Jaume Guardiola, guest at the IDEC Annual Dinner

The IDEC-Universitat Pompeu Fabra gave its annual dinner for members of the Board of Trustees, Council of Studies and sponsoring and collaborating companies on 21st November last. The event was hosted by the rector of the Pompeu Fabra University and president of IDEC, Josep Joan Moreso, and took place, as is now customary, in the main IDEC building in Barcelona.

On this occasion, the guest speaker was Jaume Guardiola, CEO and Director General of Banc Sabadell. His links with IDEC-Universitat Pompeu Fabra go back to the Institute?s first years, when, as Director General of Banca Catalana, he sat on the Board of Trustees and the Governing Council.

Prior to his present position with Banc Sabadell, Jaume Guardiola was in charge of the BBVA in Argentina (Banco Francés) and Mexico (Bancomer).

In his speech, Guardiola talked about the situation generated in the United States and other international markets by the subprimes crisis and the possible repercussions of this global crisis on the Spanish financial system. Guardiola observed that these were two different situations, which would have different solutions. He emphasized that the crucial period in the subprimes crisis will be the first quarter of 2008, when it is expected that the real value of investments in high-risk mortgages will be made public. Though the situation in Spain is different because there are no subprime mortgages in this country, the coincidence of the global financial crisis with the end of the expansion phase in the property sector has created a feeling of uncertainty among international investors. This is why it is so important for Spanish financial institutions are to convince foreign investors that the Spanish economy is sufficiently solvent, as it has proved itself to be in recent years when it has been at the forefront of the European economy, and is therefore a good market for investment.

The dinner was also attended by a number of leading figures from the Catalan business community and consular representatives of the various Latin American countries with which IDEC maintains close ties.