Guaranteed Lender of Last Resort

Tom McDonnell23/08/2011

Tom McDonnell: The often useful VOXEU resource has produced a number of constructive pieces on the debt crisis in the last week or so.

Paul DeGrauwe does a good job of describing the inherent fragility of the Eurozone as currently designed. His main proposal is the establishment of a guaranteed lender of last resort for government bonds. The ECB being the natural candidate to take on this role.

Charles Wyplosz argues there are really just two possibilities to solve the crisis. The first possibility, echoing DeGrauwe, is to make the ECB perform the function of a guaranteed lender of last resort. In this scenario the ECB would simply guarantee the rollover of maturing sovereign debt at face value. The second possibility is to pursue one of the many variations of the Eurobond option that currently has Merkel and the Bundesbank wailing against the dying of the light. Audio version of Wyplosz is here.

Stefano Micossi argues here that fiscal union is inevitable and urges using the ECB to purchase distressed sovereign debt. Micossi also emphasises the importance of using the EFSF to issue union-bonds backed by the joint guarantee of all Eurozone member states.

Posted in: EconomicsBanking and financeEuropeBanking and finance

Tagged with: lender of last resortdebt crisisEurobondsECB

Dr Tom McDonnell

McDonnell, Tom

Tom McDonnell is senior economist at the NERI and is responsible for among other things, NERI's analysis of the Republic of Ireland economy including risks, trends and forecasts. He specialises in economic growth theory, the economics of innovation, the Irish and European economies, and fiscal policy. He previously worked as an economist at TASC and before that was a lecturer in economics at NUI Galway and at DCU. He has also taught at Maynooth University.

Tom obtained his PhD in economics from NUI Galway.


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