Para que la vejez sea menos segura

Es casi una ilusión óptica: en los horizontes de Japón, de Europa y de Estados Unidos, se asoma una crisis en el sistema de pensiones. El problema es real aunque exagerado. La ilusión se encuentra en algunos de los planes que se están diseñando para hacerle frente.

La pregunta principal es si la privatización del sistema de pensiones, como lo ha propuesto el presidente George W. Bush para la seguridad social en Estados Unidos, resolvería el problema o solamente lo empeoraría. Muchos países están considerando adoptar alguna variante del plan Bush, por lo que el tema merece un análisis cuidadoso.

Por sí misma, la privatización no es una solución. El problemático sistema de pensiones de Estados Unidos -ahora con varios cientos de miles de millones de dólares de deuda - parece estarse dirigiendo a un rescate por parte del gobierno. Hubo una época en que la privatización -que permitía a las personas abrir cuentas de ahorro individuales- parecía ser mejor que el sistema de seguridad social, el cual invierte en bonos del Tesoro de bajo rendimiento. Los que se inclinan por la privatización dicen que los fondos producirían más si se invirtieran en la bolsa de valores, y pronostican ganancias del 9%.

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