November 7, 2012 |
ATHENS, GREECE - Greece's coalition government faces a crucial test in Parliament as unions on Monday launched three days of escalating strikes against austerity proposals that must win lawmakers' support if the debt-crippled country is to get more aid and stave off bankruptcy. The conservative-led coalition that has governed Greece since June on Monday presented the country's fourth austerity package in more than two years to Parliament. The drastic spending cuts and tax hikes demanded by the country's bailout creditors aim to save some $17.3 billion in 2013-14.
October 24, 2012 |
Greece is spiraling into the kind of decline that the United States and Germany endured during the Great Depression, showing the scale of the challenge involved in attempting to regain competitiveness through austerity. The economy shrank 18.4 percent in the last four years and the International Monetary Fund forecasts that it will contract 4 percent more in 2013 as Greece struggles to reduce debt in exchange for its $300 billion rescue programs. That's the biggest cumulative loss of output of a developed-country economy in at least three decades, coming within spitting distance of the 27 percent drop in the U.S. economy between 1929 and 1933, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis in Washington.
October 6, 2012 |
BERLIN - German Chancellor Angela Merkel will travel to Greece next week for the first time since the debt crisis erupted to meet the country's prime minister - who warned Friday that Athens will run out of money at the end of November if it doesn't receive the next part of its bailout loans. Because Germany has been instrumental in pushing Greece to make austerity cuts in exchange for its bailout loans, Merkel has routinely been the object of anger at public protests in Athens. Her photograph has been manipulated by Greek newspapers to look like a Nazi officer and a prisoner at Guantanamo Bay. Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras said Merkel's planned visit on Tuesday was good news.
September 28, 2012 |
ATHENS, Greece - Europe's fragile financial calm was shattered Wednesday as investors worried that violent anti-austerity protests in Greece and Spain's debt troubles showed that the continent still cannot contain its financial crisis. Police fired tear gas Wednesday at rioters hurling gasoline bombs and chunks of marble during Greece's largest anti-austerity demonstration in six months. The protests were part of a 24-hour general strike, the latest test for Greece's nearly four-month-old coalition government and the new spending cuts it plans to push through.
August 31, 2012 |
BERLIN - Chancellor Angela Merkel wants the Greeks to keep the euro. Her vice chancellor says it wouldn't be so bad if they abandoned the common currency. Another Merkel ally says Greece should leave the euro club within months. Merkel's image abroad may be that of Europe's determined taskmaster, but at home the picture has long been less clear: Her coalition government has become notorious for infighting over a range of issues. At first glance, the cacophony over Greece fits that picture - but it shouldn't be mistaken for policy drift.
August 26, 2012
"It was confirmation of [Ben] Bernanke's commitment to potentially do something more if the economy appears it needs it. A little whiff of positive news was enough. " - John Carey, of Pioneer Investments, Boston, on the cause of a market rally on Friday. "I want Greece to stay in the euro zone and that's what I'm working for. " - Angela Merkel after meeting Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras in Berlin. "The 787 keeps turning into a deeper pit for Boeing. " - Peter Harbison, chairman, CAPA Center for Aviation, on the troubled and expensive Dreamliner.
August 24, 2012 |
NEW YORK - Nobody ever said reading the Federal Reserve was easy. On Wednesday, the Fed appeared to suggest it was closer to taking additional steps to help the U.S. economy. Stocks rallied and finished the day well off their lows. But the prospect of Fed help seemed much less certain Thursday, and stocks fell. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 115.30 points to close at 13,057.46 - the biggest loss in more than a month and the Dow's fourth straight down day. James Bullard, president of the Fed's St. Louis bank, told CNBC that the minutes from the July 31-Aug.
August 24, 2012 |
ATHENS, Greece - Greece's premier embarked Wednesday on a diplomatic push to earn his nation more time to complete reforms and retain access to bailout loans, but a top European official said that any decision will depend on a report by international debt inspectors next month. Jean-Claude Juncker, who chairs meetings of eurozone finance ministers and is Luxembourg's prime minister, insisted that Greece must remain within the euro. Its exit from the currency used by 17 European Union countries would hurt both the country and the wider continent, he said.
August 22, 2012
MISSOURI Senate candidate Todd Akin caused a firestorm over the weekend when he explained why he believes there are no exceptions that would allow abortion, even in cases of rape: "If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down" and not get pregnant. Akin may have been referencing some of the ancient Greek texts that had similar strange views about how the human body functions. For example, people in ancient Greece believed that hysteria was caused by the womb detaching itself and wandering around the body, causing all kinds of problems.
August 3, 2012 |
If you have a sick friend whose illness could affect your own health, you might go so far as to suggest the medicine he should take. Such was the case with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, who recently paid a visit to European leaders and, in particular, his German counterpart, Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble. The Obama administration is afraid that a deepening euro crisis will damage the global economy even more than it has, which, of course, would impact American jobs.