Europe's nations and regions

UK growth: A new survey of macroeconomists

Angus Armstrong, Francesco Caselli, Jagjit Chadha, Wouter den Haan, 14 April 2014

Fears that the financial crisis will have a significant negative impact on long-term UK economic growth are unfounded, according to a majority of the UK macroeconomics profession surveyed by the Centre for Macroeconomics (CFM). What’s more, the inaugural CFM survey, summarised in this column, indicates some optimism about the UK’s immediate capacity for higher growth: while roughly half of the respondents share the views of the Office of Budget Responsibility, the other half is substantially more optimistic about the capacity for the economy to recover.

The increasing competitiveness of the southern Eurozone

Raphael Auer, 11 April 2014

Some view the improvements in current accounts for Greece, Italy, Portugal, and Spain as short-lived – the result of a temporary compression of import demand that is likely to be reversed as the recession eases. This column argues the contrary, based on the fact that their improving trade balances reflect better export performance. This development points toward a fundamental stabilisation of the competitiveness of these economies.

Delivering the Eurozone ‘Consistent Trinity’

Marco Buti, Maria Demertzis, João Nogueira Martins, 30 March 2014

Although progress has been made on resolving the Eurozone crisis – vulnerable countries have reduced their current-account deficits and implemented some reforms – more still needs to be done. This column argues for a ‘consistent trinity’ of policies: structural reforms within countries, more symmetric macroeconomic adjustment across countries, and a banking union for the Eurozone.

Six fiscal reforms for the UK’s ‘lost generation’

John Muellbauer, 25 March 2014

The generation born in the UK after 1979 has suffered grave disadvantages. By the early 2000s, housing had become very expensive relative to income; since 2007, labour market conditions for new entrants have been poor. University fees have increased, and soaring public debt will in future have to be serviced by this self-same generation. Restorative justice is one of the aims of the six fiscal reforms proposed in this column.

What is at stake in Crimea?

Yuriy Gorodnichenko, Gérard Roland, 10 March 2014

The speed at which events in Ukraine are unfolding is astounding. This column argues that the real goal of Russian President Putin is to make the February 2014 changes look like a failure. Root causes of the Ukrainian protest also exist in Russia and a victory of reform forces in Kiev could encourage stronger protest movement in Russia than that of 2011-2013 and potentially lead to a similar outcome.

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