Is the Euro “Dangerously High”?

Jean-Claude Juncker’s view that the euro is “dangerously high” isn’t shared by the European Central Bank (ECB). As long as this is the case, the single currency may continue to defy fundamentals and act as an unwelcome headwind for an economy still struggling to break out of recession.

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Euro-Area Periphery Faces More Pain to Complete Rebalancing

Most peripheral euro-area countries have significantly improved their competitiveness recently, but more needs to be done. With currency devaluation ruled out, further downward pressure on labor costs is likely, which will probably deepen and prolong recessions and interfere with fiscal adjustment.

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Greece Still Needs a Long-Term Growth Plan

Even by the standards of the sovereign-debt crisis, the provisional agreement reached yesterday by euro-area finance ministers and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on a second Greek rescue package looks like a messy fudge. It is clear that Greece’s euro-area partners are determined to avoid a near-term euro-area exit, but a long-term solution will require [...]

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Euro Area Still in Denial about Failure in Greece

Despite the Greek government’s best efforts, last night’s meeting of euro-area finance ministers failed to approve the release of new funding. We think it’s only a matter of time before Greece gets its money. But the latest delay reflects deep disagreement about how to reduce current unsustainable debt levels. Until the euro area addresses this [...]

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Greece Gains Some Breathing Space

Today, New Democracy (ND) leader Antonis Samaras will try to form a government. If he succeeds, an immediate disaster scenario will have been avoided. The question is: for how long? 

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Greek Election Will Be a Watershed in the Euro Crisis

As Greek voters prepare to go to the polls on Sunday, we are approaching a pivotal stage in the sovereign-debt crisis—and, perhaps, in the post-war history of European economic and political integration.

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What Will Happen if Greece Leaves the Euro Area?

With party leaders failing to set aside their differences, Greece is set to hold another general election on June 17. The outcome is hard to predict, but one thing is clear: a Greek exit from the euro area is now a possibility that investors need to take very seriously. 

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Latest Deal Postpones Greece’s Day of Reckoning

The second rescue package for Greece that was agreed upon yesterday by euro-area finance ministers should reduce the probability of a near-term Greek bankruptcy and possible euro exit. But substantial implementation risks remain and the latest analysis by the country’s own lenders suggests that more needs to be done in the medium term.

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Private Sector Involvement Is Unlikely in Second Portuguese Bailout

With 10-year Portuguese bond yields above 14% (see Display), the market is suggesting that Portugal will soon need another bailout from its euro-area partners. While we share the market’s skepticism about the sustainability of Portugal’s public sector finances, we doubt that policymakers at this stage will seek to impose losses on private sector creditors, as [...]

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Excessive Leverage: The Root of All Financial Crises

Today’s European sovereign-debt crisis has much in common with other seemingly unrelated crises of the past decade. The common element? Too much leverage.

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