This paper investigates the motivations that led policy-makers to delegate macroprudential authorities to newly created independent systemic regulatory authorities (SRAs). Three case studies are examined: the US Financial Stability Oversight Council, the European Systemic Risk Board and the UK’s Financial Policy Committee. Policy-makers’ motivations are captured by examining the specific institutional features of the newly created SRAs and by tracing the legislative debates that surrounded their creation. The findings of this empirical analysis call into question several of the conventional claims that are used to justify delegation to technocratic agencies from the functionalist and ideational scholarship. Given the limitations of the explanations based on efficiency considerations and socialisation of welfare losses, this paper suggests that the delegation of powers to SRAs was ultimately motivated by what is referred to as the ‘logic of symbolic politics.’ It is argued that the main motivation that emerges from the legislative debates for delegating this important task is that the SRAs provided a quick institutional ‘fix’ to signal to the public that in the wake of the international crisis of 2007– 2009, policy-makers were redressing regulatory mistakes made prior to and during the crisis that had caused a severe deterioration of public’s wealth.

The symbolic politics of delegation: macroprudential policy and independent regulatory authorities

Moschella, Manuela
2017

Abstract

This paper investigates the motivations that led policy-makers to delegate macroprudential authorities to newly created independent systemic regulatory authorities (SRAs). Three case studies are examined: the US Financial Stability Oversight Council, the European Systemic Risk Board and the UK’s Financial Policy Committee. Policy-makers’ motivations are captured by examining the specific institutional features of the newly created SRAs and by tracing the legislative debates that surrounded their creation. The findings of this empirical analysis call into question several of the conventional claims that are used to justify delegation to technocratic agencies from the functionalist and ideational scholarship. Given the limitations of the explanations based on efficiency considerations and socialisation of welfare losses, this paper suggests that the delegation of powers to SRAs was ultimately motivated by what is referred to as the ‘logic of symbolic politics.’ It is argued that the main motivation that emerges from the legislative debates for delegating this important task is that the SRAs provided a quick institutional ‘fix’ to signal to the public that in the wake of the international crisis of 2007– 2009, policy-makers were redressing regulatory mistakes made prior to and during the crisis that had caused a severe deterioration of public’s wealth.
Settore SPS/04 - Scienza Politica
Delegation; ESRB; FPC; FSOC; macroprudential policy; regulatory agencies
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11384/64074
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