The leading research departments have begun to make upward revisions to their forecasts for the Spanish economy in 2017 and 2018. The GDP figures confirm that our economy did not lose momentum in the final part of 2016 (in the end GDP grew 3.2% for the year as a whole). And the indicators on activity and confidence at the start of 2017 show a slight acceleration. The good performance from the labour market, and Spain’s competitive exports, will be key growth drivers.
The eternal debate as to whether Spain has a quality democracy, with a level of legal security on a par with Europe, has recently become topical again following the courts’ decisions in the cases of Urdangarin and the “black” credit cards. Weeks before legal security also appeared because of the courts’ ruling related to the floor clauses.
If one specific scandal crystalized the Spanish elite’s excesses of recent times, it’s that of former president of Bankia Rodrigo Rato going on trial for misappropriation of funds in the High Court. Punishing Rato and others responsible for such injustices is crucial from a legal and moral point of view. But when it comes to restoring credibility, it is Spain’s banks, not the justice system, that face the really hard work.
J.L.M. Campuzano (Spanish Banking Association) | The Economy Ministry has published updated figures on the Social Housing Fund, set up in 2012 initially with 5.892 homes provided by the banks to help out the more vulnerable familys in Spain. At the moment, there are over 9.866 homes which have been handed over voluntarily by Spain’s lenders, with 9.020 allocated at end-2016.
The Bank of Spain (BoS) wants to modify the recent circular 4/2016 which regulates the method for calculating provisions in the sector. Under the IASB normative, expected to be introduced on a European-wide level on 1 January 2018, provisions will be calculated according to the expected loss in a credit transaction and not according to the loss incurred as up to now.
There is a sudden push to cut taxes in the US and Europe, although the Spanish government is preparing to increase taxes here, particularly for companies.
J.L. M. Campuzano (Spanish Banking Association) Cash or credit card? Make a transfer? Or perhaps use another digital payment method? For example, using your mobile pone, like with Bizum. According to the Bank of Spain, payment by credit card has grown at double digit rates of over 10% in the last few months. The amount of cash taken from dispensers has also increased, although at a more moderate rate at around 3%.
Fernando Rodríguez | Hispania, Axiare, Lar and, above all, Merlin are looking good. Spain’s 4 big Socimis are reflecting the favourable economic cycle, the recovery in the property market and the beneficial tax conditions they enjoy. Risks include the upward tension in interest rates and the profileration of competitors, with the stock market swarming with 30 or so Socimis of all kinds.
We have seen how the public debt figures are being manipulated downward, and now we’re going to see how there are also manipulations in Spanish GDP, but this time they are upward. From this we can infer that the ratio of debt/GDP, which is a crucial figure for the health of any economy, is seriously undervalued.
In 2016, Spain was once again the European country which received the most funding from the European Investment Bank (EIB), for a total of 11.5 billion euros, in terms of investment per unit of GDP or, in other words, in relation to the size of its economy.