Livret A accounts – drowning in criticism

By Pierre Madec

As the Governor of the Bank of France and the Minister of the Economy and Finance announced a further (probable) reduction in the interest rate on Livret A accounts for August 1st, the rating agency Standard&Poor’s (S&P) released a study of the French banking system. The U.S. agency argues that Livret A accounts, and regulated savings more generally, “penalize French banks” and are at the root of “distortions in the banking market”. This debate, which is hardly new, has been the subject of a number of reports: Duquesne, 2012; Camdessus, 2007; Noyer-Nasse, 2003, and more. Some ardently defend the peculiar French approach represented by Livret A, while others advocate, on the contrary, a deep-going reform of a system they describe as “lose-lose”. Continue reading “Livret A accounts – drowning in criticism”

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