The Role of Institutional and Political Factors in the European Debt Crisis
Panico and Purificato argue that before 2007, flaws in the European institutional organization affected the cyclical and growth performance of the euro countries. After that date they contributed to an intensification of the conflicts among national political bodies and between them and the European authorities. These conflicts have favored the speculative attacks against some Government debts and exposed the peculiar conditions under which central banking is carried out in the euro area. They conclude that the institutional organization of the euro area must be reformed in such a way as to allow it to effectively pursue the objectives for which it was created, i.e. to protect the economies and the citizens from the instability of the international financial markets. The reforms must remove, as has been done in monetary policy, the cause of the “moral hazard” problem, i.e. the uncertainty as to the actual conduct of fiscal policy, and transform the current defensive attitudes of the different actors of the coordination process (i.e. the national political authorities and the central bank) into a cooperative and positive search for the most convenient mix of monetary and fiscal policy for the whole area.
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