Monetary policy

From this page you can access thematically grouped Analytical Articles published in the Economic Bulletin from 1999, ordered by date of dissemination within each year.

All documents are available in PDF format PDF File. Opens in a new window

  • 24/10/2017
    The October 2017 Bank Lending Survey in Spain (608 KB) Irene Roibás

    The results of the Bank Lending Survey show that during the third quarter of 2017 credit standards in the households segment eased somewhat in both Spain and the euro area, while they tightened slightly for enterprises in Spain and remained virtually unchanged for enterprises in the euro area. Demand for loans to enterprises remained stable in Spain, whereas it increased across the euro area as a whole, and household demand grew in both areas. Spanish and euro area banks alike generally perceived unchanged or improved wholesale market access conditions, while in the case of retail markets, a slight deterioration in access conditions was perceived in Spain, which was not observed across the euro area as a whole. Meanwhile, the banks in the survey replied that the ECB’s expanded asset purchase programme has generally helped improve the financial situation over the last six months, except in the case of profitability in the euro area, which has been adversely affected. They also reported that the programme is continuing to encourage an easing of lending conditions for the private non-financial sector. Spanish and euro area banks alike reported that the ECB’s negative deposit facility rate caused a reduction in net interest income in the last six months, having a moderately negative impact on interest rates and the mark-ups on loans to households and businesses, and a positive (albeit small) effect on lending volumes.

  • 14/09/2017
    The impact of unconventional monetary policy on euro area public finances (700 KB) Pablo Burriel, Francisco Martí and Javier J. Pérez

    Unconventional monetary policy measures implemented by the European Central Bank in recent years have helped to reduce interest rates on sovereign debt in the euro area as a whole. In addition to the direct impact on debt servicing payments, monetary policy conduct in the most recent period has had positive macroeconomic effects which have indirectly impacted the cyclical revenue and expenditure items in the government budget. This article approximately quantifies both direct and indirect effects for the main countries in the euro area.

  • 21/07/2017
    Inflation expectation indicators based on financial instrument prices (1 MB) Alberto Fuertes and Ricardo Gimeno

    This article shows how indicators of agents’ inflation expectations can be derived from the prices of various financial instruments and presents the estimates obtained for the euro area and the United States. The results show that these metrics have reacted to economic and monetary decisions made in recent years, and that, on average, expected inflation is lower and less volatile in the euro area than in the United States.
    Moreover, since end-2016 there has been a marked rise in the probability of observing longterm inflation rates above 2% in the United States, coinciding with the likely change in the country’s economic policy stance. Changes in the indicators for the euro area have been less pronounced over this period, although a marked drop in the probability of low or negative inflation rates has been observed.

  • 18/07/2017
    The July 2017 Bank Lending Survey in Spain (629 KB) Álvaro Menéndez Pujadas

    The results of the Bank Lending Survey show that during 2017 Q2 credit standards for new loans in Spain held stable in all segments, while in the euro area they eased slightly both in loans to enterprises and in loans to households for house purchase, holding virtually unchanged in consumer credit and other lending to households. Enterprises’ demand for credit held stable in Spain and increased in the euro area as a whole, while household demand grew in both areas and in both segments. Spanish and euro area banks alike generally perceived unchanged or improved wholesale market access conditions, while in the case of retail markets in Spain, Spanish banks perceived a slight deterioration in access conditions which was not observed for the euro area as a whole. Regulatory and supervisory actions were conducive, in both areas, to some increase in banks’ total assets and in their capital levels. Finally, targeted longer-term refinancing operations (TLTROs) appear to have contributed, both in Spain and in the euro area, to an improvement in banks’ financial situation, to some easing in credit standards and to a softening of the conditions applied.

  • 04/07/2017
    Spanish deposit-taking institutions’ net interest income and low interest rates (572 KB) Jorge Martínez Pagés

    This article reviews how Spanish deposit-taking institutions’ net interest income has evolved in recent years and explores the main underlying factors, which include the low levels of interest rates. For this purpose, three alternative breakdowns of net interest income are considered. The first shows how the volume of credit and the non-performing loan ratio have been as –or more– significant than net income per unit of assets in explaining the performance of net interest income since the start of the crisis. The second shows the historical importance for Spanish institutions of implicit income from payment services and its loss of significance in the current context of negative short-term market rates. The third illustrates how, since the onset of the crisis, there has been a rise in the yield spread between new lending and interbank rates, which may be partly due to the way in which institutions are responding to low interest rates.

  • 02/03/2017
    The natural interest rate: concept, determinants and implications for monetary policy (459 KB) Alessandro Galesi, Galo Nuño and Carlos Thomas

    This article defines the natural interest rate, analysing the concept and its role in monetary policy conduct. Estimates of the natural interest rate place it at historically low and even negative levels. Demographics and growth, but also the recent financial crisis with weak aggregate demand, deleveraging, etc., are identified as factors related to this decline. Lastly, the article highlights the difficulties that a natural rate of this type may pose to central banks in achieving their objectives, and it discusses potential monetary policy-related solutions, such as QE and changes in the monetary policy objective.

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