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“Die SNB schuldet den Pensionskassen nichts (Nothing the SNB Owes to Pension Funds),” NZZ, 2019

Summary:
NZZ, March 13, 2019. PDF. Long-term real interest rates do not reflect monetary policy. In the recent past, monetary policy has contributed to lower fixed-income interest rates but also to higher returns on other asset classes. Complaining about low rates but not adjusting one’s portfolio makes little sense; there is no “financial repression.” If politicians want to subsidize pension funds they should contribute funds from the government budget rather than asking the central bank to contribute. Larger and earlier SNB dividend payouts to the government may not be in the government’s interest.

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NZZ, March 13, 2019. PDF.

  • Long-term real interest rates do not reflect monetary policy.
  • In the recent past, monetary policy has contributed to lower fixed-income interest rates but also to higher returns on other asset classes.
  • Complaining about low rates but not adjusting one’s portfolio makes little sense; there is no “financial repression.”
  • If politicians want to subsidize pension funds they should contribute funds from the government budget rather than asking the central bank to contribute.
  • Larger and earlier SNB dividend payouts to the government may not be in the government’s interest.
Dirk Niepelt
Dirk Niepelt is Director of the Study Center Gerzensee and Professor at the University of Bern. A research fellow at the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR, London), CESifo (Munich) research network member and member of the macroeconomic committee of the Verein für Socialpolitik, he served on the board of the Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics and was an invited professor at the University of Lausanne as well as a visiting professor at the Institute for International Economic Studies (IIES) at Stockholm University.

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