Monday, February 22, 2010

Why Greece matters

Good column by Washington Post economist Robert Samuelson about the economic situation in Greece and how it is affecting the euro. In a nutshell if Greece had its own currency it would be falling in value and interest rates would be rising reflecting the growing risk that Greece will default on bonds that must be paid off this spring. Other EU countries have to decide whether to bailout the Greeks and thus stabilize the euro versus cutting them loose to revert to their own currency. Greece's situation is not unique to the EU; it is shared by Portugal, Ireland, Italy and Spain (the five countries now have the unwanted acronym of PIIGS). States such as California and Michigan may very well be creating a similar problem here in the US in the very near term.

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