The European Monetary Union and OCA Theories: A Common Currency Awaiting a Real Economic Union

  • Enrico Marelli
  • Marcello Signorelli


After a brief description of the functioning of the European Monetary System and its crisis, this chapter analyses the objectives and content of the Maastricht Treaty, including the convergence criteria for admission to the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU). The judgment on the EMU’s construction is made by considering the Optimal Currency Area theories. The chapter also includes an account of empirical evidence on ‘real convergence’ – which is juxtaposed to ‘nominal’ and ‘institutional’ convergence – in the Eurozone, compared with the European Union as a whole. The empirical investigation is completed by analysing cycle correlations, sensitivity to the average EU cycle and trade intensity.


European Monetary System (EMS) Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) Optimal Currency Area (OCA) theories Real convergence Nominal convergence Institutional convergence 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Enrico Marelli
    • 1
  • Marcello Signorelli
    • 2
  1. 1.University of BresciaBresciaItaly
  2. 2.University of PerugiaPerugiaItaly

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