聪明的投资:即使越来越多的人向教育砸钱,你要投资也不吃亏

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楼主 2019-06-08 16:22:58
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美国股市的投资回报率高?还是教育的投资回报率高?


近期,美国经济学家George Psacharopoulos和Harry Patrinos对过去几十年中美国股市和教育投资做了一项对比研究,结果表明教育的投资回报较美国股市的投资回报率更高。


这项研究分析了来自139个国家的1120份调查。研究表示过去半个世纪中,全球投资回报率高达8.8%;而美国股市的投资回报率为5.6%。这个类比看起来并不精确,因为教育的投资回报率并不好算。为此,这两位经济学家提出了教育“年均回报率”(annual average rate of return)的概念,即每多上一年学可增加的时薪额。


教育的投资回报率排除了社会效益,例如教育程度越高,死亡率越低。


女孩接受教育和初等教育阶段的回报较高。


此外,贫穷国家的回报也较高,因为一个国家受教育的人的比例越小,他们能拿到的工资也越高。以此推理,随着教育程度的提高,回报应该会减少。


然而事实上,高等教育的回报依然很高。(如图)



一些研究人员认为,技术进步已经取代了某些熟练的技术工人,而这部分人转而又取代了没有那么熟练的人,这就让后者处于劣势,所以对于这部分人来说,接受更多的教育的投资回报率并没有改变。


而Psacharopoulos和Patrinos则更为乐观,他们认为这是一场教育与技术之间的竞争。随着持有学位的人越来越多,教育投资回报率被拉低。而另一方面,在技术变革的推动下,社会对高技术技能需求不断上升,这又推高了教育投资回报率。技术成为这场竞争中的赢家。


回报率上升增加了投资教育的积极性。政府和个人都有所行动。全球教育公共支出占GDP的比例正在增加;私立教育正在蓬勃发展。这一趋势的受益人是接受教育的人,要么是因为他们本身就生活在富裕的、治理良好的国家,要么是因为他们本身有能力自己支付教育。Patrinos表示,回报上升会让个人对教育投资更多,同时这也意味着不投资教育的人会进一步被甩开。“不管怎样,结论都是一样的:现在就投资教育吧。”


WHICH has provided a better return in recent decades: America’s stockmarket or education? The latter, according to a research review by George Psacharopoulos and Harry Patrinos for the World Bank. The two economists looked at 1,120 studies, across 139 countries, and came up with an annual average “rate of return”—actually a pay premium, the increase in hourly earnings from an extra year of schooling—of 8.8%. The analogy is inexact, but for comparison America’s stockmarket returned an annual 5.6% over the past 50 years.


Their figure excludes social gains, such as lower mortality rates associated with greater education. The premium is higher for girls and for primary education. It is also higher in poor countries, presumably because the smaller the share of educated people, the higher the pay they can command. The same reasoning suggests that the return should have dwindled as educational attainment rose. Instead, it has stayed strong, especially for higher education (see chart).


Some researchers have posited that technological advances have displaced some skilled workers, who have then in turn displaced less-skilled ones, leaving their relative positions in the pecking order—and thus the return to their extra education—little changed. Mr Psacharopoulos and Mr Patrinos are more sanguine. They think the world is witnessing a “race between education and technology”. A rising number of degree-holders has tended to push returns down, but rising demand for higher-level skills, driven by the speed of technological change, has worked in the opposite direction. Technology seems to have been winning.


Rising returns increase the incentive to invest in education. Governments and individuals seem to be responding. Public spending on education as a share of GDP is growing; private education, both at school and tertiary level, is booming. The beneficiaries are people who have access to education, either because they live in rich, well-governed countries or because they can afford to pay privately for it. Rising returns, says Mr Patrinos, signal to individuals to invest more. But they also mean that anyone who does not will fall further behind. “Either way, the conclusion is the same: invest now.”


Source: The Economist | Translated by Coral Zhong


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