Jon Krause

De l’inconstance des fonds souverains

NEW YORK – Il y a encore deux ans, les fonds souverains étaient les épouvantails de la finance mondiale. Puis vint la crise financière globale, et les inquiétudes à leur sujet se sont évanouis. Maintenant que la crise est en recul, des inquiétudes se font à nouveau entendre quant à ces fonds souverains et à leurs agissements.

Les fonds souverains aiment à se présenter comme des instruments politiquement indépendants à vocation commerciale. Mais les deux dernières années ont démontré qu’en temps de crise, ils ne sont pas immunisés contre les pressions politiques les incitant à recentrer leur portefeuille sur les investissements nationaux. Cette tendance par temps de repli économique suggère que les fonds souverains ne sont pas les actionnaires stables et à long terme de sociétés étrangères qu’ils ont prétendu être (ainsi que l’avaient aussi prétendu certains observateurs).

Depuis l’année 2000 et jusqu’à la veille de la crise financière, la proportion d’investissements participatifs des fonds souverains sur les marchés étrangers était en hausse, atteignant même 90% au second trimestre 2008. Au second semestre de 2008, cependant, on a constaté un réel repli des fonds souverains vers les marchés nationaux. En effet, alors que la crise se propageait aux marchés émergeants qui accueillaient la plupart des fonds souverains, la proportion d’investissements étrangers dans le portefeuille des fonds souverains a chuté à 60%. 

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