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Nov 16, 2011

Spanish centre-right riding voter anger to victory

MADRID (Reuters) – Voter anger over Spain’s economic plight is certain to sweep the center-right People’s Party to an election victory on Sunday, giving it a resounding mandate to slash public spending and try to rescue the country from the euro zone crisis.

The Socialists, in power for seven years, are set to become the latest political victims of Europe’s economic woes as voters punish them for failing to heal the sickly economy or fix the worst unemployment rate in the European Union.

Nov 16, 2011

Spain’s cautious Rajoy thrust into crisis role

MADRID, Nov 16 (Reuters) – Mariano Rajoy, poised to
become Spain’s new prime minister after Sunday’s parliamentary
election, is a cautious moderate and unlikely crisis manager for
a country engulfed by euro zone debt troubles.

The colourless 56-year-old former interior minister
struggles to crack a smile and his huge, 17 percentage points,
lead in polls is built more on mistakes made by the Socialists,
in power the past seven years, than on his own vision.

Nov 2, 2011

Greek uncertainty galling for diligent Spain, Portugal

LISBON/MADRID, Nov 2 (Reuters) – Greece’s surprise call for
a referendum on austerity measures has been a particularly harsh
slap for Portugal and Spain, where diligent belt-tightening once
again has been undermined by factors beyond their control.

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou blindsided his own
political party and European leaders by calling on Monday for a
plebiscite on a 130 billion euro ($177.8 billion) bailout
package that imposes painful conditions for shrinking public
spending. Papandreou faced a grilling from the leaders of
Germany and France at crisis talks later on Wednesday.

Oct 17, 2011

Southern Europe’s lost generation stuck in junk jobs

MADRID (Reuters) – Sylvia knew things would be tough, but never like this.

With a masters’ degree in publicity, the 24-year-old has been working for more than two years, full-time, in an internship that is starting to feel like it will never end.

Paid 300 euros a month for the same work as the salaried public relations professionals who sit next to her, she doesn’t earn enough to move out of her parents’ house and her bus pass and lunch expenses eat up most of her pay.

Oct 6, 2011

Spain sells 4.5 bln euros in bonds, yields fall

MADRID, Oct 6 (Reuters) – Spain’s borrowing costs fell on
Thursday as it sold 4.5 billion euros of three 2014 and 2015
bonds, at the top of its target range, as European Central Bank
support on the open market eases concerns of Madrid being sucked
further into the euro zone debt crisis.

ECB buying of Spanish and Italian sovereign debt in the
secondary market has buoyed prices for those countries’ bonds,
helping lower the yields they have to offer at debt auctions, as
the two countries fight off doubts about their fiscal and
economic health.

Oct 5, 2011

Spain’s Rajoy’s hidden agenda is no big secret

MADRID, Oct 5 (Reuters) – Centre-right leader Mariano Rajoy
is headed to a landslide victory in Spain’s election in November
but he is keeping his drastic economic policies secret for fear
of changing the mood.

It is a novel election strategy but analysts believe voters
are so keen to replace the outgoing Socialist government that
they will trust Rajoy without fully knowing what are expected to
be painful austerity measures.

Sep 27, 2011

People’s Party plans more Spanish banking reform

MADRID, Sept 27 (Reuters) – The People’s Party, expected to
oust the Socialists in a November election in Spain, will enact
fresh financial sector reform immediately, forcing banks to
write down property holdings and mop up bad loans, a top party
official said.

The Socialists, in power for eight years, have already
pushed weak savings banks to merge with each other, find new
investors and significantly boost capital as Spain tries to
persuade investors its financial system is healthy.

Jul 19, 2011

Exclusive – Spain’s Rajoy readies post-election “shock plan”

MADRID (Reuters) – Spain’s centre-right opposition leader Mariano Rajoy will implement an economic “shock plan” if he wins a general election that could come within months, senior advisers and members of his Popular Party have told Reuters.

Rajoy, who polls show will be Spain’s next prime minister, anticipates strikes and protests in his first year in office, but not enough to derail an intensive reform agenda.

Jul 19, 2011

Spain’s Rajoy readies post-election “shock plan”

MADRID, July 19 (Reuters) – Spain’s centre-right opposition
leader Mariano Rajoy will implement an economic “shock plan” if
he wins a general election that could come within months, senior
advisers and members of his Popular Party have told Reuters.

Rajoy, who polls show will be Spain’s next prime minister,
anticipates strikes and protests in his first year in office,
but not enough to derail an intensive reform agenda.

Jul 9, 2011

Spain Socialist candidate plays to left but vows austerity

MADRID (Reuters) – Spain’s Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba courted disillusioned leftist voters on Saturday after the ruling Socialists anointed him candidate for prime minister in an uphill battle to retain power.

In a televised speech, Rubalcaba said bank profits should finance job creation and proposed reviving a tax on the wealthy, although he stressed he would maintain austerity measures to cut Spain’s deficit.

    • About Fiona

      "Fiona Ortiz is Reuters' chief correspondent for Spain. She has also lived and worked as a journalist in Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Costa Rica, Guatemala and Portland, Oregon."
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