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Central banks

08 Oct 2018

José Manuel González-Páramo called for Europe to move forward now, not “just when there’s a crisis”, and to conclude the banking union, the capital markets union and the fiscal union to have a “much more robust and genuine euro.” Speaking at the Círculo de Economía in Barcelona, he stressed the role that the ECB played in Europe’s recovery. However, the bank must now go back to its original purpose of “contributing to financial stability and separating supervision from monetary policy.”

18 Sep 2018

The expiration of ECB Vice-President Vítor Constancio’s term in June and the subsequent appointment of Luis de Guindos as his successor marked the beginning of the European Central Bank’s senior management renewal. But, how are ECB executive board members appointed?

17 Sep 2018

As widely expected, the ECB concluded its monetary policy meeting yesterday without making any changes to its monetary policy stance. As BBVA Research’s ECB Watch report notes, there were other key takeaways that came out of the meeting, such as the end of the Asset Purchase Programming, and the confirmation that the bank is in no rush to hike interest rates. From an economic standpoint, the institution affirmed its inflation outlook but slightly lowered its growth expectations for the euro zone.

13 Sep 2018

The Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey (CRBT) decided today to raise the official interest rate by 625 basis points from 17.75 percent to 24 percent. As a BBVA Research report points out, the hike came in above market expectations (21 percent according to Bloomberg consensus estimates), and BBVA Research’s own forecast (22.75 percent). BBVA Research welcomes the move and believes it should be backed up by a medium-term coherent and detailed fiscal plan.

10 Aug 2018

BBVA has requested arbitration procedures through the complementary mechanism of the ICSID – the International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes – within the framework of the Reciprocal Investment Promotion and Protection Agreements between Spain and Bolivia with respect to the transfer of BBVA Previsión AFP (Pension Fund Administrator) to the Government of Bolivia.

06 Aug 2018

The European Central Bank in 2018 began the turnover process in a number of key posts on its Executive Board. The crux will be the end of Mario Draghi’s term in office in October 2019 amid doubts about whether his departure will coincide with a hike in interest rates expected between the summer and the fall of next year.

27 Jul 2018

The European Central Bank on Thursday announced it is maintaining its monetary policy unchanged. Interest rates will remain at current levels until the summer of 2019 or “as long as necessary”, as announced in its June meeting. In doing so, ECB President Mario Draghi gave no further clarification on the next steps in the bank’s roadmap and intoned the mantra of prudence and patience.

25 Jul 2018

Answering this question is not easy. Academics and financial industry representatives met to discuss whether it would be appropriate for central banks to issue digital currencies. In the forum, BBVA executive board member, José Manuel González-Páramo, indicated that he believes it is probable that central banks will issue cryptocurrencies in the years ahead.  Future advances in blockchain technology will open the way to its use by financial authorities.

12 Jul 2018

In 2015, the ECB launched its Bank’s Integrated Reporting Dictionary, or BIRD, a project ultimately intended to organize the data that it gathers from EU financial institutions for its statistical area. This project is part of a broader strategic approach aimed at improving the system that banks and other players use to report statistics to the European supervisor, known as IReF (Integrated Reporting Framework). BIRD is one of the pivotal milestones in the list of achievements by the Statistical area of the ECB. And just as the rest of the organization, BIRD is celebrating its anniversary.

03 Jul 2018

After the bare minimum agreement on the banking union achieved at the recently held European Council, the debate about the future of Europe continues unabated. With this agreement still fresh, the Bank of Finland invited scholars, representatives of the financial sector and regulators talk about the future of the Old Continent. The experts gathered in Helsinki called for advancing towards a greater banking and capital markets union. The next date in the calendar: The European Council meeting in December.

25 Jun 2018

19 Jun 2018

As the European Central Bank celebrates its 20th anniversary, we take a look back at some of its defining milestones. Not in vain, the ECB has been the guarantor of the euro’s survival and, since 2014, the central axis of the euro area’s financial system. Since the onset of the 2008 financial crisis, the ECB took on a role that was pivotal for a huge part of the recovery. However, “it cannot act alone”: “further strengthening of Europe´s institutional and legal framework is necessary to construct a more united and resilient Europe to face future challenges.”

13 Jun 2018

Every time Mario Draghi speaks at the news conference after the European Central Bank’s (ECB) monthly monetary policy meeting, the markets hold their breath. And after he finishes, they react. In the wake of the 2008 crisis, the expectations created by the bank’s message have taken on added relevance. BBVA Research is aware of the importance of being able to gauge if the ECB’s message adequately reflects its policy and has used big data techniques to this end.

27 Apr 2018

As expected, the European Central Bank left interest rates and its asset-purchasing program, or quantitative easing (QE), unchanged. After its policy meeting, Mario Draghi instead stressed concerns about the global risks posed by protectionism as well as the need to focus on inflation.

06 Apr 2018

22 Mar 2018

As we expected, the FOMC increased the Fed funds rate to 1.5%-1.75%, confirming that newly appointed Chairman is committed to maintaining continuity with his predecessor. The language in the statement underpinned the committee’s shift from a defensive to potentially offensive mindset, with strong labor market signals, increased business investment and firmer actual inflation readings.

09 Mar 2018

As expected the European Central Bank (ECB) yesterday took a further step toward the normalization of its monetary policy. That is BBVA Research’s reading of the situation in its ECB Watch report. The institution headed by Mario Draghi left interest rates unchanged and will continue with its asset-purchasing program, commonly known in English as quantitative easing (QE). The main development that emerged from the policy meeting was the dropping of the “explicit reference” to the possibility of increasing the size of the program. And that already represents a change.

21 Feb 2018

On January 31st, the European Banking Authority (EBA) announced the formal launch of this year’s EU-wide stress test exercise of the euro area. It also unveiled the macroeconomic scenarios under which the exercise will be carried out. The  adverse scenario implies a deviation of EU GDP from its baseline level by 8.3% in 2020, resulting in the most severe scenario to date. The EBA expects to publish the results of the exercise by 2 November 2018

26 Jan 2018

As had been expected, following its monthly meeting the European Central Bank left interest rates unchanged. At the same time, ECB President Mario Draghi introduced the exchange rate as an element of uncertainty, stressing that he will monitor the fluctuations in the euro and their possible consequences. Likewise, he reiterated the possibility of broadening the bond purchase program, continuing his accommodative policy, which will be accompanied by interest rates at minimum levels for a long period of time.

25 Jan 2018

16 Jan 2018

BBVA Research maintains its forecasts for Spain’s GDP growth in 2017 and 2018 at 3.1% and 2.5%, respectively. In addition, it expects that the economic recovery will continue in 2019  (with a 2.3% increase in GDP) and that the improvement in the economy will translate into wage growth. BBVA Research’s latest Spain Economic Outlook was presented today by Jorge Sicilia, Chief Economist of the BBVA Group and Director of BBVA Research; Rafael Doménech, Head of Macroeconomic Analysis at BBVA Research; and Miguel Cardoso, Chief Economist for Spain and Portugal.  If these forecasts prove to be correct, Spain´s unemployment rate could drop to 13.4% by end of 2019, which would imply the creation of 860,000 jobs over the next two years.

03 Jan 2018

26 Dec 2017

The beginning of the normalization of monetary policy in 2018 should bring greater profitability for banks, a larger investor appetite and a positive outlook for the stock market. However, what is perhaps more important, the new policy will enable banks to meet one of their principal goals: supporting economic growth by financing companies and private individuals.

13 Dec 2017

23 Nov 2017

17 Nov 2017

13 Nov 2017

10 Nov 2017

The use of cash as method of payment has been declining in recent years, in favor of digital methods and credit cards. Last month we saw another example in the Hawkers sunglass brand, which will not be accepting cash payments in its new Madrid store.

07 Nov 2017

The finance industry will survive the disruption in the sector, but only a few banks will be able to offer the best customer experience, adapt to the new ecosystem and successfully achieve their digital transformation. “Competition with the fintech companies makes us better and stronger,” said José Manuel González-Páramo, BBVA’s Executive Member of the Board, Head of Global Economics, Regulation and Public Affairs, during the European Central Bank´s Forum on Banking Supervision.

20 Oct 2017

19 Oct 2017

16 Oct 2017

30 Aug 2017

On March 25, 1957, representatives from the six founding countries of the European Community put their signatures to the Treaties of Rome, consisting of blank pages due to a problem with the printing. Sixty years on, Europe “is an enormous success”, but today it also has “blank pages still to be filled in” for the project to continue with its process of completion. This was the metaphor used by Jose Manuel González-Páramo, the CEO of BBVA, to describe the current situation of the EU.

28 Aug 2017

Once more this year, the symposium of the most important central bankers in the world was held in Jackson Hole from August 24 to 26. Under scrutiny were Janet Yellen, the Chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve and Mario Draghi, President of the European Central Bank. Their words gave no indications of any changes with respect to the future of monetary policy.

21 Jul 2017

Mario Draghi did not surprise anyone yesterday. As expected, the European Central Bank (ECB) unanimously decided to leave interest rates unchanged. He also did not announce any immediate changes to the asset purchase program. However, he did offer some clues as to the direction the ECB will follow after the summer.  As BBVA Research notes in its ECB Watch report, the discussion on gradually tapering QE (Quantitative Easing, the ECB´s asset purchase program) will take place in the fall – most likely in September.

20 Jul 2017

18 Jul 2017

Ricardo Gómez Barredo was there for the birth of BBVA (through the merger of BBV and Argentaria), a Group he has been associated with for more than two decades.Now he is in charge of functions that are so critical to a bank like liaising with supervisors, working out financial information and reporting.Professionally, he describes himself as very demanding of himself. He thinks that the best part of his professional experience has always been “the people I’ve been lucky enough to work with”.

30 Jun 2017

28 Jun 2017

09 Jun 2017

As the markets expected, at its June meeting the European Central Bank (ECB) closed the door on further interest-rate cuts and adopted a more neutral stance on risks, although maintaining caution. Despite the fact that the institution has not yet given signs of taking a step to exit the current monetary policy, the ECB Watch report published by BBVA Research suggests that in September it may announce a slowdown in asset purchases starting in 2018.

The International Bank Note Society (IBNS) has chosen the 50 Swiss Franc bank note as the winner of its “Bank Note of the Year Award” for 2016. The bank note, which depicts a hand holding a dandelion, was chosen after a tight voting process. The three runner ups were the Maldive Islands 1000 Rufiyaa, Argentina’s 500 Peso, and the Royal Bank of Scotland’s 5 Pound bank notes.

Together with these 4 finalists, the IBNS chooses what are considered to be, overall, the 18 best bank notes in the world in 2016.

26 May 2017

23 May 2017

BBVA is one of the 40 institutions that invested in the financial technology innovator R3, which just completed two of three tranches in its Series A fundraising round. It raised a total of 107 million. With this investment, BBVA seeks to reinforce its commitment to R3, the largest consortium of global financial institutions collaborating to develop an industry platform and commercial applications for DLT.

18 May 2017

The B20 -a forum made up by companies from G20 countries– plays a key role as a liaison between governments and the economy. It is “an essential link between the real economy and the authorities that have regulatory powers over that economy,” says José Manuel González-Páramo, Executive Board Director of BBVA. Companies also act as drivers of economic growth and inclusion. For this reason, the B20 “is crucial at this point in time.”

03 May 2017

BBVA held in March its 6th annual Public Sector Investors and Issuers Seminar bringing together 60 central banks, sovereign borrowers, supranational institutions, and national agencies for 3-days of discussions on a broad range of investment themes.

Some of the key themes discussed were the impact of unconventional monetary policies on public sector issuers and investors, the challenges facing reserve managers in times of negative interest rates, and the debt management strategies of public sector issuers. The following are four of the most interesting issued discussed.

04 Apr 2017

On April 4 the new €50 note will enter into circulation. This new note, presented on July 5, 2016 by the European Central Bank will be phased in gradually and will coexist with the preceding model, which will remain legal tender. Thus, the ECB completes another step in the rollout of the Europa series, and follows the €5, €10 and €20 notes, which have already been issued. Reinhold Gerstetter, independent banknote designer was selected to refresh the design of the notes.

24 Mar 2017

The ECB has published its annual report on the supervisory activities appointed to it by the Single Supervisory Mechanism. Key achievements in 2016: effectively addressing the non-performing loan (NPL) issue, the improvement the solvency of the euro area banking sector and the further harmonisation of banking supervision in the euro area. In the spotlight for 2017: new challenges, like the new scenario for European banks after Brexit and fintech-related risks.