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Por un mundo con menos efectivo

CAMBRIDGE – El mundo está inundado de papel moneda. Los bancos centrales de los principales países inyectan cada año cientos de miles de millones de dólares en efectivo, sobre todo en billetes de alta denominación como el de 100 dólares (vehículo de casi el 80% del impresionante suministro estadounidense de 4200 dólares en efectivo per cápita). El billete de 10 000 yenes (alrededor de 100 dólares) equivale aproximadamente al 90% de la circulación de Japón, cuyo efectivo per cápita asciende a casi 7000 dólares. Como vengo sosteniendo hace dos décadas, ese efectivo facilita ante todo el crecimiento de la economía subterránea en vez de la legal.

No propongo una sociedad sin efectivo, algo que por ahora no sería ni factible ni deseable. Pero una sociedad con menos efectivo sería un lugar más justo y seguro.

El crecimiento de las tarjetas de débito, transferencias electrónicas y pagos móviles produjo una gran disminución del uso de efectivo en la economía legal, especialmente para transacciones medianas y grandes. Estudios realizados por diversos bancos centrales muestran que el ciudadano de a pie y las empresas poseen y usan sólo un pequeño porcentaje de los billetes de alta denominación.

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