Wouter Den Haan's picture
Affiliation: 
London School of Economics
Credentials: 
Professor of economics

Voting history

Secular Stagnation

Question 1: Do you agree- making your own definition of secular stagnation clear if you disagree with that offered here- that it is more likely than not that the advanced Western economies have entered into a period of secular stagnation?

Answer:
Neither agree nor disagree
Confidence level:
Not confident
Comment:
Real interest rates have been low for quite a while. I am not sure, however, whether the situation is so bad that most advanced Western economies, including the UK and the US, are in such poor shape that full employment requires negative real interest rates. After all, the UK and US unemployment rates are not that high anymore.

Migration and the UK economy August 2014

Question 2: Do you agree that current government policies with respect to non-EU migration (including policies on students, skilled workers, and family migration) are effective in maximizing the gains to the economy from migration while minimizing any possible negative impact to specific groups?

Answer:
Disagree
Confidence level:
Confident

Question 1: Do you agree that migration to the UK can be expected to be beneficial for the average income of current UK inhabitants in the upcoming decade?

Answer:
Agree
Confidence level:
Confident
Comment:
Being an immigrant myself I may be biased. But living in London I see the key role that immigrants play in all kinds of different sectors. So my own experience back up what serious research has found.

UK House Prices and Macro-Prudential Policy July 2014

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Question 2: When housing-related risk is deemed excessive from the viewpoint of financial stability, do you agree that the correct response is to deploy macro-prudential tools, leaving interest rates focused on the needs of inflation and aggregate real activity?

 
Answer:
Neither agree nor disagree
Confidence level:
Not confident
Comment:
The effect of particular macro-prudential policies is very uncertain. We have neither solid models nor empirical studies to guide us. As long as the recovery is far from certain, it would make sense not to use bank rate increases, but to adopt macro-prudential policies such as those proposed by the Financial Policy Committee at its June meeting. But it may very well be that these are not effective and the Bank of England may have to seriously figure out how to use one instrument (bank rate) to ensure both financial stability and the continuation of the recovery.

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Question 1: Do you agree it is time for more robust policy action to prevent a build-up of excessive housing-related risk?

 

 
Answer:
Agree
Confidence level:
Not confident
Comment:
The increase in UK house prices is troublesome and a nontrivial risk factor given that the recovery of the UK economy has only just started and its continuation is far from certain.

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