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The IMF's role in the resolution of the European sovereign debt crisis: a reassessment.

1. Introduction

In the mid-2000s, the liquidity bubble had increased returns in the economies of southern Europe and Ireland considerably above degrees that could have been maintained in the long run. Capital flows from the northern economies to those of the south accompanied decline in competitiveness (Pera, 2014a, b, c; 2015), advent of significant current account deficits, and gathering of both private and public debt. A drop in returns and a phase of wrenching regulation for numerous sectors (Nica et al., 2014) was compulsory under any reasonable scheme after the bubble burst. The European approach to deal with the crisis had two chief aspects, one for the eurozone collectively and the other for the separate economies that were damaged by financial instability. For the former, member states additionally standardized fiscal discipline (Nica and Mirica (Dumitrescu), 2017), established a long-lasting procedure for supplying financial assistance, and reinforced the incorporation of the banking system--besides dynamic experimentation with atypical monetary assistance under the authority of the European Central Bank (ECB). For the latter, the creditor governments recommended fiscal austerity, structural reorganization, and reforming of the financial spheres in return for considerable loans from the European entities and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). (Henning, 2017)

2. The Alarming Economic Situation Generated by the Euro Crisis

Instead of compelling private creditors to cancel the debt of such economies, European authorities lent to enable governments in crisis to pay back (Nica, 2016a, b), transferring the vulnerability onto the creditor ones. If normal growth and funding clauses were reestablished, the borrowers would considerably diminish or wipe out their deficits (Popescu, 2014), amortize their loans, and reaccess the private financial markets for the persistent financing they might need. The ECB took on atypical monetary policy measures prudently and elevated interest rates temporarily at the heart of the crisis. The economies of the monetary union asked for a swifter and more vigorous reaction (Nica, 2017) than the governments and entities of the eurozone provided. Fiscal deficits should be confined and national economic entities should be restructured in crisis economies. The argument against moral hazard should not have been highlighted at the heart of the crisis. Balancing the economy (Popescu et al., 2017a, b) was a criterion for carrying through reform. Austerity was not harmonized by enlargement elsewhere in the eurozone. Employing the crisis as an approach to derive reorganizations from other governments and entities was not a feasible surrogate (Mihaila, 2017) for the processes that were deficient in the euro's design, together with volatile financial markets, financial disintegration, recession, and significant unemployment ever possibly to bring in a durable political basis (Popescu Ljungholm, 2016a, b) on which to accomplish the institutional design in the long run. (Henning, 2017)

3. The IMF's Participation in the Euro Crisis

The initial category mistake was to establish a common currency that necessitated a level of political assimilation similar to that of a unified economy but conferring it only intergovernmental decision-making (Bratu, 2015, 2016) on issues of financial support. The economic matters of the eurozone operate as the practical field over which the member economies and financial entities strived (Popescu, 2016a, b) when dealing with separate country programs. In 2012, Greece experienced a debt reorganization in which private holders of government bonds communicated their demands by about 50%, i.e. after the IMF and eurozone governments paid out funds that compensated for privately held bonds (Nica, 2015), substituting private creditors with official credits, thus transferring risk onto taxpayers and cutting down the quantity of debt contingent on restructuring. The Greek program allowed, and the long-term crisis approach of the Eurogroup was accidentally instrumental in, contagion. The IMF held that Greece's debt was not bearable and that European creditors supply relief beyond the positive interest rates and long-run maturities (Nica et al., 2016a, b) that they had prolonged. Notwithstanding the apparent inter-institutional disputes in the Greek and resulting cases, the practical feature of the reaction depended on the choices and approach of the creditor economies in (Popescu et al., 2016, 2017), and the command of, the monetary union. Proceeding via the Council, the Eurogroup, and their financial facilities, the arrangements of member economies jointly adjusted the timing and financing envelope in which the deadlock might be tackled. (Henning, 2017)

4. Has the Euro Crisis Brought About a Groundbreaking Shift of Power within Europe?

By deciding on various entities, creditor economies in the eurozone could more thoroughly deal with the requirements of country programs. Non-European economies gave precedence to invulnerability against global financial contagion (Nica and Hurjui, 2016) when consenting to the utilization of the IMF in this manner. Overlapping entities were destined to generate critical difficulties and inadequacies (Mircica, 2014) in the architecture and controlling of programs. But leading creditor economies could mediate inter-institutional impasse, and mediation provided them with chances to confine entities from drifting beyond their choices. Institutional multiplying (Mihaila et al., 2016), primarily as regional and plurilateral financial facilities, should be admitted as a reality. As shared principals, main economies cooperate with one another in their handling of entities and tackle issues in supervising them in concert. Entities display agency drift, a predisposition to diverge from the choices of member-state principals. The options of major creditors are an underlying initiation in grasping their conduct. The practical duties of entities and regime complexes cover a range (Dusmanescu et al., 2016) on which the principal aspect is political precedence for member economies. Nearly all of the foremost causal reasons behind the institutional ways out of the financial crises (Popescu and Ciurlau, 2016, 2017) are greatly channeled, analytically, via nation economies. (Henning, 2017) (Figures 1, 2, 3, and 4)

5. Conclusions

In the euro crisis, northern European economies and their banks opted for institutional ways out that were distinct from those pursued by borrowing economies (Popescu and Ciurlau, 2016) and their major stakeholders in the southern group. States support some entities over others to move forward their concerns (Andrei et al., 2016a, b) while at the same time clarifying the teamwork issue. Institutional cooperation should be grasped taking into account the informal impact and agreements. Informal processes of impact are decisive (Lazaroiu, 2017) to the activity of separate entities and to comprehending the resolution of discord among various entities and their practical success. Domestic politics and entities convey social objectives to the latter via states and clarify why some economies were more relevant than others in influencing the reaction to the euro crisis. (Henning, 2017)

doi: 10.22381/JSME5220174


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Center for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis at AAER, New York; Dimitrie Cantemir Christian University, Bucharest


The National School of Political Science and Public Administration, Bucharest

Received 27 December 2016 * Received in revised form 2 March 2017

Accepted 3 March 2017 * Available online 25 April 2017

Caption: Figure 1 Borrowing costs

Caption: Figure 3 General government gross debt, % of GDP

Caption: Figure 4 Eurozone growth expectations
Figure 2 Government debt

            2007     2018

Spain      35.7%   100.4%
Germany    63.7%    66.1%
France     64.6%      98%
Italy      99.9%   133.6%
Greece    103.3%   184.9%

Sources: IMF and our estimations. Note: Government Net Debt as % of GDP

Note: Table made from bar graph.
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Author:Popescu, Gheorghe H.; Bitoiu, Teodora I.
Publication:Journal of Self-Governance and Management Economics
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:4E
Date:Apr 1, 2017
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