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Financial Times Deutschland - Germany | Monday, October 6, 2008

Joint action required

The Financial Times Deutschland documents an appeal by leading European and American economists exhorting the European states to take concerted action in the current financial market crisis. "The most recent events in the US have shown that it is pointless to try saving individual banks one after another. We need a systemic response. In Europe this means that the banking sector must be re-capitalised under the leadership of the European Union. ... An end must be put to the chaos on the financial markets before the real economy is seriously damaged. The savings of hundreds of millions of Europeans are in jeopardy. If the crisis causes the loan market to dry up this will lead to the large-scale destruction of jobs and companies. ... In Europe, saving an individual bank means that either a single nation shoulders the burden even though its neighbouring states also suffer from the side effects or a last minute improvised community action plan which entails sharing the costs is implemented. Up to now this latter procedure has made sense, but European banks are too independent of each other for national efforts or sporadic coordinated schemes to suffice. Any intervention by a nation state and any joint action by a small group of countries can have unforeseen repercussions for other European nations. ... Pan-European solutions should be developed where appropriate. ... To prevent crises of these dimensions in the future it will also be necessary to regulate the financial markets and institutes at a European level."

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