El miedo a la caída de los mercados bursátiles

NEW HAVEN – La marcada caída de los mercados bursátiles del mundo el 9 de agosto, después de que BNP Paribas anunciara que congelaría tres de sus fondos, es apenas un ejemplo más de la reciente inestabilidad o asimetría descendente de los mercados. Es decir, los mercados han sido más vulnerables a las grandes caídas repentinas que a las grandes subas repentinas. Los cambios diarios del precio de las acciones para el período de 100 días comerciales que culminaba el 3 de agosto tuvieron un sesgo inusualmente negativo en Argentina, Australia, Brasil, Canadá, China, Francia, Alemania, India, Japón, Corea, México, Estados Unidos y el Reino Unido.

En Estados Unidos, por ejemplo, el índice 500 de Standard and Poor registró en julio seis días de caídas y sólo tres días de alzas que representaron más del 1%. En junio, el índice cayó más del 1% en cuatro días y ganó más del 1% en dos días. Si nos remontamos un poco más atrás, hubo una gigantesca caída en un solo día el 27 de febrero de 2007, de 3,5%, y ningún rebote pronunciado.

La baja del 27 de febrero comenzó con una caída en un día del 8,8% en el índice Shanghai Composite, tras la noticia de que el gobierno chino podría gravar más agresivamente las ganancias de capital. Esta noticia debería haber sido relevante sólo en China, pero la caída allí alimentó las bajas en todo el mundo. Por ejemplo, el Bovespa en Brasil cayó 6,6% el 27 de febrero y el BSE 30 de la India cayó 4% al día siguiente. La recuperación subsiguiente fue lenta e incremental.

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