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Research-based policy analysis and commentary from leading economists
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16 июля, 00:00

How creditor lawsuits are reshaping sovereign debt markets

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For centuries, sovereign debt was assumed to be ‘above the law’ and non-enforceable. This column shows that this is no longer the case. Building on a new dataset on sovereign debt lawsuits, it documents the erosion of sovereign immunity since the 1970s and argues that legal disputes can disrupt government access to international capital markets, as foreign courts impose a financial embargo on defaulting sovereigns. These legal developments have strengthened the hands of creditors and raised the cost of default for debtors, with far-reaching consequences for government willingness to pay and the resolution of debt crises.

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16 июля, 00:00

When short-time work works

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Short-time work programmes aim to preserve jobs at firms that are experiencing temporarily low revenues, for example during a recession. This column assesses how the short-time work programme implemented in France during the Great Recession affected employment. Results confirm that the programme saved jobs and increased hours worked, and that participating firms recovered faster than non-participating firms. 

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16 июля, 00:00

Risk sharing and market discipline: Finding the right mix

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A key question in the debate on the reform of the euro area concerns the right mix between risk sharing and market discipline. This column, part of the VoxEU debate on the topic, argues that proposals to enhance market discipline in the euro area are counter-productive, because they increase the vulnerabilities of countries with high legacy debts. 

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16 июля, 00:00

The Impact of Blockchain Technology on Finance: A Catalyst for Change

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Blockchain technology has the potential to change many aspects of the financial services sector and the broader economy. The 21st Geneva Report on the World Economy reviews the basics of blockchain technology and its challenges, costs and benefits, gives an overview of its potential direct impact on the financial sector, and assesses possible use cases beyond the world of finance.

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16 июля, 00:00

The blockchain catalyst for change

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The idea of a new software system that powers a consensus-driven form of shared record keeping has already had a profound effect, encouraging rapid and substantial investment in what is now commonly referred to as blockchain technology. This column introduces the latest Geneva Report on the World Economy, which assesses the available evidence and likely impact for this technology across a wide range of applications and explores the potential use cases for the financial sector, and the ways in which the organisation of these activities may change over time.

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15 июля, 00:00

Low voter turnout? Increasing household income may help

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Political scientists have shown conclusively, at least in the US, that richer people vote more, which has troubling implications. Using data from a government cash transfer programme, this column shows that children who grew up in households in the bottom half of the income distribution that received extra income were more likely to vote as adults compared to their counterparts who did not receive the transfers. The results suggest that efforts to reduce income inequality may have the unexpected side effect of reducing gaps in civic participation.

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14 июля, 00:00

Trade agreements and global production

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The making and unmaking of trade agreements affects global production. This column reveals how deeper agreements have boosted countries’ participation in global value chains and helped them integrate in industries with higher levels of value added. Investment and competition now drive global value chain participation in North-South relationships, while removing traditional barriers remains important for South-South relationships.

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13 июля, 00:00

The Commission's Summer Interim Forecast

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Next week, after ten days of swift, flat riding, the Tour de France reaches the Alps. The European economy, meanwhile, has been pedalling uphill since the beginning of this year. 2017 was easy riding as strong global growth boosted domestic investment, but economic growth has had to move into lower gear in the first half of 2018 as this transmission is no longer working properly, and escalating trade conflicts could derail it. This column presents the European Commission’s Summer 2018 Interim Forecast, which suggests that a tightening of global financial conditions could add to the headwinds, though central banks' balance sheets will remain large for a long time, and domestic fundamentals in the euro area remain strong. 

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13 июля, 00:00

Regional inequality in Europe

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Regional economic divergence has become a threat to economic progress, social cohesion, and political stability in Europe. Market processes and policies that are supposed to spread prosperity and opportunity are no longer sufficiently effective. This column argues that a different approach to economic development is required – one that would strengthen Europe’s strongest regions, but with new methods and instruments to unleash the economic potential of weaker cities and regions. The approach should be adaptable to the specific characteristics, structures, and challenges faced by different groups of cities and regions. 

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12 июля, 00:00

Declining responsiveness and the productivity slowdown

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Job reallocation is an important determinant of productivity. This column uses US data to show that a decline in the degree of job reallocation in response to shocks is behind the overall fall in the rate of reallocation over the past decades. Weakening responsiveness became a drag on aggregate productivity for high-tech businesses in the 2000s, but in other sectors the problem dates back to the 1980s. 

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12 июля, 00:00

Children and gender inequality

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Despite considerable convergence over time, substantial gender inequality persists in all countries. Using Danish data, this column argues that this gap persists because the effects of having children on the careers of women relative to men are large and have not fallen over time. Additional findings suggest this effect may be related to inherited gender identity norms.

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11 июля, 00:00

The term structure and recessions before the Fed

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Many market commentators are worried that the gradual flattening of the US term structure in recent months is indicative of an increased risk of a recession. This column argues that the term structure contained information about the likelihood of a future recession even before the establishment of the Federal Reserve, suggesting that the information content does not arise solely as a consequence of countercyclical monetary policy.