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Estados Unidos ante una decisión sobre su deuda

BOGOTÁ – ¿Debe el gobierno de Estados Unidos emitir deuda a más largo plazo para asegurarse la continuidad del bajísimo costo de financiación actual? Es una decisión difícil, pero tal vez haya llegado el momento de tomarla, ahora que el país ya está bastante endeudado (sin hablar de las obligaciones futuras por pensiones y seguros médicos, que probablemente aumentarán).

Hasta ahora, el Tesoro de los Estados Unidos y la Junta de la Reserva Federal trabajaron juntos para mantener reducida la deuda pública a largo plazo, con el objetivo de bajar el interés que paga el sector privado. En la actualidad, la duración media de los títulos de deuda de los Estados Unidos (que integran el balance de la Reserva Federal) es menor a tres años, muy por debajo de la mayoría de los países europeos, incluso con los enormes programas de flexibilización cuantitativa (FC) de sus bancos centrales.

La preferencia por el endeudamiento a corto plazo como forma de tratar de estimular la economía tuvo sentido hasta ahora. Además, como el tipo de interés de la deuda de Estados Unidos a 30 años es aproximadamente 200 puntos básicos superior al de la deuda a un año, acortar los plazos suponía un ahorro para el fisco.

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