John Overmyer

¿Por qué se debe volver a regular la cuenta de capitales?

NUEVA YORK –  Los debates actuales sobre la “guerra de monedas” reflejan dos características paradójicas de la economía mundial. La primera es que no hay ningún mecanismo que ate las reglas en materia de comercio internacional a los movimientos de los tipos de cambio. Los países dedican años a negociar las reglas de comercio, pero una variación de las tasas de cambio puede tener en pocos días efectos más significativos sobre el comercio que esas reglas acordadas tras penosas negociaciones. Más aún, los movimientos cambiarios están determinados esencialmente por flujos financieros y pueden no tener ningún efecto en términos de corregir los desbalances comerciales globales.

La segunda paradoja es que la expansión monetaria puede ser en gran medida inefectiva para el país que la lleva a cabo, pero puede generar externalidades negativas considerables sobre otros países. Esto es particularmente cierto de las medidas de expansión cuantitativa que ha adoptado Estados Unidos, en gran media porque el dólar de Estados Unidos es la principal divisa internacional.

Hasta ahora, Estados Unidos ha sido incapaz de generar con su política monetaria una expansión del crédito interno, el principal mecanismo a través del cual la expansión monetaria se transmite a la actividad productiva. Pero dicha política ha inducido flujos masivos de capitales hacia las economías emergentes, donde ha generado burbujas de precios de activos. Si además la expansión genera un debilitamiento del dólar, puede generar efectos negativos sobre sus socios comerciales. (Y algo similar puede ocurrir con las recientes decisiones monetarias japonesas.)

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