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Financial repression and high public debt in Europe

Ad van Riet

Other publications TiSEM from Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management

Abstract: The sharp rise in public debt-to-GDP ratios in the aftermath of the global financial crisis of 2008 posed serious challenges for fiscal policy in euro area countries. This thesis examines whether and to what extent modern financial repression has been applied in Europe to address these challenges. Financial repression is defined as the government’s strategy – supported by monetary and financial policies – to gain privileged access to capital markets at preferential credit conditions and divert resources to the state with the aim to secure and, if necessary, enforce public debt sustainability. This study shows that national public debt management, EU financial regulation, EMU crisis management as well as ECB monetary policy have significantly supported euro area governments in dealing with their fiscal predicament. Taken on their own, these public policies were targeted at supporting fiscal, financial and monetary stability in the wake of the euro area crisis. This study argues that the respective authorities have in fact applied the tools of financial repression and thereby contributed to relieving sovereign liquidity and solvency stress.

New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cba, nep-eec and nep-mac
Date: 2018
Note: Dissertation
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