Special Issue "Breakpoint of the Euro Zone?"

A special issue of Economies (ISSN 2227-7099).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2016).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Hardy Hanappi
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Guest Editor
SWM-Economics University of Technology of Vienna, Austria

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This issue presents a collection of papers that contribute to the most dramatic question of the future feasibility of the unification process of Europe. So far the Euro Zone has been the most ambitious—and in many respects also the most successful—project of European political economy after World War 2. Its influence on the economies of EU member states can hardly be exaggerated. Nevertheless, the global financial crisis that has started some seven years ago has now produced doubts on the sustainability of the European unification design that initially was envisaged. Some of the scholarly debates surrounding these doubts will be presented in this Special Issue.

Prof. Dr. Hardy Hanappi
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Breaking up Is Hard to Do: Why the Eurozone Will Survive
Economies 2016, 4(4), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies4040021 - 03 Oct 2016
Cited by 2
Abstract
Since revelations of the Greek fiscal deficit in the fall of 2009, the breakup of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) has moved from unthinkable to plausible. The debate over the future of the EMU has become increasingly relevant, as numerous efforts to [...] Read more.
Since revelations of the Greek fiscal deficit in the fall of 2009, the breakup of the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) has moved from unthinkable to plausible. The debate over the future of the EMU has become increasingly relevant, as numerous efforts to solve the Greek crisis have not been successful. Neither have basic competitiveness differences between countries in the core and periphery of the European Union been eliminated. Proposed solutions include development of a banking union, regulatory measures to monitor trade and capital imbalances, fiscal reforms on the part of countries in trouble, and centralized fiscal capacity on the part of the EMU itself to offset the liabilities of the indebted states. While the crisis seems to be contained, it is by no means solved. This leads to the question: “Will the euro survive?” We answer this question in the affirmative, but in doing so we argue that continuation of the EMU is different from the question of whether the EMU should have been created in the first place. Some reasons for continuation of the EMU were present at its creation; others have developed in a path‐dependent way as the Eurozone has evolved. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Breakpoint of the Euro Zone?)
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Open AccessArticle
Going Forward from B to A? Proposals for the Eurozone Crisis
Economies 2016, 4(3), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies4030018 - 24 Aug 2016
Abstract
After reviewing the main determinants of the current Eurozone crisis, this paper discusses the feasibility of introducing fiscal currencies as a way to restore fiscal space in peripheral countries, such as Greece, which have so far adopted austerity measures in order to abide [...] Read more.
After reviewing the main determinants of the current Eurozone crisis, this paper discusses the feasibility of introducing fiscal currencies as a way to restore fiscal space in peripheral countries, such as Greece, which have so far adopted austerity measures in order to abide by their commitments with Eurozone institutions and the IMF. We show that the introduction of fiscal currencies would speed up the recovery, without violating the rules of Eurozone Treaties. At the same time, these processes could help the transition of the euro from its current status of single currency to a status of “common clearing currency” along the lines proposed by Keynes at Bretton Woods as a system of international settlements. Eurozone countries could therefore move from “Plan B” aimed at addressing member state domestic problems, to a “Plan A” of a better European monetary system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Breakpoint of the Euro Zone?)
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Open AccessArticle
Convergence and Heterogeneity in Euro Based Economies: Stability and Dynamics
Economies 2016, 4(3), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies4030016 - 16 Aug 2016
Abstract
Cluster analysis is used to explore the performance of key macroeconomic variables in European countries that share the euro, from the inception of the currency in 2002 through to 2013. An original applied statistical approach searches for a pattern synthesis across a matrix [...] Read more.
Cluster analysis is used to explore the performance of key macroeconomic variables in European countries that share the euro, from the inception of the currency in 2002 through to 2013. An original applied statistical approach searches for a pattern synthesis across a matrix of macroeconomic data to examine if there is evidence for country clusters and whether there is convergence of the cluster patterns over time. A number of different clusters appear and these change over time as the economies of the member states dynamically interact. This includes some new countries joining the currency during the period of examination. As found in previous research, Southern European countries tend to remain separate from other countries. The new methods used, however, add to an understanding of some differences between Southern European countries, in addition to replicating their broad similarities. Hypotheses are formed about the country clusters existing in 2002, 2006 and 2013, at key points in time of the euro integration process. These hypotheses are tested using the rigour of a bivariate analysis and the multivariate method of Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA). The results confirm the hypotheses of cluster memberships in all three periods. The confirmation analysis provides evidence about which variables are most influencing cluster memberships at each time point. In 2002 and 2006, differences between countries are influenced by their different Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) and labour productivity scores. In 2013, after the crisis, there is a noticeable change. Long term interest rates and gross government debt become key determinants of differences, in addition to the continuing influence of labour productivity. The paper concludes that in the last decade the convergence of countries sharing the euro has been limited, by the joining of new countries and the circumstances of the global economic crisis. The financial crisis has driven divergences from pre-existing integration. Country convergence needs to be understood as a dynamic and multivariate concept. This is a significant development of convergence theory and is an addition to how the concept has been understood previously. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Breakpoint of the Euro Zone?)
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Open AccessArticle
Germany versus the United States: Monetary Dominance in the Eurozone
Economies 2016, 4(2), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/economies4020008 - 26 Apr 2016
Cited by 2
Abstract
This study inspects if there is greater convergence with Germany amongst the Eurozone founding members and if their relations with the hegemonic economy have been more symmetrical after “euroization”. The dimensions explored are those inspired by the optimum currency areas (OCA) framework. To [...] Read more.
This study inspects if there is greater convergence with Germany amongst the Eurozone founding members and if their relations with the hegemonic economy have been more symmetrical after “euroization”. The dimensions explored are those inspired by the optimum currency areas (OCA) framework. To some extent, the findings could signify if real convergence has been significantly endogenous. At the same time, to assess the relative dominance of Germany, the features against Germany are compared to those against US. In addition, the paper also appraises some aspects of economic performance to check whether economic conditions across the states have improved and converged after unification. In some convergence aspects, findings suggest remarkable convergence with Germany and across the states but also relative convergence with US. On economic performance, results indicate substantial improvements in inflation and unemployment. Amongst the founding states, Ireland has idiosyncratically shown serious divergences in a number of the convergence and performance measures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Breakpoint of the Euro Zone?)
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