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The Challenges of the EU Banking Union - will it succeed in dealing with the next financial crisis?

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  • Ida-Maria Weirsøe Fallesen

    (European Commission, DG Competition, Cabinet of Commissioner Margrethe Vestager.)

Abstract

The EU Banking Union combines micro- and macro-prudential regulation. It aims at breaking the “doom loop” between banks and sovereign debt, promoting financial stability and mitigating the next financial shock to the real EU economy, at the lowest possible cost to the financial institutions and to the taxpayers. Success, or failure, is determined by how the banking union copes with the challenges to its two main pillars, the Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM) and the Single Resolution Mechanism (SRM). Under the SSM, in its new supervisory role, the ECB may be subject to conflicts between the objectives of price and financial stability, and the single-supervisor role may be sub-optimal. Two regulators might have been preferable and more focus on ECB accountability will now be required. The shock-absorbing Single Resolution Fund (SRF), which is part of the SRM, may not have the capacity to deal with a crisis of the size of the one of 2008. Especially as the nature and severity of a future financial crisis cannot be forecasted. The design of the banking union is not the result of theoretical studies, but a political compromise to deal with an acute crisis. The theoretical studies that are included in this paper are not supportive of the banking union in its current form. Nevertheless, there is a good chance that the EU Banking Union may succeed, as ECB supervision of the 123 systemically important banks should contain potential demands on the SRM. In the event of a crisis that is too severe for the banking union to absorb with its current capability, the crucial assumption is that there is political will to rapidly provide new resources. The same applies, if a major financial crisis develops before the banking union is fully operational.

Suggested Citation

  • Ida-Maria Weirsøe Fallesen, 2015. "The Challenges of the EU Banking Union - will it succeed in dealing with the next financial crisis?," Bruges European Economic Policy Briefings 36, European Economic Studies Department, College of Europe.
  • Handle: RePEc:coe:wpbeep:36
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Zsolt Darvas & Guntram B. Wolff, 2013. "Should Non-Euro Area Countries Join the Single Supervisory Mechanism?," DANUBE: Law and Economics Review, European Association Comenius - EACO, issue 2, pages 141-163, June.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Banking Union; supervision; resolution; Eurozone; financial crisis;

    JEL classification:

    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • F33 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
    • F36 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Financial Aspects of Economic Integration
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • O52 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Europe

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