Paul Lachine

L'Amérique et la stratégie du vide

NEW-HAVEN – Apparemment, les responsables de la Réserve fédérale reconsidèrent le bien-fondé de leur interminable politique de relâchement monétaire (QE). Ils ont raison ! Non seulement son expérimentation ne débouche pas sur la reprise économique attendue, mais elle augmente le risque d'une nouvelle crise.

Les minutes de la réunion du 29 et 30 janvier de la Commission fédérale de l'Open Market (FOMC) évoquent un mécontentement croissant : "Beaucoup de participants… ont exprimé leur préoccupation quant aux coûts et aux risques potentiels liés à la prolongation des achats d'actifs". Il s'agit tant d'un risque de déstabilisation liée à l'arrêt des mesures de relâchement monétaire, que du risque de moins-value du portefeuille-titres qui gonfle à toute vitesse (actuellement 3000 milliards de dollars,  sans doute 4000 milliards de dollars à la fin de l'année). 

Aussi graves soient ces préoccupations, elles ne prennent pas en compte ce qui est probablement la plus grande erreur de la politique inédite de la Fed : la préférence accordée à une tactique à court terme par rapport à une stratégie à long terme. Aveuglée par la crise de 2007-2008, la Fed a aggravé son erreur de diagnostic initial en relançant à deux reprises sa politique de relâchement monétaire avant de la prolonger sans limite. La FOMC, croyant à tort au succès de la première phase de cette politique (QE1) - une injection massive de liquidités dans les profondeurs d'une crise horrible - a imaginé qu'il lui suffirait de continuer sur cette lancée.

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