Interview to Juan March

Little biography:

– Bachelor of Laws from the University of Alicante in 1986.
– Preparation for three years of opposition to notary.
– Incorporation in 1990 at Banco Urquijo SA, where he developed commercial management role until 1993. In that year he joined as director of Banco Urquijo to the office located in Alicante.
– In late 1994, he became part of La Caixa, office number 2354 in San Blas
since 2008 he is director of the Office 1534 by Playa de San Juan (Alicante)

1. Could you describe your job?

Since 2008 I hold the position of director of La Caixa’s at Playa de San Juan (Alicante).

2. How did you obtain this job and how has been your career in the firm?

They appointed me to the position when the former director of that office was given the position of area manager. Before that I was director of another office of the same firm since 1994.

3. Has the company change since you go in?

Yes, the firm has change enormously since 1994, but it has also change the financial system.

4.Has the financial crisis directly affected your job? And the company? In which way?

Obviously, the position of director of a financial institution has suffered a radical change since the start of the financial crisis. When the crisis started, with the explosion of the USA mortgage crisis, the job of director of Savings Banks changed. In that moment the bank was called Caixabank, it had connotations of attention to the small thrifty and it was thrown in to the market of the private saving. Where the majority of the clients work with saving passbook and the fixed term deposit when they had

a leverage of the medium-term money. The family economy predominated with their mortgage on the family home as the only debt and the social labour was an added value and characteristic of the company. The Savings Banks, in general, throw an important percentage of their credit activity around the mortgages and everything related to it. The Crisis and its consolidation have brought to the sector an evolution since 2008 which was not know off in centuries. The Savings Banks have disappeared and they become Banks, almost with no time to assume the change and what it means. They have change to segment their base of costumers and to increase the roll of the medium and small enterprise, and also to augment the commercial factor and the sales. Until now, the perfectly know to manage the Banks, because they know what was to respond before the owner and the actionists.

5. How has the housing bubble affected Spain? And, especially to the zone where you work?

The Housing Bubble has affected Spain much more than other countries, mainly because our country has thrown its growth in the lasts years in the property sector, now known as the brick sector.

I develop my job in the Comunidad Valenciana, and this region has suffered the financial crisis much more than the rest, because the building has been one of the main stands of the regional economy during the last fifteen year which has given rise to Valencia, Alicante and Castellon to experience in its economy an important decline and a shocking rise in unemployment, with a high rate of arrears.

6. Do you think that is possible to get out of the crisis?

It will be possible but also slowly. The problem of the crisis in Europe is different to the one produced in United States. In the USA exists a unique policy in the different states while in the Euro Zone there as many fiscal and economic policies as there are countries that set it up. This gives place to a process of slowing down in every aspect and this makes things more difficult and slowly to every improvement in economic matters. Because the countries don’t realize that we have to do things all together to evolve positively in the different economies.

7. Do you think that Spain will exit of the Crisis sooner than other countries? Why?

I think that our country will take longer that in other countries like France and Germany, because the exposition of construction is much higher. The majority of the unemployment comes directly from construction or dependent sectors of it.

8. Do you consider that is advisable to continue with the euro?

I understand that it is advisable to continue with the Euro, but I also think that for this to continue is necessary a common policy and that Europe is not managed by a country own wants. If the governments doesn’t realize this and put it into practice, the better solution will be to eliminate the Euro and for each country to go back to its original currency, with its own fiscal and economic policies.

9. The measures that the Spanish government has adopt, do you think that are correct? In which way?

I think that they are correct, but they have been implemented too late. I also think that we must be patience to see the effects. However the reduction of the public deficit is not the solution of the crisis. It is necessary a philosophy of growth and for this we need to increase the expenses the enough for this.

10.Do you think that the economic aids to the financial institution will be enough?

I think that they should be enough, but we don’t have to forget that there are good, medium and bad Banks. And we don’t have to put them in the same basket. Because sometimes a rotten apple could affect the whole batch.

By Patricia Martínez Vicent


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