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    The true size of the ECB: new insights from National Central Bank balance sheets

    Portelli, C. and Wright, Stephen (2018) The true size of the ECB: new insights from National Central Bank balance sheets. Working Paper. Birkbeck, University of London, London, UK.

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    The balance sheet of the European Central Bank (ECB) represents a very small fraction (onetenth) of the reported balance sheet of the Euro Area system as a whole. This paper presents evidence that the effective size of the ECB’s balance sheet is massively higher than this, and indeed is significantly higher even than the reported balance sheet of the Eurosystem as a whole. We point to strong evidence that most NCBs (especially those of the larger countries) effectively act on autopilot, as branches of a near‐monolithic institution which we term the “Mega‐ECB”. The lending behaviour of the “Mega‐ECB” appears to have been driven primarily by the borrowing needs of the distressed countries of the EU’s southern periphery.


    Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
    Additional Information: BWPEF 1807
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): central bank balance sheet, capital key, ECB, Eurosystem, national central banks, Target2
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Business and Law > Birkbeck Business School
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 25 Mar 2019 10:56
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:49


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