Reinventar la economía

NEW HAVEN-  El fracaso generalizado de los economistas para prever la crisis financiera que estalló en 2008 está muy relacionado con los modelos defectuosos.  La falta de modelos acertados significó que los responsables del diseño de las políticas económicas y los banqueros centrales no tuvieron una advertencia de lo que iba a pasar.

Como señalamos George Akerlof y yo en nuestra reciente publicación, Animal Spirits , la actual crisis financiera fue originada por burbujas en los mercados de la vivienda, bursátil y de energía, así como en otros mercados de materias primas. Las burbujas las causan los circuitos de retroalimentación: el aumento de los precios especulativos fomenta el optimismo, lo que alienta a comprar más, y de ahí que haya más incrementos de los precios especulativos –hasta que se da la quiebra.

Sin embargo, no encontrará la palabra “burbuja” en la mayoría de los tratados o libros de economía. Del mismo modo, una búsqueda en los documentos de trabajo realizados en años recientes por los bancos centrales y departamentos de economía arroja pocos ejemplos en los que siquiera se menciona la palabra “burbuja.” En efecto, la idea de que existen las burbujas se ha vuelto tan vergonzosa en muchas de las profesiones de la economía y las finanzas que hablar de ellas en un seminario de economía es como hablar de la astrología en un grupo de astrónomos.

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