Sylvester Eijffinger's picture
Affiliation: 
CentER, Tilburg University
Credentials: 
Professor of Financial Economics
President of Tilburg University Society

Voting history

Juncker's State of the Union Address

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Question 2: Do you agree that the euro has had more benefits than costs?

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Answer:
Agree
Confidence level:
Very confident
Comment:
In the long run the benefits of euro membership exceed the costs but this doesn't have to be the case in the short run. The convergence criteria set in the Treaty of Maastricht are necessary but not sufficient conditions for euro membership. The decision to join shouldn't be an automatic one.

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Question 1; Do you agree that euro membership should be compulsory for all EU member states?

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Answer:
Agree
Confidence level:
Very confident
Comment:
In principle, every EU member state (except Denmark and the UK) should join the eurozone in the long run but euro membership should not be compulsory in the short run. If we want to have some kind of European fiscal unification, then we should restrict euro membership even more. There is a trade-off between the broadness and deepness of EU monetary and fiscal unification.

Wages and economic recoveries

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Question 2: Do you agree that the different behaviour of UK real wages relative to Eurozone wages during the Great Recession is in large part due to the UK having different labour market policies?

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Answer:
Strongly agree
Confidence level:
Extremely confident
Comment:
The different behaviour of UK real wages relative to Eurozone wages is indeed in large part due to the UK having different labour makets policies, particularly by its more flexible labour markets. Labour markets in France and Germany are less flexible resulting in more unemployment there. The election of Macron may have big consequences for the flexibility of French labour markets.

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Question 1: Do you agree that lower real wage growth was beneficial for employment levels during the Great Recession?

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Answer:
Strongly agree
Confidence level:
Extremely confident
Comment:
Lower real wage growth might be beneficial for economic growth and employment in the short to medium term but can be detrimental for economic growth and employment in the (very) long term because it hampers innovation that is necessary for increasing efficiency and productivity growth.

Happiness and well-being as objectives of macro policy

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Question 2: Do you agree that quantitative well-being analysis should play an important role in guiding policy makers in determining macroeconomic policies?

 
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Answer:
Neither agree nor disagree
Confidence level:
Very confident
Comment:
More empirical research should be done on the correlation between more subjective self-reported measures of happiness and well-being and more objective and scientific measures, such as those derived from CT brain scans.

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