Press Releases The OEE has published the Overview of Savings in Europe

The OEE has published the Overview of Savings in Europe

Paris, Monday 1 March 2021: The OEE (Observatoire de l’Epargne Européenne), whose mission is to promote research on savings, has published its Overview of Savings in Europe with data of the third quarter of 2020.

The main key findings of this document are: 

– During the third quarter, governments gradually implemented end-lockdown measures. Economic activity rebounded in all the countries under review. Final consumption expenditures increased by 16% as compared to the second quarter, but their annual growth rate remained negative.

– The Covid-19 pandemic continued to weigh on economic activity in all European countries and on the behavior of households, who continued to save large amounts of money and reduced their use of consumer loans.

– Faced with economic uncertainties and the evolution of the epidemic in Europe, equity markets ended the quarter down in all the countries under review as compared to previous quarter (-3.9% on average), with the exception of Germany where the Dax index increased by 3.2%. Year-on-year, stock indices had a negative performance (-15% on average).

– After high record levels of saving rate observed during the second quarter, households continued to save large amounts of money during the third quarter (from 132 billion euros in Germany to 11.6 billion euros in Belgium). The quarterly savings income ratio, however, fell by 8 percentage points between the second and third quarter on average.

– A large part of this savings remained invested in liquid products. On average, outstanding amounts held in currency and sight deposits grew by 1.5% and by 11.6% year-on-year.

– The outstanding amounts of non-transferable deposits increased further, mainly in countries where there is a regulated savings offer (Belgium, France and the United Kingdom). The increase in these countries was more moderate (+ 1.2%) than during the second quarter (+ 2.6%).

– Portfolios of listed shares held directly by households suffered unrealized losses. Nevertheless, the positive flows in Germany, Belgium and France allowed to offset these capital losses during the quarter. Year-on-year, only German households recorded positive valuation of their assets (+ 11%), versus a negative valuation in the other countries (-9.8% on average).

– European households’ investment fund portfolio increased during the third quarter (+2%). Portfolio benefited from positive flows during the quarter in all countries except the United Kingdom, where households made withdrawals for 2.5 billion euros.

– In the third quarter of 2020, outstanding amounts of life insurance contracts and pension funds held by households increased further in all the countries under review compared to the previous quarter (+ 1.3% on average).

– Real estate markets were very dynamic at the end of the lockdown during the summer. New housing loan production rose in all countries after the decline observed during the second quarter. Annual growth of European households’ outstanding amounts of housing loans remained strong (+ 5.8% on average) in all the countries under review, with the exception of Spain where households continued to reduce their indebtedness (-1.7% over one year).

– After the first lockdown, production of new consumer loans increased during the third quarter, but it remained below pre-crisis levels. Outstanding amounts of consumer loans fell in most countries except Belgium and Italy. Since the outbreak of the Covid-19 crisis, British households have started to reduce their indebtedness (-8% year-on- year).

About the OEE :

The Observatoire de l’Epargne Européenne (OEE) is a non-profit association chaired by Jacques de Larosière. OEE’s mission is to promote research on savings in Europe, in order to better understand to role played by savings in economic growth and inform the public debate.

Every year, the OEE and its Scientific Committee, chaired by Christian Gollier, are selecting, through public tenders, prestigious academic teams to conduct studies on topics selected by its members. The works are discussed with professionals during seminars and conferences.

Since its creation in 1999, the OEE has conducted or supported more than 50 studies on savings, both descriptive and theoretical, and has put together a unique European statistical database.

To receive the full document, please contact:

Laetitia Gabaut : +33 (0) 9 87 53 71 05 /

Grégoire Naacke : +33 (0)6 17 87 26 95 /

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