Los nuevos cucos del capitalismo financiero

La crisis de las hipotecas de alto riesgo ha desviado la atención de los crecientes temores sobre los Fondos de Riqueza Soberana (SWF, tal su sigla en inglés) como los nuevos cucos de las finanzas globales. Pero apenas ceda la crisis de las hipotecas de alto riesgo, las ansiedades sobre los SWF regresarán, ya que el surgimiento de este vasto y creciente manojo de fondos controlados por el estado puede tener implicancias de mayor alcance y, por cierto, políticamente más sensibles, que la angustia con suerte temporaria causada por la crisis de las hipotecas de alto riesgo.

De hecho, si los SWF siguen creciendo, sus inversiones están destinadas a alterar de manera permanente el peso relativo de los activos controlados por el estado y los privados en las economías avanzadas. Según Morgan Stanley, se espera que los SWF gestionen 12 billones de dólares para 2015, con respecto a los aproximadamente 2,5 billones actuales. Ambas sumas hacen que los montos controlados por los fondos de cobertura y los grupos de capital riesgo parezcan pequeños. Por lo tanto, algunos de los mayores inversores -tanto pasivos como estratégicos- en los mercados financieros en los próximos años serán instituciones de gobierno. Que entre estas instituciones las más grandes estén en China, en la Rusia de Vladimir Putin y en algunos estados petroleros inestables suma otra preocupación a la mezcla.

El crecimiento de los SWF es una consecuencia directa de la acumulación de más de 5 billones de dólares en reservas extranjeras por parte de las economías de los mercados emergentes en Asia y entre los países exportadores de petróleo y productos básicos. Los excedentes de cuenta corriente de estas economías, junto con las masivas afluencias de capital, llevaron a sus autoridades monetarias a intentar impedir que sus monedas nacionales se apreciaran para mantener la competitividad de sus industrias.

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