该公司却从零售商支付货款与隔周缴税之间的盈余现金衍生利息上获利。当景气转好时,过去习惯于在非常时期经营的公司就发大财了。

There is some truth to this argument, even though it brushes aside the fact that until the 1990s Brazilian companies did not have to worry about foreign competitors. No big companies went bust in the recent financial crisis, despite losses on foreign-exchange derivatives that the Bank for International Settlements estimates at $25 billion. Moreover, no big banks wobbled, let alone had to be rescued, though there were some mergers.

有一些事实可以支撑这个说法,即使该说法漠视在巴西公司企业在1990年代之前从不必担心外国竞争者的事实。尽管国际结算银行估计,最近金融海啸期间巴西外汇损失高达250亿美元,但没有任何一家大型企业破产。此外也没有一家大型银行财务不稳,遑论需要政府救援,但有发生一些合并。

One reason was that a previous round of bank failures, in 1994, had already cleared out the bad ones. Until then banks made their profits by taking deposits from customers, lending the money to the government overnight and pocketing the difference. With inflation at several hundred per cent a year, many banks’ balance-sheets were hard to decipher. When inflation came down, it became clear that a number of them were insolvent. These folded or merged with other banks, leaving only the stronger ones.

理由之一是1994年前一波银行倒闭,已经清理了体质较差的银行。在那之前,这些银行藉由提领客户存款、一夜之间借钱给政府并装进别人的口袋来赚取利润。由于一年内通膨高达几个百分之七八百,很多银行资产负债表根本无法判读。当通膨来临,很明显许多银行面临破产。这些银行纷纷倒闭或与其它银行合并,只留下体质较健全的银行。

Brazil’s financial system got a further boost from reforms carried out when Arminio Fraga was governor of the central bank from 1999 until the start of 2003 (he is now at Gávea Investimentos, an investment firm). The country’s bank-settlement system now operates in real time, so all banks know their cash positions at any given moment and the central bank has an overall picture of what is happening. Before this system was introduced the central bank often ended up honouring the debts of banks that went bust, creating a dangerous incentive to be careless. Both Mr Fraga and his successor as governor, Henrique Meirelles, have made sure that banks report what is going on in any off-balance-sheet vehicles they have funded. This has helped to keep under control the special investment vehicles, conduits and other mysterious creatures that have caused so much damage in other countries.

巴西金融体系在Arminio Fraga担任央行行长期间(1999至2003年初)进行大刀阔斧改革并获得大幅提升,目前他担任投资公司Gávea Investimentos总裁。巴西的银行结算制度目前以实时方式运作,因此所有银行在任何时刻都能掌握自己的现金状况,而央行则掌控各银行实时情况的总图。这套制度引进之前,央行经常要收拾残局支付破产银行的债务,建立了危险诱因却不自知。Arminio Fraga和下一任行长Henrique Meirelles,确保各银行的报表在他们设立之不列入资产负债的任何平台上继续运转。这些有利于控管曾在其它国家造成严重伤害的特别投资平台、管道和其它神秘工具。

This transparency extends to financial markets too. All fund managers must disclose the net asset value of their funds to Brazil’s Securities and Exchange Commission (CVM) daily, though with a 48-hour delay. At the end of every month funds must disclose what they were holding 90 days ago. Anyone can go to the CVM’s website and look up these numbers. Fund managers may grumble about too much disclosure, but most are happy with the rules. Maria Helena Santana, who chairs the CVM, explains that they make it harder to pull off a scam of the sort run by Bernard Madoff, whose pyramid scheme was hidden behind a veil of secrecy.

此一透明制度亦延伸至金融市场。所有基金经理人每天必须向巴西证券交易委员会(CVM)公开他们手上基金的净资产价值,但有48小时延迟。在每个月底,各檔基金必须公开他们90天以前的持股比例,任何人都可以去CVM的网站查阅这些数字。基金经理人虽然可能因公开太多而牢骚满腹,但大多数经理人都乐于接受法规约束。CVM主席Maria Helena Santana阐述,他们会使Bernard Madoff操作的诈骗手法(藏身在秘密面纱后的树状网)更难抽身。

Created equal 建立公平制度

Equity investors, for their part, have benefited from new rules for publicly traded companies brought in by the São Paulo stock exchange (Bovespa) in 2002. Big Brazilian companies used to be notorious for abusing shareholders with minority stakes. Under current guidelines, it is illegal to issue shares that pay out different amounts to different holders in the event of a takeover. Any disputes between shareholders are judged by the CVM. With these rules in place, foreigners have been happy to buy shares and Brazilian companies that were unable to borrow in capital markets are now able to finance their expansion.

适用于公开上市公司的新法规在2002年引进圣保罗股市(Bovespa)后,股票投资人亦因而获利。巴西大型企业过去因坑杀持股少数的小股东而臭名昭彰。根据现今规范,在收购过程配发不同股东不同股息比例的股票就是非法的。股东之间的任何争论由CVM裁判。由于这些法规到位,外资乐于购买巴西股票,过去在资本市场借不到钱的巴西企业,现在可以筹措资金大展鸿图。

A boom in initial public offerings (IPOs) followed. At its height, in 2007, 80% of the money for IPOs came from foreign investors. This undoubtedly led to some excesses: at one point there were more listed housebuilders in Brazil than in America. But some of the companies that floated will do well. And the message conveyed by the new rules—that better corporate governance allows people to make money by selling bits of their companies on the stock exchange—has been good for the family businesses that make up the bulk of Brazil’s medium-sized firms.

首次公开售股(IPOs)的荣景接踵而至。极盛时期,2007年,八成左右的IPOs资金来自外资。这无疑造成了某些过度现象︰巴西股票上市的房屋营造商曾经一度比美国的还要多。但是,某些流通股票的公司反而业绩亮眼。并且,新的法规传达出一种讯息──更好的公司管理允许员工利用出售部分公司持股在股市赚钱──对于构成巴西中型企业绝大部分的家族企业而言绝对有益。

Plenty to Celebrate
很多事情值得庆祝


Santander Brasil’s recent IPO was a test of whether investors’ appetite for Brazil had returned. It proved to be the world’s largest IPO this year, valuing the bank’s Brazilian subsidiary at more than the whole of Deutsche Bank worldwide. The government is so worried about foreign portfolio investors pushing up the value of the real that it imposed a 2% tax in October to discourage them. IPOs have a wider benefit because companies that want to float all or part of their stock need to get their accounts in order, pay their taxes and make sure their workers are not part of the black economy.

Santander Brasil(土生金银行巴西子公司)最近一次IPO就是外资是否对于巴西恢复信心的测试。这次发行被证实为今年全球最大一笔IPO,使得 Santander银行巴西子公司资产超越了全球Deutsche Bank(德意志银行)的总和。巴西政府非常担心外资持股投资人会让黑奥(巴西币)强劲升值,于是在今年十月征收2%税金以阻挡外资进场。IPOs拥有很大利益,想要流通全部或部分股票的公司需要按顺序建立自己的账户、支付自己的税款,并确保自己的员工不是逃税的黑市经济之一。

All this has brought sophistication and liquidity to Brazil’s financial markets. São Paulo’s futures and options market is one of the five largest in the world by volume traded. Well-developed markets have been good for consumers too. High interest rates, high inflation and dysfunctional courts once made consumer credit rarer than snow. Thanks in part to a series of reforms carried out in Lula’s first term, credit has grown steadily. Loans for bigger items, such as cars and apartments, have become available for the first time, thanks to a new law under which a lender remains the owner of the asset acquired with the loan until the last repayment is made, whereas previously the money would have had to be chased up through the courts.

所有这些已经让巴西金融市场更加成熟和流动。以交易量而言,圣保罗期货市场排名全球五大期货市场之一,完善发展的市场也对于消费者有益。高利率、高通膨和功能不彰的法院一度使消费者贷款消失殆尽。部分归因于鲁拉总统第一任期进行的一连串改革,消费者融资已经稳定成长。大笔金额(例:汽车和公寓)的贷款第一次可以提供,归因于一项新法,出借人在收回最后一笔偿债之前仍是那笔贷款的资产拥有人,不像从前债务必须经由法院去追踪。

Lula’s first administration also introduced a new bankruptcy law that is credited with making it slightly easier to salvage something from companies that go under. There was room for improvement: a few years ago a World Bank study found that bankruptcy proceedings in Brazil took an average of ten years and left creditors with just two cents in every dollar owed.

鲁拉的第一任政府亦引进了新破产法,提供贷款使得抢救某些公司免于破产更为容易。还有需要改进的空间︰几年前,世界银行的一项研究发现破产程序在巴西平均要花十年工夫,而债权人仅能从每一美元的欠债拿回两美分。

Yet for all this progress, two glaring problems with Brazil’s financial system remain. First, credit is very expensive. Second, only the government will lend for long periods, and not to everyone.

可是,由于全部这些发展使巴西金融制度留下两个耀眼问题。首先,融资非常昂贵。其次,只有政府可以办理长期借款,而且不是提供给每个人。

Tax and lend 征税和放款

Brazil has a hybrid retail banking system, with state-controlled and private-sector banks competing directly. It is highly concentrated: Itaú Unibanco, the largest private bank, is among the world’s 15 biggest on several measures and yet has almost no presence outside Brazil. Banco do Brasil, the largest state-controlled bank and one of the world’s oldest financial institutions, vies with it for the title of the country’s biggest bank. All told, credit from state-controlled banks makes up 37.6% of the total and has recently been growing.

巴西拥有一套混合的零售金融制度,由国营银行与民营银行直接竞争。这是高度集中的︰巴西最大的民营银行Itaú Unibanco,从某些标准而言排名全球十五大银行之列,但在巴西以外几乎不存在。最大国营银行和全球最古老的金融机构之一Banco do Brasil(巴西银行),与Itaú Unibanco竞争巴西最大银行头衔。据说,国营银行的融资金额占总金额37.6%,并且最近还在成长。

Despite their different owners, the state-controlled and the private banks seem to be behaving in a remarkably similar way. Aldemir Bendini, the chief executive of Banco do Brasil, talks enthusiastically about international expansion. The bank will soon open five agencies in America to serve Brazilian expatriates. It also wants to help Brazilian multinationals abroad with local-currency financing. Meanwhile it will keep up its role as an instrument of public policy that does the bidding of the federal government, its biggest shareholder, and also look after the 22% of its shareholders who own traded stock. It looks like an incongruous mixture, but it appears to work. Itaú Unibanco too is keen on expansion abroad, but makes so much money at home that it does not seem to be in a rush.

尽管他们的所有人不同,但国营和民营银行在行为表现上却似乎非常相似。Banco do Brasil首席执行长Aldemir Bendini热情地谈论在国际上的扩展业务。该银行不久将在美国开设五家分行,提供给移居国外的巴西人,亦想要以当地货币融资协助在海外的巴西跨国企业。同时将保持身为公共政策执行工具的角色,替最大股东联邦政府进行国际招标作业,并且照顾持有上市交易股票比例22%的一般股东。虽然看起来像是不和谐的混合物,但Banco do Brasil似乎却工作。Itaú Unibanco亦对扩展国外业务有强烈兴趣,但在国内赚了太多钱,好像一点都不匆忙。

In theory, all this should provide plenty of competition, with the two types of bank keeping each other honest and making sure that Brazilians have access to credit. In practice it does not quite work like that. Even though Itaú alone has 25,000 cash points, more than 500 municipalities in Brazil lack even a single bank branch. The two kinds of bank compete most fiercely in the comparatively wealthy south and south-east of the country. Banco do Brasil recently added to the geographical concentration by buying Nossa Caixa, a São Paulo state savings bank, and a large stake in Banco Votorantim, a private-sector bank.

理论上,这一切应该提供大量竞争力,让两种不同类型银行维持彼此诚实并确保巴西民众可以取得融资。实际上,却完全不是那么回事。虽然单就Itaú银行而言就有25,000家分行,但巴西五百多个市镇甚至连一家分行都没有。两家银行在巴西最富裕的南部和东南部激烈竞争,Banco do Brasil最近藉由并购圣保罗州营储蓄银行Nossa Caixa及民营银行Banco Votorantim的大半股份,来增加在地理上的集中性。

The government has raised the limit for foreign participation in Banco do Brasil to 20% to attract more capital, but the state-controlled banks are not as well run as the private-sector ones, so the hoped-for competition has not materialised. The clearest sign of this is spreads—the difference between a bank’s cost of borrowing and lending. The Institute for Industrial Development, a lobby group, calculates that average lending rates are 35% higher than deposit rates, against less than 10% in the other BRIC countries. The bankers’ lobby disputes these figures, but nobody thinks that banks’ spreads are thin.

巴西政府已将外资入股Banco do Brasil的比例限制提高至两成以吸引更多资本,但国营银行并不像民营银行经营完善,因此期盼的竞争一直未具体化。银行扩张业务最明显的征兆──银行存放款成本之间的价差。游说团体「工业发展研究院」计算,巴西平均放款利率较存款比率高出35%,其它金砖国家则不及10%。虽然银行业者的游说团还在争吵这些数字,但没人相信银行的扩张仍嫌不足。

Among the things that make them fatter are a curious tax on bank funding that increases costs, and high reserve requirements which mean that banks must squeeze more revenue from what they are able to lend. Bad-loan provisions are high too, reflecting the fact that consumer credit is concentrated among people who are already stretched. And a lot of credit is subsidised, which pushes up costs for the rest.

其中,银行在筹募资金过程巧立名目增税使放款成本提高让银行业者的油水更多,而高额准备金需求意味银行必须从他们的放款能力赚取更多收入。呆帐金额也水涨船高,反映了消费者融资集中在展延偿债期限者的事实。而且许多融资接受补助,抬高了其它项目的成本。

Brazil’s banks have many things to recommend them; indeed they seem to exemplify what might happen if regulators elsewhere got their every wish. They are safe and their lending is well-capitalised and profitable. Two-thirds of Brazilian deposits are in local banks, which is unusually high for Latin America and a big change from the past, when anyone who had money kept it out of the country and in dollars. The banks also offer some things that would surprise American or European customers. Many ATMs provide a wide range of financial services, from dispensing cash to providing loans. Even so, for now credit is likely to remain too expensive for the country’s good.

巴西各银行做了很多事情使他们受到欢迎;假若其它地方的金管官员想要达成每一愿望,他们甚至可以举证未来可能发生的情况。巴西银行很安全且放款资本充足和有盈利。巴西三分之二的存款在地方银行,这对拉美国家而言是非常罕见的偏高,过去有钱人喜欢在国外以美元开户存款,现在已经发生了变化。银行亦提供一些令欧美客户惊讶的服务。很多自动提款机提供各种金融服务,从提领现金到提供借款。虽然如此,目前融资很可能对于巴西利益来说仍然太贵了。

For companies trying to get credit, the problems are much the same. To make up for the absence of a market in long-term debt Brazil created a giant development bank, the BNDES, with a balance-sheet larger than the World Bank’s. This is financed by an impost on labour and lends predominantly to Brazil’s biggest companies—the opposite of what you would expect from a left-leaning country.

对于试图取得融资的公司来说,面对的问题几乎大同小异。为了弥补长期负债期间欠缺一个市场,巴西成立巨型开发银行BNDES(国营经社发展银行),资产负债表金额甚至较世界银行还大。BNDES从劳务税取得资金而以巴西最大企业为主要放款对象──可以预期来自左倾国家的反对。

Because its large loans to Brazil’s big names carry so little risk, the BNDES is profitable. It also does some more adventurous lending, although trickier credit assessments are farmed out to private banks, which collect a fee for their pains and also assume the risk of loans going bad. The BNDES was useful to Brazil during the recent crisis as a stable source of funding, but its scale as the lender of choice for Brazil’s best credit risks is probably impeding the development of markets in long-term debt, and the way it is funded seems fundamentally unjust.

因为BNDES提供巴西大型企业的大笔贷款承担较少风险,所以BNDES仍是赚钱的。BNDES亦进行一些较具风险性的放款,但较棘手的信用评等则外包给民营银行,民营银行因承担痛苦而收取费用,亦假定贷款的风险会变得更糟。BNDES在最近金融海啸期间作为稳定的资金来源,对于巴西非常受用,但作为巴西最佳融资风险的放款者,BNDES的规模或许妨碍了长期负债期间的市场发展,而且BNDES取得资金的方式似乎基本上有欠公平。

Still, compared with the bank failures, frauds, market manipulation, volatility, disregard for contracts and near-absence of credit of the past, Brazil’s financial sector has come a long way. Foreign investors have noticed, and have recently started pouring money into the country.

尽管如此,与银行倒闭、欺诈、市场操控、反复无常,漠视合约及过去的几乎缺乏融资相比较,巴西金融业已经走了很长的路。外资已经注意到了,最近已经开始让热钱涌入巴西。


Brand royalty
Nov 26th 2009
From The Economist print edition

Oprah Winfrey's brand has many years of life left in it yet

Illustration by Brett Ryder

IT WAS one of the most tear-stained moments in the 24-year history of a show that specialises in tear-stained moments. On November 20th Oprah Winfrey announced that she will end her eponymous show in September 2011, 26 years after it first aired nationwide. She loves her show enough to know when it is time to say goodbye, she told her traumatised audience.
这是24年的专注于打动人心的节目生涯中最令人热泪盈眶的时刻。11月20号,奥普拉.温芙蕾宣布将于2011年结束她的同名脱口秀节目。该节目已在全国广播了26年。奥普拉告诉极度愕然的听众,她很爱她的节目,因此知道什么时候该说再见。

The sound of ululation could be heard from sea to shining sea. For once the pundits sang the same song as “real Americans”—as one of Ms Winfrey’s recent guests, Sarah Palin, likes to call them. They talked breathlessly about Ms Winfrey’s up-from-the-bootstraps achievements—how she came from nothing to amass a fortune of $2.3 billion and how she has viewers in more than 100 countries—and pronounced her retirement the end of an era. The New York Times’s Gail Collins added that she wished politicians, from the 92-year-old Robert Byrd on down, would follow her example and quit while they are ahead.
啜泣声从西海岸传到了东海岸。曾经,权威人士唱着同样的歌“真正的美国人”--如温芙蕾女士的最近一位嘉宾,莎拉.佩林就喜欢这样称呼。他们谈论着温芙蕾女士靠自身奋斗一步一步取得的成就--她是怎样从一无所有到聚集了23亿美元的财富,拥有100多个国家的观众--并宣告她的退役是一个时代的结束。纽约时报的盖尔.科林斯补充说她想从政,从92岁的罗伯特.伯德传下来,将以她为例,激流勇退。

The only problem with all this commentary is that Ms Winfrey is not quitting. She is ending her relationship with a big network, CBS, in order to devote herself to an ambitious new venture, a cable-television channel to be called the Oprah Winfrey Network, or OWN, which she plans to launch in January 2011 as a joint-venture with Discovery Communications. The world is about to be blessed with more Oprah, rather than less.
关于这所有评论的唯一一个问题是,温芙蕾女士并不是退役。她正在结束与大网络CBS的合作,是为了让自己致身于抱负远大的新的尝试,被称为奥普莱.温芙蕾网络的有限电视频道,或OWN,这是她计划于2011年公布和“发现探索公司”合资的一览节目。世界即将有更多的奥普拉,而非更少。

This is a tricky transition that raises all sorts of questions about the power of personal brands. Can the star’s brand be separated from the show that has nurtured it for almost a quarter of a century? And can it be used to launch an entire network? Personal brands are easy to damage. Martha Stewart, who was once the nearest equivalent to Ms Winfrey, had started to devalue her brand even before she got into trouble with the law, spreading herself too thin and striking too many deals with retailers. The celebrities who lent their name to Planet Hollywood probably no longer relish being associated with a tacky fast-food chain that has gone bankrupt twice. “The Oprah Winfrey Show” is not just a “delivery channel” that she can close down at will: it has defined its creator for 24 years. By killing off her brand-creating show and diluting her personal contribution across an entire network, she runs the risk of enraging her fans.
这是一个微妙的变化,出现各类关于个人品牌力量的问题。明星的品牌能与培养其几乎25年的节目分开吗?它能被用于投放整个网络吗?个人品牌很容易被破坏。玛莎·斯图尔特曾经是几乎与温芙蕾女士等同的人物,但甚至在她惹上法律纠纷之前就已使其品牌贬值了。过分铺张自己的品牌,与众多零售商签订交易,使得其品牌大为贬值。将自己的名字借给好莱坞星球的名人或许不再乐意与破产两次的寒酸的快餐链联系起来。“奥普拉.温芙蕾脱口秀”并不只是随她的意志就能关闭的 “输送频道”:它已塑造其创造者24年了。温芙蕾的离开是冒着激怒自己粉丝的危险,抹灭创造其个人品牌的脱口秀节目以及通过整个网络冲淡自己的个人贡献。

But there are good commercial reasons for Ms Winfrey’s decision. The audience for network television has been declining relentlessly as viewers have migrated to cable and the internet. The audience for “The Oprah Winfrey Show” has shrunk from about 14m viewers in 1998 to about 7m today, though it still remains the highest-rated talk show. Ms Winfrey is simply following her audience into a more fragmented media world. Besides, there is nothing to stop Ms Winfrey reviving “The Oprah Winfrey Show”, or something very like it, on her new platform.
但是温芙蕾女士的决定有利好的商业因素。由于观众转向有限电视和网络,网络电视的听众在不断的减少。“奥普拉.温芙蕾脱口秀”节目的听众从1998年的 1400万缩减到如今大约700万,尽管其在脱口秀节目中,收视率仍占据最高。温芙蕾女士简单的跟随她的听众的步伐,进入更加零碎的媒体世界。此外,没有任何东西可以阻止温芙蕾女士复兴“奥普拉.温芙蕾脱口秀”,或在她的新的平台上与其非常相似的东西。

Ms Winfrey also has lots of experience at relaunching herself. She reinvented the daytime talk show not once but twice—first by exposing some of her innermost secrets in public (about how she was raped at the age of nine and experimented with drugs in her 20s, for example) and second by taking her show upmarket. While Jerry Springer and his ilk filled their studios with stump-toothed degenerates, Ms Winfrey introduced her book club and encouraged her viewers to improve themselves.
温芙蕾女士也有很多重新推出自己的经验。她重新创新了日间脱口秀不是一次,而是两次--第一次是在公众面前揭露自己的一些内心秘密(例如有关她九岁时怎样被强奸,20多岁时曾吸毒),第二次是谈论她的脱口秀高档。当杰瑞·斯普林格.........................温芙蕾女士引进了读书俱乐部并鼓励她的观众提升自己。

Ms Winfrey is also an experienced brand-stretcher. She has starred in a number of successful films, most notably “The Colour Purple”, for which she was nominated for an Oscar; more importantly, she has launched a succession of Oprah-related products such as her website, Oprah.com and her magazine, O. Each time she succeeded in extending her audience without alienating her most loyal fans: a year after O’s launch in 2000 half its readers were not regular watchers of “The Oprah Winfrey Show”, including many professional women who would never dream of watching television in the afternoon.
温芙蕾女士也经历了品牌拓展。她在一系列成功的电影中担任主角,最出名的是“紫色”,并被提名为奥斯卡奖;最重要的是,她发布了一系列与奥普拉有关的产品,诸如她的网页Oprah.com,她的杂志O. 每次她都成功扩展了自己的听众,而没疏远自己的最忠实的粉丝:2000年,O杂志发行一年后,其读者不再是“奥普拉.温芙蕾脱口秀”的固定观众,包括很多从没想象到自己会在下午看电视的职业女性。

Life without Oprah没有奥普拉的生活
The biggest challenge with the cable channel will be to see whether Oprah’s brand can survive independently from the star herself. But again she has experience here. She has produced several films that deal with the classic Oprah-themes of suffering and redemption in which she did not actually appear. But the best evidence that she can make successful programmes without starring in them is her success in launching Phil McGraw. She first encountered him after she said on air that fears of mad-cow disease had put her off hamburgers; he helped her handle a lawsuit from a group of enraged Texas cattlemen. She invited him onto her show several times, and then helped him get his own program. “Dr Phil” is now the second most popular talk-show host after Ms Winfrey herself.
对有线电视的最大挑战就是看奥普拉品牌是否能不依靠明星自己生存下去。再一次,温芙蕾尝试了有线电视。她创作了几部电影,涉及典型的有关受难和救赎的奥普拉主题,而她本人并没哟出现在电影中。但是最能证明她能不用出任主演就能制作成功节目的是她成功激励了菲尔·麦克格劳博士。温芙蕾是在广播中说害怕疯牛病夺去自己的汉堡遭到愤怒的牛肉场主控诉时,首次遇见了菲尔·麦克格劳博士。他帮她摆平了这起控诉。温芙蕾几次邀请他到脱口秀节目,而后帮他获得了他自己的节目。“Dr Phil”是继温芙蕾女士之后的第二个最有名的脱口秀主持人。

Ms Winfrey has always been a vigilant steward of her brand. Almost from the first she wrested as much control as possible from the suits at CBS—and struck famously savvy deals into the bargain. This entailed not only creating her own company, Harpo, but also her own production studio. She is also notorious for her overbearing perfectionism. Ms Winfrey has steadfastly refused to take her company public, as Ms Stewart did. She has also refused to strike deals with retailers or stick her name on merchandise, as numerous celebrity chefs and athletes have done.
温芙蕾女士一向对自己的品牌管理警醒。几乎从一开始,她就要求得到CBS的更多的自由掌控权。这包括不仅是创造了她自己的公司Harpo,而且包括她自己的制作工作室。她也因其傲慢的十全十美主义而臭名昭著。温芙蕾女士坚决拒绝让自己的公司上市,和斯图尔特一样。她也拒绝与零售商达成交易或将自己的名字贴在商品上,就如许多名厨和运动员所做的。

Such vigilance about her brand is hardly a guarantee of success in the volatile and cacophonous media market. Her film version of Toni Morrison’s “Beloved” earned only $23m, less than half what it cost to make. Her earlier tentative venture into the cable market, with Oxygen Media, enjoyed limited success. But Ms Winfrey’s handful of failures are as nothing compared with her successes. Perhaps more than any of her rivals Ms Winfrey understands that it is hard to fail in the media business if you put your faith in people’s appetite for stories of those who pick themselves up from the floor and make something of their lives.
她对自己品牌如此的警惕,很难保证在动荡噪杂的媒体市场取得成功。她的托妮·莫里森版本的电影“被爱”仅赚取2300万美元,比其成本的一半还少。她早期尝试与氧气媒体合作进入有线市场,享受着有限的成功。但温芙蕾女士少数的失败与成功相比,是微不足道的。或许温芙蕾女士比她的任何一个竞争对手都明白,如果你将信念对中人们的胃口,讲述这些从地上爬起来的人们和在自己生活中有所得人的故事,就很难在媒体业务中失败。



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