Europe's nations and regions

Marina Feliciano, Ethan Ilzetzki, Borui Niklas Zhu, 24 May 2022

The April 2022 CfM survey asked members of its European panel to assess the effects of an embargo on Russian gas on the German and EU economies. The majority of panellists assesses that an embargo on Russian gas would cut one to three percentage points from German GDP growth in 2022-3, if the German government offsets the costs with well-targeted fiscal policy. Estimates increase if the German government were to take no offsetting action. Additionally, a large majority thinks that the EU could weather such a ban with costs in the one to three percentage point range, even absent offsetting fiscal or monetary measures.

Maarten Verwey, Laura Bardone, Kristian Orsini, 20 May 2022

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has led the European Commission to revise its EU growth outlook downwards, and the forecast for inflation upwards. As this column discusses, by exerting further upward pressures on commodity prices, causing renewed supply disruptions and increasing uncertainty, the war is exacerbating pre-existing headwinds to growth, which were previously expected to subside. Nevertheless, the economy is expected to keep expanding, and inflation is set to gradually decline towards, though remain above, 2% throughout the forecast horizon. Should further disruptions in energy markets occur, the economy would not escape stagflation.  

Ethan Ilzetzki, 13 April 2022

The March 2022 CfM survey asked the members of its UK panel how the Bank of England and the UK Treasury should respond to the economic fallout of the war in Ukraine on the UK economy. A solid majority of the panel think that the Bank of England should slow the pace of interest rate increases planned this year due to the events in Eastern Europe. The panel is nearly unanimous that the government should increase public spending, but is split on whether increased spending should exceed inflation and on whether taxes should be increased or cut in response to recent events.  

Viktor Tsyrennikov, 06 April 2022

Since Russia’s full-scale offensive began in late February 2022, many civilians have died and Ukraine has suffered massive destruction of its infrastructure. This column attempts to put a figure to the economic damage suffered by Ukraine by comparing its growth path to that of similar Eastern European countries. It estimates that the combined effect of Russia’s 2014 invasion and the current war will cause damage in the region of $1.36 trillion to the Ukrainian economy. And unless there is a large spur in Ukraine’s growth potential, these losses will continue to grow for several year.

Ethan Ilzetzki, 10 February 2022

Consumer prices in the UK rose by 5.4% (year-on-year) in December 2021, the highest annual rate of inflation since the UK adopted an inflation target in 1992. The January CfM survey asked a panel of experts on the UK economy to evaluate the causes and prospects of the current inflation surge. The panel was nearly unanimous in thinking it was caused by supply side factors that are mostly global in nature (commodity prices, supply chain disruptions) and fall outside government control. The majority of the panel believes that inflation will not persist beyond 2022. 

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