The European Shadow Financial Regulatory Committee (ESFRC)

The ESFRC is a group of fifteen professors and other independent experts in the fields of banking, finance and the regulation of financial institutions and markets, drawn from across Europe. It is chaired by Harald Benink, who is a professor of finance at the Rotterdam School of Management of Erasmus University Rotterdam and who is a senior associate to the Financial Markets Group of the London School of Economics. The Committee meets three times each year to discuss issues in financial regulation and to deliver policy recommendations.

CEPS participates in the ESFRC trough Karel Lannoo, Senior Research Fellow and Chief Executive Officer.


Following each meeting, the ESFRC issues a statement on a topical aspect of financial regulation. These are reproduced in full below.


No. 31, November 2009
A New Life for European Financial Supervision
No. 30, September 2009
Letter to the G20
No. 27, March 2008
Resolving the Current Crisis and Preventing its Return
No. 26, September 2006
Lessons from the recent financial turmoil
No. 25, November 2006
Basel II and the Scope for Prompt Corrective Action in Europe
No. 24, April 2006
Insurance Supervision in Europe: Is Solvency II Appropriate?
No. 23, November 2005
Reforming Banking Supervision in Europe
No. 22, October 2005
No. 21, March 2005
Repeal the Second EU Company Law Directive
No. 19, October 2004
Towards New Bank Capital Requirements in Europe
No. 18, May 2004
Challenges to Financial Regulators in Accession Countries
No. 17, October 2003
Credit Risk Transfer from Banks to Non-Bank Financial Institutions
No. 16, May 2003
Bank Supervisors’ Business: Risk Management or Systemic Stability?
No. 15, December 2002
Corporate Governance in Europe
No. 14, October 2002
Reforms in the Process of Restructuring International Sovereign Debt
No. 13, February 2002
Takeover Bids in Europe
No. 12, November 2001
Re-Plumbing European Securities Markets
No. 11, June 2001
Reforming Bank Capital Regulation
No. 10, March 2001
The Regulation of European Securities Markets: The Lamfalussy Report
No. 09, October 2000
Reform of Bank Regulation and Its Application to Japan
No. 08, June 2000
Towards a Single Market in European Securities Trading
No. 07, February 2000
Internal Ratings Capital Standards and Subordinated Debt
No. 06, February 2000
Banking Mergers and Acquisitions
No. 05, 18 October 1999
A New Role for Deposit Insurance in Europe
No. 04, June 1999
Improving the Basel Committee’s New Capital Adequacy Framework
No. 03, March 1999
Towards Safer Derivatives Markets
No. 02, October 1998
EMU, The ECB and Financial Supervision
No. 01, June 1998
Dealing with Problem Banks in Europe

About the Committee

For further information on CEPS involvement in the ESFRC, please contact Senior Research Fellow Karel Lannoo.
Members of the Committee

The ESFRC consists of the following 15 members, coming from 11 European countries and from the United States:

  • Harald Benink (Erasmus University, Rotterdam, The Netherlands & FMG/LSE)
  • Tom Berglund (Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration, Helsinki, Finland)
  • Christian de Boissieu (University of Paris I - Sorbonne, Paris, France)
  • Franco Bruni (Bocconi University, Milan, Italy)
  • Jordi Canals (IESE, Barcelona, Spain)
  • Richard Dale (University of Southampton, United Kingdom)
  • Philip Davis (Brunel University, London, United Kingdom & FMG/LSE)
  • Hans Geiger (University of Zurich, Switzerland)
  • Friedrich Kübler (Johann Wolfgang Goethe University & Clifford Chance, Frankfurt, Germany & University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA)
  • Karel Lannoo (Centre for European Policy Studies, Brussels, Belgium)
  • Rosa Lastra (University of London, United Kingdom & FMG/LSE)
  • Reinhard Schmidt (Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, Frankfurt, Germany)
  • Benn Steil (Council on Foreign Relations, New York, USA)
  • Niels Thygesen (University of Copenhagen, Denmark)
  • Clas Wihlborg (Copenhagen Business School, Denmark & Gothenburg University, Sweden)
Independence of the Committee

The European Shadow Financial Regulatory Committee meets three times every year. The ‘shadow’ function of the ESFRC is related to the Committee’s purpose of following and analysing critically the existing and evolving regulatory framework for financial institutions and markets. Moreover, at the end of each meeting the ESFRC organises an international press conference during which a public statement is issued on topics discussed during its meeting. The Committee is fully independent of the providers, regulators and supervisors of financial services whose behaviour it aims to evaluate.

The independence of the ESFRC is also expressed by the fact that the Committee will not accept sponsoring by financial institutions and regulatory/supervisory authorities.

Analytical Mission

The analysis of the regulatory framework is based on existing and proposed European Union directives, national regulations, recommendations by international forums such as the Basel Committee and the Group of Thirty, and on relevant academic research in this field. Typically, the Committee tries to translate concepts drawn from academic literature into concrete policy recommendations with respect to certain subject areas. Topics to be covered by the ESFRC during the coming years could include: remaining barriers to the completion of the EU single market for financial services, guidelines for the design of financial services regulation, the pros and cons of universal banking and bancassurance, banks and derivatives, electronic payment services by non-banks, supervision of financial conglomerates and non-banks, supervision on a European level vs. home country control, capital requirements, and state ownership and/or support of financial institutions.