On 8th February 2013, the Texas International Law Journal organised a conference on the theme of The Nation State and its Banks. Click here for the full program. The organisers were kind enough to invite me to give the lunchtime talk, which I chose to be European Banking Union: Behind the rhetoric. You can here an audio of the talk by clicking Banking Union audio. In brief, my message was that Europe’s leaders agreed to begin the process of forging a Banking Union that is, to all intents and purposes, economically meaningless, at least in the context of the current crisis. If the Eurozone survives, the Banking Union will eventually emerge. But the current moves towards the Banking Union are a cynical attempt to ensure that Europe will not de-couple its banking from its sovereign debt crisis as part of a rational effort to arrest the current crisis; a crisis that is getting worse the calmer the bond markets are becoming under the influence of Mr Draghi’s OMT. In short, the prognosis I offered in my talk was threefold:
- There will be no meaningful Banking Union that helps resolve the current crisis
- OMT has created a dead calm but under the surface the crisis is getting worse, primarily because it allows Germany to kill off the June 2012 EU Summit agreement on bank recapitalisations
- If the Euro dies, the EU will follow suit. But if the Euro survives, a genuine Banking Union will emerge but then it will be undesirable and impossible for a nation to be in the EU but not in the Eurozone. For this purpose Mr Cameron is right (most likely for the wrong reasons): there will be no place for Britain in a future, post-Crisis, EU!
For my talk’s outline in greater detail, click… Continue reading
Anyone in Vienna this coming Wednesday (5/12/2012)? If so, perhaps you may pop in at the Kreisky Forum to hear me address:
THE GREEK CRISIS AND THE EUROPEAN TRAGEDY
THE DEBT CRISIS AND THE FUTURE OF THE WORLD ECONOMY
For the official announcement… Continue reading
Robert Gottliebsen, one of Australia’s leading business and economics journalist, interviewed me recently in Melbourne for Business Spectator. Like many anglosaxon business commentators, Robert clearly thinks that Greece is facing an impossible future within the Eurozone and that it would be better off leaving the currency union. In this interview, he began by asking me about the situation facing Greek universities and, more broadly, about the trials and tribulations caused by the austerity-induced vicious cycle. After touching upon the issue of labour market reforms, our conversation turned to my explanation of why Greece cannot ‘do’ and Argentina or an Iceland and, immediately after that, we discussed our Modest Proposal on how to resolve the Euro Crisis without crippling austerity, fiscal union, federal moves, bailouts, debt guarantees or buybacks. Click here for the interview.
Last week, Norman Lamont and I addressed the CPA 2012 Conference in Melbourne. Yesterday we repeated that ‘gig’ in Sydney. Unwilling to deliver the same speech as in Melbourne (which was posted here), I chose to discuss the Euro Crisis from a slightly different angle (with very few overlapping paragraphs). As this was a closed-to-the-public conference, I am taking the liberty of posting below my talk and to upload my own recording of that presentation. For the talk’s text read on. For the audio click here. Continue reading