Banking

Europe's Broken Banks Need the Urge to Merge

Europe needs fewer, more focused financial firms.

Selling German bank stocks could have made this guy rich.

Photographer: Krisztian Bocsi/Bloomberg

The recent flurry of excitement at the idea that Germany's Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank contemplated a merger reinforces the view that the European finance industry is ripe for consolidation. Banking leaders themselves talk about the need for mergers in an overbanked market, but no one among the bigger banks seems to want to go first. If something doesn't change soon, Europe won't have a banking industry worthy of the name.

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