Fed chair Janet Yellen Yin Bogu/ZumaPress

Los mercados en ascenso tras la subida de los tipos de interés por la Reserva Federal

NUEVA YORK – La perspectiva de que la Reserva Federal de los Estados Unidos comience en este año a abandonar los tipos de interés oficiales, situados en el nivel de cero, ha inspirado un temor en aumento a una nueva inestabilidad en los mercados de divisas, bonos y valores. Se trata de una preocupación comprensible: cuando la Reserva Federal indicó en 2013 que estaba próximo el fin de su relajación cuantitativa, la conmoción resultante mandó ondas expansivas a través de los mercados financieros y las economías de muchos países en ascenso.

De hecho, se teme que el aumento de los tipos de interés en los Estados Unidos y el consiguiente aumento del valor del dólar podrían causar estragos entre los gobiernos, las entidades financieras, las grandes empresas e incluso los hogares de los mercados en ascenso. Como todos ellos han recibido en los últimos años billones de dólares prestados, ahora afrontarán un aumento del valor real de esas deudas en las monedas locales, mientras que el aumento de los tipos de interés de los EE.UU. hará subir los de los mercados en ascenso, con lo que los costos del servicio de la deuda aumentarán aún más.

Pero, aunque es probable que la perspectiva de que la Reserva Federal aumente los tipos de interés provoque una importante turbulencia en los mercados financieros de los países en ascenso, el riesgo de crisis y dificultades a las claras es más limitado. Para empezar, mientras que la conmoción de 2013 tomó los mercados por sorpresa, no ocurrirá lo mismo con la intención por parte de la Reserva Federal de empezar a subir los tipos de interés este año, manifestada claramente a lo largo de muchos meses. Además, es probable que la Reserva Federal comience a aumentar los tipos de interés más adelante y más despacio que en ciclos anteriores, reaccionando gradualmente a las señales indicadoras de un crecimiento económico lo bastante sólido en los EE.UU. para sostener unos mayores costos de endeudamiento. Ese mayor crecimiento beneficiará a los mercados en ascenso que exportan bienes y servicios a los EE.UU.

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