Past Event

The search for fiscal discipline and financial integration in the euro area: lessons from US history

On 27 November Vitor Gaspar, Adviser at Banco Portugal and former Finance Minister of Portugal came to Bruegel and speak about the search for fiscal discipline and financial integration in the euro area and what Europe can learn from US history. The presentation discussed how the US solved the challenge of honoring the debt accumulated […]

Date: Nov 27 - Topic: Macroeconomic policy

On 27 November Vitor Gaspar, Adviser at Banco Portugal and former Finance Minister of Portugal came to Bruegel and speak about the search for fiscal discipline and financial integration in the euro area and what Europe can learn from US history.

The presentation discussed how the US solved the challenge of honoring the debt accumulated during the War of Independence. The possibility of federal insolvency was one of the main motivations leading to the 1789 Constitution. A key priority was to establish Public Credit.

The problem was addressed in a comprehensive way. Alexander Hamilton thought throught the main elements of a financial program in the 1780s. He then went on to implemented as the first secretary of the US Treasury. That gave the US one of the most advanced financial systems in the world fostering growth and development.

But the years from 1789 to the 1930s were eventful. The US experienced episodes of financial crises and financial fragmentation. The interaction between financial policies and politics was pervasive.

US financial history helps the understanding of financial integration, financial stability and crises, fiscal profligacy and discipline. The process is particularly interesting when looked at from an European perspective.

Speakers

  • Vítor Gaspar, Special Adviser at Banco Portugal and former Finance Minister of Portugal
  • André Sapir, Senior fellow at Bruegel and Professor at ULB
  • Chair: Guntram Wolff, Director of Bruegel

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Practical details

Venue: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels
Time: Wednesday 27 November 2013, 12:45 – 14:30 (A light lunch will be served before the event)
Contact:Matilda Sevón, Events Coordinator – matilda.sevon[at]bruegel.org

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