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Are They All the Same? Banking and Financial Crises in Debt-Ridden Euroarea Countries

Economic Imbalances and Institutional Changes to the Euro and the European Union

ISBN: 978-1-78714-510-8, eISBN: 978-1-78714-509-2

Publication date: 23 October 2017

Abstract

In the euro’s initial years, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain observed capital flow bonanzas and credit-booms, two cycles known to precede banking crises. Domestic banks fuelled those cycles via funding obtained from foreign financial institutions. Yet, these countries’ banking and financial crises have unfolded in different modes. In Ireland and Spain, credit-booms propelled real-estate bubbles, which dragged banks into crises, with governments’ accounts later being affected when rescuing banks (Spanish regional banks, and all Irish major banks). In Greece and Italy, extra monetary means perpetuated government imbalances (e.g. debt levels above 100% of GDP, large yearly deficits). More severely in Greece, banks were brought into crises by sovereign crises. In Portugal, a mixture of private and public sector–led crises have occurred. Our comparative study finds that these crises: (1) are connected to shocks and imbalances caused by dangerous banking sector cycles during the monetary integration process; (2) were not mere expansions of the US subprime crisis; (3) were not only caused by country-specific features and institutions; and (4) followed distinct paths, therefore, a uniform model encompassing all post-euro crises cannot exist.

Keywords

Citation

Cardao-Pito, T. (2017), "Are They All the Same? Banking and Financial Crises in Debt-Ridden Euroarea Countries ", Economic Imbalances and Institutional Changes to the Euro and the European Union (International Finance Review, Vol. 18), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 305-331. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1569-376720170000018015

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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