Category: International Economics

A few thoughts about the euro

This is it! You now need 1 dollar to buy 1 euro. To get this picture below, I used the FRED connection with Mathematica 13.1, as I explained it in a previous blog. The Wolfram documentation is very clear and self-explaining. You have to register on the FRED website. Beyond these practical aspects, let us come back to the economic meaning of the parity between the euro and the US dollar. Between 2000 and 2003, the euro was below the one dollar threshold, the late John Williamson explained in this article that is it was only a stochastic blip. The rest of the 2000s seem...

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Next Generation EU: a time-bomb, or a new lease of life?Understanding the EU recovery plan in 5 questions

The European recovery plan, named Next Generation EU, was launched in the heart of the pandemic crisis that began in early 2020. This recovery plan truly represents a project of unprecedented scale in the European construction history. But the EU is a complex thing, difficult to grasp for the uninitiated as the institutional mechanism is so difficult to understand. This recovery plan can be a cornerstone for the future of the European, but can also become the painful indicator of the institutional dysfunctions of the EU. 1. Next Generation EU, what does it mean? Next Generation EU is intended...

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Joint liability bonds for a joint European defense against the pandemic

The problem Mitigating the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic will require a significant increase in public spending to rescue sinking economies and further shield health systems. At the same time, tax revenues will be collapsing as long as economic activity remains suppressed. Budget deficits will inevitably swell, leading to soaring public debt. Eurozone countries – such as Italy, Greece, Portugal and Spain – that have already suffered the effects of the sovereign debt crisis – and their debt remains high – will be hit particularly hard. The increase in debt will call into question its sustainability, posing the risk...

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The European response to the epidemic

Germany shut down its borders with France, Denmark, Austria and Luxembourg in an effort to curb the spread of the Covid-19 epidemic at home. Spain and other European Union countries are doing the same. The closure of the Schengen border raises more barriers to individual movements within the EU.  Closing the borders is an impulsive response to the crisis. It is perhaps understandable in an emergency, when national governments are responsible for protecting the population, in the absence of a common health policy in Europe. But it promotes an inward-looking attitude that does not facilitate the coordination of actions...

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