Ms. Yan M Sun, Ms. Pritha Mitra, and Mr. Alejandro Simone
This paper studies the factors behind pro-cyclical but widely varying construction shares (as a percent of GDP) across countries, with a strong focus on European countries. Using a dataset covering 48 countries (including advanced and emerging economies within and outside Europe) for 1990-2011, we find that country’s geography, demographics, and economic conditions are the key determinants of a norm around which actual construction shares revolve in a simple AR(1) and error-correction process. The empirical results show that in many European countries, construction shares overshoot relative to their norms before the recent global crisis, but they have fallen significantly since the crisis. Nevertheless, there is still room for further adjustment in construction shares in some countries which may weigh on economic recovery.
Various indicators place Cyprus’s banking system soundness ahead of emerging countries but behind advanced economies. This report discusses financial sector stability in Cyprus, using a combination of accounting-based and market-based indicators, and stress tests. Cypriot commercial banks are weaker than their counterparts in Greece and also less stable than cooperative banks in Cyprus. Credit risk appears as the main source of risk in the banking sector, with demand for real estate slowing, declining property price growth as well as Cyprus’s high household indebtedness.
This technical note presents factual update of International Organization of Securities Commissions Core Principles of Securities Regulation for Cyprus. There is provision in the law allowing for the sharing of information and cooperation with both domestic and foreign regulators. The Cyprus law transposing the European Union Prospectus and Transparency Directives, together with the company law and stock exchange law, provide accurate and timely disclosure of financial results and adequate safeguards in the fair and equitable treatment of shareholders.
The Compliance of the Basel Core Principles welcomes the assessors’ recognition of the overall quality and effectiveness of Cyprus’s banking regulatory and supervisory framework in place, and the resulting high degree of compliance with the Basel Core Principles. Regulation has to be defined to set a frame in which insurance undertakings can operate. Clear objectives and measures should be defined for the Superintendent of Insurance. The International Organization of Securities Commissions Principles was assessed in accordance with the criteria in the Guidance Note.
Cyprus is broadly compliant with International Organization of Securities Commission (IOSCO) core principles in a number of areas including enforcement, cooperation with domestic and foreign regulators, principles for issuers, principles for market intermediaries, and market regulation. The following statistical data are presented: composition of gross-fixed capital formation, tourist travels and receipts, wage and productivity indicators, price indices, implicit deflators, monetary survey, financial indicators, social insurance funds, direction of trade, invisible transaction, balance of payments, international reserves, imports by commodity, and so on.
Cyprus’s economic performance in the past quarter century has been impressive but volatile, as the economy has come to rely on tourism as the main engine of growth. Financial market restrictions, including the interest rate ceiling, limit the ability of the Central Bank of Cyprus to manage liquidity. Capital and financial market liberalization are planned to be implemented by the time of EU accession. Executive Directors commended the authorities for their efforts to improve the oversight of the offshore financial sector.