Trois nouvelles leçons de la crise de l’euro

WASHINGTON, DC – Alors que certains observateurs estiment que la leçon essentielle du baptême du feu de la zone euro est qu'une plus grande intégration fiscale et bancaire est nécessaire pour maintenir l'union monétaire, de nombreux économistes l'avaient souligné avant même l'introduction de l'euro en 1999. Les véritables leçons de la crise de l'euro sont ailleurs – et elles sont véritablement nouvelles et surprenantes.

L’idée reçue à propos des unions monétaires, c'est que leur optimalité peut être évaluée sur la base de deux critères. Tout d'abord, est-ce que les régions qui s’unissent sont semblables ou dissemblables en terme de la vulnérabilité de leur économie aux chocs externes ? Plus les régions sont semblables, plus la zone monétaire qui en résulte est optimale, car les réponses politiques peuvent être appliquées de manière uniforme dans l'ensemble du territoire.

C’est si les structures économiques sont dissemblables que le deuxième critère devient critique: est-ce que des dispositions existent pour s'adapter aux chocs asymétriques ? Les deux dispositions fondamentales soulignées par la plupart des économistes sont les transferts fiscaux, qui peuvent amortir les chocs dans les régions durement touchées, et la mobilité du travail, qui permet aux travailleurs de ces régions de se déplacer vers les pays moins touchés.

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