No debe haber cheque en blanco para Paulson

NUEVA YORK – El paquete de rescate de 700 mil millones de dólares del Secretario del Tesoro de los Estados Unidos, Hank Paulson, se ha topado con dificultades en el Congreso. Y con razón: está mal planeado. El Congreso faltaría a sus responsabilidades si diera al secretario del Tesoro un cheque en blanco. La propuesta de ley enviada al Congreso incluso contenía texto que eximiría a las decisiones del secretario de ser examinadas por cualquier tribunal u organismo administrativo –el sueño cumplido de la administración Bush de un poder ejecutivo unitario.

El historial de Paulson no inspira la confianza suficiente para darle discreción sobre 700 mil millones de dólares. Las medidas que tomó la semana pasada provocaron la crisis que hace que el rescate sea necesario. El lunes permitió que Lehman Brothers quebrara y se negó a facilitar fondos para salvar a AIG. El martes tuvo que dar marcha atrás y conceder un crédito de 85 mil millones de dólares a AIG con condiciones punitivas.

El colapso de Lehman trastornó el mercado de papel comercial. Un importante fondo del mercado monetario “reventó al dólar” y los bancos de inversión que dependían del mercado de papel comercial tuvieron dificultades para financiar sus operaciones. Para el jueves, la especulación contra los fondos del mercado monetario estaba en su apogeo y nunca desde los años treinta habíamos estado tan cerca de una debacle. Paulson volvió a dar marcha atrás y propuso un rescate sistémico.

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