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Negative interest rates and their effect on humans

August 23, 2019
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What should an honest and law-abiding German citizen think when their finance minister, a high-ranking representative of the state, is investigating whether he can protect them from the actions of another state body, the central bank? This is exactly what the Bavarian Prime Minister Söder is calling for: a ban on negative interest on bank deposits (up to a certain level), whose chances of realisation are now being examined by the Federal Ministry of Finance. [more]

More documents contained in "Talking Point"

150 Documents
July 1, 2020
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Analyst:
1
During the corona summer, Germans will probably travel less and for shorter periods of time than in former years. Destinations in Germany and in the neighbouring countries, which are only a car journey away, look set to benefit. In contrast, European holiday destinations which are usually reached by plane will see the number of tourists decline in 2020. Spain will probably be the main loser. Long-distance travel will not play a major role in 2020. The cruise boom is likely to come to an abrupt end. In 2020, the total amount spent by Germans abroad is likely to decline by 10-20%. Once the coronavirus crisis is over, climate and environmental regulation (in particular for the transport sector) will return as the main structural challenge for tourism. [more]
June 17, 2020
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2
German households saved surprisingly little money during Q1; their bank deposits were only up by EUR 5.8 bn. In the lockdown month of March, deposits even declined by EUR 11.1 bn, as households withdrew a lot of cash due to the uncertain situation. During the current quarter, however, households will probably build up deposits substantially in order to prepare for potential income losses. By contrast, retail loans continued to increase strongly in Q1 and may cool down only in the medium term. [more]
May 28, 2020
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3
Commission President von der Leyen presented the long anticipated Commission proposal for a EUR 750 bn European Recovery Instrument together with an upsized EU budget for the next seven years. The plan goes beyond the Franco-German proposal that surprised markets last week. It can be expected to cause heated debates in the European Council and meet fierce resistance from frugal EU members. [more]
May 20, 2020
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4
European banks have taken a substantial initial hit from the corona crisis in Q1, but so far digested it relatively well. Nevertheless, more pain is surely to come. While revenues and costs were both down only mildly, loan loss provisions shot up and almost wiped out industry profits. Capital levels dropped quarter-over-quarter, yet less than feared as banks cancelled 2019 dividends. Balance sheets expanded by a record-breaking 10% compared to year-end due to growth in corporate loans, higher liquidity reserves at central banks and increased derivatives volumes. [more]
May 14, 2020
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5
Public attention has shifted away from climate change as the coronavirus pandemic has spread. Nevertheless, mitigating climate change and making sure that the growing global population has access to climate-friendly energy remain among the key challenges of this century. These issues will still be on the agenda when the pandemic is over. It is therefore an encouraging sign that many policymakers and corporates have said they will not only take into account, but pay more attention to climate protection when re-opening the economy. The heated discussion about which instruments are best suited to ensure climate protection will continue for years to come, though. [more]
May 4, 2020
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6
During March, the first month in which the coronavirus pandemic made itself felt in Europe, banks' balance sheets grew substantially. On the one hand, euro-area banks raised enormous amounts of liquidity from the ECB, other financial corporations and non-financial companies. On the other, they just kept a large part of that at the central bank or lent it to other banks and other financial corporations. In addition, banks extended markedly more credit to non-financial firms which likewise stacked up their liquidity buffers to prepare for weaker cash flows as a result of the looming massive recession. The crisis so far had no major impact on banks’ retail business and their holdings of government bonds. [more]
April 29, 2020
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7
The government’s coffers are not bottomless. That is why any money spent on cushioning the impact of the corona crisis should be used as efficiently as possible to achieve the maximum positive impact or compensate for the damage caused by the lockdown. Unlike other sectors, such as hotels or restaurants, car producers in Germany were and are not directly affected by the lockdown. Car dealers have re-opened. Moreover, a car-scrapping bonus scheme will cause customers to bring forward purchases, with sales declining in the following year. In addition, high-wage earners in particular will benefit from the financial windfall. Car sales in Germany play only a limited role for German carmakers’ overall profitability. And finally, subsidies for e-cars already provide an incentive to include environmental considerations in car-buying decisions. [more]
April 22, 2020
8
The economic slump is taking its toll on the banking industry. For the major US banks, profits in Q1 more than halved compared to the prior year, as loan loss reserves jumped. Revenues declined moderately with weakness in interest income and fees and commissions partly compensated for by a jump in trading income. Deposits, loans and other assets surged because clients hoarded liquidity. Banks’ capital ratios fell only somewhat and they remain well capitalised. Banks in Europe may have faced similar trends overall but will probably have benefited less from the supportive trading environment and suffered more from declining capital ratios. They are also handicapped by their much lower starting level in terms of profitability. [more]
April 20, 2020
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9
The COVID-19 crisis raises the question of whether the increased shift towards working from home will ultimately reduce demand for office space. The longer the crisis continues, the more people will get used to long-distance co-operation – and the more efficient remote communication may become. However, employees and teams experience the corona crisis very differently. Much depends on how well a team worked together pre crisis. [more]
April 15, 2020
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Analyst:
10
The coronavirus pandemic has struck the German mechanical engineering sector at an already difficult time. Since 2019 at the latest, mechanical engineering firms have been feeling the effects of a realignment in the industry, particularly as German automobile manufacturers shift towards electric mobility. On top of that, there was the possibility of unusual expenses due to the potential discontinuation of deliveries from China amid ongoing trade conflicts. Production may decline by 25% or more in 2020 as a result of the coronavirus. [more]
April 8, 2020
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12
The banking industry in Europe is entering the corona recession with strong capital levels and ample liquidity, though still only moderate profitability. Revenues will come under substantial pressure this year, loan loss provisions will jump and net income will fall materially – many banks may well make losses. However, there is likewise massive support from the public sector, with governments propping up the real economy, central banks the financial markets and supervisors relaxing rules for banks. This should mitigate the hit. Nevertheless, the risks are profound and a prolonged shutdown could even trigger a renewed banking crisis. Enormous uncertainty regarding its depth and length notwithstanding, the current crisis may well turn out more severe than the macro-financial shock scenario underlying the latest European bank stress test. Its magnitude could possibly even exceed the financial crisis and the Great Recession. [more]
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