Chief Correspondent, Germany
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Dec 16, 2011

Fitch: comprehensive euro zone deal “beyond reach”

ROME/BERLIN, Dec 16 (Reuters) – The credit rating
agency Fitch said on Friday it thought a comprehensive solution
to the euro zone’s debt crisis was beyond reach, putting six
euro zone economies including Italy on watch for potential
near-term downgrades.

It reaffirmed France’s top-notch triple-A rating but even
here said the outlook was now negative, meaning it could be
downgraded within two years.

Dec 16, 2011

Italy PM warns policymakers against dividing Europe

ROME/BERLIN, Dec 16 (Reuters) – Italy’s prime minister
urged European policymakers on Friday to beware of dividing the
continent with their efforts to fight its debt crisis, warning
against a “short-term hunger for rigour” in some countries, in a
swipe at Germany.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel gained some respite from
domestic pressure for a tougher line in the euro zone crisis
when Eurosceptics hostile to more bailouts lost a referendum in
her junior coalition partner, the Free Democrats, aimed at
blocking a permanent rescue fund.

Dec 16, 2011

German FDP eurosceptics lose party vote on euro

BERLIN, Dec 16 (Reuters) – Eurosceptics in Germany’s
Free Democrats (FDP) lost an internal party vote on a permanent
euro zone bailout scheme, the leader of the ruling coalition
party said on Friday, removing a threat to Chancellor Angela
Merkel’s leadership and European policy.

“The FDP remains clearly focused on a pro-European stance,”
party leader Philipp Roesler said, adding that a failure to meet
the quorum of a third of party members made the referendum
questioning the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) invalid.

Dec 13, 2011

Merkel’s post-summit glow fades in Germany

BERLIN (Reuters) – Praise for Angela Merkel’s tough negotiating skills in forcing through a deal on European budget rules has given way to warnings that the chancellor risks using up her political credit among Germans.

Britain’s rejection of last week’s agreement, backed by the EU’s other 26 leaders, gave Merkel respite from foreign media caricatures casting her as a Kaiser or Fuehrer intent on dominating Europe.

Dec 13, 2011

Analysis: Merkel’s post-summit glow fades in Germany

BERLIN (Reuters) – Praise for Angela Merkel’s tough negotiating skills in forcing through a deal on European budget rules has given way to warnings that the chancellor risks using up her political credit among Germans.

Britain’s rejection of last week’s agreement, backed by the EU’s other 26 leaders, gave Merkel respite from foreign media caricatures casting her as a Kaiser or Fuehrer intent on dominating Europe.

Dec 2, 2011

Germany’s Merkel fights for euro, Cameron for UK

PARIS/BERLIN (Reuters) – British Prime Minister David Cameron threatened on Friday to obstruct a Franco-German drive for swift change to the European Union’s treaty, a sign of the difficulty leaders will face transforming Europe to to save the euro.

France and Germany are reaching a consensus that euro zone economies need to be bound more closely together if the single currency is to survive, which could mean changing the EU treaty to give Brussels powers to punish spendthrift euro states.

Dec 2, 2011

Merkel fights for euro she says is stronger than D-mark

BERLIN/PARIS, Dec 2 (Reuters) – German Chancellor
Angela Merkel vowed on Friday to defend the euro, which she said
was stronger than Germany’s former deutschemark, but she warned
that Europeans faced a long, hard “marathon” to restore lost
credibility.

“Resolving the sovereign debt crisis is a process and this
process will take years,” Merkel said in an address to
parliament.

Dec 2, 2011

Merkel says “marathon” crisis will take years to solve

BERLIN, Dec 2 (Reuters) – The euro zone debt crisis
cannot be solved overnight, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said
on Friday, urging instead a long-term approach that relies on
tougher fiscal rules being enshrined in European treaties.

A week before European leaders meet in Brussels for what is
being seen as a make-or-break summit for the 13-year-old single
currency bloc, Merkel once again rejected the idea of joint euro
zone bonds and cautioned against steps that might hurt the
credibility of the European Central Bank.

Nov 28, 2011

Germany, France press for coercive euro zone debt rules

BERLIN/BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Germany and France stepped up a drive on Monday for coercive powers to reject euro zone members’ budgets that breach EU rules, and the United States kept up the drumbeat of demands from the rest of the world for decisive action.

The OECD rich nations’ economic think-tank said the European Central Bank should cut interest rates and abandon its reluctance to step up purchases of government bonds in order to restore confidence in the euro area, which now posed the main risk to the world economy.

Nov 28, 2011

Germany, France eye euro zone pact, markets hopeful

BERLIN/BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Germany and France stepped up a drive on Monday for intrusive powers to reject national budgets in the euro zone that breach EU rules, as a market rout of European debt eased temporarily on hopes of outside help for Italy and Spain.

The OECD rich nations’ economic think-tank said the European Central Bank should cut interest rates and step up its purchases of government bonds to restore confidence in the euro zone, which it said now posed the main risk to the world economy.

    • About Stephen

      "I moved to Berlin to run our German political, economic and general news file in 2010 after nearly four years as chief correspondent in Rome covering Berlusconi, the L'Aquila earthquake, G8 summit and Vatican. I was Nordic and Baltic bureau chief for 3-1/2 years and bureau chief of southern Latin America, based in Buenos Aires, for eight years including the Argentine collapse in 2001/2002. My first assignments for Reuters were in Spain, Portugal and our HQ in London. Before Reuters I worked for the Financial Times Group."
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