Richard Portes's picture
Affiliation: 
London Business School and CEPR

Voting history

The Importance of Elections for UK Economic Activity

Question 1: Do you agree that the austerity policies of the coalition government have had a positive effect on aggregate economic activity (employment and GDP) in the UK?

Answer:
Strongly Disagree
Confidence level:
Extremely confident
Comment:
The data are clear. The recovery is aborted immediately after austerity begins, then revival when it is (semi-covertly) relaxed.

Transparency and the Effectiveness of Monetary Policy following the Warsh Review at the Bank of England

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Question 2: Do you agree that the Bank's proposal to release the policy decision, MPC minutes and (once a quarter) the Inflation Report all at the same time justifies a change in the structure of MPC meetings from two consecutive days to a process in which in the MPC meetings are spread out over seven days?
 
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Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Not confident
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Question 1: Do you agree that the simultaneous release of the policy decision, the enhanced minutes (including the voting record) of the MPC meeting and (in the relevant months) the release of the Inflation Report will facilitate inference on the likely stance of monetary policy?
 
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Answer:
Agree
Confidence level:
Not confident

Greece’s elections and the future of the Eurozone

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Question 2: Do you agree that refusal of the core EU countries to a renegotiation of the Greek bailout agreements would carry serious risks for the economic well-being of the Eurozone?

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Answer:
Strongly Agree
Confidence level:
Very confident
Comment:
The charade has run much too long already. Greek debt was unsustainable in spring 2010, the bailout just added more, the leadup to default brought a huge transfer of private creditors' holdings into the official sector, so the big haircuts in the restructuring of spring 2012 still left a clearly unsustainable debt burden. 'Extend and pretend', even with lower interest rates, is not a serious long-term policy and leaves Greece with a continuing debt overhang that deters investment and hinders growth. So renegotiation and debt forgiveness along Paris Club lines is necessary. Greece is small, to be sure, so continuing depression there has only minor repercussions, but it keeps very much alive the risk of Grexit. And Grexit would be a disaster for Greece as well as a major risk for the continued existence of the eurozone - and hence for its 'economic well-being'.

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Question 1: Do you agree that a Syriza victory on 25 January would lead to a significant or sustained escalation in spreads for other peripheral Eurozone countries?

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Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
New firewalls against contagion are some comfort, and ECB will have announced some version of QE by then.

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