Wouter Den Haan's picture
Affiliation: 
London School of Economics
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:
Strongly Agree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
yes, central banks have built enough credibility and inflation expectations seem well anchored. So it makes sense to be cautious and wait for convincing evidence of significant wage and inflation pressure.

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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:
Agree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
Traditionally that has been the case and there are good theoretical reasons for this. If labour markets are truly "strong," then this should lead to higher wages and that will have to lead to higher prices at some point. A low unemployment rate may not be sufficient to talk about a "strong" labour market.

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:
Agree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
All assets which are not backed by anything real or central backing should be regulated when they become sufficiently important. Not sure whether we have reached this point, but it is better to be too early than too late.

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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:
Agree
Confidence level:
Not confident
Comment:
The LTCM crisis has taught us that it takes just one key financial institution taking on large risky positions to put the system at risk. Given that cryptocurrences are not backed by anything, they are potentially an extremely risky investment.

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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Make sure to save each question separately

Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Not confident at all
Comment:
Since I don't expect house prices to drop a lot if they will fall, I also do not expect a big impact on the UK economy. But combined with Brexit uncertainty, falling house prices may negatively affect confidence substantially and then effects could be bigger. But I do not see this as a major risk factor.

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