October 17, 2012
Sir, José Ignacio Torreblanca writes that “Europe must prove it is still the solution for Spain” October 17, and lists all the problems and sufferings of that nation.
There is of course a long list of have to dos but, if Europe, the first thing I would do, is to begin to help to repair the damages those immoral, stupid and outright dangerous bank regulations caused it.
How? By immediately telling all European banks their capital requirements, for holding loans to small businesses and entrepreneurs in Spain should, until further notice, be cut in half, at least.
Because it is immoral how current regulations favors the access to bank credit of “The Infallible”, those already favored by markets and banks, and discriminates against that of “The Risky”, those already discriminated against by banks and markets.
Because current capital requirements gave banks incentives to stay away from taking manageable risks on "The Risky", like the small businesses and entrepreneurs, those who never ever caused a major bank crisis, and to instead take unmanageable risk on "The Infallible", like real estate and sovereigns.
Because current capital requirements are dangerous since they distort and thereby hinder the banks from allocating economic resources efficiently.
What Spain most needs now is a workable plan of how to get back to regulatory sanity… and Europe, being guilty for much of the insanity, should be helping Spain to do precisely that.