Trends in bank profitability and factors affecting it are major indicators of changes in the state of health of national banking systems. This publication provides information on financial statements of banks in OECD member countries. The coverage of banks is not the same in each country, though the objective is to include all institutions that conduct ordinary banking business, namely institutions which primarily take deposits from the public at large and provide finance for a wide range of purposes. Some information on the number of reporting banks, their branches and staff is also included, as well as structural information regarding the whole financial sector. Moreover, ratios, based on various items of the financial statements of banks in percentage of some specific aggregates, are supplied to facilitate the analysis of trends in bank profitability of OECD countries.
A lack of finance for water resources management is a primary concern for most OECD countries. This is exacerbated in the current fiscal environment of tight budgets and strong fiscal consolidation, as public funding provides the lion’s share of financial resources for water management.
The report provides a framework for policy discussions around financing water resources management that are taking place at local, basin, national, or transboundary levels. The report goes beyond the traditional focus on financing water supply and sanitation to examine the full range of water management tasks that governments have to fulfill; when appropriate, a distinction is made on distinctive water issues.
The report identifies four principles (Polluter Pays, Beneficiary Pays, Equity, Policy Coherence), which have to be combined. In addition, it identifies five empirical issues, which have to be addressed on a case-by-case basis. Finally, it sketches a staged approach that governments might wish to consider, to assess the financial status of their water policies and to design robust financial strategies for water management. Case studies provide illustrations of selected instruments and how they can be used to finance water resources management.
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Given the current low interest rate environment and weak economic growth prospects in many OECD countries, institutional investors are increasingly looking for real asset classes which can deliver steady, preferably inflation-linked, income streams with low correlations to the returns of other investments. Clean energy projects may combine these sought-after characteristics.
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This definitional, stocktaking paper aims to provide a comprehensive review of the concepts and definitions related to „green‟ investments that are currently used in the market place.
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The OECD/INFE High level Principles on National Strategies for Financial Education provide international guidance to policy makers with a view to developing evidence-based, co-ordinated and tailored approaches to financial education, both in emerging markets and more advanced economies. G20 Leaders recognised the important role of financial education policies when they endorsed these Principles in 2012.
This report analyses the results of simulations using an agent based model of financial markets to show how excessive levels of leverage in financial markets can lead to a systemic crash. Investors overload on risky assets betting more than they have to gamble creating a tremendous level of vulnerability in the system as a whole. Plummeting asset prices render banks unable or unwilling to provide credit as they fear they might be unable to cover their own liabilities due to potential loan defaults. Whether an overleveraged borrower is a sovereign nation or major financial institution, recent history illustrates how defaults carry the risk of contagion in a globally interconnected economy. The resulting slowdown of investment in the real economy impacts actors at all levels, from small businesses to homebuyers. Bankruptcies lead to job losses and a drop in aggregate demand, leading to more businesses and individuals being unable to repay their loans, reinforcing a downward spiral that can trigger a recession, depression or bring about stagflation in the real economy. This can have a devastating impact not only on economic prosperity across the board, but also consumer sentiment and trust in the ability of the system to generate long-term wealth and growth.
OECD Working Paper on Finance, Insurance and Private Pensions, No.15: This paper presents the findings from a pilot study undertaken in 14 countries. The analysis focuses on variations in financial knowledge, behaviour and attitude across countries and within countries by socio-demographics.
Europe's sovereign debt crisis has exposed structural weaknesses in economic governance that now threaten the entire euro region. Efforts to reinforce public finances and preserve the currency union must go further than solutions proposed to date.
This project examines how policies can support the integration of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) into global value chains through creating and exploiting linkages between SMEs and Foreign Direct Investors (FDI). It involves assessments of current conditions and opportunities in three regions of Kazakhstan and makes recommendations for policy actions at national and local levels.
The effects of globalisation have been at the forefront of public debate in recent years, fuelled on the one hand by the large benefits of integrated markets, and on the other hand, by the detrimental adjustment effects often experienced by many economies as a result. Knowing how trade has been evolving over time and the role policy has played in this evolution are critical to understanding the globalisation debate and grasping the lessons for future policy development. The comparative advantage hypothesis has been suggested as one of the principal explanations of international trade and of the benefits associated with openness. It has also provided the intellectual underpinnings for most trade policy in the past 50 years. This book collects OECD work that builds on recent contributions to the theory and empirics of comparative advantage, putting particular emphasis on the role policy can play in shaping trade.