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Light and shadows in Europe’s new Action Plan for Capital Markets Union

by Diego Valiante
06 October 2015

Light and shadows in Europe’s new Action Plan for Capital Markets Union

Diego Valiante

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The European Commission’s new Action Plan for Capital Markets Union, unveiled on September 30th, consists in a nutshell of a short list of technical proposals and a longer one of (rather general) potential actions. Overall, the plan indeed proposes to achieve some short-term objectives, such as a reduction of listing costs for SMEs, but it lacks long-term vision. The plan bundles actions under rather generic objectives of long-term finance or cross-border investing. Improving the informational infrastructure (e.g. accounting standards, company data) and cross-border enforcement of rules is left to vaguely defined future actions, but these constitute the core of the capital markets infrastructure. Without a well-defined set of measurable objectives, the whole plan may lose political momentum and become an opportunity for interested parties to cherry pick their pet provisions. Building a single market, i.e. removing cross-border obstacles to capital circulation, is too challenging a task to simply appear as one of many items on a long list of general objectives, which incidentally do not include institutional reform. The ultimate risk is that the Commission may just miss a unique opportunity to revamp and improve the financial integration process in Europe after almost a decade of harmful retrenchment.

Diego Valiante is Head of Research at ECMI and Head of the Financial Markets and Institutions research unit at CEPS.


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  • Author
    Diego Valiante
    Diego Valiante
Light and shadows in Europe’s new Action Plan for Capital Markets Union
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3784 Downloads