Paul Lachine

El estancamiento económico de los Estados Unidos

CAMBRIDGE – Los Estados Unidos parecen estar atrapados en un peligroso callejón sin salida económico. La negativa de los republicanos y de los demócratas a ceder terreno en lo que se refiere al presupuesto está impidiendo que el gobierno haga frente a su enorme déficit fiscal y a su deuda nacional que crece rápidamente. En efecto, la Oficina de Presupuesto del Congreso estima que ésta podría aumentar al 82% del PIB en los próximos diez años –más del doble del coeficiente de deuda que se registraba apenas en 2008.

Además, esa previsión se basa en supuestos muy optimistas de un fuerte crecimiento económico y tasas de interés bajas. Con un crecimiento más lento y tasas de interés más normales, el coeficiente de deuda podría aumentar fácilmente a más del 100% en 2021, y superar el 150% para 2030.

Una razón fundamental del aumento acelerado de la deuda pública es el rápido envejecimiento de la población estadounidense y el consiguiente aumento del costo de la pensión universal y los programas de salud –el seguro social y “Medicare”. La mayoría de los expertos creen que limitar el aumento de la deuda requerirá una disminución del crecimiento de estos programas de beneficios, e incrementar los impuestos como proporción del PIB.

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