Los bancos y el gran debate

OXFORD – Recientemente Christine Lagarde, directora gerente del Fondo Monetario Internacional, comentó sobre la inconclusa agenda para la reforma del sector financiero mundial: «Para comenzar, necesitamos avances concretos sobre el problema de las instituciones demasiado grandes para caer. Necesitamos una discusión de alcance mundial sobre los pros y las contras de las restricciones directas a los modelos de negocios». Cinco años después del inicio de la crisis, con la publicación del informe Liikanen sobre la reforma bancaria en la Unión Europea, ese debate finalmente ha comenzado.

Las propuestas del informe Liikanen tiene mucho en común con las efectuadas en 2011 por la Comisión Independiente de la Banca (ICB, por su sigla en inglés), que presidí. Ambos conjuntos de recomendaciones enfatizan la importancia de un paquete de medidas entrelazadas que combine una absorción de pérdidas mucho mayor con la reforma estructural. Y ambos proponen la misma justificación económica para esas reformas: para aislar los servicios bancarios básicos de los riesgos de la banca de inversión; para que la resolución bancaria sea más fácil y más creíble; para proteger a los contribuyentes de riesgos que corresponden al sector privado; y, por lo tanto, para garantizar que la adopción de riesgos por parte de los bancos quede sujeta a una adecuada disciplina de mercado.

Además, tanto Liikanen como la ICB favorecen la banca universal estructurada –entidades legalmente separadas con capital separado, administración separada, etc.– en vez de solicitar su desaparición, como exigen quienes desean separar completamente la banca comercial de la banca de inversión. En el caso de los grandes bancos, Liikanen separaría las operaciones bursátiles de la banca de depósitos, mientras que las propuestas de la ICB, ya incorporadas en la propuesta de legislación británica, protegerían la banca minorista a través de condiciones diferenciadas.

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