It’s the bank deposits, Jeroen Dijsselbloem!

Now we know: he loves Russian roulette–when it is our heads the gun aims at. Jeroen Dijsselbloem, new Eurogroup chief, has played a terrible hand in the bailout plan for Cyprus and destabilised the entire financial system. Dijsselbloem wants eurozone’s bank depositors to feel constantly scared, suspicious, and surrounded by the rotten smell of contagion.

The problem is that some eurocrats seem unable to realise the consequences of their irresponsible talk when they land jobs at the top of the European pyramid. A stupid word can go a long way, also in the wrong direction. And that is exactly what happened when he said that the Cypriot rescue would be the template for future bailouts, stressing the importance of understanding that bank deposits may be pushed on to the firing line if necessary.

The common currency union will never recover its credibility if Jeroen Dijsselbloem and the like are allowed to climb the European Union ladder: he demonstrates he doesn’t have the wider vision the euro requires right now, he can trigger social unrest by sheer ignorance. Dijsselbloem’s, though, was not only a faux pas but a mistake willingly made.

We despair: at a national level, euro country members struggle to find politicians with the right skills and knowledge to manage the current crisis; at a European level, the situation looks riskier.

Jeroen Dijsselbloem has so far achieved something remarkable, he has single-handedly increased the price of any financial bailout in the eurozone. U-turns will be voiced, but the wound will remain open for the time being.

Let me remind you that the Spanish Finance minister, Luis de Guindos, was the one to vote ‘no’ to Jeroen Dijsselbloem’s appointment.

About the Author

Miguel Navascués
Miguel Navascués has worked as an economist at the Bank of Spain for 30 years, and focuses on international and monetary economics. He blogs in Spanish at: http://

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