Three hundred years of financial regulation offer a cautionary tale to today‘s push against yesterday‘s regulations. This column revisits the political economy of financial crises and documents a consistent pattern of politically driven procyclical regulations. These regulatory cycles have a poor track record.
One stark feature of the global economy in the 21st century is the ongoing slowdown of productivity growth. This column explores the key factors behind this trend for several countries around the world. Weak demand is found to be a critical driver of the slowdown by holding back investment and changing the structure of consumption baskets, and through economies of scale effects. Although digitisation offers a potential way back, its benefits will
The majority of male entrepreneurs in Norway start a firm in an industry closely related that in which their father is employed. These entrepreneurs outperform others in the same industry. This column uses longitudinal data to argue that ‘dinner table human capital‘ that is, industry knowledge learned through their parents is an important factor. This form of capital also has effect on employee performance in the wider labour market
Many advanced economies are facing the twin challenges of an ageing population and public hostility towards immigration. This column studiesthe impact of demographics on attitudes towards immigration in Japan, and the effectiveness of information campaigns explaining the benefits of immigration. It finds that information campaigns are effective in improving attitudes towards immigration, especially amongst women. Deep generational gaps in attitud
A recent strand of literature suggests that the decline of long-term inflation expectations observed between 2014 and 2016 was partly due to the fall in oil prices. Using euro area data, this column argues that this presumed relationship is false. Lower global demand prompted a positive correlation between oil prices and the real economy, while perceived constraints on monetary policy action resulted in a positive correlation between short- and l
Two European elections in Germany on 24 September 2017 and Italy on 4 March 2018 warn that the peoples of Europe are drifting apart. Much of the recent deepening of these divisions can be traced to Europe‘s single currency, the euro. This column argues that the political divide in Europe may now be hard to roll back absent a shift in focus to national priorities that pay urgent attention to the needs of those being left behind.
Greece‘s third economic programme has been relatively successful, but before it can return to private market financing, the country will require more official debt relief. CEPR Policy Insight No. 92 asks how much debt relief is required and how it should be delivered.
Greece‘s third economic programme has been relatively successful, but before it can return to private market financing, the country will require more official debt relief. This column introduces a new CEPR Policy Insight which asks how much debt relief is required and how it should be delivered. Any debt relief package for Greece that wishes to avoid shifting the burden of repayment several generations into the future will need to include s
The share of fund assets held in exchange-traded funds has risen from 3.5% in 2005 to 14% in 2017, and to 20% for funds in emerging market assets. This column uses reported investor flows to argue that this is related to increased exposure of aggregate portfolio equity capital inflows to global risk. On this evidence, exchange-traded fund flows amplify the global financial cycle.
The post-crisis period has seen a considerable shift in drivers of international bank lending and international bond issuance, the two main components of global liquidity. This column describes how the sensitivity of cross-border lending to global risk conditions declined substantially post-crisis, becoming similar to that of international bond issuance. This fall largely reflects a change in the composition of international lenders.
In September 2017, the ECB held its second Annual Research Conference. This column surveys the contributions to the conference, which brought together academics and central bankers working at the cutting edge of economics, covering a wide range of research relevant for the ECB. ECB Vice-President Vtor Constncio highlighted the value that the ECB attaches to research, which ‘contributes to shaping the intellectual framework that we use to un
A number of economists and officials have recently proposed different schemes aimedat using financial markets to impose the right amount of discipline in the euro area. This column argues that this would not eliminate the inherent instability of the sovereign bond markets in a monetary union. During crises this instability becomes systemic, and no amount of financial engineering can stabilise an otherwise unstable system.
There has been criticism that the ‘genetic revolution‘ heralded by the completion of the Human Genome Project has failed to meet the more optimistic expectations of 15 years ago and that patient outcomes have not materially improved. This column analyses the extent to which basic genetic science has fuelled early-stage drug innovation. The results suggest that alleged ‘slower-than-expected‘ progress has been partly caused