Brussels famously shuts down completely in August. There are no Commission meetings, no Parliament sessions and no backroom dealings between national diplomats in the Council. There are no press conferences, no announcements and even the ranks of Brussels’ 15,000 lobbyists appear to have thinned out. In other words, it is the perfect time to either take a holiday or spend an hour or two leafing through the latest International Monetary Fund report on the Eurozone. I chose the latter option, and having waded through almost 70 pages of colourful little graphs and bone-dry economical analysis I thought I might as well share some of the highlights.
Perhaps the most interesting issue raised by the Washington-based institution concerns the threat to financial stability in the Eurozone. The IMF’s experts point out that the Eurozone (the same might just as well be said about the EU as a whole) is prone to a very peculiar risk deriving from the gap between market integration on the one hand and the lack of supervisory integration on the other hand.