Euro Area Policies 2014 Article Iv Consultation Staff Report Press Release And Statement By The Executive Director

Author: International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Publisher: International Monetary Fund
ISBN: 1498381251
Size: 40.37 MB
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This 2014 Article IV Consultation highlights that the euro area recovery is taking hold. Real output has expanded for four consecutive quarters, and financial market sentiment has improved markedly. Complementary policy actions have supported demand, boosted investor confidence, and eased financial conditions. At the national level, governments have made further progress repairing sovereign and bank balance sheets and implementing structure reforms to restore competitiveness. At the area-wide level, the ECB has taken a wider range of measures to support demand and address fragmentation. Over the medium term, there is a risk of stagnation, which could result from persistently depressed domestic demand owing to deleveraging, insufficient policy action, and stalled structural reforms.

Euro Area Policies

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"Real output has expanded for four consecutive quarters, and financial market sentiment has improved markedly. But the recovery is weak and uneven. Inflation has been too low for too long, financial markets are still fragmented, and structural gaps persist: these hinder rebalancing and substantial reductions in debt and unemployment. Policies. The economic expansion is grounded in complementary policy actions at both the national and euro area levels, but more is needed to strengthen the recovery: Supporting Demand. Recent ECB actions - including a rate cut, negative deposit rates and policy support for new bank lending to companies - should help address low inflation and financial fragmentation. But if inflation remains too low the ECB should consider a substantial balance sheet expansion, including through asset purchases. The broadly neutral overall fiscal stance is appropriate but any negative growth surprises should not trigger additional consolidation efforts as this would be self-defeating. Mending balance sheets and completing the banking union. Successfully executing the ongoing asset quality review and stress tests should spur balance sheet repair and help reverse fragmentation. Agreement on a single resolution mechanism and bail-in rules comprise important milestones towards banking union, but a common fiscal backstop is still needed. Advancing structural reforms. Alternative sources of funding through securitization, especially to credit-constrained SME's, should be promoted. A comprehensive strategy, which boosts demand and removes country-specific structural impediments, is needed to tackle high youth unemployment. Competitiveness-enhancing reforms in debtor countries and higher public investment in creditor countries would promote needed rebalancing"--Abstract.

Spain 2014 Article Iv Consultation Staff Report Staff Supplement Press Release And Statement By The Executive Director For Spain

Author: International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Publisher: International Monetary Fund
ISBN: 1498383955
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This 2014 Article IV Consultation highlights that economic growth in Spain has resumed, and unemployment is falling. Exporters are gaining market share, and the current account is in surplus for the first time in decades. Financial conditions have improved sharply, with sovereign yields at record lows. Business investment is rebounding strongly and private consumption has also started to recover owing to improved employment prospects and rising confidence. Executive Directors have welcomed the improving Spanish economy. They have stressed that labor market reform should be accompanied by product and service market liberalization to maximize the gains to growth and jobs.

Czech Republic 2014 Article Iv Consultation Staff Report Press Release And Statement By The Executive Director For The Czech Republic

Author: International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Publisher: International Monetary Fund
ISBN: 1498333125
Size: 27.29 MB
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Growth is gaining momentum, led by strong external demand while domestic demand is also picking up. The central bank’s foreign exchange intervention policy has helped stem deflationary pressures but inflation is still well below target. Following substantial fiscal adjustment over the past three years, an easing of the fiscal stance is underway and the new government’s medium-term fiscal plans have not yet been fully elaborated. The financial system is sound and resilient to shocks, and improvements in the regulatory and supervisory architecture are ongoing. The challenge for the authorities is to create the conditions for strong and sustainable growth while maintaining macroeconomic stability.

France 2014 Article Iv Consultation Staff Report Press Release And Statement By The Executive Director For France

Author: International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Publisher: International Monetary Fund
ISBN: 1498324169
Size: 15.33 MB
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This 2014 Article IV Consultation highlights that the economy of France fared better than most other large euro areas economies through the crisis, reflecting the resilience of private consumption, lack of financial fragmentation, and lower levels of household and corporate debt. Banks’ financial position has also been strengthened. But after two years of near stagnation, unemployment remains high. A loss of competitiveness has also weighed on growth. The outlook is for a gradual recovery, with GDP growth projected at 0.7 percent in 2014 and 1.4 percent in 2015, based on stronger external and domestic private demand, reflecting gains in real disposable income and improved profit margins.

Sweden 2014 Article Iv Consultation Staff Report Press Release And Statement By The Executive Director For Sweden

Author: International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Publisher: International Monetary Fund
ISBN: 1498349838
Size: 63.54 MB
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Sweden’s economy has re-gained speed, following supportive macroeconomic policies and strong household demand. Employment has been rising, but the labor force expanded even more, resulting in higher unemployment mostly among vulnerable groups. Inflation remains very low, driven by external and domestic factors. At the same time, financial stability risks are an increasing concern, reflecting high and rising household debt, accelerating house prices, and Sweden’s very large banking system.

Malta 2014 Article Iv Consultation Staff Report Press Release And Statement By The Executive Director For Malta

Author: International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Publisher: International Monetary Fund
ISBN: 149839583X
Size: 31.12 MB
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This 2014 Article IV Consultation highlights that Malta’s economy continues to weather the global crisis well. Real GDP growth has been one of the highest in the euro area since the beginning of the crisis, supported by relatively diversified exports, a recent recovery in domestic demand, and a stable banking sector. Unemployment is close to historical lows and among the lowest in the euro area. The external position is strong, and progress has been achieved in reducing the budget deficit. The macroeconomic outlook is favorable. Growth is expected to remain robust in 2015–16, supported by domestic demand. Inflation is projected to remain subdued. The current account surplus will likely persist.

Republic Of Poland 2014 Article Iv Consultation Staff Report Press Release And Statement By The Executive Director For The Republic Of Poland

Author: International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Publisher: International Monetary Fund
ISBN: 1498340490
Size: 35.35 MB
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This 2014 Article IV Consultation highlights that Poland’s economy is steadily recovering from the 2012–2013 slowdown on the back of Poland’s very strong fundamentals and policies. Real GDP growth moderated to 1.6 percent in 2013 as the slowdown in core euro area countries had knock-on effects on consumer and investor confidence. However, a steady recovery is now under way. The outlook is for a continuing recovery, but external risks remain firmly on the downside. Growth is expected to reach 3.3 percent in 2014 but strong trade and financial linkages with core euro area countries make it vulnerable to growth shocks.

Cyprus 2014 Article Iv Consultation Staff Report Press Release And Statement By The Executive Director For Cyprus

Author: International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Publisher: International Monetary Fund
ISBN: 1498306535
Size: 17.16 MB
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KEY ISSUES Background: The large imbalances that accumulated prior to the global financial crisis culminated in a collapse of the banking sector in early 2013. In response, the authorities took unprecedented measures and adopted an economic adjustment program, supported by official financing, aimed at securing financial stability and fiscal sustainability. Recent developments and outlook: GDP contracted sharply in 2013. Wages and prices also declined, and unemployment increased. While bank deposit outflows have slowed, non-performing loans have risen sharply, and credit remains impaired. The outlook is difficult, with the recession expected to continue this year, followed by a modest recovery starting next year. Risks remain tilted to the downside. Reform agenda: The authorities need to overcome recent delays in the implementation of their adjustment program. A key priority is addressing high non-performing loans, which requires putting in place a strong private-sector debt-restructuring framework, including legislation to facilitate foreclosures, complemented by a modernized insolvency regime. Banks should continue to restructure and build strong capital buffers. Removal of external-payment restrictions must proceed prudently. Continued fiscal consolidation is required to ensure long-run sustainability, complemented by firm implementation of structural reforms.

Germany 2014 Article Iv Consultation Staff Report Press Release And Statement By The Executive Director For Germany

Author: International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
Publisher: International Monetary Fund
ISBN: 1498321852
Size: 37.63 MB
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KEY ISSUES Context: ? Germany fundamentals are sound: balance sheets are generally healthy, unemployment is at a historic low, and the fiscal position is strong. ? While a recovery is underway, medium-term growth prospects are subdued and the current account surplus remains high. The economy also faces a still weak international environment, lingering uncertainty (including about future energy costs), and fast approaching adverse demographic changes. ? Germany could do more to increase its growth, thus strengthening its role as an engine of euro area recovery. Policy recommendations: ? Germany has the fiscal space to finance an increase in needed public investment, particularly in the transport infrastructure. Unlike public consumption, this would durably raise German output and have measurable growth spillovers on the rest of the euro area. ? Further reforms in services sector regulation would boost competition and productivity. ? Greater clarity about the future energy sector regulatory framework would encourage private investment in the energy infrastructure and beyond and strengthen the outlook. ? Decisions on the future level of the minimum wage should take into account the employment effects in certain regions. ? Banks should keep strengthening their capital position ahead of the completion of the ECB’s Comprehensive Assessment. ? The macroprudential framework needs to be ready as monetary conditions are set to remain accommodative for a prolonged period.