Articles by Fernando Barciela

About the Author

Fernando Barciela
Fernando Barciela has been a regular collaborator for Spain's leading daily El Pais' business section since 1994. He is also a regular collaborator on foreign policy. For Grupo Consejeros he interviews the top executives of Spain's listed companies. He was a correspondent with Diario de Noticias, Portugal's leading daily newspaper, in 1987-2004. He has a degree in Business Science and Journalism from the Complutense University.

Angel Gurría, Secretary-General, OECD

The OECD Politely Asks For An End To Austerity

F. Barciela / F.G. Ljubetic |It was well known that the forecasts the OECD were going to present for 2016 and 2017 would be nothing to shout home about. But the figures and the tone of the comments made by Angel Gurria, secretary general of the organisation and Catherine Mann, its chief economist, turned out to be more dismal than expected.


CoCos May Not Be As Good As They Look…But Investors Don’t Care

The European banks are having nothing but trouble in the last few months. And if they needed something else to further cloud their outlook – negative interest rates, meagre margins, increasing capital demands…- doubts have begun to emerge lately over whether the sector can continue to pay the high interest on the so-called CoCos (Contingent Convertible Capital Instruments), contingent convertible bonds.


Sicavs Are Starting To Pack And Leave Spain

Fernando Barciela and F.G. Ljubetic | So finally, the urban legend which was created around Spanish Sicavs is beginning to have the results everyone expected; namely that their owners have either begun to close them down, put the brakes on their investments or even consider the possibility of moving to more temperate climes to be found in locations like Luxembourg, Geneva or London.


New Technology Stocks Are The Only Ones Creating Real Value In The US Markets

F. Barciela /F.G. Ljubetic |The stock market valuations of new technology firms have reached dizzy heights in the US over the last few years.  And it doesn’t look as if their stratospheric rise has stopped. Google, now Alphabet, has a stock market value of 491 billion dollars, while Apple’s is 484 billion. Facebook is worth 345 billion dollars and Amazon 337 billion.

Spanish stocks

Weak Start To The Year For Ibex 35 Companies

F. Barciela / F. Gil Ljubetic | If there had been a recovery in the Ibex 35 companies previously, it’s clear that this has stopped or slowed in the January-March period. Amongst those which have already presented first quarter results, very few have given investors much of a reason to be happy.

The City of Arts (Valencia) , designed by architect Santiago Calatrava

Let’s Say Goodbye To The Billion Euros Infrastructure Works In Spain

The government has designed an infrastructures and housing programme, but not one sector expert or professional believes that Spain will see a return to the level of public works investment of, for example, 2007.  The PITVI (The Infrastructure, Transport and Housing Plan), in force until 2024, does not contemplate building large infrastructures but rather maintaining the existing ones.


Spanish Tourism Industry Has Grown By 31% Since 2009

It’s unheard of Spain’s tourism sector, which many experts said was stagnant and mature ten years ago, has not only massively recovered but continues to beat records from one year to the next in terms of numbers of international tourist arrivals. Since it touched bottom in 2009, with 52.2 million foreign tourists, the sector has not stopped growing any year. In 2015, numbers reached 65 million, up 31% in comparative terms.


Low Inflation Still Not Affecting Spain’s Growth

It’s straight out of the textbook that low inflation – and above all deflation – has negative effects on economic growth that we all know about. That’s the main reason why ECB President Mario Draghi implemented an ambitious set of monetary expansion measures in March, with the aim of boosting prices to a level more suitable for economic growth, namely 2%.


Will rising labour costs damage Spain’s competitiveness?

F. Barciela/ F. G. Ljubetic | Labour costs in Spain stagnated during the crisis, but the idea that they eventually have to rise again has quite a few supporteres, including many businessmen. It would even be a postive driver for consumption and the economy general.