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Free articles uit het werkdomein van het tijdschrift Bank- en Financiewezen – Revue bancaire et financière. De artikels worden aangeboden in de oorspronkelijke taal.

  • Woensdag 10/7/2019

    As an open economy, the euro area feels the consequences of the worldwide economic slowdown. But markets are not just pricing in a cyclical slowdown. Instead, interest rates and inflation expectations are reflecting a prolonged period of low structural growth and inflation. If markets are right, this would mean a secular stagnation. Just like Japan experienced since the bursting of its asset bubbles in the early nineties.

    Undoubtedly, there are some similarities between Japan and the euro area. Among others, an ageing population, issues within the banking sector or higher private savings. On the other hand, the euro area (until now) avoided the deflationary environment. And it still has policy room to avoid a straightforward ‘Japanification’ of its economy.

  • Woensdag 10/7/2019

    On May 7th, 2019, the Belgian Financial Forum organised a presentation by Geert Noels, CEO and Chief Economist of Econopolis, entitled ‘SOS capitalism.’ The presentation consists of two parts. In the first part, Geert Noels discusses recent events with a major financial and economic impact, events that are partly the result of capitalism and which may further promote capitalism. In the second part he elaborates on his book "Gigantism": How did gigantism arise? What are the consequences? And how can we solve this?

  • Woensdag 10/7/2019

    Book review of Geert Noels’ “Gigantisme. Van too big to fail naar trager, fijner en menselijker”.

  • Woensdag 19/6/2019

    Recent economic indicators are not very encouraging for those hoping that inflation in the euro area will soon return to the ECB's 2% target. Economic growth decelerated sharply in 2018 and the previous acceleration in inflation was completely reversed in the final months of the year. Core inflation has not yet picked up, although stronger wage increases would have justified hopes of such a development. However, the slowdown in consumer demand growth has probably prompted entrepreneurs to reduce their profit margins rather than increase prices.

     

    Low inflation in the eurozone also reflects the adjustment process whereby peripheral euro area countries continue to make up for competitiveness losses that occurred before the euro debt crisis. This is still not complete and implies that their inflation rates should remain below that of Germany. Consequently, as long as German inflation remains below 2%, average eurozone inflation cannot really get close to 2%.

     

    A stronger stimulation of the German economy, and in particular of German consumption, could accelerate the process by stimulating German inflation. But such a stimulus is unlikely. A significant acceleration of German inflation to above 2% is therefore also unlikely. As other large euro area countries will have to keep their inflation levels below German levels for a long time to come in order to restore their competitiveness, a return to average inflation in the euro area close to the ECB's 2% target is likely to be a very long-term effort.

  • Woensdag 19/6/2019

    This is a report of the panel discussion, following the masterclass of Mathias Dewatripont, at the Universiteit Antwerpen, on April 4th, 2019.

  • Woensdag 19/6/2019

    Masterclass at the Universiteit Antwerpen, April 4th, 2019.

  • Woensdag 19/6/2019

    This is a report of the conference on ‘Quantitative Easing’, organised by Het Financieel Forum West-Vlaanderen, which took place on April 2nd, 2019 in Kortrijk.

  • Woensdag 19/6/2019

    The issue of non-performing loans (NPLs) in Europe continues to be a focal point of attention for the banking system, both at national and European level. This article explores the origins and causes of the accumulation of NPLs in Europe and explains why they have been and continue to be an important challenge that needs to be tackled. The reduction of NPLs in the EU banking sector is in fact encouraging and substantial progress is being made. Nevertheless, NPLs remain a significant challenge to the profitability and viability of EU banks, and economic growth at large. Attention also needs to be drawn to the clear and important EU dimension to reducing NPLs, as well as preventing their renewed build-up in the future, given the interconnectedness of the banking system of the EU and particularly of the euro area. In this respect, there is a clear connection with the "Action Plan to Tackle Non-Performing Loans In Europe", which was endorsed by finance ministers in the ECOFIN Council in July 2017. The contribution also touches upon the link with the wider agenda of advancing risk reduction and risk sharing in the EU. Most importantly, the contribution elaborates upon the actions that the European Commission has taken to address NPLs, what their main objectives are and how they could affect the EU banking sector.

  • Dinsdag 26/3/2019
    Jean Deboutte

    The Eurosystem has spent 73.4 billion euros on Belgian Public Sector Securities between March 2015 and December 2018. It is believed that these purchases concerned mainly, if not entirely, Belgian OLOs issued by the federal government. Together with other non-standard measures taken by the ECB, this quantitative easing has exerted downward pressure on Belgian bond yields. Now that net buying of public sector securities has come to an end, it is worth looking at interest rate developments. Interest rates did not increase until now, and the federal government debt servicing costs which were for the first time lower than 2.0% of GDP in 2018, would further decline in 2019. Projections by the Belgian Debt Agency show that debt servicing costs would not materially rise, not even in the long term, when scenarios of rising rates are combined with very conservative debt management strategies.

  • Dinsdag 26/3/2019
    Jan Leroy

    Flemish local authorities are in quite good fiscal condition at the start of the new local legislature, which runs from 2019 up to 2024. Although, big financial problems arise due to the growing expenditure for their statutory staff pensions. Without support by the other (regional and federal) central governments, local authorities might be obliged to cut in investment spending. This means that they wouldn’t be able to react properly to the important social and civic challenges coming from the society.

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