Daily Newsletter - 24 June 2020


Macroeconomic News (4)

Daianu: An excessive relaxation of monetary policy, combined with a double-digit deficit, would destabilize the economy

"The pandemic has not been defeated, and the numbers are discouraging. If you don't have the cooperation of the citizens, if there is no partnership between those who manage public affairs, the business environment and, last but not least, the citizens, if you don't have them on your side, the situation will revert to very restrictive measures. You need the citizens on your side. And it will not be easy," said Daniel Daianu, president of the Fiscal Council.


Romanian investors withdrew 17 times less month from mutual funds in May

Investors in the 84 Romanian mutual funds overcame the panic experienced in March and their May investments were only RON 27.2 million below withdrawaks, according to data published by the Association of Fund Administrators (AAF) on Tuesday. Negative net subscriptions were almost 17 times lower in May, compared to April, but more than 162 times lower than in March.


Romanian aquaculture fish market reached 60,000 tons

The national market for aquaculture fish has reached 60,000 tons, 50% of the entire fish market, and is expected to exceed wild fish sales in the coming years, according to a report from Alfredo Seafood.


Economic activity is 55-60% of normal month

The economy is coming back to life after lifting restrictions on movement, but activity is still far from normal. Ciprian Dascalu, chief economist of BCR, said he expects a recovery shaped as a wider "V", provided there's no second wave of the epidemic at the end of this year or in 2021. Budget policies could further confuse future calculations, given that a 40% increase in pensions would push the deficit to an unsustainable level and lead to negative reports from rating agencies.


Financial News (4)

Exchange rate could pass RON 4.94 per EUR

The pandemic has created an extremely volatile and unpredictable environment on the foreign exchange market, according to specialists from brokerage house XTB Romania, which estimate that the trade imbalance and a drop in remittances could lead to a reference exchange rate of more than 4.94 per EUR. Compared to previous assessments, the tendency to reopen Europe's major economies and the loan financing plan, but especially the use of grants, suggest a slightly more optimistic outlook.


Banks expect borrowing standards to be tightened

Romanian banks saw a tightening of lending standards in the first quarter of 2020 and a decline in demand, and expect the trend to continue in the second quarter, especially in the case of consumer and short-term loans for SMEs. The lending survey conducted by the National Bank of Romania (BNR) in May and published on Tuesday shows that the COVID 19 pandemic has affected the risks taken on by banks.


SME Invest data

Around 7,418 loans worth RON 6.2 billion have been approved so far under the SME Invest program, according to information from the National Loan Guarantee Fund for SMEs (FNGCIMM). The banks registered with the program have rejected 12,390 applications so far.


Raiffeisen Bank adapts current account packages

Raiffeisen Bank offers customers who open current accounts between June 15 and September 30 a series of incentives to help them overcome the difficulties caused by the pandemic crisis. Thus, the ZERO Simple current account package will have zero costs in the first 6 months, while also waiving the monthly income requirement, according to a press release.


Investment News (1)

Overpass to be built in southern Bucharest

The Fourth District Hall and the Popesti Leordeni City Hall announced they would undertake the joint construction of an overpass in order to address the traffic jams in the area.


Legislative News (1)

Anti-tobacco bill is breach of freedom of choice

The Property Rights Alliance sent an official letter to the Chamber of Deputies regarding the anti-tobacco bill (PLx 587/2019). According to PRA, the bill is "restrictive, inefficient and a breach of the consumers' freedom of choice".


Politics (2)

Marcel Ciolacu says motion of censure signed by 202 MPs

Marcel Ciolacu, interim leader of the Social Democratic Party (PSD), said that the 202 signatures have already been collected for the upcoming motion of censure. The PSD, and any other party willing to join, will bring down the Cabinet and present President Iohannis with their own economic platform.


Nicusor Dan hopes right-wing parties will field joint candidates for district halls

Independent Deputy Nicusor Dan hopes right-wing parties will field joint candidates for Bucharest's district halls. "There is a strong desire among the people of Bucharest who vote for the opposition parties, and who are in the majority in the city, to see the PSD-Firea administration eliminated from the City Hall and the district halls, and I hope we will all have the wisdom to make an alliance," said Dan.


Social (1)

More than 15,000 complaints filed after National Evaluation

More than 15,000 complaints were filed after the National Evaluation exams, a drop from the 20,000 filed in previous years. More than half of complaints focused on the Romanian Language and Literature exam.