19 Dec 2017

The provision of critical functions at global, national or regional level

Willem Pieter De Groen

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The provision of critical functions at global, national or regional level: Is there a need for further legal/regulatory clarification if liquidation is the default option for failing banks?

The introduction of a bank resolution framework for EU banks has created the need for clear legal definitions of the main elements in resolution. This paper assesses one of these elements, namely “critical functions”, which encompasses the activities of a bank that are of significant importance for the real economy. The assessment of the regulation and implementation shows that there is room for sharpening the definition and equal application across all banks. It is questionable, however, whether regulatory intervention is necessary given the on-going work of authorities at different levels. In turn, legislative intervention will be required to align the objectives of the resolution framework and state aid. The latter currently leaves more room for public support measures, which are not necessarily in the public interest.

Willem Pieter De Groen is Research Fellow and Head of Financial Markets and Institutions Unit at CEPS.

This material was originally published in a paper provided at the request of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs of the European Parliament and commissioned by the Directorate-General for Internal Policies of the Union and supervised by its Economic Governance Support Unit (EGOV). The opinions expressed in this document are the sole responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the European Parliament. The original paper is available on the European Parliament’s webpage © European Union, 2017.

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