Euro-Area Reform Plans Held Hostage By Italian, German Turmoil

The euro area made some progress toward completing its banking union and reforming its bailout fund, though political turmoil in two of its largest economies torpedoed hopes for a full agreement, Bloomberg News reported. In talks that went late into the night on Wednesday, finance ministers gathered in Brussels couldn’t overcome longstanding differences, missing a goal to finalize a package of measures to strengthen the single currency by year-end. Instead they made marginal progress, leaving key technical issues open, while only agreeing to keep talking on others. At stake was roadmap for the establishment of a joint European deposit insurance, something that would stabilize the financial system by reducing the risk of bank runs, and long seen as the key missing piece of Europe’s financial architecture. Read more