EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

The Search for a Euro Area Safe Asset

Alvaro Leandro and Jeromin Zettelmeyer

No 12793, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers

Abstract: This paper evaluates four approaches to create "safe assets" or asset portfolios for the euro area: (1) a diversified portfolio of senior tranches of sovereign debt ("national tranching"); (2) a senior security backed by a diversified pool of national sovereign debt ("ESBies"); (3) debt issued by a senior financial intermediary, backed by a diversified pool of national debt ("E-bonds"); and (4) debt issued by a euro area budget or a leveraged wealth fund, based on member state contributions or dedicated direct revenue sources. None of these approaches envisages explicit guarantees by member states, and all could potentially produce safe assets in sufficient quantities to replace euro area sovereign bond holdings in euro area banks. At the same time, the four approaches differ across several important dimensions. A euro area budget or wealth fund could create the largest volume of safe assets, followed by ESBies, E-bonds, and national tranching. A euro area budget or wealth fund is also likely to have the lowest impact on the structure and liquidity of national bond markets, while national tranching would have the largest impact. ESBies and E-bonds occupy an intermediate position. ESBies and potentially bonds issued by a euro area budget would offer their holders greater protection from deep national defaults than the other two proposals. Both ESBies and national tranching would avoid cross-country redistribution by construction, whereas E-bonds and a euro area budget could have significant distributional consequences, depending on their design. E-bonds are unique in that they would raise the marginal cost of sovereign debt issuance at higher levels of debt, thereby exerting fiscal discipline, without necessarily raising average debt costs for lower-rated borrowers.

Keywords: Banking Crisis; ESBies; Euro crisis; safe assets; Sovereign debt (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F33 F36 G21 H63 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-eec
Date: 2018-03
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=12793 (application/pdf)
CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at subscribers@cepr.org

Related works:
Working Paper: The Search for a Euro Area Safe Asset (2018) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:12793

Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
http://www.cepr.org/ ... rs/dp.php?dpno=12793

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers Centre for Economic Policy Research, 33 Great Sutton Street, London EC1V 0DX.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().

 
Page updated 2019-08-31
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:12793