La errática integración financiera de Europa

LONDRES – Este verano, las dificultades ampliamente publicitadas por los que atraviesa el Banco Espírito Santo de Portugal nos recuerdan que los problemas financieros de la eurozona no se encuentran resueltos en lo absoluto. Sin duda, existen factores idiosincráticos detrás de los problemas de este banco, mismos que se derivan de su exposición a otras partes que conforman el imperio de la familia Espírito Santo. Sin embargo, cuando el banco anunció una pérdida de €3,6 mil millones ($4,7 mil millones) en el primer semestre, el colapso repentino de la confianza fue alarmante, y los inversores nerviosos empezaron a averiguar si existían bombas de tiempo similares haciendo tictac en otros lugares.

En la actualidad, todos los ojos se dirigen hacia los resultados de la revisión de la calidad de los activos (RCA) que realiza el Banco Central Europeo, revisión que se prevé concluya en un par de meses. La RCA es el elemento clave en la “evaluación exhaustiva” de los bancos de Europa que lleva a cabo el BCE antes de que en el mes de noviembre tome formalmente la responsabilidad de supervisar a más del 80% del sistema bancario de la eurozona.

El BCE, actuando con bastante sensatez, quiere que todos los horrores potenciales se visibilicen antes de tomar dicha supervisión bajo su cargo – de esta forma esta institución no podrá ser culpabilizada. Debido a que los supervisores nacionales, quienes a menudo se inclinaban por presentar fotografías color rosa de las instituciones de sus países, ya no son quienes evalúan, podemos tener la esperanza de que las evaluaciones vayan a ser más robustas que las pruebas de resistencia bancaria realizadas anteriormente bajo los auspicios de la Autoridad Bancaria Europea (ABE). Dichas pruebas, a diferencia de sus equivalentes en Estados Unidos, no lograron una recuperación de la confianza. Varios bancos que superaron con creces dichas pruebas, pronto se vieron obligados a obtener capital nuevo.

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