Institute for Research in Economic and Fiscal issues

IREF Europe - Institute for Research in Economic and Fiscal issues

Fiscal competition
and economic freedom


Gordon Kerr, Cavin O’Driscoll with Enrico Colombatto

Articles by this author (17) :

The Brydon Report on Audit. Will Banks’ Financial Statements Become More Reliable?

The Brydon Report on Audit. Will Banks' Financial Statements Become More Reliable?Sir Donald Brydon, former Chairman of the London Stock Exchange, published just before Christmas his wide-ranging review of the UK audit industry. This is likely to have significant ramifications for bank financial reporting throughout Europe because (with only a few national opt outs) (...)

Germany Remains Firmly Opposed to Banking Union

Germany Remains Firmly Opposed to Banking UnionIn November, Germany’s Finance Minister Olaf Scholz wrote an article in the Financial Times claiming that he had devised a common European Deposit Insurance Scheme (EDIS) [1] that could be acceptable to both sides of the hitherto gridlocked debate. Mr Scholz also circulated a document which he (...)

Central Banks’ Varied Approaches to the Financial Risks of Climate Change

Central Banks' Varied Approaches to the Financial Risks of Climate ChangeAs the momentum has built behind calls for policy responses towards climate change, the ECB and the Bank of England have not been the quickest central banks to act. Back in 2011, the Banco do Brasil announced that banks must incorporate ‘Environmental and Social Risk’ in their reporting and risk (...)

FinTech Companies; little innovation and no reform of banking

FinTech Companies; little innovation and no reform of bankingNew entrants into every aspect of banking were encouraged by two recent regulatory developments: the Open Banking initiative and the ‘sandboxing’ exemptions from regulations. Open Banking, part of the Payment Services Directive enacted October 2015, encourages customers to allow their data to be (...)

Paralysis and Circularity at the ECB

Paralysis and Circularity at the ECBA cynical English expression popular in sporting circles is “All the Gear and No Idea”. This is expressed, sotto voce, at the club bar when mocking a typically well-off amateur sportsman who has shown up at the ski slope, the golf course or the clay pigeon shoot with the most expensive equipment (...)

Facebook’s Libra; will it test the new ECB chief Christine Lagarde?

Facebook's Libra; will it test the new ECB chief Christine Lagarde?Facebook’s greatest recent challenge has been the fading of its brand. A veritable slew of newer social media platforms are cooler and more trendy than Fb, which now languishes in popular esteem as the social platform of choice for the out of touch greying generations, rather than youngsters. (...)

The Authoritarian Push for Tighter and More Centralised Banking Regulations

The Authoritarian Push for Tighter and More Centralised Banking RegulationsReuters reported in May that “The European Commission is working on its biggest regulatory push on banking since the 2008 financial crash that could curb Britain’s access to the bloc”. According to Reuter’s account, the document outlines three areas which the Commission seeks to reform: bank (...)

Will Monetary Union Become Fiscal Union? The Incoming New Personnel will Influence the Timing and Required Power Shifts.

Will Monetary Union Become Fiscal Union? The Incoming New Personnel will Influence the Timing and Required Power Shifts.Personnel changes are afoot, both of Central Bankers and Politicians. ECB President Draghi will step down at the end of October when his eight-year term expires. Half the ECB Governing Board will also be replaced at the same time. Bank of England Governor Mark Carney’s term expires at the end (...)

The ECB Is Getting Out Of Kilter With The Federal Reserve

The ECB Is Getting Out Of Kilter With The Federal ReserveThe 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 (...)

More Euro Deepening – The Currency

More Euro Deepening – The CurrencyLatest 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’. (...)

The Consequences of Future ECB Policies for Banking

The Consequences of Future ECB Policies for BankingIn 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 (...)

The EU To Push For EMU Deepening After May Elections

The EU To Push For EMU Deepening After May ElectionsWith little fanfare, the Eurogroup of 19 Eurozone finance ministries published in December its report detailing progress on how to strengthen and deepen the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). Written in dry bureaucratic language, the Report Summary hardly appeared on the radar screens of (...)

The Effectiveness of MIFID II After 11 Months

The Effectiveness of MIFID II After 11 MonthsBackground to MIFID, MIFIR and EMIR
Version 2 of the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MIFID II) is a particularly important piece of recent European Law due to the extent and scale of its impacts on professionals operating in capital markets. MIFID II was enacted in 2014, and the (...)

The Stand-off Between Italy and the EU is a Serious Threat to the Euro

The Stand-off Between Italy and the EU is a Serious Threat to the EuroWhy all the fuss?
The nub of the dispute is Italy’s budget plans, which have been rejected by the European Commission (EC). The budget claims to increase public indebtedness by 2.4% in 2019 rather than the previously approved figure of 1.6%. However, the EC is unhappy about the violation of (...)

Central Banks in Europe Are About to Regulate Crypto-Assets.

Central Banks in Europe Are About to Regulate Crypto-Assets.In September, the UK cross party Parliamentary Committee dealing with bank regulation and central banking published its analysis of the opportunities and risks posed by ‘crypto-assets’, such as Bitcoin, Ether, as well as any other coin issued via an Initial Coin Offering.
The report makes stark (...)

Will The ECB Step In and Help Turkey Stabilise Its Currency?

Will The ECB Step In and Help Turkey Stabilise Its Currency?Why is Turkey’s Currency Falling?
During the past five years, we have observed the ebbs and flows of US and European capital markets investment appetite for the emerging markets (EM). Nothing deters EM investment more than currency fears, and many European fund managers must be pleased that (...)

The BIS Takes Aim At Cryptocurrencies:
Do They Understand The Economics Of Cool?

The BIS Takes Aim At Cryptocurrencies:To help understand the genuinely transformative business technology of blockchain in the context of cryptocurrency hype, Wharton professor David Werbach encourages the distinction to be drawn between three frequently confused concepts:
1. Cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, which are simply (...)

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