Download Open Issues in European Central Banking by Lorenzo Bini Smaghi PDF

By Lorenzo Bini Smaghi

With the beginning of EMU, the Eurosystem has taken over financial coverage for the eleven nations of the Euro-area. however the department of powers in the Eurosystem, among the ecu significant financial institution and the constituent nationwide principal Banks, isn't passable. This quantity presents an research of the strengths and weaknesses of the Eurosystem and provides concrete proposals in regards to the decision-making organs, stability sheets and the distribution of seigniorage.

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Central bank intervention to bailout a bank, however, causes substantial distortionary effects. Even if the intervention is sterilized, re-distributive effects occur across all market participants. If central bank money is allocated directly to one or a few credit institutions, possibly at a subsidized rate, the remaining amount of liquidity has to be allocated at a higher rate than otherwise would be the case. The other market participants are indirectly called upon to pay for the subsidy to the institutions in difficulty.

To be sure, the supervision exercised by a foreign supervisory authority cannot be compared, in terms of quality, intensity, and thus in terms of costs, to that exercised by the local authority. As long as the foreign bank is a small branch, with limited activity, the difference in treatment may not be too worrisome. If instead the foreign bank is large, and competes with the local banks, the difference in treatment may create substantial distortions. The development of pan-European banking groups and the acceleration of cross-border banking activity magnify these distortions.

These concepts have not been fully harmonized across the European Union. Another example concerns the definition of own funds, which is sufficiently broad in the directive to enable very different interpretations by national regulators. The same applies to the valuation of asset risks for calculating capital adequacy ratios, which may differ from country to country. Differences in accounting practices are another 32 Open Issues in European Central Banking factor that provides substantial leeway for national differences in implementingdirectives.

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