CO2 emission limits and targets are currently all over the news. For example, the European Union is gradually strengthening the environmental standards for new vehicles, with a view to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 60% by 2050. These emission targets, however, could be reached more (...)
The ECB is under twin pressures, both of which are only likely to increase. Firstly, with interest rates stuck at minus 0.4% ECB policy is diverging from Fed policy; secondly, problems with Europe’s banking look likely to be highlighted soon by the ECB’s Supervisory Board.
A) Interest Rate (...)
Press freedom in Europe is more fragile now than at any time since the end of the Cold War». This pessimistic and rather surprising statement appears at the beginning of the 2019 Annual Report published by the Council of Europe, which is the continent’s leading human rights organisation, (...)
A merger between the German conglomerate Siemens and French rail firm Alstom was blocked by the European Commission at the beginning of February over concerns that the new European rail giant would raise costs to consumers and stifle competition in transport. Less than two weeks later, the (...)
In light of increasing income inequality and wealth inequality in many Western democracies, some social scientists believe that democracy is in jeopardy. Do the rich have a disproportionally high influence on political decisions – in contrast with the ideal of equal representation of all voters? (...)
The recent paper “20 Years of the Euro: Winners and Losers” by Gasparotti & Kullas estimates that the introduction of the euro increased the pro-capita income in Germany and the Netherlands, while it impoverished the other EMU members. Critics have poured on the statistical technique. In our (...)
Latest Political Developments
Given the media’s focus on the March 29th Brexit date, the views of present and former EU political leaders captivated recent mainstream media. Former Italian prime minister Paolo Gentiloni called Brexit ‘the biggest mistake by a European country since the war’. (...)
It is common opinion that financial cycles generate business cycles and crises, and that central banks intervene to sterilise this causal link. But there are reasons to doubt both statements.
In January, there were two interesting speeches by senior ECB figures which provided some insight as to likely future policy.
Speaking at an event in Riga to commemorate the fifth anniversary of Latvia’s adoption of the euro, ECB vice president Luis de Guindos (also a former Finance Minister (...)