Euro MP’s blame USA for financial crisis

Sarah Davidson

September 16, 2010

Cicero Consulting and ComRes surveyed 100 members of the European parliament (MEPs) to investigate their opinion as law makers on:

• Preventing a future crisis: the effectiveness of legislative measures such as CRDIV in reducing the frequency and severity of future financial crisis

• Ensuring better supervisory oversight

• The impact of new legislation

• Who’s to blame?

• What should happen next?

The survey was conducted in July 2010 at a time when there was still a high level of stress in the financial markets, when the Basel Committee confirmed its stance on its Basel III proposal, while the European Commission was drafting its legal text on Capital Requirements IV and when the MEPs were preparing their ground to battle for the best interests of their constituents during the course of the new legislative term September 2010/2011.

Helena Walsh, senior country officer at Cicero Brussels, said: “What stands out from this report is the blame game.

“Respondents from the four biggest political groups within the European Parliament – EPP, S&D, ALDE and ECR – all named the United States as most to blame for the current financial crisis, and across all political groups, at least one of the following ranked in the Top 3 “to blame” targets: US mortgage lenders; US regulators and US government; and US banks.

“All political parties point the finger of blame at retail investors and mortgage holders. For many MEPs, this is a view that has been held for some time, and is one they can no longer afford to take.

“In less than three years we have witnessed banks collapsing, being nationalised or partially nationalised, along with dramatic drops in share prices. These events have all combined to rock not just market confidence but also consumer confidence.

“But many in the banking sector would support the statement that shafts of light of a recovering economy have started to appear and this has been driven mainly by the redesigning of the world’s financial architecture at G20 level. The cornerstone of this new at the global level is Basel III.”

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