Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

¿Sin municiones para combatir la recesión?

STANFORD – Los pronósticos económicos para 2017 proyectan una fragilidad constante en la economía global, y un crecimiento inferior a lo esperado para la mayoría de los países y regiones. Los problemas económicos obvios incluyen los bancos débiles de Europa, el mercado inmobiliario distorsionado de China, la incertidumbre política en Occidente, los récords históricos de deuda privada y pública -225% del PIB, según el Fondo Monetario Internacional- y la reticencia por parte de Grecia y Portugal, dos países sumamente endeudados, a cumplir con los programas del FMI.

Los riesgos económicos globales adicionales, como una alteración importante del mercado petrolero que podría hacer subir los precios, no son tan obvios y, por ende, reciben menos atención. Los economistas catalogan a estos episodios como "shocks" precisamente porque se producen de manera inesperada y pueden tener consecuencias de amplio alcance.

El estímulo monetario de largo plazo sin precedentes y las alzas masivas de las cargas de deuda pública han dejado a los gobiernos muy mal equipados para hacer frente a la próxima desaceleración económica, ya no si se produce o no, sino en el momento en que llegue. La próxima recesión probablemente no sea tan mala como la última, pero las economías avanzadas estarán mucho mejor preparadas para hacerle frente si, mientras tanto, llevan a cabo una normalización gradual de la política monetaria y una consolidación fiscal.

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