The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
Most financial institutions in the European Union (EU) are still based in one country, but a number of large financial institutions (LCFI) have systemic cross-border exposures. The paper explains how, despite much progress, nationally-segmented supervisory frameworks and national accountability for financial stability hinder optimization across borders of banks' operations and efficient and effective LCFI supervision. A full-fledged EU-level prudential regime that operates along-side national regimes--a European Banking Charter (EBC)--could harness market forces to establish a level playing field for financial sector competition, while plugging some significant gaps in Europe's financial stability framework without concentrating excessive powers.