Before the crash: Ambling through the ‘archives’

May 31, 2012

Moving from one house or apartment to another is mainly onerous, but one of its few pleasures is coming across papers you have not seen for years: the adventure stories your grown son wrote when he was eight years old or the book report he wrote on William Shakespeare’s Richard III when he was 10.

Risk of contagion if Greece exits euro: WestLB

May 11, 2012

What happens if Greece leaves the euro? No one can say for sure. But John Davies at WestLB, finds it difficult to envision a benign outcome.

Germany’s zero bound

May 4, 2012

The ultra-low rates offered by two-year German bonds reflect just how worried investors have become about the euro zone debt crisis and the continent’s sluggish economy.

“There are human beings involved” in austerity debate

May 3, 2012

The inventors of democracy and its greatest 18th century champions both go to the polls this weekend. Greek and French voters will try to elect governments they hope will help release their economies from the grips of the euro zone debt crisis.

Netherlands at core of the crisis

April 23, 2012

The Netherlands has become the latest country to come into the firing line of the euro zone crisis.

U.S. housing slump: Six years and counting

April 17, 2012

Just as Americans begin to regain some hope that the housing sector might be on the mend, we get another batch of data showing the sector’s not quite there yet.

For insatiable markets, Spanish steps fall short

April 6, 2012

So much for the lasting power of the ECB’s 1 trillion euros in cheap bank loans. Spain is again looking like a basket-case, more because of market dynamics rather than any particular policy misteps.

Ireland’s uneasy market comeback

March 26, 2012

Ireland, hailed as the poster child of euro zone austerity, is hoping to get back into the long-term bond market this year. But analysts say a hasty return could do more harm than good.

A recovery in Europe? Really?

March 8, 2012

There’s a sense of relief among European policymakers that the worst of the euro zone’s crisis appears to have passed. Olli Rehn, the EU’s top economic officials, talked this week of a “turning of the tide in the coming months”. Mario Draghi, the president of the European Central Bank, speaks of “sizeable progress” and “a reassuring picture”.

France: More like Italy than Germany?

February 17, 2012

In the more than two years that have passed since the start of Europe’s financial crisis, France has consistently aligned itself with Germany in pushing for greater austerity in so-called “peripheral countries” like Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy. German Chancellor Angela Merkel even took the rare and somewhat awkward step of publicly campaigning for French President Nicolas Sarkozy.