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Finance

Finance

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.”

BBVA CEO Carlos Torres Vila opened the seminar in Santander organized by the International Menéndez Pelayo University and the Spanish Association of Economic News Journalists (APIE), which this year puts the spotlight on blockchain. BBVA’s CEO lauded digital transformation as a way to improve people’s lives. Additionally, he released the news that in May, BBVA’s digital sales reached 40% of the total, and that the Group will begin testing the negotiation and contracting of syndicated loans using blockchain. Finally, he stated that technological development fosters long-term economic progress and social well-being, which requires collaboration between public and private institutions.

We are witnessing the birth of a new generation of consumers. The latest generations – “millennials” and “centennials” – and those who are no longer so young but have quickly migrated to the new technologies, are setting the course for the economy in general and for banking in particular. Their new patterns of behavior and consumption create needs that change as quickly as the digital environment. It is essential that banks understand these needs so that they can help their customers make better financial decisions.

Interest rate, risk diversification and fixed-income assets are some of the financial concepts that most people have to deal with at one point or other. Do we really know what we are talking about? According to the Financial Skills Survey carried out by the Bank of Spain and the National Securities Market Commission (CNMV), 46 percent of Spaniards rate their financial knowledge as “low” or “very low”. Only 8 percent say it is “high”.