Macron’s actual economic record: between “very good” and “better”

Observers are required to make clear judgments, especially in our politicized countries. Modern media formats and social networks emphasize this demand for unconditional commitment. You will be asked to show whether Emmanuel Macron’s economic balance sheet is magnificent (see unemployment rate) or whether the country is weaker than ever (look at public debt).

This all doesn’t make much sense. Every rating has its pros and cons, good surprises and disappointments. In this column, we set aside the economic management of the crisis, which we have set aside several examples on these pages, to focus on the reforms implemented from the beginning of the five-year term, and their effects are measurable. ..

Relaxation of labor law

Let’s start with the best. Labor orders in 2017 under the leadership of Muriel Penico and recent reforms to limit access to unemployment insurance. These ordinances, in fact, almost eliminate the country from 35 hours a week and give us new adaptability by giving companies the ability to break out of branch contracts on issues such as working hours.

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More generally, they completed the labor market flexibility work that Nicolas Sarkozy started with the introduction of traditional breaks and Francois Hollande used the El Comri method. Results: By the end of 2021, the unemployment rate fell to 7.4% of the active population, and more importantly, the unemployment rate for ages 15-64 reached record levels of 67.8%, which is true with learning support. Was helped. Although we are still far from full employment, these figures, which look mediocre in many countries, are excellent in terms of French economic history. For 20 years, all governments have endeavored to improve the functioning of the labor market. It was rewarded.

The best part is also the capital tax exemption that makes our country particularly attractive to foreign investors. According to Ernst & Young, France received more foreign direct investment in 2019 and 2020 than the United Kingdom and Germany. What will change! In fact, our image outside France has improved considerably. There is still room to increase investment to make France the most attractive country in Europe. It is within our reach.

Ability to re-industrialize oneself

It is this attraction that determines our ability to re-industrialize. So far, even with a slight increase in industrial employment, our terrible foreign trade deficit (€ 85 billion in 2021) continues to produce much more than what France buys. Indicates that there is no such thing. It’s too early to talk about the current majority of failures. Because the trade deficit is more than 20 years old, it is clearly premature to assess the effects of production tax cuts and France’s 2030 plan. More than relevance. However, it seems clear that France has not yet provided the means to become a major industrialized country, and even a country that creates innovation.

We confirm that about 20 unicorns (startups with valuations over € 1 billion) are large but small and poorly represented in highly technologically intensive sectors. I’m gargling without. On this subject of production / innovation, we have not yet taken all actions that enable the liberation of the French genius. There are still some absolutely basic subjects that have only been touched upon in the last five years. In particular, public spending (including failed attempts to reform pensions) and housing.


We apologize for the lack of excess that prevents this chronicle from becoming panegyric or aggressive. Maybe that’s the price of honesty. In one of his letters in 1839, Tocqueville confessed that he was in the middle of an intellectual and ethnically strict, but difficult to defend and painful to live. It doesn’t make friends or enemies. It’s a bad situation, if any, “he said.



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