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Stefania Baroncelli

Chapter 8 has the legality of the ECB at its heart and examines judicial review of ECB measures. The author refers to older ECJ cases on ECB independence, and the more recent national challenges to ECB monetary policy, but her analysis mostly focuses on two major rulings delivered by the ECJ - on preliminary references made by the Bundesverfassungsgericht (the Constitutional Court of Germany) - on the legality of the OMT and the QE programs: the Gauweiler and Weiss judgments. As the author explains, the fact that the ECB has been subject to so many legal actions is unusual in comparative perspectives, since in most other constitutional democracies action by central banks tend to be shielded from judicial review on standing grounds. Nevertheless, she stresses that the ECJ has fully validated the action of the ECB, effectively adopting a deferential standard of review, which is consonant with the greater technical expertise that the ECB has compared to the other EU institutions.