Hay que domar a las “langostas” del capital privado

Las plenas repercusiones de la crisis financiera desatada por las hipotecas incobrables en Estados Unidos aún son inciertas, pero entre los efectos impensados ya figura una demanda irrefrenable de una mayor transparencia y una mejor regulación en los mercados financieros.

Una parte de los mercados financieros que no está sujeta a la transparencia y las reglas de información que se aplican, digamos, a los bancos y a los fondos mutuos son los fondos de cobertura y los fondos de participación privada. Los cinco acuerdos más importantes de participación privada, alguna vez relativamente pequeños, hoy involucran más dinero que los presupuestos anuales de Rusia y de la India. Los activos en fondos de participación privada y fondos de cobertura actualmente representan 3 billones de dólares, y se espera que alcancen los 10 billones de dólares para fines de 2010. Los fondos hoy dependen fuertemente de la inversión de los fondos de pensión y del dinero solicitado a bancos y otras fuentes no privadas.

De hecho, estos fondos privados representan aproximadamente las dos terceras partes de toda la deuda nueva. Así, si existe un problema de deuda, como en la crisis hipotecaria norteamericana, también debe analizarse el papel que desempeñaron los fondos privados. Ellos son, en pocas palabras, un desafío importante para la estabilidad financiera y, a menos que estén regulados, probablemente contribuyan a futuras crisis.

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