If economic integration fosters expectations of institutional and productivity convergence, then international capital flows should be driven by consumption-smoothing anticipation of future income growth patterns as well as by factor-intensity equalization. In the euro area,
financial market integration eased accumulation of international imbalances but does not appear to have resulted in the expected institutional convergence. The resulting crisis casts doubt on the sustainability not only of international imbalances, but also of the current
configuration of the European integration process. A robust and coherent European market and policy integration process would require supranational implementation of the
behavioral constraints and contingent redistribution schemes that traditionally operate within National socio-economic systems, and have been weakened in recent experience by uncoordinated policy competition.