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Just Round the Corner? Pros, Cons, and Implementation Issues of a Fiscal Union for the Euro Area

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  • Fabrizio Balassone
  • Sandro Momigliano
  • Marzia Romanelli
  • Pietro Tommasino

Abstract

The experience of a number of successful monetary unions and economic theory suggest that the euro area would benefit from the establishment of a supranational fiscal capacity, provided its design keeps the risk of moral hazard at bay. Institutional reforms prompted by the crisis (e.g., the European Stability Mechanism and the banking union) are introducing - though to a limited extent - elements of crosscountry risk sharing. Nevertheless, among European institutions there is a broad consensus that further steps are needed. Proposals to create a sort of rainy-day fund present major practical difficulties - associated, inter alia, with the uncertainty characterising the identification of shocks in real time. A more appropriate solution, consistent with how risk sharing operates in existing federations, may be to centralize specific public functions. One often-discussed possibility is the introduction of a common unemployment benefit scheme. We argue that consideration could also be given to the creation of a euro-wide, notional defined-contribution pension scheme.

Suggested Citation

  • Fabrizio Balassone & Sandro Momigliano & Marzia Romanelli & Pietro Tommasino, 2018. "Just Round the Corner? Pros, Cons, and Implementation Issues of a Fiscal Union for the Euro Area," ECONOMIA PUBBLICA, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2018(1), pages 5-34.
  • Handle: RePEc:fan:epepep:v:html10.3280/ep2018-001001
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    2. Riccardo De Bonis, 2016. "What Piketty said in Capital in the Twenty-first Century and how economists reacted," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 130, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.
    3. Pablo Burriel & Panagiotis Chronis & Maximilian Freier & Sebastian Hauptmeier & Lukas Reiss & Dan Stegarescu & Stefan Van Parys, 2020. "A fiscal capacity for the euro area: lessons from existing fiscal-federal systems," Occasional Papers 2009, Banco de España.
    4. Francesco Spadafora, 2020. "Completing the Economic and Monetary Union: Wisdom Come Late?," Italian Economic Journal: A Continuation of Rivista Italiana degli Economisti and Giornale degli Economisti, Springer;Società Italiana degli Economisti (Italian Economic Association), vol. 6(3), pages 379-409, November.
    5. Alessandro Borin & Elisa Macchi & Michele Mancini, 2018. "Eu transfers and euroscepticism: can’t buy me love?," ECON - Working Papers 289, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.
    6. Andrea Brandolini & Francesca Carta & Francesco D'Amuri, 2016. "A Feasible Unemployment-Based Shock Absorber for the Euro Area," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(5), pages 1123-1141, September.
    7. Fabrizio Balassone & Sara Cecchetti & Martina Cecioni & Marika Cioffi & Wanda Cornacchia & Flavia Corneli & Gabriele Semeraro, 2016. "Risk Reduction and Risk Sharing in the Governance of the Euro Area," Politica economica, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 3, pages 463-488.
    8. Olanubi, Sijuola Orioye & Osode, Oluwanbepelumi Esther & Adegboye, Abiodun Adewale, 2020. "Public sector efficiency in the design of a euro-area social benefit scheme," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 615-627.
    9. Francesco Spadafora, 2019. "European integration in the time of mistrust," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 512, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
    • F42 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - International Policy Coordination and Transmission
    • H77 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism

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