The finance ministers of Germany, France, Italy and possibly Spain are expected to meet in Berlin to discuss banking union. Two sources told us Dutch Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem – who chairs the Eurogroup of euro zone finance ministers — should attend as will EU commissioner Michel Barnier and key European Central Bank policymaker Joerg Asmussen.
There is a possibility, however, that a violent storm that has hit Germany could prevent the participants reaching Berlin. If they make it, they will bid to come closer to a solution on a planned European resolution mechanism to deal with troubled banks ahead of a full meeting of euro zone finance ministers next week to help fashion a deal by the end of the year.
The last time the ministers met it didn’t go so well.
Germany is cool to the original idea that the euro zone clubs together to tackle frail banks. Instead, Berlin wants losses imposed on bank creditors, including bondholders, once stress tests due next year expose any weak links.
The reluctance of Germany, which is worried that it will shoulder much of the burden if weaker countries turn to the bloc’s emergency fund, put it at odds with France, which wants a euro zone-wide safety net.
Thomas Weiser, the head of the band of experts who work behind the scenes for the Eurogroup, is speaking on the same subject in Dublin and Irish Finance Minister Michael Noonan is in London.