Enseñanzas falsas de la historia financiera

TOULOUSE -. Si la Historia castiga a quienes no aprenden de ella, la historia financiera impone su castigo con un giro sádico: también castiga a quienes aprenden de ella demasiado entusiásticamente. Una y otra vez, las crisis financieras han reflejado las deficiencias de los sistemas reglamentadores basados en las enseñanzas aprendidas de crisis anteriores. La crisis actual no es una excepción ni lo será la próxima.

El sistema de reglamentación financiera de la posguerra se basó en tres supuestas enseñanzas de la del decenio de 1930. En primer lugar, pensamos que la razón principal por la que los bancos quiebran es la de que los depositantes son presa del pánico, no que la razón principal por la que los depositantes son presa del pánico es la de que los bancos están en peligro de quebrar.

Como la creencia de que escapar corriendo de los leones los provoca para que devoren a quien lo hace, existe algo de verdad en la de que los bancos quiebran porque los depositantes son presa del pánico, pero es poca y el depositante medio no asegurado, como el turista medio en una “reserva de animales”, no debería confiar en ella. De hecho, muchos pánicos se deben a una razón válida. Incluso en el decenio de 1930, la mayoría de los bancos quebraron a consecuencia de una mala gestión y de actividades ilegales, cosa que también es cierta hoy día.

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