Policy brief

Debt restructuring in the euro area: A necessary but manageable evil?

Publishing date
21 June 2011
Authors
Zsolt Darvas

There are two possible responses to the Greek debt crisis: ‘Plan A’, continued official lending, for as long as needed, with possible voluntary private sector involvement, and ‘Plan B’, coercive pre-emptive or post-default restructuring with significant face value reduction. Both options have risks, but it is necessary to move to Plan B sooner or later. The impact on Greece could be mitigated by foreign bank ownership and proper liquidity support measures. The direct spillover impact on the rest of the euro area seems small. But there is the risk of contagion, which is a serious concern. There is a cautious case for delaying somewhat Plan B in order to prepare for it.

About the authors

  • Zsolt Darvas

    Zsolt Darvas, a Hungarian citizen, joined Bruegel as a Visiting Fellow in September 2008 and continued his work at Bruegel as a Research Fellow from January 2009, before being appointed Senior Fellow from September 2013. He is also a Senior Research Fellow at the Corvinus University of Budapest.

    From 2005 to 2008, he was the Research Advisor of the Argenta Financial Research Group in Budapest. Before that, he worked at the research unit of the Central Bank of Hungary (1994-2005) where he served as Deputy Head.

    Zsolt holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Corvinus University of Budapest where he teaches courses in Econometrics but also at other institutions since 1994. His research interests include macroeconomics, international economics, central banking and time series analysis.

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