Working paper

EU financial services policy since 2007: crisis, responses and prospects

This paper presents a holistic overview and assessment of the European Union (EU)’s financial services policy since the start of its financial crisis

Publishing date
21 June 2018
Authors
Nicolas Véron

This paper has been first published in Global Policy Volume 9, Supplement 1, June 2018, and available here. It is republished by Bruegel with permission.

This paper presents a holistic description and assessment of the European Union’s financial services policy since the start of financial crisis in mid-2007. The decade-long sequence is divided into four themes, in broadly chronological order: the initial reaction to the 2007-08 financial shock; subsequent initiatives framed by political developments at the EU and G20 level; the banking union from mid-2012; and more recent events centred on the United Kingdom vote to exit the EU (Brexit). The analysis identifies banking union as the watershed moment, and correspondingly assesses the EU policy response as mostly inadequate in the first half and mostly effective in the second half of the period covered. Recommendations for future reforms are made in the conclusion.

Key recommendations:
Complete the task of breaking the bank-sovereign vicious circle in the euro area with a reform package that includes a European Deposit Insurance Scheme that equally protects all insured deposits, the introduction of sovereign concentration charges to reduce the home bias in banks’ sovereign exposures, and the phasing out of national authorities’ ability to ring-fence banks’ capital and liquidity.

Move towards a simpler, ‘twin-peaks’ architecture for financial supervision in the European Union with a strengthening of the governance and funding of the European Securities and Markets Authority and an expansion of its scope of direct responsibility over financial business conduct.

A long-haul effort of further harmonisation in both banking and non-bank activities (banking union and capital markets union) to move closer to the vision of a single market for financial services, including areas such as accounting, auditing, insolvency legislation and investment taxation.

About the authors

  • Nicolas Véron

    Nicolas Véron is a senior fellow at Bruegel and at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington, DC. His research is mostly about financial systems and financial reform around the world, including global financial regulatory initiatives and current developments in the European Union. He was a cofounder of Bruegel starting in 2002, initially focusing on Bruegel’s design, operational start-up and development, then on policy research since 2006-07. He joined the Peterson Institute in 2009 and divides his time between the US and Europe.

    Véron has authored or co-authored numerous policy papers that include banking supervision and crisis management, financial reporting, the Eurozone policy framework, and economic nationalism. He has testified repeatedly in front of committees of the European Parliament, national parliaments in several EU member states, and US Congress. His publications also include Smoke & Mirrors, Inc.: Accounting for Capitalism, a book on accounting standards and practices (Cornell University Press, 2006), and several books in French.

    His prior experience includes working for Saint-Gobain in Berlin and Rothschilds in Paris in the early 1990s; economic aide to the Prefect in Lille (1995-97); corporate adviser to France’s Labour Minister (1997-2000); and chief financial officer of MultiMania / Lycos France, a publicly-listed online media company (2000-2002). From 2002 to 2009 he also operated an independent Paris-based financial consultancy.

    Véron is a board member of the derivatives arm (Global Trade Repository) of the Depositary Trust and Clearing Corporation (DTCC), a financial infrastructure company that operates globally on a not-for-profit basis. A French citizen born in 1971, he has a quantitative background as a graduate from Ecole Polytechnique (1992) and Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines de Paris (1995). He is trilingual in English, French and Spanish, and has fluent understanding of German and Italian.

    In September 2012, Bloomberg Markets included Véron in its second annual 50 Most Influential list with reference to his early advocacy of European banking union.

     

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