financial crises

Building on incomplete foundations: financial stability policy since the crash

Economists understand that a fit for purpose policy regime requires a reliable general equilibrium model of the system in question and a well specified description of the objectives that the policymaker is trying to pursue. The current financial stability regime has neither and without these critical foundations the regime is fundamentally fragile and incomplete. There is no anchor on the conduct of policy, an absence in genuine accountability and, as a result, reputational risks for policy institutions.

Too big to fail and too big to save: dilemmas for banking reform

‘Too big to fail’ traditionally refers to a bank that is perceived to generate unacceptable risk to the banking system and indirectly to the economy as a whole if it were to default and be unable to fulfill its obligations. Such a bank generally has substantial liabilities to other banks through the payment system and other financial links, which can be sources of ‘contagion’ if a bank fails. The main objectives in this paper are to identify the different dimensions of too big to fail and evaluate various proposed reforms for dealing with this problem.

Scotland’s Currency Options

This paper considers which currency option would be best for an independent Scotland. We examine three currency options: being part of a sterling currency union, adopting the euro, or having an independent currency. No currency option is the best when considered against all criteria. Therefore, making the decision requires deciding which criteria are most important. Recent events around the world, particularly in Europe, have shown that fiscal sustainability and currency arrangements cannot be considered in isolation.