Vatican releases new document on finance


A new Vatican document called Oeconomicae et pecuniariae quaestiones (Economic and Monetary Questions) outlines sound general principles, but also reflects the Church’s present struggle to comprehend modern finance, says Sam Gregg. 

The first substantive point to note about Oeconomicae pecuniariae et quaestiones is that it’s free of populist hyperbole like “this economy kills!” There’s no demonization of capital. Indeed, the document states that money “is a good instrument . . . a means to order one’s freedom and to expand one’s possibilities” (15).

The financial sector likewise is presented as “something positive” insofar as it engages in circulating capital (15). ….

But what’s especially missing in the document’s third section is any consideration of the way that excessive regulation distorts the workings of the financial sector. In multiple places, Oeconomicae et pecuniariae quaestiones insists that the financial sector requires more regulations and regulators. The difficulty is that the financial sector, especially in developed economies, is already heavily regulated.