La demi-mesure du FMI

BOSTON – « Ce qui était une hérésie est désormais considéré comme orthodoxe, » avait fait remarquer John Maynard Keynes en 1944, après avoir contribué à convaincre les dirigeants du monde que le tout nouveau Fonds Monétaire International devait permettre que la régulation des flux financiers internationaux demeure un droit fondamental des états membres. Mais dans les années 70 cependant, le FMI et les puissances occidentales avaient initié le démantèlement de la théorie et de la pratique de la régulation des flux de capitaux globaux. Dans les années 90, le Fonds est allé jusqu’à tenter de modifier ses Statuts pour rendre obligatoire la dérégulation de la finance transfrontière.

A grand bruit, le FMI a récemment adopté une nouvelle « vision institutionnelle » qui de toute évidence approuve la re-régulation de la finance globale. Le Fonds reste attaché à une éventuelle libéralisation de la finance, mais il reconnaît maintenant que le libre mouvement des capitaux repose sur un fondement intellectuel beaucoup plus faible que celui du libre échange.   

Le FMI admet en particulier maintenant que la libéralisation du compte de capital exige des pays qu’ils atteignent un certain seuil en matière d’institutions financières et de gouvernance, et que de nombreux marchés émergeants et pays développés ne l’ont pas atteint. Plus fondamentalement, le Fonds a accepté l’idée que les flux financiers transfrontières comportent autant de risques que de bénéfices, particulièrement des hausses subites de flux entrants suivies d’arrêts soudains, ce qui peut provoquer de fortes instabilités économiques.

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