The 1990s have witnessed unprecedented attempts at privatizing state owned enterprises in virtually all OECD democracies. This contribution analyzes the differences in the privatization proceeds raised by EU- and OECD-countries between 1990 and 2000. It turns out that privatizations are part of a process of economic liberalization in previously highly regulated economies as well as a reaction to the fiscal policy challenges imposed by European integration and the globalization of financial markets. In addition, institutional pluralism and union militancy yield significant and negative effects on pri-vatization proceeds. Partisan differences only emerge if economic problems are moderate, while intense economic, particularly fiscal problems foreclose differing partisan strategies.