What options for the European Central Bank?

By Paul Hubert

All eyes are now on the ECB, whose recent statements indicate that it is concerned about the risk of deflation in the euro zone. The further downturn in inflation in May to 0.5% year on year is a reminder that this risk is increasing. This could lead the ECB to take action at the monthly meeting of the Board of Governors being held today, or in the months to come. This post provides a brief summary of the possible options available to the ECB. Continue reading “What options for the European Central Bank?”

Share Button

The ECB – or how to become less conventional

By Jérôme Creel and Paul Hubert

The gloomy economic situation in the euro zone and the deflationary risks it is facing are leading the members of the European Central Bank (ECB) to consider a new round of quantitative easing, as can be seen in recent statements by German, Slovakian and European central bankers. What might this involve, and could these measures be effective in boosting the euro zone economy? Continue reading “The ECB – or how to become less conventional”

Share Button

Does financial instability really undermine economic performance?

By Jérôme Creel, Paul Hubert and Fabien Labondance

What relationship can be established between the degree to which an economy is financialized (understood as the ratio of credit to the private sector over GDP), financial instability and economic performance (usually GDP per capita) in the European Union (EU)?  A recent working paper [1] attempts to provide a few answers to this question. Continue reading “Does financial instability really undermine economic performance?”

Share Button

The chiaroscuro of the ECB’s “forward guidance” *

By Paul Hubert and Fabien Labondance

“The Governing Council expects the key interest rates to remain at present or lower levels for an extended period of time.” With this pronouncement on 4 July 2013 at the press conference following the monthly meeting of the European Central Bank Board of Governors, Mario Draghi initiated the adoption by the ECB of a new communication strategy called “forward guidance”. Since then these words have always been included in his speech following announcements of the ECB’s monetary policy, and he has repeated them again today [1]. What should we expect? Forward guidance has recently been adopted by several central banks, but the methods chosen by the ECB differ and indicate that this measure will have only limited effectiveness in the euro zone. Continue reading “The chiaroscuro of the ECB’s “forward guidance” *”

Share Button

Does too much finance kill growth?

By Jérôme Creel, Paul Hubert and Fabien Labondance

Is there an optimal level of financialization in an economy? An IMF working paper written by Arcand, Berkes and Panizza (2012) focuses on this issue and attempts to assess this level empirically. The paper highlights the negative effects caused by excessive financialization. Continue reading “Does too much finance kill growth?”

Share Button

What monetary policy for the ECB in 2013?

By Paul Hubert

After the monthly meeting of the Board of Governors of the European Central Bank on 7 February 2013, the ECB decided to hold its key interest rate at 0.75%. The analysis of the economic situation by Mario Draghi made ​​during the press conference afterwards pointed to contrasting developments justifying the status quo. In a recent study, we showed that the inflation forecasts of the ECB can shed new light on future trends in interest rates. Continue reading “What monetary policy for the ECB in 2013?”

Share Button