The financial reforms in the economies of Eastern and Central Europe have created institutions which are becoming increasingly integrated into the world economy. This book examines aspects of the emerging capital markets and financial developments in the area in a comparative assessment and highlights aspects of these developments which are not present in the developed capital markets of Western Europe, Asia or North America. The first part of the book presents, through case studies, the transition process as experienced in 11 countries. It outlines the role of monetary policy in macroeconomic stabilization, the characteristics of banking systems, the transfer of corporate ownership through privatization, the dynamics of exchange-related trading and the importance of international funding. In the second part, the contributors present an in-depth analysis focusing on specific issues, including market efficiency, financial risk, a comparative assessment of central bank independence, foreign debt settlement and the privatization process.