Ricardo Reis's picture
Affiliation: 
London School of Economics and Columbia University
Credentials: 
Professor of economics

Voting history

Labour Markets and Monetary Policy

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Question 2: Do you agree that, in a period of great uncertainty and after a prolonged period of weak real wage growth, monetary policy makers can afford to wait for greater certainty about real wage developments and building inflationary pressure before raising interest rates?

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Answer:
Agree
Confidence level:
Confident

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Question 1: Do you agree that a strong labour market is a good indicator of building inflationary pressure?

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Answer:
Strongly Agree
Confidence level:
Very confident
Comment:
As a simple plot, or correlation, the Phillips curve is a very unreliable economic law. But, as a structural relation that encapsulates the strength of nominal rigidities, monetary non-neutrality, or deviations from the classical dichotomy, it is one of the most powerful, effective, and useful pieces of applied economics. I am interpreting the vague term "strong labor market" as a measure of real activity standing fot the structural interpretation.

Bitcoin and the City

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Question 2: Do you agree that the regulatory oversight of cryptocurrencies needs to be increased?

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Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
Only as much as we regulate gold, silver, baseball cards, or any other asset that can potentially emerge as a currency (and we know from monetary theory that many can). Market regulators can regulate it, as the CFTC will be doing, but central banks through macro prudential regulation should be weary of jumping to tightly regulate anything that moves, including speculative new assets that banks and SIFIs should not be holding in the first place.

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Question 1: Do you agree that cryptocurrencies are currently a threat to the stability of the financial system, or can be expected to become a threat in the next couple of years?

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Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
Bitcoin is inadequate as a currency. As an asset that provides some small benefits to its users---chiefly anonymity and irreversibility of transactions---and that has a fairly limited and steady supply though, it is quite similar to gold. Even the arguments of some of its fans are eerily familiar to those that one has heard for decades about gold. Like gold, it fluctuates wildly in value and it is subject to fads and manias. As long as regulators treat it as a highly speculative investment, like so many other investments out there, then it should pose as much risk to the financial system as so many of these do.

House Prices and the UK economy

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Question 2: Do you agree that a more widespread weakening of the UK housing market will slow UK GDP growth significantly?

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Answer:
Agree
Confidence level:
Not confident
Comment:
The negative impact on the construction sector, which is quite leveraged and already in bad shape according to stock market valuations, and the reduction in consumption would likely lead to a slowdown in GDP growth in the short run.

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