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Archive for 6. Februar 2016

Volksbank bleibt auf der Erfolgsstraße

Posted by hkarner - 6. Februar 2016

entschuldigung! falsches land! (hfk)

Artikel vom Samstag, 6. Februar 2016

Es war ein ereignisreiches Jahr für die Südtiroler Volksbank: Zuerst musste die Fusion mit der Banca Popolare di Marostica zu einem guten Ende gebracht worden – nun steht noch die Umwandlung in eine Aktiengesellschaft bevor. Das Jahr ist aber gut verlaufen. Die Volksbank konnte einen Reingewinn von 22,4 Millionen Euro erwirtschaften.

Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Europe’s Huddled Masses

Posted by hkarner - 6. Februar 2016

Date: 06-02-2016
Source: The New York Times: Roger Cohen

WASHINGTON — From London to Athens, Europe is questioned. Some people, mainly refugees from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, are dying to get into the European Union. Many British conservatives are fighting to get out of it. Others, including President Vladimir Putin of Russia, plot to undermine it. Yet others are bored by it: The 20th century and the strategic imperatives behind NATO and the European Union seem far away to wired millennials.

The two most powerful symbols of European integration — the euro that binds 19 European Union states in a common currency and the Schengen accords that allow people to move freely among 22 European Union nations — are in danger of unraveling under the pressure of polarized politics, diverging economic performance and the influx of more than one million desperate migrants and refugees in the past year.

There is an identity crisis. Christian Europe, a notion that Prime Minister Viktor Orban of Hungary has turned into a kind of illusory fetish, is in fact much less Christian. Around 6 percent of the European population is Muslim today; by 2030 that figure will be 8 percent. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Limits of German Power

Posted by hkarner - 6. Februar 2016

Photo of Volker Perthes

Volker Perthes

Volker Perthes is Chairman and Director of Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, the German Institute for International and Security Affairs, Berlin.

FEB 5, 2016, Project Syndicate

BERLIN – In the two years since Germany’s president, foreign minister, and defense minister signaled that their country would take on a larger role in international affairs, the country’s leaders have received a crash course in geopolitical realism. The challenges Germany has had to face include Russia’s annexation of Crimea, the conflict in eastern Ukraine, the explosion of Syria, terrorist attacks in Europe, and an unprecedented influx of refugees.

These crises have greatly increased Germany’s international profile. And yet the country’s reemergence as a major player on the world stage must be tempered with the recognition that its power depends on cooperation with its partners and the development of a strong, unified European foreign and security policy. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Great Populists

Posted by hkarner - 6. Februar 2016

Photo of Jacek Rostowski

Jacek Rostowski

Jacek Rostowski was Poland’s Minister of Finance and Deputy Prime Minister from 2007 to 2013.

FEB 5, 2016, Project Syndicate

WARSAW – The first challenge to the Western hegemony that followed the collapse of Communism in Europe was the emergence of the so-called BRICS countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa – in the 2000s. Rapidly growing and collectively accounting for nearly half of the world’s population, the rise of the BRICS seemed set to tip the balance of power away from the United States and Western Europe.

Today, the BRICS look like less of a geopolitical threat to the West. Russia, Brazil, and South Africa are in severe economic straits, and China is wobbling. Only India maintains its luster. And yet the West is coming under pressure again, including in its own backyard. This time, the challenge is political, not economic: the rise of politicians who relish conflict and disdain national and international law and democratic norms.

I call such leaders “PEKOs,” after the four most prominent examples of their kind: Russian President Vladimir Putin, Turkish President Recep Tayyep Erdoğan, the Polish politician Jarosław Kaczyński, and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Japan’s Wrong Way Out

Posted by hkarner - 6. Februar 2016

Photo of Adair Turner

Adair Turner

Adair Turner, a former chairman of the United Kingdom’s Financial Services Authority and former member of the UK’s Financial Policy Committee, is Chairman of the Institute for New Economic Thinking. His latest book is Between Debt and the Devil.

FEB 5, 2016, Project Syndicate

LONDON – Financial markets were surprised by the Bank of Japan’s recent introduction of negative interest rates on some commercial bank reserves. They shouldn’t have been. The BOJ clearly needed to take some new policy action to achieve its target of 2% inflation. But neither negative interest rates nor further expansion of the BOJ’s already huge program of quantitative easing (QE) will be sufficient to offset the strong deflationary forces that Japan now faces.

In 2013 the BOJ predicted that its QE operations would deliver 2% inflation within two years. But in 2015, core inflation (excluding volatile items such as food) was only 0.5%. With consumer spending and average earnings falling in December, the 2% target increasingly looks out of reach. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Putins Traum von einem russisch dominierten Europa

Posted by hkarner - 6. Februar 2016

Date: 05-02-2016
Source: Die Welt

Nichts wäre dem Mann im Kreml lieber als der Sturz Angela Merkels. Dann könnte er mit Europa spielen. Schon jetzt testet Moskau aus, wie weit es gehen kann, ohne im Westen auf Widerstand zu stoßen.

Putin BarrosoNach Auffassung von Kremlkritikern führt Russlands Präsident Putin gegen Deutschland einen Hybridkrieg: Durch Desinformation und Propaganda soll ein Keil in die deutsche Gesellschaft getrieben werden.

Russlands Staatschef Wladimir Putin sieht die Chance, den von ihm betriebenen Zerfall der EU erheblich zu beschleunigen. Sollte Angela Merkel stürzen, wäre die zentrale politische Führungspersönlichkeit aus dem Weg geräumt, die Europa bis heute auf Sanktionskurs gegen Moskaus Aggression in der Ukraine hält.

Der Kreml-Herr hat wohl registriert, dass Sigmar Gabriel vom Merkel-Koalitionspartner SPD bereits vor Monaten die Aufrechterhaltung der Strafmaßnahmen wegen des russischen Völkerrechtsbruchs infrage stellte. Horst Seehofer hat dies nun sogar vor Ort in Moskau getan.

Dass der CSU-Chef zu dem Zeitpunkt am Hof des neuen Zaren seine Aufwartung macht, da der Druck auf die Kanzlerin in Sachen Flüchtlingskrise steigt, bestärkt die Moskauer Destabilisierungsspezialisten in ihrer Einschätzung, eine Post-Merkel-Ära sei zum Greifen nahe – und dass sie in ihr deutlich leichteres Spiel haben würden. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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How International Is International Monetary Fund?

Posted by hkarner - 6. Februar 2016

By on February 5, 2016  RGE EconoMonitor

IMF Lagarde

Recently, the International Monetary Fund announced “historic reforms” in its governance. In reality, changes have barely begun. The IMF does not look like the world it purports to represent. 

During the global crisis of 2008/9, advanced economies could no longer contain the devastation. As a result, the old G7 club of Western powers was surpassed by the G20, which includes both advanced and emerging economies.

In turn, Washington and Brussels pledged to accelerate governance reforms in international organizations, such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Last week, these reforms entered a new era, according to the organization.

“I commend our members for ratifying these truly historic reforms,” Christine Lagarde said. The French managing director of the IMF stated that the reforms would ensure that the institution is better able to meet its members’ needs in a rapidly changing global environment.

But how does the IMF reflect the international community?

Asia’s fractional power Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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