Explaining governmental preferences on Economic and Monetary Union Reform
European Union Politics
Pages / Article-Number
Economic Monetary Union, European integration, financial crisis, preference formation, public opinion
This article examines the extent to which economic or political factors shaped government preferences in the reform of the Economic Monetary Union. A multilevel analysis of European Union member governments' preferences on 40 EMU reform issues negotiated between 2010 and 2015 suggests that countries' financial sector exposure has significant explanatory power. Seeking to minimize the risk of costly bailouts, countries with highly exposed financial sectors were more likely to support solutions involving high degrees of European integration. In contrast, political factors had no systematic impact. These findings help to enhance our understanding of preference formation in the European Union and the viability of future EMU reform.