Skyscraper in Moscow

El faltante de inversión

BERKELEY – La debilidad de la inversión privada en Estados Unidos y otras economías avanzadas es un aspecto preocupante (y desconcertante) de la recuperación tras la crisis financiera mundial de 2008. Según el Fondo Monetario Internacional, a lo largo de 2014 la inversión privada disminuyó un promedio de 25% en comparación con las tendencias previas a la crisis.

La caída de la inversión ha sido amplia y profunda, y afecta no solamente a la inversión residencial sino también en equipamientos y estructuras. La inversión de las empresas sigue muy por debajo de las expectativas previas a 2008, y el año pasado recibió un nuevo golpe en Estados Unidos por el derrumbe de la inversión en el sector energético en respuesta a la abrupta caída del precio del petróleo.

Curiosamente, la caída de la inversión en Estados Unidos coincide con una fuerte recuperación de la rentabilidad del capital. Una de sus mediciones indica que hoy el rendimiento del capital privado es el mayor de las últimas décadas. Pero existe abundante evidencia empírica de que en el nivel macroeconómico, la inversión de las empresas depende ante todo del crecimiento futuro esperado de la demanda y la producción, no de la rentabilidad actual o de los resultados acumulados. Según el FMI, esta teoría del “acelerador” explica la mayor parte de la caída de la inversión empresarial en las economías desarrolladas después de la crisis de 2008.

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