Publications

Analytical Articles

The Analytical Articles present various subjects relating to the economy and finances of Spain, the euro area and the international environment. They seek to bring the papers and analyses of the Banco de España to the attention of a broad public audience interested in current economic and financial affairs.

Since January 2017, the Analytical Articles have been disseminated ahead of the publication of the related quarterly Economic Bulletin and are listed by release date or by subject.

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

  • 05/12/2017
    Migratory pressures in the long run: international migration projections to 2050 (731 KB) Rodolfo Campos

    This article presents bilateral international migration projections to 2050 based on a new methodology that takes into account the population growth both in countries of origin and countries of destination. To do this, the methodology used by Hanson and McIntosh (2016) to project the future migratory flows to a sample of OECD countries is generalised to all countries worldwide. The United Nations population growth forecasts are used as a basis for projecting future migratory flows. The main findings of the exercise indicate that the number of migrants is projected to increase from 2.8% of the world population in 2010 to around 3.5% in 2050, as a result of the strong increase in migrants from India and sub-Saharan Africa. Against this background, and despite the slowdown in demographic growth in Latin America, the United States is expected to continue to receive high net immigration flows and to remain the country with the highest stock of immigrants globally, while continental Europe will post larger net immigration flows.

  • 30/11/2017
    Results of non-financial corporations in 2016 and in the first three quarters of 2017 (705 KB) Álvaro Menéndez y Maristela Mulino

    According to the CBA and CBQ surveys, non-financial corporations as a whole continued to create employment in 2016 and in the first nine months of 2017, as did most sectors and most of the firms individually. As regards business activity, the main surpluses grew significantly in 2016, resulting in an increase in aggregate ordinary net profit. The favourable behaviour of extraordinary costs and revenues also contributed to the increase in net profit. By contrast, in the first three quarters of 2017, gross value added and ordinary net profit continued to grow, but at more moderate rates than in the previous year, owing to the adverse effects of the behaviour of some large firms with a high weight in the quarterly sample, which led to a slight decrease in aggregate profitability. Also, during the first nine months of this year, non-recurring items had a negative impact, leading to a sharp contraction in net profit. Lastly, average debt ratios continued to decline in 2016, while in the first three quarters of 2017 they rose slightly. Driven by the lower cost of borrowing, the debt burden declined in both periods. The article includes two boxes, the first of which analyses the performance of SMEs relative to larger firms in 2016, and the second the results and financial position of Spanish consolidated groups in 2016.

  • 23/11/2017
    Contingent convertible bonds and subordinated debt of euro area credit institutions (674 KB) Ignacio Fuentes and Juan Carlos Casado

    The progressive entry into force of the new bank capital accord, known as Basel III, and the approval of the new regulations on the recovery and resolution of credit institutions in the European Union are increasing the need for credit institutions to have a sufficient capital buffer to absorb potential losses. In order to meet these legal requirements, European banks have, in recent years, issued contingent convertible bonds and subordinated debt. This article analyses the main characteristics of these hybrid instruments. It first presents the information available on the volumes and the numbers of issues and issuing institutions, and then analyses issuance costs and market prices of outstanding issues, paying particular attention to Spanish institutions’ issues.

  • 16/11/2017
    An assessment of the effectiveness of rebates for keeping the over-60s in employment (472 KB) Mario Izquierdo Peinado and Sergio Puente Díaz

    Traditionally, employment policies in Spain have rested to a greater extent than in other countries on the application of rebates to the Social Security contributions of specific groups.
    The international empirical evidence on the effectiveness of this type of programme tends to
    show that, in general, these programmes involve a high budgetary cost, with limited although
    positive effects on the groups concerned, without affecting the aggregate level of employment. With the aim of providing additional evidence on this matter, this article summarises the results of an exercise assessing a specific Social Security contribution rebates programme in force from 2006 to 2012 for the group of workers over 60. Specifically, using data from the Spanish MCVL (Social Security administrative labour records), the effect that the elimination of this rebates programme had on the probability of these workers losing their job is estimated. The results show that the elimination of the incentives gave rise to a positive and significant although limited impact on the probability of this group losing their job, which was concentrated among the low-skilled, with relatively few years of service in the firm and with lower severance costs. Overall, the evidence would indicate that the programme produced scant benefits in terms of a higher rate of employment retention for the group of workers concerned. These findings are confined to this specific programme and, therefore, they are not extensible to the range of employment rebates for different groups that have been in force in the past in Spain or are so are present, although they highlight the need for a detailed assessment of active employment policies providing for an analysis of their effectiveness.

  • 31/10/2017
    Human capital formation in the labour market (568 KB) Juan Jimeno, Aitor Lacuesta, Marta Martínez and Ernesto Villanueva

    The data from the OECD’s Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competences (PIAAC) allow comparable measures of several aspects of human capital in 13 developed economies to be obtained. Drawing on these data, this article shows that work experience improves the numeracy and literacy skills of low-educated workers, a result that is observed in economies with different labour market institutions, educational systems and workforce compositions. The analyses performed suggest that on-the-job learning contributes considerably to the human capital of less educated individuals, which may help steer the formulation of active employment policies.

  • 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.

  • 20/10/2017
    Report on the Latin American economy. Second half of 2017. (1 MB)

    Latin America is now participating in the cyclical improvement in global activity. The weighted average growth rate of GDP in the region’s six main economies stood fairly close to estimated potential growth. Moreover, the results across the countries show a degree of convergence. Broadly, there has been a significant reduction in inflation rates which has enabled central banks – with the odd exception, such as Argentina and Mexico – to cut policy rates. To offer a deeper assessment of the monetary policy stance in the main economies with an inflation target, the Report includes a thematic section in which a Taylor rule is constructed on the basis of estimated natural interest rates. Furthermore, the Latin American economies have continued to adjust their external balances to a new scenario of low commodities prices, but fiscal adjustment has not progressed to the same extent. Nonetheless, the region’s financial markets have performed very favourably and currencies have tended to appreciate.
    The higher-frequency indicators show that the dynamism of activity has run into the second half of the year. Nonetheless, the continuity of the recovery in the region is subject to certain downside risks. Chief among these in the external environment is the possible tightening of financial conditions on international markets. Risks persist too in the case of possible changes in tack in US policies, principally towards greater trade protectionism in the context of the negotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, to which Mexico is a signatory. In this respect, the second thematic section of this report analyses the factors behind the recent strength of private consumption in Mexico, against a relatively unfavourable background. On the internal front in the region, where there is a very busy electoral calendar until late 2018, the risks appear to be more balanced. In the medium term, the countries in the region remain subject to modest growth prospects.

  • 10/10/2017
    A short-term forecasting model for GDP and its demand components (648 KB) Ana Arencibia Pareja, Ana Gómez Loscos, Mercedes de Luis López and Gabriel Pérez Quirós

    This article summarises the key aspects of the extended and revised version of Spain-STING (Spain, Short-Term INdicator of Growth), which is a tool used by the Banco de España for short-term forecasting of the Spanish economy’s GDP and its demand components. Drawing on a broad set of indicators, several models are estimated that enable GDP, private consumption, public expenditure, investment in capital goods, construction investment, exports and imports to be forecast. The assessment of the new model’s predictive power for the period spanning June 2005-September 2016 shows a slight improvement on the previous version of Spain-STING.

  • 05/10/2017
    China’s economic imbalances and the role of the financial sector (547 KB) Jacopo Timini

    China’s economic success in recent decades has been associated with a distinctive, highly investment dependent, pattern of growth, which has led to a high level of non-financial private sector debt. The Chinese authorities, recognising that this model has reached its limits, have made “rebalancing” the pattern of growth one of their key economic policy objectives. One feature of this rebalancing is that of promoting an orderly deleveraging process to avoid a sharp adjustment of the economy. In this context, this article discusses the challenges being faced by the Chinese authorities as they seek to reduce non-financial sector debt levels and mitigate the risks associated with the excessive growth of the financial system, and of the shadow banking sector in particular.

     

  • 21/09/2017
    Results of non-financial corporations for 2017 Q1-Q2 (722 KB) Luis Ángel Maza, Álvaro Menéndez and Maristela Mulino

    According to the data from the Banco de España’s Central Balance Sheet Data Office, employment continued to grow in non-financial firms in 2017 H1, at rates exceeding those of the previous year. The gross value added generated by these firms declined somewhat in the same period, highly conditioned by the unfavourable performance of a number of large firms which account for a substantial share of the sample. However, the favourable progress of financial costs and revenue led to a slight increase in ordinary profits, but this was not sufficient to prevent a moderate fall in the aggregate return ratios, although median returns increased in the period. Extraordinary costs and revenue also had a negative impact, as a result of which net profit contracted with respect to the level reached in the same period the preceding the year. Lastly, the variations in the financial position ratios of firms were negligible. This article describes these developments and also analyses, in a separate section, the strong growth of intra-group financing in large Spanish corporate groups since 2005, in a setting in which the organisational structure of these conglomerates has become increasingly complex.

     

  • 19/09/2017
    Regional convergence in Spain: 1980‑2015 (561 KB) Sergio Puente

    This article aims to analyse the process of per capita income convergence between the different Spanish regions and the factors that may have played a role in this process over the last three decades. The main conclusion is that the distance between the per capita income of the different regions has narrowed, albeit slightly. As regards the factors underlying this process, the convergence of labour productivity is the main element that has helped to reduce regional income dispersion, mainly due to a greater accumulation of capital in regions where income was initially lower. Conversely, neither the labour market variables (employment, unemployment) nor total factor productivity have contributed significantly to the reduction of regional differences during the course of the period analysed.

  • 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.

  • 05/09/2017
    The EU’s new-generation trade agreements: the CETA treaty (399 KB) M.ª Jesús González, Esther Gordo and Marta Manrique

    Against an international background of low tariff barriers, the EU’s trade policy has shifted towards attaining bilateral trade agreements that promote the reduction both of non-tariff barriers and of those regulatory barriers that restrict the movement of goods, services, individuals and investment flows, in addition to including provisions relating to the environment, labour markets and intellectual property rights. An example of these “new-generation” agreements is the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) recently negotiated by the EU and Canada, which is in the process of being ratified by the national parliaments.The article describes the general characteristics of new-generation trade agreements, the difficulties posed by their regulatory and wide-ranging nature, and how the CETA has attempted to respond to some of the issues that have proven most controversial for public opinion. The significance of this agreement pertains not only to the economic impact it will have on the European and Canadian economies, but also to how it could act as a model for other agreements with developed countries, including that which the EU and the United Kingdom have to negotiate.

  • 01/08/2017
    The oil market: recent developments and outlook (572 KB) Daniel Santabárbara

    The past three years have seen a radical change in the structure of the oil market, as a result of the deep-seated transformation the US oil industry has undergone and of OPEC’s strategic
    reaction. This has translated into a substantial reduction in the price of oil. Specifically, this article analyses three key factors behind oil market developments in the past two years: the resilience of US shale oil production, the new turn in OPEC’S strategy to cut output and the slowdown in demand. Further, the medium and long-term outlook for this market is discussed, with the conclusion drawn that a marked rise in prices owing to the foreseeable course of supply and demand is not expected. While some fall-off in supply is contemplated owing to the decline in investment, demand, too, will be contained by greater efficiency in the use of oil-derived fuels and social awareness about their negative externalities.

  • 25/07/2017
    Private-sector economic developments in the euro area in 2016 (719 KB) Ana del Río and José Antonio Cuenca

    This article describes the economic situation of the non-financial private sector in the euro area during 2016, on the basis of sectoral accounts. In the case of households, employment creation and low inflation provided for an increase in purchasing power which, along with the rise in wealth, was reflected in the strength of consumption, against a background in which the increase in nominal wages continue to be modest. The pace of economic recovery enabled firms to improve their profits and investment, although the investment drive was still moderate, while the sector continued to evidence a net lending capacity. The greater dynamism of lending both for households and firms was compatible with further increases in the ongoing correction of indebtedness, though such increases were uneven from one country to another. In the case of large corporations, the shift in the liabilities mix towards financing based on fixed-income securities continued, driven in 2016 by the Eurosystem’s monetary policy measures.

  • 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.

  • 11/07/2017
    Spain in the global value chains (569 KB) Elvira Prades and Paloma Villanueva

    In the past 15 years there has been an expansion in world trade accompanied by a growing international fragmentation of production, which has given rise to the so-called “global value chains” (GVCs). This new way of organising production at the international level means that countries specialise increasingly in small contributions to the final product and that companies are increasingly global.
    The Spanish economy has also played a part in these developments, although its participation in GVCs is still below the international average. However, from the onset of the crisis up to 2014, the import content of Spanish exports increased, partly as a result of a reallocation of resources towards firms with a greater import content that have gained weight in total exports.
    Moreover, Spain is characterised by the fact that it is one of the countries where exports are closer to the final consumer in the country of destination, a phenomenon that has increased in recent years.

  • 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.

  • 22/06/2017
    Results of non-financial corporations in 2017 Q1 (749 KB) Álvaro Menéndez and Maristela Mulino

    The productive activity of the overall sample of firms reporting to the Central Balance Sheet Data Office Quarterly Survey saw a moderate expansion in 2017 Q1, similar to that recorded a year earlier. This recovery was greatly affected by the poor performance of some larger firms, which account for a large share of the sample, thus dampening the expansionary trend observed in most firms. Employment also continued to grow in the majority of firms. The notable increase in ordinary profits was driven by the favourable progress of financial costs and revenues, leading to a further increase in aggregate levels of ordinary profitability.
    However, extraordinary costs and revenues had a negative impact in this quarter, as a result of which net profit contracted with respect to the level reached in the same period the preceding year. The box included at the end of this article shows that the improved profitability of recent years can be observed across all the percentiles of the distribution, although it was higher in those reflecting the situation of less profitable firms, and therefore the dispersion of this variable in the sample has gradually been reduced. In addition, in 2017 Q1 these values had already returned to the levels achieved before the crisis.

  • 20/06/2017
    The recovery of private consumption in Spain by product type and household (644 KB) Marta Martínez Matute and Alberto Urtasun

    This article describes the behaviour of household spending during the period 2005-2015 based on information from the Household Expenditure Survey. The recent recovery in consumption was broad-based, but breaking down the data in terms of households’ characteristics, the recovery was stronger in those in which the main breadwinner was in work than in those in which he or she was not. By product type, spending on consumer durables, which had shrunk most during the crisis, grew strongest over the two-year period from 2014 to 2015. Despite the strong upturn in consumption in the most recent years of the period considered, in general, median levels of expenditure per household have not yet recovered pre-crisis levels.

  • 25/05/2017
    Federal unemployment insurance in the United States (592 KB) Silvia Albrizio, Juan Carlos Berganza and Iván Kataryniuk

    Unemployment insurance in the United States is one of the fiscal risk-sharing mechanisms designed to mitigate the negative consequences of economic shocks. The system is based on complementary federal and state benefits, which behave very differently during normal and crisis periods. Thus, unemployment insurance is principally a state competence during normal periods, while the federal government assumes an active role in crisis periods, smoothing the negative impact of economic crises on household consumption and mitigating the heterogeneous effects across states.
    This is an element that distinguishes the United States from the European Monetary Union, which lacks automatic fiscal stabilising tools for the area as a whole; consequently the costs arising from shocks have to be assumed by each country individually, which makes it difficult for the area to function homogeneously.

  • 18/05/2017
    Economic and financial performance of Spanish non-financial corporations during the economic crisis and the first years of recovery. A comparative analysis with the euro area (670 KB) Álvaro Menéndez, Anna Gorris and Daniel Dejuán

    This article reports evidence based on firm-level information of the marked deterioration in the economic and financial situation of Spanish companies between 2008 and 2012, which was comparatively sharper in SMEs and in certain sectors such as construction and real estate, and higher than that in other euro area economies.
    However, from 2013 this trend began to reverse and the recovery in activity, stronger on average than in other euro area economies, and the subsequent performance of Spanish firms allowed the previous differences with respect to other euro area countries to diminish.

  • 11/05/2017
    The effect of oil price fluctuations on Spanish inflation (869 KB) Luis Julián Álvarez, Isabel Sánchez and Alberto Urtasun

    This article analyses the impact of changes in oil prices on the consumer price index (CPI) in the Spanish economy from a historical perspective. The evidence provided reveals a substantial degree of pass-through of these changes to CPI components tied to heating and vehicle fuel (direct effect). However, the estimated effect of changes in crude prices on firms’ input costs (indirect effects) and on inflation or wage expectations (second-round effects) is, on average, moderate.
    Consequently, in the current situation, in the absence of fresh shocks in the expected path of oil prices, the rise in the CPI in early 2017 – linked to base effects prompted by the low price of this commodity for most of 2016 – can be expected to be essentially temporary and, therefore, consistent with a downward trajectory in inflation in the coming months.

  • 27/04/2017
    The Balance of Payments and International Investment Position of Spain in 2016 (724 KB) Noelia Jiménez and César Martín

    According to the balance of payments (BoP) statistics, in 2016 the Spanish economy once again became a net lender. The increase in the current account balance mainly reflected the decline in the trade deficit, driven by the decrease in the energy bill and the increase in the services balance surplus.
    The Spanish economy’s net debtor international investment position (IIP), in GDP terms, decreased in 2016 for the second consecutive year, since the nation’s net lending and the growth of GDP counteracted the slight negative impact of valuation effects and other adjustments on this indicator.

  • 20/04/2017
    Report on the Latin American economy. First half of 2017 (1 MB)

    The Latin American economies face a highly complex outlook as a result of various factors, such as the fragility of the recovery in the advanced economies in the wake of the crisis, the tensions in re-balancing the Chinese economy and doubts over the extent of the pickup in commodities prices. And adding to these has been the change of US Administration, with potential global implications owing to the expected change in the US economic policy stance.
    Nonetheless, National Accounts data have shown a muted improvement in the region as a whole in the second half of 2016, assisted by the firmness of financial markets, the easing in monetary policies – against a backdrop of falling inflation – and the turnaround in commodities prices. The higher-frequency indicators point to a continuation of this improvement in the opening months of 2017. For 2017 as a whole, a moderate pick-up in growth across the region is expected, but one that is notably uneven from country to country, and with the balance of risks to growth remaining tilted to the downside.

  • 06/04/2017
    The cost of interventions in the financial sector since 2008 in the EU countries (526 KB) Antonio Millaruelo and Ana del Río

    Since the start of the financial crisis, the advanced countries have deployed numerous measures in support of the financial system, requiring a sizeable volume of public funds. In the EU, aid has been authorised and subject to the conditionality required by the European Commission, in respect of its accountability for competition-related matters.
    This article explains the broad criteria for recording aid in general government accounts and discusses the different ways of measuring its direct cost. On Eurostat figures for the 2008-2015 period, the impact of interventions on general government accounts in terms of debt, debt net of assets, deficits and contingent liabilities are shown for the EU countries.
    Nevertheless, the final cost will not be fully identified until the restructuring processes outstanding have been concluded and the public sector’s remaining exposure to the banking sector has been removed.

  • 22/03/2017
    Results of non-financial corporations: summary 2016 year-end data (697 KB) Álvaro Menéndez and Maristela Mulino

    Most sectors and companies in the Central Balance Sheet Data Office Quarterly Survey saw an expansion in productive activity and employment in 2016. Buoyant activity, coupled with favourable trends in financial costs and revenues, enabled companies’ ordinary profits to grow rapidly. This meant a further increase in aggregate levels of ordinary profits.
    Lastly, companies’ financial position continued to strengthen, translating into a drop in indebtedness and debt burden ratios.

  • 16/03/2017
    Situation of and outlook for the world economy at the start of 2017 (1 MB)

    Global growth in 2016 disappointed analysts once again. Moreover, three far-reaching events
    occurred which, nevertheless, did not have an immediate major impact. At the start of the year, the Chinese financial markets experienced turbulence relating to the challenges the Chinese authorities face in implementing their structural reform programme. In June, the United Kingdom voted in favour of leaving the European Union, which means the loss of an influential partner in the process of European construction.
    Lastly, in November, the Republican candidate Donald Trump won the US presidential elections. This might entail a change in macroeconomic policies and check the process of globalisation. These events reveal a global economic setting shrouded in great uncertainty for the future.

  • 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.

  • 23/02/2017
    Global funding trends in capital markets in 2016 (943 KB) Alberto Fuertes, José Manuel Marqués and Luis Molina

    Bond issuance increased moderately in the developed markets in 2016, partly due to the ongoing fiscal consolidation in the main economies. Placements by companies with better credit quality and by the banking sector were notably buoyant. Across countries, however, there were significant differences, both in terms of the conditions of supply of bonds by issuers (the cyclical position of each economy, the need for deleveraging by businesses and the public sector, and the regulatory requirements in the financial sector) and in terms of the factors affecting the demand of investors (risk appetite, the search for yield in a context of negative interest rates and the role of central banks in bond purchases). With regard to the emerging economies, they continued to have access to the markets.
    However, the volatility observed in foreign exchange markets led to a certain preference for foreign-currency issuance, especially in US dollars.

  • 16/02/2017
    Services regulation, input prices and exports (575 KB) Mónica Correa-López

    This article analyses the economic implications of a change in the regulatory framework designed to promote competition among firms, assessing the impact that barriers to competition in the services industry have on the cost of inputs and the exports of manufacturing firms in Spain.
    The estimates presented reveal that the reductions in barriers to competition over recent decades have had a significant impact on the real exports of manufacturing firms, especially larger ones, as a result of greater competition in the supply of their inputs.
    The results underline the fact that further improvements in the degree of competition may influence the competitiveness of the Spanish economy as a whole.

  • 09/02/2017
    Towards efficient capital flow management (530 KB) Ángel Estrada, Luis Molina, Paula Sánchez and Francesca Viani

    Financial globalisation has advanced notably in recent decades. In principle, greater integration should raise the degree of economic efficiency. However, the empirical evidence suggests that, for this to occur, countries should have well-designed economic institutions and sufficiently developed local financial markets. Moreover, these flows may jeopardise financial stability in certain circumstances, whereby the economic authorities need to draw on criteria and instruments to withstand such situations. These tools should be used as part of a broader programme of measures that includes the macro and microeconomic adjustments required. Furthermore, international cooperation emerges as a necessary complement to globalisation.

  • 02/02/2017
    Macroeconomic uncertainty: measurement and impact on the Spanish economy (982 KB) María Gil, Javier J. Pérez and Alberto Urtasun

    This article characterises the level of uncertainty in the Spanish economy. Various indicators are analysed, distinguishing their source: financial market volatility, degree of disagreement between agents on the economic situation and economic policy uncertainty. Aggregate uncertainty in the Spanish economy increased in 2016, although it remained at levels below the average for the 2008-2013 recession. The changes in uncertainty captured by financial indicators are shown to have a higher impact on economic activity, and particularly on investment. Finally, it is illustrated how a significant part of the macroeconomic effect of the heightened uncertainty in the past year originated outside the Spanish economy.

  • 24/01/2017
    Survey of Household Finances (EFF) 2014: methods, results and changes since 2011 (1 MB)

    This article presents the main results of the Survey of Household Finances 2014, which show the financial position of Spanish households at the end of 2014. It also describes the most significant changes observed in the period from end-2011 to end-2014.

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