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The end of the European Union?

On October 12th, I will be hosting a press conference to release the results of our European Payments Survey 2010.

Last year’s survey’s headline was that 58% of survey respondents say that the PSD is being transposed inconsistently and 63% state that this is because of different interpretations at the country level, amongst many issues raised.

A year later, the situation has not changed a great deal, as the majority of this year’s survey respondents clearly state that the PSD and SEPA are not working … yet.

The results will be released in full on 12th, but one thing that has come to light is that there is a big difference this year in the views of the banks and the general respondents.

Bankers do not believe the European Union will survive in the long term, whereas general respondents think it will.

What do you think?

You have SEVEN days left to vote in our 2010 survey, which closes on September 30th.

Click here to take the survey.

Click here if you want an invite to the October 12th press conference.

Click here if you want a copy of the survey results.

If you can make it to join me for the meeting – it'll be from 16:30 to 18:00 on 12th October – then you also get a free seat at the Financial Services Club that follows with Giles Andrews, Chief Executive of Zopa, discussing the five year road to success that Zopa has followed.

More details can be found at the fsclub.co.uk.

About Chris M Skinner

Chris M Skinner
Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, the Finanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News. To learn more click here...

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  • Fritz Thomas Klein

    Was it not a London banker who said, when he saw one of the first telephones, that this would never take off as ‘London has plenty of messenger boys’? So much simply to show how credible predictions from bankers are…

  • tonyw

    I think there are more important things than PSD and SEPA.
    Should a German worker who already pays 50%+ in taxes suffer through austerity or tax hikes just so that a Greek hairdresser can retire at age 50?
    Greece’s finance minister has been on the road lately trying to convince investors that Greek debt is just fine and that they’re not going to default thanks to a huge EU bailout package. No one is buying it, Greek bonds are now trading at a higher risk premium than they were during the height of the euro debt crisis a few months ago. Meanwhile, Irish and Portuguese bond spreads are the highest they’ve been in the history of the euro.
    Apparently Irish Opposition leaders are pushing for Anglo Irish to default on its bondholders. If the opposition can persuade the taxpayers that they are being unfairly saddled with private debts, then the voters will change the government in the next election.

  • Paul Peters

    In regards to the last comment, I can’t escape the impression that Italy is the elephant in the room?
    Due to running an international business from Italy, i couldn’t join the party here, and ended up paying roughly 65% in tax and others.. probably more. Impossible to have a surviving business here if one doesn’t jiggle the handle. This causes a rather tightly bound network of small time deals to bypass a large variety of bureaucratic regulations which are constructed by a government which has a 90 year trackrecord of corruption. This is not efficient. According to some local economical scientists Italy already entered a recession in 1993.. and since then the government has been playing around with criteria, such as cost of living indexes which reflect more the (non)buying pattern of selfsufficient isolated mountain villages with woolen underwear and articles like that.
    Using the harmonics of delay, where payment regulations of 6 to 9 months are already the norm, the problems have been spread out over time but these days it’s hitting hard. It seems that besides a small priviliged segment of some 400.000 families networked together, the rest of the 60 million inhabitants is more or less out of money,that includes black money. At least, that was estimated based on figures from 2009..
    Although the market is very deregulated housing agencies are advicing sellers to not ‘show’ the house is for sale as ‘that doesn’t sell’.. so there are many houses here in the surroundings (i live near the Lago Maggiore, about 45 minutes from Milan) which are effectively empty and for sale, but it’s full of furniture and some underpaid cleaning lady maintains the illusion of it being in use. These houses are people’s major investments.. it was one of few ways that large portions of money could be laundred and invested in a value good. And about 15% of the houses here are for sale, public sale.
    Most people don’t invest in the stock market here, as this is seen as an extention of the corrupt status quo (which makes senses as 89% of directors are on the board of their direct competitors) they just kept on building houses eventhough the population is greying at the fastest rate in Europe. On the other side of the coin, the Benettons, Berlusconis, Agnelli’s etcetera got 40% richer at the end of the 2009 stockmarket.. it is more likely to assume that Italy as a whole became about 30% more poor in 2009.
    Greece did some funny things with creative bookkeeping.. but the thing is, that not only did the Italian government do the same, most of the provinces here did so as well. Which means that there are at least 750-800 billion euro’s in debts being registered as assets, which is on top of a national debt of somewhat more than 2 trillion euro. That’s rather a strange valuation for the ‘goodwill’ of owing someone something..
    The problem is that the government can’t really do something about it, publically, because the Standards & Poors ratings work with the information a country presents. Which means, that if Greece had continued messing around and generating false numbers, they would never had gotten a negative rating. That is fair to some extend, taking in mind local taste. But it also means there are large countries which are “too big to fail” and which cannot afford addressing the internal rot because it will bring the euro down.
    Greece, Ireland, Portugal, the majority of the economical activity is all concentrated around a very small number of cities, this makes it easy to default and bounce back.. but what’s going to happen when Italy turns out to be the I in PIGS?

  • Chris Barry

    It will likely be an expanding and contracting union over time where member countries fall in and out of the established requirements for membership.

  • Chris Skinner

    Thanks for the comments. I’ll reserve my elaboration until October 13th, when the report is released – to avoid skewing the results – but this is great input.
    Chris