Cyprus: The next blunder

Charles Wyplosz, 18 March 2013

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The decision to tax all Cypriot bank deposits has attracted massive attention (Spiegel 2013) – and rightly so. It is a huge blunder:

Topics: EU institutions, Macroeconomic policy
Tags: Cyprus, EU, Eurozone crisis

Avoiding an Italian bailout: Why and how

Francesco Giavazzi, 13 August 2012

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Spain has no options, but Italy does.

Topics: EU policies
Tags: EFSF, Eurozone crisis, Italian bailout, Spanish bailout

Watch the indices! Derivatives and the Eurozone sovereign debt crisis

Anne-Laure Delatte, Julien Fouquau, Richard Portes, 17 April 2014

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The job of government bond analysts has been tough since the Eurozone crisis started. They’ve had to tell their clients a story behind every single bond spread hike since the fall of 2009. The list includes concerns over peripheral sovereigns’ public finances, deterioration of the fundamentals, financial sector credit risk, and European institutional coordination failures.

Topics: Financial markets, Global crisis
Tags: Credit Default Swaps, Eurozone crisis

The increasing competitiveness of the southern Eurozone

Raphael Auer, 11 April 2014

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Current-account (CA) rebalancing is a necessary step for the Southern EZ countries to overcome their debt and external balance of payments crises.1 Figure 1 documents the impressive speed and magnitude of the southern EZ’s CA rebalancing.

Topics: Europe's nations and regions, International finance
Tags: current account rebalancing, eurozone, Eurozone crisis

Delivering the Eurozone ‘Consistent Trinity’

Marco Buti, Maria Demertzis, João Nogueira Martins, 30 March 2014

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As argued in an earlier commentary, the financial crisis exposed important economic inconsistencies in the way that EMU operated.1 Although progress has been made, the reality is that more needs to be done.

Topics: Europe's nations and regions, Macroeconomic policy
Tags: banking union, debt, EMU, euro, eurozone, Eurozone crisis, fiscal consolidation, fiscal policy, imbalances, internal devaluation, Stability and Growth Pact, structural reforms

The Eiffel group: A political community to rebuild the architecture of the euro

Agnès Benassy-Quéré, Shahin Vallee, 27 March 2014

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The idea that the European Monetary Union can only exist with some form of political integration and a proper budget is not new. In 1977, the MacDougall report suggested that a budget of the order of 5-7% of GDP was necessary, and in the run-up of the Maastricht treaty, Jacques Delors was insistent on the needs for political integration (see, e.g., Delors 1991).

Topics: EU institutions, EU policies
Tags: Eiffel group, eurozone, Eurozone crisis

The puzzling pervasiveness of dysfunctional banking

Charles W Calomiris interviewed by Romesh Vaitilingam, 21 Mar 2014

Charles Calomiris talks to Romesh Vaitilingam about his recent book, co-authored with Stephen Haber, ‘Fragile by Design: The Political Origins of Banking Crises and Scarce Credit’. They discuss how politics inevitably intrudes into bank regulation and why banking systems are unstable in some countries but not in others. Calomiris also presents his analysis of the political and banking history of the UK and how the well-being of banking systems depends on complex bargains and coalitions between politicians, bankers and other stakeholders. The interview was recorded in London in February 2014.

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See Also

Calomiris, C W and S H Haber (2014), Fragile by Design: The Political Origins of Banking Crises and Scarce Credit, Princeton University Press.

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Topics: Financial markets
Tags: bank capital, Bank credit, banking, banks, credit booms, Eurozone crisis, recapitalisation, systemic risk

TARGET balances, Bretton Woods, and the Great Depression

Michael Bordo, 21 March 2014

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During the Eurozone crisis, an analogy was made between the events in Europe between 2007 and 2012 and the collapse of the Bretton Woods System between 1968 and 1971. There has been a build-up of TARGET liabilities since 2007 by some central banks (notably Greece, Ireland, Portugal, and Spain, or the ‘GIPS’), and of TARGET assets by Germany and others.

Topics: Economic history, International finance
Tags: Bretton Woods, Central Banks, ECB, euro, Eurosystem, eurozone, Eurozone crisis, financial crisis, global imbalances, Great Depression, TARGET

A fiscal shock absorber for the Eurozone? Lessons from the economics of insurance

Daniel Gros, 19 March 2014

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Even before the euro crisis started, it had been widely argued that the Eurozone needed a mechanism to help countries overcome idiosyncratic shocks. The experience of the crisis itself seemed to make this case overwhelming, and throughout the EU institutions it is now taken for granted that the Eurozone needs a system of fiscal shock absorbers.

Topics: EU institutions, Macroeconomic policy, Welfare state and social Europe
Tags: euro, eurozone, Eurozone crisis, fiscal policy, fiscal shock absorbers, fiscal shocks, fiscal union, insurance

The AQR and stress testing the European banking system

Viral Acharya interviewed by Viv Davies, 14 Mar 2014

Viral Acharya talks to Viv Davies about his recent work with Sascha Steffen that, using publicly available data and a series of shortfall measures, estimates the capital shortfalls of EZ banks that will be stress-tested under the proposed Asset Quality Review. They also discuss the difference in accounting rules between US and EZ banks and the future potential for banking union in the Eurozone. The interview was recorded by phone on 25 February 2014.

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See Also

Acharya, V and S Steffen (2014) "Falling short of expectations? Stress-testing the European banking system", VoxEU.org, 17 January.

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Topics: Financial markets
Tags: Asset Quality Review, bank capital, banking, banking union, banks, Eurozone crisis, recapitalisation, stress testing, systemic risk

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