Simon Wren-Lewis's picture
Affiliation: 
University of Oxford
Credentials: 
Professor of economics

Voting history

Monetary Policy and Inequality

Question 2: What role should inequality play in the monetary policy decisions (interest rate policy and quantitative easing)?

Answer:
Minimal role
Confidence level:
Confident

Question 1: How large is the impact of monetary policy on the joint distribution of income and wealth?

Answer:
Large
Confidence level:
Confident

Fiscal Rules in the European Monetary Union

Question 2: Which of the following is the one reform you would choose to improve fiscal rules?

Answer:
More flexible, countercyclical, or expenditure-based rules
Confidence level:
Extremely confident
Comment:
National fiscal rules should focus on real exchange rate (price level) harmonisation among EZ countries using national fiscal stimulus or contraction. If this is achieved then national debt will look after itself. If the EZ wants to reduce aggregate government debt, or increase it at the interest rate lower bound, it should be done uniformly across countries.

Proposition 1: The existing fiscal rules for European Monetary Union members require revision.

Answer:
Strongly agree
Confidence level:
Extremely confident
Comment:
Fiscal rules that focus on national government debt have caused the Eurozone great harm. It is time to rethink the whole basis of those rules, so they allow aggregate fiscal stimulus when interest rates hit their lower bound.

The “Spend Now, Tax Later” Budget

Question 3: Which of the following best characterizes the pace at which the budget addresses UK’s medium term fiscal challenges (deficit and debt)?

Answer:
Reduces deficits too rapidly
Confidence level:
Extremely confident
Comment:
Sunak has failed to learn from the US example. What should have been a budget for enhancing the recovery, greening the economy and helping those most badly hit by the pandemic. Instead it was a budget largely about reducing deficits. A clear indicator of Sunak's failure is that the OBR expect Bank interest rates to be 0.5% or less when fiscal consolidation starts. Osborne's failure is being repeated, with the only difference being a focus on tax rises rather than spending cuts.

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