Fixing the banks and getting out of the crisis

Financial markets are still not regulated enough and it is time that those who helped cause the crisis help fix it – and are held responsible. The regulation of financial markets is one of our main priorities to ensure we avoid a similar crisis.

Financial market and interest rates  

Greed, excessive risk-taking, poor regulation and distorted incentives caused a catastrophe in 2008 and we’re still paying the price. Better regulation of the financial sector can build a more stable financial system, outlaw extreme risk-taking, cut speculation and end the bonus culture.

  • We want to see smarter, stricter financial regulation and strong supervisory authorities to make sure the financial sector serves the needs of businesses and citizens.
  • Unfairly high interest rates are bankrupting struggling countries and keeping Europe in recession.  Conservative governments have failed to act, but with serious commitment across Europe we can drive interest rates down – through Eurobonds and help from the European Central Bank – and give countries the breathing space they need for reforms.

Taxation

A fair tax system can close the loopholes and the tax havens, bringing in billions of euros to cut budget deficits and finance training and investment, research and development.

  • We want a European Financial Transaction Tax (a ‘Robin Hood tax’) to raise €80-200 billion a year.
  • Tax evasion costs EU governments €1 trillion per year! Closing loopholes and fighting tax havens can give a huge boost to financial and economic recovery, reduce inequality and ensure that hard work and creativity bring rewards.

Budgeting for growth

Crash dieting is not the answer! Public debt and deficit levels need to be properly controlled, but when public spending is cut too far and too fast, it inflicts massive social damage and actually deepens the recession. We want a realistic strategy that balances the books while letting the economy grow and protecting citizens.

  • The European budget (at just 1% of overall European GDP) is vital to boost public investment, for example in growth, jobs, research, innovation and infrastructure. We want the budget to focus on the industries, skills and technologies of the future and on creating decent, secure jobs and closing the gap between rich and poor regions.
  • EU funds invested in the poorest regions lead to full order books for manufacturers and businesses in the richer countries, so all parts of Europe benefit. A Europe of solidarity, investment and  sustainable growth is a win-win  story