1. Research
  2. Products & Topics
  3. Region
  4. Europe

European banks: Operating struggles and some external headwinds

January 15, 2019
Region:
Banks in Europe face a more difficult business environment in 2019 than last year. While the macro environment is still decent, momentum is cooling markedly. In addition, prominent political risks loom dangerously. On the operating side, banks are treading water. Their limited cost savings are being fully absorbed by declining revenues, and balance sheets continue to shrink despite a moderate pickup in lending. Profitability and capital levels are both stagnating. Only in a benign economic and political scenario will banks be able to return to growth this year. [more]

More documents about "Europe"

164 Documents
June 4, 2019
Region:
Analyst:
1
Artificial intelligence (AI) is a significant step forward in the digitalisation and transformation of modern businesses. Investors are lining up to be part of the imminent change. AI attracted USD 24 bn in investments globally in 2018, a twelvefold increase since 2013. Within Europe, Germany, France and the UK are the frontrunners in experimentation and in the implementation of AI. Similar to earlier examples of information technology (IT) implementation in financial services, AI promises great efficiency gains and potential revenue increases and its potential contribution to bank profitability should not be underestimated. [more]
May 23, 2019
Region:
2
Shrinkage – and no end in sight: in the first quarter of the year, the European banks once more saw revenues and costs alike decline compared to 12 months ago (-2% each). Non-interest income was particularly weak. As a result, profitability dipped, with loan loss provisions also rising, albeit from very low levels. Banks tried to make up for the revenue loss by taking more risk and expanding their balance sheets. Total assets and risk-weighted assets both increased by 4%. Consequently, the average CET1 capital ratio fell 0.4 pp yet remained in comfortable territory. [more]
May 23, 2019
Region:
3
Results from the 23-26 May EU elections will not be published before late Sunday evening, final numbers not before Monday morning. Polls continue to indicate a loss of the conservatives' and social democrats' traditional majority while right-wing and left-wing Eurosceptics could gain more than 35% of the seats in the next EP. We do not expect any Council decisions on the next Commission President and other key positions before the June 20-21 summit. But negotiations between leaders on the EU's top jobs could last much longer and also a lengthy standoff between the Council and Parliament over the "Spitzenkandidaten" procedure cannot be excluded. [more]
May 21, 2019
Region:
4
Digital taxation is currently a subject of intense debate and since large digital companies are widely thought to pay inappropriately low taxes, policymakers remain under pressure to act. However, all approaches which are based on the taxation of revenues instead of profits have major flaws. As digital services expand into ever new areas of the economy (‘smart everything’), the risk of a far-reaching, arbitrary taxation of entrepreneurial activities is increasing. Disruption, the buzzword of the digitalisation discussions, may become an issue in international tax policy, too. In addition to an (international) digital tax, minimum taxes are one of the concepts under discussion. [more]
May 6, 2019
Region:
5
The May European Parliament elections could see Germany's conservative CDU/CSU and Social Democrats lose a substantial share of votes compared to the last round in 2014, whereas the Greens could overtake the SPD and become the second strongest party. Compared to European peers, the appeal of the far-right AfD to German voters remains far more limited. Still, the AfD could expand its share and rank fourth, followed by the Liberals and the far-left Leftist party. Shifts of voters' support between centrist parties will not have a substantial impact on Germany's generally pro-European stance. However, these parties still represent different views on the future of the EU, e.g. regarding further EMU deepening. [more]
April 11, 2019
Region:
6
Soft and hard EU(ro)sceptic as well as anti-establishment parties could account for one-quarter up to one-third of the seats in the next EP, according to our updated poll-based projections. We have doubts about whether Eurosceptic and nationalistic groups in the EP will be able to overcome their previous discrepancies and build a significantly more united bloc. However, even without a joint agenda, Eurosceptics could make coalition building (as on the national level) much more complex and increasingly split the next EP into two camps. [more]
April 3, 2019
Region:
7
At the recent meeting of the Governing Council on 7 March 2019, the ECB decided to maintain an extremely expansionary degree of monetary accommodation in future. It now announced to keep target rates at their present extraordinarily low levels at least through year-end 2019 – instead of just "through the summer", as previously pledged. Furthermore, it reiterated that it intends to maintain the huge size of EMU sovereign bond holdings purchased between March 2015 and the end of December 2018 for an incalculable period of time. As a consequence, principal payments from maturing securities bought under the APP (asset purchase programme), including sovereign bonds from the PSPP portfolio (public sector purchase programme) have to be reinvested in full. This ought to support demand for EMU bonds for some time to come, putting downward pressure on yields. [more]
March 25, 2019
Region:
8
While digitalisation does promise significant additional prosperity, it also threatens to lead to higher inequality. A major automation wave or increasingly capital-intensive production would reduce the overall wage share and raise corporate and capital income. According to our scenario analysis, the EU countries would, on average, have to deal with a huge annual fiscal deficit if automation dramatically reduced employment. It is uncertain how digitalisation will affect the demand for labour and the public finances. Nevertheless, governments should try and prepare their countries for the future, for example by paying more attention to education policy and adapting the international tax system to the realities of the 21st century, for example in the field of corporate taxation. [more]
February 28, 2019
Region:
9
In 2018, net income at the major European banks climbed to its highest level since the financial crisis. Lower administrative expenses and a further fall in loan loss provisions to multi-year lows more than made up for a decline in revenues. Whereas net interest income stabilised, fee and commission income as well as trading income declined. Banks took a bit more risk, and risk-weighted assets edged up. Total capital remained flat despite higher profits as banks increased returns to shareholders and implemented the new IFRS 9 accounting standard. Consequently, capital ratios declined for the first time since 2008. The gap between European banks and their US peers remained huge as the latter benefited from higher interest rates and lower corporate taxes. [more]
February 28, 2019
Region:
10
The outcome of the EU elections and the composition of the new Parliament will significantly influence the nomination and election of the next President of the European Commission (EC). Parliament will vote for the Council's proposed candidate in a secret ballot with a majority of component MEPs required. The election of the Commission President will be particularly challenging this year. Given the projected new balance of power after the elections both within the EP and within the Council as well as between the EP and the EU Council, an institutional stalemate cannot be ruled out. [more]
February 13, 2019
Region:
11
Ahead of the May 23–26 European Parliament elections, the EU is surrounded by internal and external challenges, its leaders increasingly divided, and its integrity and credibility challenged by Eurosceptic and anti-European groups across the continent. An extension of Article 50 could push the Brexit date close to or even beyond the European elections. Under EU treaties the UK would then be required to participate in the vote. The implications for the next EP – both if the UK agreed and refused to hold elections – could bear risks for the unanimity required in the European Council for an extension of Article 50 beyond the election date. [more]
November 15, 2018
Region:
12
Tensions in financial markets have increased significantly since the populist/Eurosceptic Five Star/League in Italy took power in May and presented a budget in violation of EU rules. In an unprecedented move, the European Commission sent Rome back to the drawing board. Italy has now provided the Commission with its latest fiscal plan – which is not much different from the old plan. [more]
2.1.5