The Great Debate UK

from MacroScope:

Can Greek public opinion be turned?

By Mike Peacock
May 16, 2012

So we’ve got the fresh Greek elections we expected and markets, despite the inevitability that we would get here, have reacted with some alarm. European stocks have shed  around 1 percent, and the harbour of German Bunds is pushing their futures price up in early trade. The Greeks will try to form a caretaker government today to see them through to elections expected on June 17.

Nuclear plants aren’t the only meltdown worry in Germany

June 13, 2011

Having just got back from a couple of days in Hannover, I couldn’t help but be struck by the dominance of the local news agenda by two topics – and the almost complete absence of a third. Taking the British media at face value, I might have expected a city in near-panic, with people nervously scanning menus for safe dishes to order and maybe antiseptic handwashing facilities being hurriedly installed in public places. In fact, the town looked exactly as I remembered it from my last visit a few years ago, with E.coli rarely mentioned either in conversation or on the 24-hour TV news channels.

from Felix Salmon:

The US won’t default, even if the debt ceiling stays

By Felix Salmon
January 13, 2011

Greg Ip makes a very important point today, which I haven't seen made anywhere else*: even if the US debt ceiling isn't lifted, that doesn't mean the government will default.

from Felix Salmon:

Greece: The bull case

By Felix Salmon
September 1, 2010

Back in April, I noted with respect to Greece that "the bear case is terrifying, and the bull case is very hard to articulate". So it's extremely useful to have a clearly-articulated paper from the IMF, entitled "Default in Today’s Advanced Economies: Unnecessary, Undesirable, and Unlikely", which puts the bull case much more vividly than I've seen it before.

from Breakingviews:

Greek default should not be taboo topic

By Edward Hadas
April 6, 2010

Forget about Greece for a moment. Just think about country X, which has lived well beyond its means for years thanks to loans from inattentive or foolishly optimistic lenders. When the crunch comes, the X-people will have to cut back on spending. And the X-lenders will generally suffer from the famous rule of banking: "Can't pay, won't pay."

from Breakingviews:

Has Greece delivered another Trojan horse?

January 14, 2010

Greece's economic statistics are dubious in more than one sense. The country probably bent its figures to get into the euro zone. Now, the EU is angry that Greece has not been straightforward about the size of its fiscal deficit. But the greater doubts concern how an uncompetitive, highly indebted, weakly governed country can live with a strong currency such as the euro.