Much has been made of Europe’s struggling banking sector since the turn of the decade. In October, for instance, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) reported that across the world, banks that were in charge of approximately $12 trillion of assets will continue to remain vulnerable, even if a global economic recovery takes hold.
Since the global financial crisis, central banks have resorted to monetary policy to pull their economies out of the abyss. But the time may have arrived for fiscal policy to share centre stage as the limitations of monetary policy become more apparent, and national decision-makers turn away from further fiscal-austerity measures toward stimulus.
If it seems as if the world has changed, it is because it has. Economic growth, for example, lags behind the levels reached before the 2007/2008 financial crisis even in developed countries. The need for governments to step in with proactive fiscal policies to kick start their economies has never been greater.
Anemic economic growth in advanced economies has led central banks to prescribe loose monetary policy that has not produced the cure. The problem may lie more on the supply than demand side; digital innovation in industrial operations if properly implemented could lead to the transformative revolution that will boost productivity and revive economic performance.
Forecasting economic risk is an attempt to quantify the unknowable in a complex, ever-changing system. Although they often fall short of future realities, macroeconomic forecasting models that include thoughtful and comprehensive analyses of risk factors will provide launching points for serious and useful economic-policy discussion and planning.
Japan boasts the world’s third-largest economy, and yet it has been stalled by deflation, low wage growth and slowing GDP. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s three-arrow Abenomics policy, introduced four years ago, was meant to counter years of economic stagnation, but despite some success, it may be time to re-evaluate the plan.
Human beings tend to believe that after hitting a bump in the road, their route will eventually go back to “normal”. But when it comes to global economic and trade growth, this assumption may lead to a complacency that ultimately allows conditions to deteriorate to levels that everyone dreads.
The European Union is exactly that, a union. This interconnectedness works well when all members are doing well, but what happens when one is not? Many investors are concerned about the health of banking in one member country in particular, Italy, and how its struggles may infect the Eurozone as a whole.
Around the turn of the year, credit-rating agencies Fitch and Moody’s both upgraded their outlooks for Ireland’s banking system. Their favourable views were largely based on the expectation of improving credit fundamentals in 2016 and 2017