Market Infrastructure & Payments

We provide infrastructure for payment and securities settlement, cooperate with market stakeholders to integrate financial markets in Europe, and oversee financial market infrastructure and payment instruments.

Crisis communication exercise for euro area financial market infrastructures

On 4 November 2015 an exercise was carried out to simulate a cyber-attack on a systemically important payment system (SIPS) in order to test the crisis communication procedures amongst authorities and market participants.

It involved all TARGET2 central banks, the other three SIPS located in the euro area, 29 financial market infrastructure participants, the New York-based Continuous Linked Settlement System (CLS), the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York who acted as observer, in their capacity as the overseers of CLS.

The exercise was the largest of its kind performed by the Eurosystem to date and is one element in supporting the smooth operation of payment systems.

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Providing market infrastructure

The Eurosystem has developed and currently operates the real-time gross settlement (RTGS) system, TARGET2, and the European platform for securities settlement in central bank money, TARGET2-Securities (T2S).

Integrating financial markets

The ECB and the Eurosystem foster financial market integration in Europe by contributing to more efficient euro retail payments and the realisation of the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA). We promote securities harmonisation and the safe and efficient mobilisation of collateral in the euro area via the Correspondent Central Banking Model (CCBM).

Overseeing market infrastructure

The Eurosystem performs oversight to ensure the smooth functioning of payment, clearing and settlement systems. It monitors their performance, assesses them against its objectives of safety and efficiency and, where necessary, induces change.

Market infrastructure and payments explained