On 8 June 2020, the General Board of the European Systemic Risk Board (ESRB) agreed to a second set of actions to address the challenges stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic. These macro-prudential actions refer to the five priority areas previously identified by the ESRB:

  1. Implications for the financial system of guarantee schemes and other fiscal measures to protect the real economy. The ESRB has decided to establish an EU-wide framework to monitor the financial stability implications of the support measures that have been introduced. With this framework, the ESRB intends to complement and enhance what is being done at the national level by fostering the exchange of experiences and the early identification of cross-sectoral and cross-border issues. The ESRB has also adopted a recommendation that introduces minimum requirements for national monitoring and establishes a framework for reporting to the ESRB.
  2. Market illiquidity and implications for asset managers and insurers. The ESRB highlights that the monitoring of liquidity risks in the insurance sector needs to be improved.
  3. Impact of large-scale downgrades of corporate bonds on markets and entities across the financial system. The ESRB, together with its member institutions, continue to monitor developments in the corporate bond market, including possible implications of large-scale corporate bond downgrades across the financial system.
  4. System-wide restraints on dividend payments, share buy-backs and other pay-outs. The ESRB supports the previous initiatives of the European Central Bank, the European Banking Authority, the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority and national authorities by issuing a recommendation on the restriction of distributions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  5. Liquidity risks arising from margin calls. The ESRB has issued a recommendation aimed at: (i) limiting cliff effects in relation to the demand for collateral, including client clearing services and non-centrally cleared markets; (ii) enhancing central counterparty stress test scenarios for the assessment of future liquidity needs; (iii) limiting liquidity constraints related to margin collection; and (iv) promoting international standards related to the mitigation of pro-cyclicality in the provision of client clearing services and insecurities financing transactions. The recommendation is published together with a background report.