Public Perspectives on Credit Intermediation: from the National Dimension to Supranational Innovations

By Giuseppe Sciascia

During the first half of the 20th century, the long-standing interaction between public and private forces in the economy prompted a theorization of the mechanisms surrounding the control over the banking sector under a public law perspective (Nigro); this approach was recently used to analyse some of the measures undertaken in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. Building on this method, this paper discusses the recent developments occurring in banking and financial regulation, by addressing three specific issues: schemes adopted to sustain and protect the banking sector, measures aimed at shaping and guiding the credit market, and initiatives showing the emergence of a State playing a «facilitating» role on the market. The results can be summarized as follows: in the supranational dimension, public inter- vention is mainly based on a functional regulatory entrenchment, while some early examples of safety net schemes emerge, aimed at supporting national initiatives in terms of financial stability; at national level, new interactions among public authorities and the market can be observed, in an attempt to reinforce the competitiveness and stability of the domestic credit market and its ability to resist to the pressures exerted by public and private global actors.