8th SUERF & UniCredit Foundation Research Prize and Workshop
Date: 22 April 2021
Venue: Cisco Webex Events
The Global Financial Crisis and COVID-19 crisis have, among many other things, also affected savings behaviour. Changes involve both aggregate household savings ratios, individual propensity to consume and to save, as well as portfolio choice. While the post-GFC and COVID-induced very low interest rates have likely reduced income motives for saving, crises put precautionary savings into the foreground. In the COVID-19 crisis, new attention was directed to savings motives, given the impossibility to consume, resulting in “forced savings”. The COVID-19 crisis also raises the question whether consumption and household savings behaviour will change more permanently, and beyond the time of the constraints imposed by the pandemic and related containment measures. Such changes would have important permanent consequences on aggregate demand, structural employment/unemployment, potential growth, the sectoral composition of output, the natural rate of interest and, as a result, the environment in which fiscal and monetary policies act.
|Thursday, 22 April 2021|
|13:30||Welcome & opening|
Presentation - pdf
|14:30||8th SUERF UniCredit Foundation Award: Paper Presentations|
Chair: Maurizio Beretta, Chairman, UniCredit Foundation
Presentation - pdf
|15:00||Panel: COVID and savings behaviour: What lessons? Any lasting impact?|
Moderator: Arne Holzhausen, Head of Insurance, Wealth and Trend Research, Allianz SE
Jens Ulbrich, Director, Deutsche Bundesbank
Savings rates (the share of savings in households" disposable income) have doubled in many countries during the COVID-19 pandemic, as a result of the impossibility to consume due to lockdowns and other containment measures, while households" and businesses" income losses were supported by government aid.
Will households, once the lockdowns will be over, reduce their savings rates back to pre-crisis levels? Will they seek to run down their stock of savings accumulated during the pandemic to pre-crisis levels? Will this leed to a spending spree and trigger a vigorous economic recovery? Or are higher savings here to stay, implying a lacklustre economic recovery? And how has portfolio choice been affected by the COVID and the very low risk-free interest rate? Will there be lasting changes, e.g. towards stocks and real estate?