Föhrenbergkreis Finanzwirtschaft

Nach den kristallklaren Aussagen des Föhrenbergkreises zur Finanzwirtschaft aus dem Jahr 1999 gibt es jetzt einen neuen Arbeitskreis zum Thema.

Archive for 13. April 2012

Germany’s economy: Modell Deutschland über alles

Geschrieben von hkarner - 13. April 2012

Date: 12-04-2012
Source: The Economist

The lessons the rest of the world should—and should not—take from Germany

MUCH of the rich world is fascinated by Germany. Despite being at the heart of sclerotic Europe, its GDP per head has risen by more than any other G7 country’s over the past decade. Unemployment in the troubled euro zone is at its highest since the single currency’s birth; in Germany it is at a record low. In most rich countries manufacturing exports have been hammered by foreign competition; in Germany they remain powerful drivers of growth. No wonder hard-pressed political leaders in France, Spain, Italy and Britain are talking wistfully of becoming more like Germany.

Germany’s recent success has both new and old roots. Only a decade ago, still struggling with the costs of unification, it was a basket-case. It has since bounced back to show that a high-wage country can succeed in top-end manufacturing, not least by holding down unit labour costs. The Germans have long since repaired their public finances—the budget deficit is barely 1% of GDP, public spending as a share of GDP is well below the European average and German bond yields are at record lows. Thanks mainly to the Agenda 2010 reforms begun by the Social Democrat-led government of Gerhard Schröder in 2003, Germany has liberalised many of its labour-market rules, one reason for today’s enviably low unemployment. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

Veröffentlicht in Artikel | Getaggt mit: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Italian politics: Jittery Italy

Geschrieben von hkarner - 13. April 2012

Date: 12-04-2012
Source: The Economist

Stockmarkets tumble, and a scandal topples a political veteran

COLD winds blew through Italy this week, and clouds obscured the unseasonably blue skies under which the country had long been basking. Politically and economically, too, the outlook has changed. On April 10th the Milan bourse’s index dived by 5%. Markets fell elsewhere in Europe, but the drop in Milan was the biggest, reflecting among other things fears that Italy’s banks, which bought more than €50 billion ($65 billion) of government bonds during the winter, are perilously exposed to renewed panic in the debt markets. The same day saw the yield spread between Italian and German benchmark bonds exceed four percentage points for the first time since January.

That is not all bad news for Mario Monti, Italy’s prime minister. Last year, fear of a crisis that could force Italy to default on its vast public debts (worth more than 120% of GDP) cemented an unlikely alliance between the three big parties, giving Mr Monti’s government a solid parliamentary majority. Of late, that alliance has needed extra glue.

The centrepiece of Mr Monti’s legislative programme is a reform of Italy’s notoriously restrictive labour laws, which help to produce a woefully low employment rate (see chart). The bill, which began its parliamentary journey this week, has been rejected outright by Italy’s biggest trade-union federation, the CGIL. That stance has put the leaders of the centre-left Democratic Party (PD) between the rock of their historic ties to organised labour and the hard place of support for the government. To ease their pain, the government said on April 4th that one of the most fiercely contested parts of the bill would be watered down: judges will retain the power to order reinstatement (and not just compensation) for workers dismissed for economic reasons. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

Veröffentlicht in Artikel | Getaggt mit: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Return of the euro crisis: After the sugar rush

Geschrieben von hkarner - 13. April 2012

Date: 12-04-2012
Source: The Economist

Spanish bond yields have risen as the effect of cheap ECB cash wears off

THE high is over. The European Central Bank’s two long-term refinancing operations (LTROs) in December and February saw commercial banks borrow over €1 trillion ($1.3 trillion) of three-year money at the ECB’s main interest rate, which it had cut to 1%. Ostensibly a scheme to keep euro-area banks afloat, the LTROs also boosted flagging public-debt markets in the zone’s southern periphery, as banks used some of the cash to buy high-yielding bonds. That effect has faded.
 Spain’s ten-year government-bond yield has been rising since the second tranche of three-year ECB cash was doled out. This week it reached almost 6%, the highest level since November (see chart 1). The U-turn owes a lot to the shifting dynamics of the euro-zone bond markets, which have also affected Italy. Missteps by Spain’s new government have not helped. Beneath all this lie deeper fears about Spain’s injured banks, the stringency of the government’s fiscal plans, and the impact of both on an already weak economy.

Start with the bond-market dynamics. With tacit support from regulators, the stock of government bonds held by Spanish and Italian banks rose by €122 billion between November and February. Prices surged and yields fell. Hedge funds which had sold borrowed bonds in the hope that prices would fall were forced to buy them back. The rally lured others in. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

Veröffentlicht in Artikel | Getaggt mit: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Bankers and the public sector may both be enemies of growth

Geschrieben von hkarner - 13. April 2012

Date: 12-04-2012
Source: The Economist: Buttonwood
Subject: The question of extractive elites

THE developed world has a growth problem. Of 34 advanced economies, 28 had lower GDP per head in 2011 than they did in 2007. Forecasts for growth in the current year are anaemic. This sluggishness is generally perceived to be a hangover from the financial crisis of 2007 and 2008. But might the problem be structural rather than cyclical?

In their new book, “Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity and Poverty”, Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson, a pair of economists, suggest that many countries are bedevilled by economic institutions that “are structured to extract resources from the many by the few and that fail to protect property rights or provide incentives for economic activity.” In contrast, “inclusive” economies distribute power more widely, establish law and order, and have secure property rights and free-market systems.

In an extractive economy, such as the Belgian Congo and its successor state, Zaire, a narrow elite seizes power and uses its control of resources to prevent social change. Such economies can achieve growth for a while, particularly when (as with the Soviet Union in the mid-20th century and, the authors argue, China today) resources are being transferred from the unproductive agricultural sector into manufacturing. But they run out of steam eventually. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

Veröffentlicht in Artikel, Books | Getaggt mit: , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
Follow

Erhalte jeden neuen Beitrag in deinen Posteingang.

Schließe dich 346 Followern an