January 23, 2022

An increase in the livret A rate announced in January, according to Le Maire

“The rate of the livret A will increase in January”, according to the Minister of the Economy Bruno Le Maire (Denis CHARLET / AFP / Archives)

“The rate of the livret A will increase in January,” Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire said Monday on BMTV / RMC, without specifying by how much.

His ministry told AFP that the rate increase will be proposed by the government in January and will take place on February 1.

The governor of the Banque de France François Villeroy de Galhau had for his part already indicated Friday on RTL that the calculation of the rate of the livret A would integrate the inflation of the last six months.

“I cannot give you a figure: the governor of the Banque de France will make a proposal,” said the minister.

Asked by AFP, the Banque de France was not able to put forward a figure either, the proposal not being officially made to the government until mid-January.

It is however possible to have an estimate by recalling that the rate of remuneration of the Livret A is calculated by making the average between, on the one hand, the average of the inflation rate of the last six months and, on the other hand, the average of the interbank rates, that is, the rates at which banks exchange money in the short term. The result is then rounded to the nearest tenth of a point, without being able to fall below 0.5%, the current rate.

According to Philippe Crevel, director of the Cercle de l’Epargne, the new Livret A rate should be “between 0.7% and 1%”, given that inflation should reach on average 2% over the last six months while that interbank rates have been moving for several months around -0.5%.

Despite a level of remuneration at the lowest level, the Livret A, which is used in particular to finance social housing in France, has become a safe haven for savers during the health crisis which has seen its outstandings jump.

But since May, net inflows have slowed sharply, while consumption has picked up and inflation has picked up.

Savings and inflation
Savings and inflation (/ AFP)

Bruno Le Maire explained that the fight against the effects of inflation on purchasing power must be based on the following triptych: “protection against the increase in energy prices, 50% of the increase in inflation is that, protection against the increase in the prices of current consumption in the mass distribution and also an increase in remuneration so that people do not lose money in the accounts in which they have placed their savings “.

Asked about a possible boost for the minimum wage on January 1, he replied that “we are the only developed country where the minimum wage is indexed to inflation”.