Las trampas de la salida de la Fed

BOMBAY – La sostenida debilidad de la economía estadounidense –donde el desapalancamiento en los sectores público y privado continúa a ritmo acelerado– ha conducido a un desempleo obstinadamente elevado y un crecimiento menor a lo adecuado. Los efectos de la austeridad fiscal –un brusco aumento de los impuestos y una pronunciada caída del gasto gubernamental desde principios del año– están debilitando aún más el desempeño de la economía.

De hecho, datos recientes han silenciado eficazmente las insinuaciones de algunos funcionarios de la Reserva Federal sobre la necesidad de que la Fed salga de su actual tercera (e indefinida) ronda de flexibilización cuantitativa (FC3). Dado el lento crecimiento, el elevado desempleo (cuya disminución solo se debe al abandono de la fuerza laboral por los trabajadores desalentados) y una inflación bien por debajo del objetivo de la Fed, no es este momento para comenzar a limitar la liquidez.

El problema es que las inyecciones de liquidez de la Fed no están generando crédito para la economía real, sino disparando el apalancamiento y la toma de riesgos en los mercados financieros. La emisión de bonos basura bajo cláusulas flexibles y con tasas de interés excesivamente aumenta; el mercado de valores alcanza nuevos máximos a pesar de la desaceleración del crecimiento; y el dinero fluye hacia los mercados emergentes con elevados rendimientos.

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