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Whither the TARGET2 System? Taking a Glance at the Real Economic Facets of the Euro-Area Debt Crisis

  • Christian Fahrholz
  • Andreas Freytag

The TARGET2-system impedes economic recovery within the EMU. Hard budget constraints are a key to kick-start structural reforms in some EMU-member countries. However, the TARGET2-system is not only aggravating real misalignments but also softening budget constraints. The authors argue that the European settlement system is not only a monetary issue but of real concern for the survival of the euro area. The real economic causes of the exceptional TARGET2-balances in the euro system can be illustrated by means of the distinction between core and peripheral countries. In this respect, the core countries—such as Germany, Finland, Netherlands and, Austria—are characterized by current account surpluses (net capital exporters or net creditors), while the periphery is generally characterized by current account deficits (net capital importers or net debtors). A discussion of means to reduce the TARGET2-imbalances closes the paper.

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.3790/aeq.57.1.15
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Article provided by Duncker & Humblot, Berlin in its journal Applied Economics Quarterly.

Volume (Year): 57 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 15-25

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Handle: RePEc:aeq:aeqaeq:v57_y2011_i1_q1_p15-25
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